SI TOU TIMOU TUMOU TOU
( Man lives to educate others )
Welcome to The Minahasa web pages.
On these pages you will find much information about the Minahasa in Northern Sulawesi (the old name for Sulawesi is 'Celebes'), Indonesia.
The Minahasa is a regency within the province of the peninsula of North Sulawesi, in Indonesia.
You may wonder why we use the saying "SI TOU TIMOU TUMOU TOU", which in the Minahasa language means: "Man lives to educate others".
This saying is the motto of the true Minahasa descendant.
'Tou' is the Minahasa word for man. 'Timou' means to live. 'Tumou' stands for to grow, to develop, to tend and to educate.
This old Minahasan life philosophy was frequently quoted by the late Dr. G.S.S.J. Ratu-Langie (known as Dr. Sam Ratulangi, 1890-1949), Minahasan philosopher, educator and a national hero of Indonesia.
The Island of Sulawesi, previously known as Celebes, lies like an orchid shaped island in the pearl chain of the Indonesian archipelago. North Sulawesi is a beautiful piece of land in the north eastern part of Sulawesi, it covers an area of 27,515 squared km that consists of four regions - Bolaang Mongondow, Gorontalo, Minahasa and the small islands of Sangihe and Talaud.
Location of the Minahasa in Indonesia
North Sulawesi is also famous for its fertile soil that has made it the home of varieties of plant and animal life both terrestrial and aquatic. Covered by the green leaves of coconut and clove plantations, the land also provides a large variety of fruit, vegetables. The fauna boasts amongst others, rare animals such as Maleo Birds, Cuscus, Babi Rusa (pig deer), Anoa (dwarf buffalo) and Tangkasii (Tarsius Spectrum).
To protect these species from extinction, a nature reserve was established. An amazing sea garden provides an excellent underwater experience. The fabulous variety of panorama and way of life of the people showing their unique traditions will considerably fascinate the visitor.
One of the most western oriented people in Indonesia, the Minahasa are Christians and friendly people. Their first contact with Europeans was with the arrival of Spanish and Portuguese spice traders. However it wasn't till the Dutch landed on their shores that they became totally Christianised. Dutch influence grew subduing indigenous traditions. "Minahasa" refers to the confederacy of tribes and existing monuments bear evidence to the ancient system of tribes and clans.
North Sulawesi is one of Indonesia's richest producers of coconut, cloves and nutmeg which all adds to its natural wealth.
The crest of the Minahasa Regency includes an owl, as the owl is the symbol for wisdom, with sharp eyes and a head capable of turning 360 degrees, and it also warns people in case of danger.
The Minahasa people consider Owls very wise. They call the owl 'Burung Manguni'. Every time someone wants to travel, they listen to the owls. The owls make two different sounds; the first means it is safe to go, and the second means it's better to stay at home. The Minahasa, people around Manado, take those warnings very seriously. They stay at home when Manguni says so.
(source: Alex van Poppel via http://www.controverscial.com)