This is my last post about our week-long trip in Indonesia and the last temple we’ve visited. I hope you were able to read my earlier posts about Bali, Yogyakarta and the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Borobudur and Prambanan.
Candi Sewu is a Buddhist temple located 800 meters from the Hindu temple Prambanan. The one responsible for the construction of Candi Prambanan, Rakai Pikatan of the Mataram Kingdom, married a Buddhist princess and Candi Sewu was constructed for her. The mix of Buddhism and Hinduism in the architectural style and other facets of the people’s traditions is highly evident not only in Yogyakarta but also in Bali. Inter-religious marriage was acceptable that even royalties were part of it. And most importantly, they were able to profess their own faith without restrictions. It is inspiring to learn that there was acceptance and tolerance despite differences even way back then. It is true we can learn a great deal from people of the past.
Here’s an excerpt about Candi Sewu from the pamphlet they handed us at the entrance of Prambanan:
The symmetrical configuration of the building symbolizes the form of universe’s harmony, a tradition followed by the Palace both in Surakarta and Yogyakarta. All buildings inside the temple complex have a rock fence and a dwarapala (a large rock statue armed with a club) guarding the entrance door. This kind of big stomached guardian rock statue also exists in the inside hall of Yogyakarta Palace.
To our surprise, we were the only ones visiting Candi Sewu at that time other than a group of 5 Indonesian boys. It was drizzling and we walked all the way from Prambanan temple to Sewu temple stopping at the ruins of Bubrah and Lumbung temples (closed from the public due to ongoing reconstructions, I guess). We also dropped by at the Archaeological Museum inside the complex.
Here’s where our Indonesia trip ends. I already miss it. It is the friendliest country I visited, so far (here’s why). Bali quenched my husband’s longing for the beach and Yogyakarta offered me a dose of history and archaeology enough for me to last until our next travel. I hope you enjoyed this series of posts the same way I enjoyed writing and sharing them to you. There will still be bits and pieces of Indonesia once in a while, perhaps in my Weekly Photo Challenge or Travel Tips.
If you are from this beautiful country, thank you.
If you haven’t been to Indonesia, I suggest to include it in your bucket list.
If you’ve been there, I’m sure you agree with me that it is a place worth returning to.
Indonesia, terima kasih!