What’s the Origin of the Word Mudik in Indonesian Language?

As the biggest Muslims Community country, Indonesia has some cultures and traditions to undergo the special month named Ramadan. Ramadan is the month for Muslims to do some worshiping activities such as praying, reading Quran and giving goodness to others.

The main activity of Ramadan is fasting. After fasting for a month in Ramadan, Muslims people would like to celebrate the triumph day named the Eid Mubarak in Syawal month.

Eid Mubarak is the special two days for Muslims people in Indonesia. Before they celebrate Eid Mubarak, Indonesian Muslims usually do some activities. One of the famous activities before Indonesian Muslims celebrate Eid Mubarak is Mudik.

Mudik is the activity for Indonesian Muslims to go back to their hometown after finding or adventuring themselves in capital city. But, what is the origin of the word ‘Mudik’?

The Origin of the Word Mudik

The origin of the word Mudik comes from some histories of the word. Mudik is the origin word from Udik. The original meaning from KBBI (Kamus Besar Bahasa Indonesia/The Official Indonesian Language Dictionary), the word Udik means berlayar, pergi; ke udik means hulu sungai, pedalaman.

Udik > berlayar, pergi = to sail, to go (verb)

Ke Udik > hulu sungai, pedalaman = to go to the headwaters or the hinterland (a place, noun)

The word Mudik is also originated from Javanese word mulih dhisik which means pulang dulu.

Mulih dhisik (Mudik > Read: MudIk) = going home

The meaning of the word Mudik can be taken from the meaning of headwaters or hinterland where people live and they decide to move to the city for the better life. Indonesia as the archipelago country has the sailing culture so that is why the meaning of Udik is to sail, to go back to hometown or hinterland.

Another word of Mudik is Pulang Kampung. Pulang Kampung and Mudik has become the original and official Indonesia term. The meaning of both words are the activity of migrants/migrant workers to return to his hometown when Indonesian people gets their holiday in the special events such as Eid Fitr or Eid Mubarak and Christmas.

As well, according to the Oxford Online Dictionary the word Mudik means inland or upstream and hilir mudik which means go and fro. The words can be concluded as return to the village or homecoming trip.  

The Mudik Traditions

The word Mudik has the function of explaining the activity before Eid Mubarak or other special event and celebration such as Christmas or Chinese New Year.

People of Indonesia will go home to their hometown meet their parents or relatives and celebrate the event together before the day of Eid Mubarak. Usually, the government of Indonesia will make holiday regulation for Mudik in 1 until 2 weeks, after that people who work in capital city or big city have to come back and work again.

Mudik has been existed since the ancient era. Majapahit Kingdom was the kingdom which applied the activity of Mudik. The tradition in Majapahit Kingdom was some royals came home to their ancestral home to respect the spirits or the parents there. Until now, Mudik has become the obligate activities every time Ramadan, Eid Mubarak, Christmas or other celebration day come.

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Example of Usage

  1. Apakah tahun ini anda Mudik? = Are you going to Mudik this year?
  2. Saya tidak Mudik tahun ini = I am not going to Mudik this year.
  3. Mau Mudik kemana dia? = Where is she going for Mudik?
  4. Saya akan pergi ke Jogja untuk Mudik = I will go to Jogja for Mudik.
  5. Tradisi Mudik adalah tradisi yang unik = Mudik is the unique tradition