SANGKURIANG (WESTJAVA PEOPLE STORY)
Posted by JASMANSYAH pada Agustus 20, 2008
Famous tales from “Tatar Pasundan” West Java, Indonesia.
Sangkuriang grew up strong and knew how to use bow and arrows to hunt. One day, Dayang Sumbi wanted to eat some liver. She then ordered Sangkuriang to go hunting for it. So off he went with Tumang. Sangkuriang walked for hours and hours but not a single deer was seen. He was almost desperate when he saw a wild pig passing by. Lucky him!
Sangkuriang quickly raised his bow and got ready to shoot the pig. He did not know that the wild pig was actually his grand mother, Celeng Wayung Yang.
But Tumang knew who the pig really was so he came to her rescue immediately. When Sangkuriang was about to shoot her, Tumang bit his ankle! Thus Celeng Wayung Yang escaped. How furious Sangkuriang was at Tumang. “Don’t you know how exhausted I have been today? Since you have been acting stupidly, I’ll give your liver to mother instead!” That night Sangkuriang and Dayang Sumbi feasted on a delicious liver.
Dayang Sumbi wondered why Tumang was nowhere to be found. She was infuriated to hear from Sangkuriang that the liver they had eaten was Tumang’s.
She picked up a rice ladle and smashed it on Sangkuring’s head. “Ungrateful child! Tumang was your father! You killed your own father! You must die!” Terrified, Sangkuriang made a dash for escaping his mother’s rage. He ran and ran until he could hardly remember anything.
Thus Sangkuriang began wandering in a journey full of danger. He had to face demons of all kinds who lived in the forest! But Sangkuriang was so keen that he learned fast how to conquer them.
Some of them even made friends with him and they taught him Super Human Powers to defeat the stronger ones. In the end, Sangkuriang became invulnerable that even demons were scared of him and were willingly at his service. But the demons only wandered at night so that not many humans could see the magical power of Sangkuriang.
What about Dayang Sumbi? When her anger subsided, Dayang Sumbi regretted what she had done to her son. It was not fully his fault that he killed Tumang. She had never told him that Tumang was his father, hadn’t she? Then she meditated in order that she could see her son again. She meditated incessantly that the king of Gods was pleased at her piety. He blessed her with iternal beauty.
Years flew by. One day, Sangkuriang arrived in the Galuh Kingdom, which he could not remember anything of, neither his house nor his mother. All that rang in his mind was that his father was a dog.
While Sangkuriang was walking in the forest, he came across a figure of a radiantly beautiful woman. He was soon attracted by her and so was she by him. None of them realized that they were mother and son. Yes, the woman was indeed Dayang Sumbi. Her eternal beauty did not fade away; it had made her even more beautiful for years.
They both fell in love. But something told Dayang Sumbi that the man she was in love with was her own son. Her suspicion proved right when she saw the scar on Sangkuriang’s head. She immediately told him the truth but Sangkuriang had been blinded by passion. Nothing could keep him from marrying her!
Dayang Sumbi tried unsuccessfully to make him come to his senses. Eventually, she agreed, on one condition. He was to build a big ark and a lake before dawn broke. She thought he could not possibly do it and hoped that he would give up.
Unexpectedly, Sangkuriang agreed. And with his magical power, he gathered his armies of demons and together they made plans to build an ark and a lake within one night.
First of all, Sangkuriang & his demonic army went to a hill nearby and cut down trees for the ark. They cut down so many trees that nothing but tree stumps remained. People hence called the hill “Bukit Tunggul” mountain. Branches and leaves were thrown to an area which is now called “Burangrang” mountain.
Once it was done, Sangkuriang soon began to dam up the Citarum river using the huge logs of wood he had cut. It worked. Gradually water came together to make up a lake! Now, the giant ark. It would be completed shortly, thought he.
Dayang Sumbi feared to see that Sangkuriang nearly finished his tasks. She was then urged to ruin his plan. She spreaded out and waved large red clothes on the horizon to trick him into believing that dawn had broken.
She succeeded! Thinking that morning came soon, the demons ran away and abandoned their almost finished work.
Sangkuriang was terribly furious that he kicked the ark until it went upside down! Still displeased at his failure, he ran after his mother, persisted to get her. But poor Sangkuriang. He slipped and fell into the lake while doing so. No one ever saw him again since.
NOw? Sangkuriang was never seen and neither was Dayang Sumbi. The lake he made has turned into today’s Bandung, which is no longer as beautiful as it used to be. But the ark still be seen today. It is now known as the “Tangkuban Perahu”. Well, that’s what people say…