Friday, May 16, 2014

Sacred SEX in Muslim-Buddhist Indonesia

Maya, Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly; Rebecca Henschke, Marco Werman, The World (PRI)
Sacred practices enhance intimacy (in-to-me-see), union with  partner (Tantric Yoga).

Java, Indonesia's Borobudur is the world's largest Buddhist temple (TrevThompson/flickr)
Colorful Muslim girls visit the massive infidel shrine of Indonesia's history (TrevThompson)

Next let's visit sexy Gunung Kemukus? Asian Muslim tourists at Borobudur (TrevThompson)
Elizabeth Gilbert's salvation
"Eat, pray, love" the American Elizabeth Gilbert famously advised.

She had just come back to the U.S. from Hedonistic-Catholic Italy and Hindu-Buddhist India and Bali (Indonesia).

But Islam now dominates the massive island nation. Its remaining traditionally Theravadan Buddhists will gladly tell anyone about it from Southern California (visit: Facebook,

In Indonesia, people seek "salvation" at shrine to anonymous sex
Housewife Fitri has come up to the mountain for a good Friday night out. She hooked up with Ishlam, who is here to improve the fortunes of his small business (Rebecca Henschke).
Sex, okay. Sexual misconduct, not okay.
(PRI) Every 35 days, Muslims from across Indonesia flock to a hilltop Islamic shrine in central Java. They come to find blessings and good fortune -- through a ritual that involves adulterous sex.
When they arrive at the shrine, known as ["the ritual of the hill"] Gunung Kemukus, they offer prayers and flowers at a sacred grave. Then, they find a stranger for anonymous sex.
  • Question: Didn't this "sacred [sex work]" happen in ancient Greece? In Corinth, Delphi, in Athens and even Sparta, with The Oracle (the living Goddess Pythia, like the virgin Kumari of Nepal) and the temple priestesses, who were the Greek-version of Geishas called Hetairai? The Old World knew how to live better than our Puritanical shame and guilt about sex allows us to live now in a world saturated with porn.
Undress Me (Susan Gilman)
When I arrive there, darkness is starting to shroud the hillside. By candlelight, people are sitting on mats around sacred dewadaru trees.
  • [These are not the American deodara/Asian devadaru trees, both of which are favored haunts of woodland fairies or dryads called devas in Buddhism and Hinduism, a Sanskrit word (cognate Latin deus, dÄ«vus, Spanish dios, French dieu, Proto-Indo-European deiwos), a term at the root of our English diva, deity, and divinity].
Siddhartha and deva-like maras under Bo tree
And they are sitting amidst the twisting roots of massive fig trees [like the Buddha sat under a sacred fig, Ficus religiosa or peepal, that became the Bodhi tree]. There are lots of women standing by themselves and lots of men in groups.

Pak Slamat is one of the men. He is balding, has a moustache, wears a leather jacket and glasses, and is reading from the Koran [Muslim Bible]. He's married, but hasn't told his wife he is here because she wouldn't let him come. [Ehem.] She thinks he has gone somewhere to pray [but he's really here to eat and love or just love].
Buddhist monastic follows Siddhartha's steps
"In all the rooms around here there are couples," he says. "They are small-business people, and, if you ask them, they say it works -- that before business was slow and now it's good. This is the work of Allah, through our traditional ways. I am keen to do the ritual; it's just a matter of finding someone who wants the same thing."
AUDIO (The World)
Echoes of the celestial devis, or Apsaras (Indonesian Bidadari) Angkor Wat (Andreadaddi)
History of infidelity
Pilgrims on stairway to "heaven" (Ali Lutfi)
Like tens of thousands of others, Slamat has come to be blessed in a ritual that dates back hundreds of years.
The ritual's origin is a legend about a young royal, Prince Pangeran Samodro, who was raised in the court of Demak, a Muslim sultanate on Java’s north coast. He fell in love with his stepmother, Nyai Ontrowulan. The two ran off to Gunung Kemukus [this hill, with stairs leading to the shrine], where they were discovered by soldiers from Demak and slain. Their bodies are supposedly in a grave at the shrine.
Ancient romance on walls
According to some versions of the story, the couple didn't finish having sex before they were discovered, so the ritual sex completes their union.
In another version, the ritual helps minimize the shame of their act by offering a more shameful act to [to compare it with? After all, no one brings a stepparent, taking instead an anonymous partner]. Regardless, many believe that coming to Gunung Kemukus provides a blessing that can boost one's fortune -- an incentive that seems to have special appeal for needy workers, like bus drivers, farmers, or small-market traders.
I'd do it, I'd totally do it! How much? lol
Ibu Winda is a grandmother in her early 60s and is dressed in a gold jacket with flowers, a short mini-skirt, and leather jacket. For makeup, she wears bright red lipstick and has powdered her face.

She runs a small food stall in her hometown and has been coming here for ten years. "Ever since I have come here, business has been good and life has been easier," she says. "Praise be to Allah."
I love both of you; that's why it tears me apart! Borobudur (TrevThompson/

At 10:00 pm, it's very dark, and the area around the grave is full of older people -- some women with headscarves [hijabs like they used to wear in the Islamic Republic of Iran], others with barely any clothes on, and a lot of middle-aged men in leather jackets.

Lois, my leather jacket is too tight (Family Guy)
[All this talk of leather must be a reference to a ritualized sexual fetish object picked up from the decadent West.] Everyone is starting to pair up now underneath the trees.
Sexy figurines of Borobudur
This ritual [is Islam but] isn't Islam as most would recognize it. It is a mix of Islam with earlier Hindu, Buddhist, and traditional [animistic] beliefs -- something that is typical in Indonesia, and especially Java.
"Indonesia is amazing because whatever religion comes into Indonesia, it changes its color," says Kunijoro Soeparno, a professor of sociology who’s been researching these traditions for decades. 
Into me see, see into me. Now it's your turn.
"The Islam is not just Islam like it is in Arab countries. Hinduism is different here to what it is in India. Buddhism is different from China. The Catholic Church is different from in Rome," he says. [It's just like Gilbert said -- Rome, India, Buddhist Asia -- all of the ingredients to eat, pray (ecstatically meditate), and love!] More

The most amazing thing about jungle Borobudur is not its massive size or pyramids, but its many "Time Travel Bells" (stupas, Die Glocke) with Buddhas inside at dawn (TrevThompson).
Buddhism in Indonesia
CC Liu, Dhr. Seven, Wisdom Quarterly (Wikipedia edit)
Buddhist monastics on path under a sacred Bodhi tree, Sewu Temple, Indonesia (TJP)
Buddhist Borobudur, Indonesia (TrevThompson)
Hinduism and [Hindu-saturated] Mahayana Buddhism arrived in Indonesia from India [where Indo, or Indra (Sakra) was a prominent Buddhist deity, one important to the Sailendra] in the 4th and 5th century, as trade with India intensified under the south Indian Pallava dynasty [Guide to the Temples of Java (Indonesia), Approach Guides, David Raezer and Jennifer Raezer].
From the 7th century, the powerful Srivijaya naval kingdom flourished as a result of trade and the influences of Hinduism and Buddhism that were imported with it (Indonesia: Peoples and History, Jean Gelman Taylor,  2003, Yale University Press; M.C. Ricklefs, A History of Modern Indonesia since c.1300, 2nd Ed., 1991, MacMillan).

From earthquakey Aceh in the west to Papau (not New Guinea) in the east (wiki)

Between the 8th and 10th centuries, the agricultural Buddhist Sailendra and Hindu Mataram dynasties thrived and declined in inland Java, leaving grand religious monuments such as Sailendra's Borobudur and Mataram's Prambanan. The Hindu Majapahit kingdom was founded in eastern Java in the late 13th century, and under Gajah Mada, its influence stretched over much of Indonesia [Peter Lewis, "The Next Great Empire," Futures 14 (1): 47–61, 1982].

Sewu, 2nd only to Borobudur (will-on-board)
Although Muslim traders first traveled through Southeast Asia early in the Islamic era, the earliest evidence of Islamized populations in Indonesia dates to the 13th century in northern Sumatra (Ricklefs, 1991, pp. 3-14). Other Indonesian areas gradually adopted Islam, and it was the dominant religion in Java and Sumatra by the end of the 16th century... More

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