Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Cetho Temple (Candi Cetho), Religious and Exotic Temple on The Side of Mount Lawu

In Java language, cetho means clear or pure. Thriving over 1400 meters above the sea level on the slope of the Mount Lawu, Cetho Temple can only be reached by a narrow pavement road which is steep and curve. The anxiety and afraid would be paid off when you reach the temple complex. The mild mountain air and the breakthrough scenery would accompany your trip enjoying the temple.

A high gate standing elegantly under the sky will bring your memory to the temple's gates in the God's island, Bali. The gatekeeper statues look like pre historic statues. The temple, standing on a terraces land, was built at the end of the Majapahit Kingdom under the Brawijaya V reign. In one of the terraces, there is a rock stacked with a carved of the sun depicting the Majapahit's Sun, the symbol of Majapahit kingdom. The first scientific report about it was made by Van de Vlies in 1842. A.J. Bernet Kempers also doing research about it. Excavation (digging) for the purposes of reconstruction was first performed in 1928 by the Archeological Department of the Dutch East Indies. Based on the situation when the debris started to study, this temple has not aged a lot with Sukuh Temple. Location in the village temple Ceto, Gumeng Village, Sub Jenawi, Karanganyar District,

Until now, the temple complex is used by local residents who are Hindus as a place of worship and popular as a sanctuary for those in the original religion of Java / Javanese beliefs.

When he found the situation of this temple is the stone ruins on the plain fourteen-story, stretching from the west (the lowest) to the east, though currently living in 13 terrace, and the restoration carried out on the porch just nine. Structure terraces will make the emergence of allegations of cultural revival of the original ( “punden berundak”) at the time, which is synthesized by the Hindu religion. This suspicion is strengthened by the relief of the body such as the wayang kulit, similar to the description in the temple Sukuh.

The restoration is done by Humardani, Suharto’s personal assistant, in the late 1970s changed many of the original structure of the temple, although the concept berundak punden retained. This restoration was much criticized by archaeologists, given that the restoration of archaeological sites can not be done without in-depth study. The new building is the restoration of the magnificent gate in front, the buildings of the hermitage wood, statues Sabdapalon, Nayagenggong, Brawijaya V, and the phallus, and building on the top of the cube punden.

Cetho temple consists of nine levels to the railroad. Before the great gate of the temple-shaped moment, visitors find two pairs of statues guard. The first level after the gate into the temple yard. The second level is still a page and here are petilasan Ki Ageng Krincingwesi, Cetho ancestral village community.

At the third level there is a flat stone carvings on the ground depicting a giant tortoise, solar majapahit (allegedly as a symbol of Majapahit), and the symbol of phallus (penis, genitals male) 2 meters long with piercing jewelry (piercing) of type ampallang. The tortoise is a symbol of the creation of the universe while the penis is a symbol of human creation. There are representations of other animals, such as Mimi, frogs, and crabs. Animal symbols available, can be read as suryasengkala dated Saka 1373, or 1451 the modern era.

At the next level can be found at the stone rows of two adjacent terrain containing reliefs Sudhamala story excerpts, as there are in the Temple Sukuh. This story is still popular among the Java community as a basis Ruwatan ceremony. The next level includes two buildings flanking pendapa entrance of the temple. Until now, pendapa pendapa used as a place of religious ceremonies. At the seventh level of the two statues can be found on the north and south. On the north side is a statue Sabdapalon, and in the south Nayagenggong, two half-mythical figures (many who think they are actually one person) is believed to be the servants and spiritual advisor to King Brawijaya V.

At the eighth level there is a statue phallus (called “kuntobimo”) on the north side and the statue of the King Brawijaya V in the form of Mahadeva. The cult of the phallus statues, symbolizing gratitude, and hope for fertility of the earth’s abundant local. Last level (ninth) is the highest level as a place of prayer climbing. Here there is a cube-shaped stone building.

At the top of the building Cetho Temple, there is a building used in the past, as the place cleaned up before carrying out the ritual worship ceremony (patirtan). Near the temple, with a steep slope, was found again a temple complex by the surrounding community called Temple Kethek ( “Monkey Temple”).