The Unique Barong Temple

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When the midday had already passed, my trip this time was visiting Barong Temple which is located in Sambirejo Village, Prambanan, Sleman Regency in Jogjakarta. As usual, I had to put down my name on the provided guess book in the security station. The security doesn’t only watch out the temple area, but also quite knowledge to tell the history of Barong Temple.

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My first impression looking the temple was weird because the design of the temple area is unique; it’s like a blockhouse, and the main temple isn’t on the center, like other ones. Starting my exploration this time, I had to return to the back side og the security station, because the temple’s entrance faces the cliff.

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Barong Temple has 3 terraces. The first one is profane, the second is called semi profane, while, the last one, we had to go through stairs and a small entrance. The last terrace is the highest point, and it’s sacral, because the two main temples are used to praise gods; Wisnu and His wife, Dewi Laksmi or known as Dewi Sri (a goddess bringing fertility in agriculture). Perhaps, the land wasn’t an arable one or dry, thus, they wanted the land became arable after praising Wisnu and Dewi Sri.

Based on information I heard on the spot, there were statues of Wisnu and Dewi Sri, but I was a little disappointed because I couldn’t see them due to saved in Balai Pelestarian Peninggalan Purbakala (BP3, or Department of Archaeological Heritage Conservation) in Sleman. Then I decided to have a nap behind the main temple where the sunshine wasn’t too strong. The breezy air of the mountain made me fell asleep for a moment to release tiredness during my trip from Jember to Jogjakarta.

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The moment I woke up, I saw a uniqueness of Kala Makara’s decoration which in the shape of the head of a lion (it’s called Barong by the local people) with its lower jaw. The head of the Barong was engraved on the top of the door or niche as a symbol of repellent of disasters. Perhaps that sculpture was the origin of the name of the temple, Candi Barong.

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