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Kalasan Temple - Year 778 AD

Jakarta (Dreamland Library) - Located in Kalibening Village, Tirtamani, Sleman Regency, Special Region of Yogyakarta, precisely about 16 km to the east of the city of Yogyakarta. In the Kalasan Inscription it is said that this temple is also called the Kalibening Temple, in accordance with the name of the village where the temple is located.

Not far from Kalasan Temple there is a temple called Candi Sari. The two temples have similarities in the beauty of the building and the fineness of the sculpture. Another distinctive feature found only in the two temples is the use of vajralepa (bajralepa) to coat ornaments and reliefs on the outer walls.

Generally a temple was built by the king or royal authority at his time for various purposes, for example for places of worship, a residence for monks, a royal center or place for religious teaching and learning. Information about the Kalasan Temple is contained in the Kalasan Inscription written in Saka 700 (778 AD). The inscription was written in Sanskrit using the pranagari script.

In the Kalasan Inscription it is explained that the religious advisors of the House of Syailendra had suggested that Maharaja Tejapurnama Panangkarana erect a sacred building to worship the Goddess Tara and a monastery for Buddhist priests. According to the inscription of King Balitung (907 AD), what is meant by Tejapurnama Panangkarana is Rakai Panangkaran, son of King Sanjaya from the Ancient Mataram Kingdom.

Rakai Panangkaran later became the second king of the Ancient Mataram Kingdom. During the period 750-850 AD the northern region of Central Java was controlled by the kings of the Sanjaya dynasty. During the same time period the House of Syailendra was in power in the southern part of Central Java.

The division of power affected the character of the temples that were built in their respective regions at that time. The two Wangsa were finally united through the marriage of Rakai Pikatan Pikatan (838 - 851 AD) with Pramodawardhani, the son of Maharaja Samarattungga from the Syailendra Dynasty. (Source:

Ancient Cement Layer
The uniqueness of Kalasan Temple is found in its beautiful decoration and fine stone carvings. In addition, ornaments and reliefs on the outer walls are coated with a type of ancient cement called Valjralepa. The use of Valjralepa aims to protect the temple from moss and fungus.

Valjralepa also refines relief carvings and gives a golden color effect to the temple. Valjralepa layer is rarely found in the temples of the Prambanan region. In addition to the Kalasan temple, the temple that uses Valjralepa is the Sari temple. Sari Temple is a series with the construction of the Kalasan temple. Kalasan Temple is a place of worship while Sari Temple functions as a hostel.

Photo: Special

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