Tunkasina and The Origins of Fear & Evil
by Wambdi Wicasa
A long time ago, when everything was new, all children played without fear.
To some of his children Tunkasina (Grandfather) had given strong eyes, and they liked the heat of the day. For these children Tunkasina put a big light in the sky, and they ran free over the prairie.
Other children had weaker eyes. They liked to play in the leaves and in the grasses under the trees. For these children Tunkasina put a little light in the sky, and it came out, when these children woke at the end of the day.
Everyone was satisfied. Day followed night, and night came after the day. No one had to worry. Tunkasina was happy, and he always came to visit.
His work was good.
But, then, something terrible happened.
One night the little light did not show up ! ! ! ! !
Deep darkness was everywhere. The night-children went outside, but right away they were lost. They ran back and forth, and their crying woke up the whole camp. Fathers could not find their sons, and mothers could not find their daughters.
Fear shook everyone. They had never felt this way before, and they didn't know what to do. Fear was like a damp fog creeping over everyone. It chilled the bones of the worn, old men. It confused the senses of the trusted, wise men.
Everyone kept turning around and looking over his shoulder. There was great danger.
Tunkasina heard the cries of his children and the running footsteps of the parents. He also felt the danger that was threatening his children.
He rushed down from his place to see what had happened.
He looked and looked -- and THERE IT WAS ! ! ! ! The sky was empty......There was no little light in the sky.
And he began searching for her. He looked and looked.....And then he found her.
She was sleeping with another man. She had been unfaithful to him, and she had neglected his children. When he found her it was terrible. He dragged her from the bed and tore her over rocks. He beat her and pounded her. He shook her and slapped her. He punished her and he shamed her.
Then he threw her away ! ! ! ! !
That was a long time ago.
Look at her now.
You can see that she is wandering here and there in the night. And she still has the marks and the bruises on her.
She will never be the same again.
She is shamed. When she gets close to the big light, watch her. She will hide her face. And, when she is far from the big light, she will look out again.
Maybe someday Tunkasina will take her back again.
This is how Fear -- Evil -- came to the children that Tunkasina always wanted to be happy.
The Legend of Sica Hollow
by: Wambdi Wicasa
There is a place that today is called Sica Hollow. It is deep and dark, and long memories live there. Few people, except the Sisseton, know its entrance, and these people keep its story a secret.
Once it was a shelter for many camps. Quiet smokes rose up to the prairie. North Wind tried every opening into the Hollow, but the great trees held back his white breath.
Deer and antelope slipped into the folds of the Hollow. They found open water and salt, when all the earth above was hard with ice.
Great tipis lay under buffalo robes, and the old men sat every day in their meeting houses. Their bones were warm, and their pipes prayed to Ate, who had blessed them.
But a stranger came from the west into the Hollow.
His bow was broken and his moccasins were worn. He had no family. He made a sign to say his name was Hand. He was not fall, and his eyes were thin. The young girls looked at him, and something told them to be afraid.
He ate much, and did not show thanks. He laughed under his breath at the old men, and no one saw him pray. He did not smile like good men do, nor did he tell stories.
The old women said he should be sent away. But it was cold outside the Hollow, and thick ice covered the Big Stone Lake. The old men said he would go when it was warm.
After several moons the great light in the sky, the Sun, began to move back to the north. Earth began to open and let out her young. Young braves quit their winter games and crept out of the Hollow to search for fresh meat and for the eggs of water birds that flew at night from the south.
Hand was older and slyer, and he showed the young boys many tricks. He hid like a lynx in the grass. His eye drew the game to him. He was proud and laughed at the mistakes of the young men.
Around the prairie camp fire, when the old men could not hear, he said, "Why do you follow the old ways? What little glory do you have? In the dark of the night I can bring you to big kills that will make you warriors, feared by everyone. You will be great chiefs and wear scalps at your belts. Not the tails of rabbits. Will you listen to me, and keep my secrets away from the council fires?"
It was spring, and the young braves' hearts were beating for the beautiful maidens hidden in their mothers' tipis. A great kill would prove manhood, and the maidens would surrender to marriage.
"Listen, then, to me and prepare your war clubs. Soon the Valley trail will be dusty with camps moving north to the Lakes of Rice. If you follow me, you will strike many coups, and you will have many eagle feathers in your hair. You will be men, not old skeletons who sit and dream in the lodges."
This talk stirred the blood of the youths, and they made war clubs and waited. Every dawn they watched the Valley in order to make their first kill.
And it was easy.
The people of the HoIlow had a always been good. The Camps who passed them sent signals of friendship and slept safe on the open earth.
Now no more. Hand had taught the boys to strike.
Travelers woke to wail over their dead. They ran for their lives into the tall grass, holding their hands over the mouths of the little ones. Blood ran everywhere. It fell into the River, and even today this River is called Red.
The horror spread into the Hollow. Children ran for fear when they saw the dripping scalps. Women and girls spat on the tracks where the boys walked. The old men called for a Council and for the Medicine Man.
"How can we make up for what our Sons have done? How can we wash our Hollow from this crime? What will be our Sacrifice? We want our Hollow to be as it was long ago.
Wicasa Wakan listened to the old men. He went to his own lodge to listen to Wakantanka. He sat with his whistle and rattle and burning sweetgrass. He did not sleep, but his eyes were closed. He waited for Thunderer to bring him a message.
And Hand did not sleep. He and his killers lit a big fire in the middle of the camp. They leaped and killed again and again. They bragged and shouted to the girls, "Lift up the tipi walls and follow us out into the grass. Your children will have our blood in them and everyone will tremble when they call out."
But the camp listened only to the Holy Man and prayed with him. An evil had come into their Peace, and only Thunderer could cleanse it from them.
A wind stirred . The whistle and rattle in the lodge stilled. Ate, Father, had heard his people. He had accepted their sacrifice. His messenger was coming.
Through the smoke holes women saw the dark wings of Thunderer. A flash and then another come from his eyes.
Sudden fear touched the shoulders of Hand. He crouched and shook like a water reed. Madness took him, but he could not escape. He ran and ran, but the wings of Thunderer beat him back into the flood that rained from the cloud.
Vines reached out for him and took him by his ankles. The water rose to his screaming mouth and to his gaping eyes. He was too evil to cry for mercy, and the talons of Thunderer ripped out his sight, so he would never see the Happy Hunting Ground.
Wakantanka did not take all the sacrifice offered to him by his people in the Hollow. Most sat in their tipis and went to God with a prayer.
But one was saved. By her father she was called Fawn.
When the Wicasa Wakan had began his prayer Fawn slipped into the door of her mother's tipi. Her hair was black as a raven and long. With a bone she began to comb it and oil it. She set it into two braids and tied the ends with a bit of ermine. From her bundle she drew her tassled dress and high white moccasins. Her Medicine was calling her to flee the rising water.
Up and up the steep slope she flew. The water rose higher behind her. All the world was covered. On the top of the highest hill she stood bright and smooth-skinned in the sun light. She was alone, the only one of her tribe not touched by man or by the evil that Hand had brought to her people.
She began her song, and the Great Spirit behind the Sun listened:
"I am grieved for the evil that my brothers did. Your beautiful land is destroyed. I stand alone with you. Let me sing my song, before I join my sisters. You were good to us before evil entered our Peace. Now I grieve. I ask your kindness. Ate make this ground, where I stand, holy again. Remember this little spot and send your love here. From this ground make a new people and they will worship you always. Now I go to you."
Her song and her great grief made Fawn drop to the ground and she slept. The eye of Wakantanka saw her, and he sent a white cloud to cover her. She slept many days, and the cloud covered her.
She could not feel it, but from the cloud new life stirred in her. She felt no pain either, but a motion awakened her. It was a child hungry for her milk.
A tall brave looked down on her and touched her face.
Below her the Hollow was clean and bright again. Only the memory lingers--Sica Hollow. Some day even this bad name will be changed and be forgotten. Gentle smokes will rise again. It will be called by its old name -- Mokoce Waste. (Good Land)
Cerita rakyat from East Java
Raden Putra was the king of Jenggala kingdom. He had a beautiful queen and concubine. Unlike the queen, the concubine had bad personalities. She was envious and jealous with the queen, so she planned to make the queen leave the palace. The concubine then asked the royal healer to help her in her plan. One day, the concubine pretended to be ill. Raden Putra called the royal healer to give the concubine treatments. “What is her disease?” Raden Putra asked the royal healer. “I’m very sorry, My Majesty. She is sick because the queen put poison in her meal,” the royal healer lied.
Raden Putra was shock and angry to hear the explanation. He called the queen and asked her if the story was true. Of course the queen denied, but Raden Putra won’t listen. “Please Your Majesty, have mercy. I really didn’t do anything,” cried the queen in her tears. Raden Putra’s anger ended in a decision. The queen should be banished to the woods and terminated. He did not know that the queen was already pregnant. Raden Putra commanded one of his general to do the punishment. The queen was banished to the woods, but the wise general didn’t have the heart to kill her. He built a simple house in the woods for her. On his way back to the palace, he smeared his sword with rabbit blood, so Raden Putra would believe that he had killed the queen.
After the general left, the queen lived by herself in the woods. Several months later, she gave birth to a healthy baby boy. The baby was named Cindelaras. He grew up as a nice, healthy, and handsome boy. One day, while Cindelaras helped her mother to collect some fire woods, an eagle dropped an egg. Cindelaras brought the egg to be brooded by a chicken behind their house. The egg hatched into a chick and then it slowly became a strong rooster. The rooster is no ordinary rooster. The rooster could sing. Every morning, the rooster woke Cindelaras up with its beautiful song, “My master is Cindelaras. His house is in the woods. He’s the son of Raden Putra.” The rooster often sang that song.
Cindelaras always woke up early in the morning and listen happily to his rooster’s song. He didn’t realize the meaning of the song until one day, he started to think. “Who is Raden Putra?” he asked his mother. The queen then told him the whole story. She also told him why they were banned from the kingdom and lived in the woods. Cindelaras was very surprised. He decided to go to the palace to meet the king, his father. Cindelaras asked her mother’s permission to go to the kingdom and to tell the king what really happened. He also brought his rooster that grew bigger and stronger each day.
On his way, Cindelaras stopped at a village. There, he met some people who were involved in cockfighting. They challenge him to see how strong his rooster was. “If your rooster wins, you’ll get a reward,” said the man who challenged him. Cindelaras accepted the challenge. In a few minutes, his rooster defeated the opponent’s rooster. He was challenged again by other man, and one more time, his rooster won. He won again and again.
The news about Cindelaras’ rooster quickly spread to the whole Jenggala kingdom and made Raden Putra curious. So, he invited Cindelaras to the palace. “What is your name, boy?” Raden Putra asked as Cindelaras arrived in the palace. “My name is Cindelaras, Your Majesty,” Cindelaras answered. He felt both thrilled and happy to see Raden Putra.
Raden Putra challenged Cindelaras with one condition. If Raden Putra’s rooster won, Cindelaras’ head would be cut off. But if Cindelaras’ rooster won, Raden Putra would share half of his wealth. Cindelaras accepted the condition. The competition was held in the front yard of the palace. The two roosters fought bravely. But in just a few minutes, Cindelaras’ rooster won the fight! Raden Putra shook his head and stared at Cindelaras from his seat, “That rooster is no ordinary rooster, and the boy is not an ordinaty boy either. Who is he exactly?” he thought. Raden Putra was about to asked when suddenly Cindelaras’ rooster sang the song, “My master is Cindelaras. His house is in the woods. He’s the son of Raden Putra.”
Raden Putra was surprised. “Is it true?” he asked. “Yes, My Majesty. My name is Cindelaras and my mother was the queen,” said Cindelaras. Raden putra called the general who had banished the queen. The general then confessed that he never killed the queen. Later, the royal healer also admitted his mistake. Raden Putra was so shocked. He immediately went to the woods to pick up the queen. Ever since, Cindelaras and his parents lived happily together. As for the concubine, she was sent to the jail as punishment.***
Cerita rakyat from West Kalimantan
The Golden Watermelon
Long time ago, at the north area of West Kalimantan, lived a wealthy merchant. He had two sons. The older one is named Muzakir and the younger one is named Dermawan. The two brothers were so different in their attitudes. Muzakir had a very mean and greedy character. On the contradictory, Dermawan was a caring and kind person. He was not greedy and always tried to help those in needs.
Before he passed away, the merchant divided all of his money equally to both of his sons. He did it so that both of his sons will not envious at each other. Muzakir then bought a big cash-box. He put his entire share inside the cash-box and locked it. When a poor came to Muzakir’s house, he laughs at them instead of giving them something. If the poor don’t want to leave, Muzakir would summon his servants to chase them away.
Many of the poor in that area had heard about Muzakir’s rude attitude, therefore they preferred to come to Dermawan. When Dermawan saw those peoples coming, he sincerely welcome them to his house and shared money with those who needed it. It was almost every day a poor came for his help that f inally he ran out of money. Dermawan then moved to a smaller house. He also worked as a foreman. His salary was not much, only enough to buy his own daily meals. But Dermawan was happy with his simple life.
His elder brother laughed when he heard the news about Dermawan. He always thought that Dermawan was a fool to share his money with other people. He himself has just bought a large new house. “There is no one who as stupid as my younger brother,” he said.
One day, when Dermawan was sitting and relaxing in his house yard, a sparrow suddenly fell off in front of him. The sparrow twittered in pain. “Poor bird, did you broke your wing?” He took the bird and examines its wings. He’s right. One of the sparrow’s wings is broken. “Let me take care of you,” he said. Dermawan bandaged the sparrow’s wing and then he took some rice to feed the poor bird. After some time, the bird gradually tamed and was no longer afraid to Dermawan. Few days later, its wings were completely healed. After a while, it flew to the sky. The following day, the sparrow came to visit Dermawan. It held a seed with its beak, and then it put the seed in front of Dermawan. It was an ordinary seed, but Dermawan accepted it with a big smile on his face. He then planted the seed in the back yard of his house.
Three days later, the seed started to grow. It was a watermelon tree. Dermawan took good care of the tree. He thought the tree would bear many fruits since it was so blossomy. But, from all the flowers, only one turned to fruit. Day by day, the fruit grows bigger, bigger than any watermelon Dermawan ever see. Harvesting time finally came and he debided to take the watermelon. “Oh my God, it is so heavy”, he uttered while trying hardly to carry it into the house to put on the table. He took a knife and started to cut the watermelon. Dermawan was shocked. Inside the watermelon is some kind of yellow sand. “What could this be?” Dermawan wondered. Then he realized that the strange yellow sand was actually a pile of pure golden sand. “Holy God, it’s gold. I’m rich,” he danced happily. He heard bird twittered and he looked outside. He saw the sparrow on a tree. “Thank you”, he shouted. “Thank you”, he shouted again, and then the sparrow flew away.
Dermawan then bought a big house with a very big garden the next day. All of the poor came to his house and were welcomed for meals. This time, Dermawan would not run out of money. He had so much money, and his fields produced plants with good fruits as well.
The news about Dermawan’s fortune was heard by Muzakir and made him envy. He went to Dermawan house, and Dermawan honestly told his brother about the sparrow. Muzakir immediately commanded his servants to find a bird with broken wings as he heard the story from his brother. A week passed, but Muzakir’s servants still couldn’t find such bird. He was so angry and even couldn‘t sleep during the nights. The next day, he asked one of his servants to catch a bird using chopsticks. Of course, the chopsticks hurt the bird and broke its wings. Muzakir then pretended to pity the bird and took care of it. Days passed and the bird was completely healed and let to fly. The following day, the bird came back to Muzakir and brought a seed for him. He was very happy. ”I will be very rich soon, even richer than Dermawan,” he said to himself.
Muzakir planted the seed at the back yard of his house and it grew to a fine watermelon tree after several days. It also bore only one fruit, which was much bigger than that once owned by Dermawan. As the harvesting time approached, Muzakir asked his servants to take the fruit into his house. He couldn‘t wait to find a pile of golden sand inside. He cut the watermelon himself and was very shocked when black mud mixed with dirt flushed out to his face. It smelled very bad. Muzakir‘s clothes and also the room were terribly dirty because of it. He ran to the street because he couldn‘t stand the rotten smell from the watermelon. All the people on the street laughed at him for what they saw.***
Cerita rakyat from West Kalimantan
The Origin of Landak River
Long time ago, lived a farmer and his wife in a village by the side of a forest. They lived simply and they like to help other people, especially one who in afflictions. One night, the farmer and his wife were resting in their house. The farmer was sitting beside his sleeping wife. Suddenly, a white centipede came out from the wife’s head. The farmer was amazed. He then followed the centipede until they reach a small pond not far from their house. Then the centipede suddenly disappeared. The farmer went home and found his wife still soundly asleep.
In the morning, the wife told his husband about the dream she had last night. “I was walking through a vast field, and I came to a lake. I saw a giant hedgehog in the lake. It was glaring at me, so I ran away.” After he heard his wife’s dream, the farmer went back to the small pond. In the pond, he saw something very shiny. He came to the shiny object and took it. It was a golden hedgehog statue. It was very beautiful. Its eyes were made of diamond. The farmer then brought the statue home.
At night, the farmer had a dream. A giant hedgehog came to him, “Please let me stay in your home. As return, I will give you everything you want. Just caress the statue’s head and say the prayer. There are two kinds of prayers, one is to start your wish and the second is to stop your wish. Now memorize the prayers.”
In the next day, the farmer told his wife about his dream. They really wanted to prove it. The farmer slowly caressed the statue's head. He said the prayer and asked for rice. Suddenly, rice came out of the mouth of the statue. The rice kept on coming out from the statue's mouth. The farmer immediately said the prayer to stop it. The rice then stopped coming out from the statue.
The farmer and his wife then asked for other things, jewelry and other stuff they needed. They became very rich. But they still like to help other people. A lot of poor came to them for help. Unfortunately, a thief found out about the secret of the golden hedgehog statue. Pretending to be a poor asking for help, he stole the statue from the farmer’s house.
The thief blurred to the district area of Ngabang. There was a drought in the area. The thief wanted sympathy from the people, so he said to them that he would provide them with water. The thief then caressed the hedgehog statue and said the prayer. Water came out of the statue’s mouth. All the people were so happy. But the water kept on coming out. The thief didn’t know the prayer to stop the wish. People who saw the incident were really scared. They ran away to avoid the water as it was started to flood the area. The thief also wanted to run away, but he cannot move his legs. In his vision, there was a giant hedgehog holding both his legs. Water kept coming from the statue and slowly it became a river. The thief was drowned in the river. People then named the river as Hedgehog River or Sungai Landak.***
Cerita rakyat from South Kalimantan
Legend of Gunung Batu Bangkai
Many years ago, in Loksado, lived a young man with his mother. He was called Andung Kuswara. He was a smart young man. He had medical skill that he learned from his late father. Andung Kuswara worked hard everyday to fulfill their daily needs. One day, Andung Kuswara went to the forest alone, searching for fruits and vegetables. On his way home, he found an old man squeezed badly between two big trees. Andung Kuswara immediately helped him. He then healed his wound perfectly. “Dear young man, I thank you for your help,” the old man said and took something hanging on his neck. “As my gratitude, I give you this necklace. Hopefully it would bring good fortune for you,” said the old man. Andung Kuswara took the gift and went home.
Both Andung Kuswara and his mother passed their times happily. But Andung Kuswara wanted a better life for him and his mother. “Maybe it is better to leave my home to another country and practice my medical skill,” he thought. However, he had not enough courage to tell his intention to his mother. He knew his mother would be alone if he left. After a month passed, finally Andung Kuswara told his mother about his intention. “Mother, I want to make our life better. I want to go to other country and find a better job,” he said to his mother. “Andung… my son. If it is your final decision, I won’t stop you. All I can do is pray for you to find what you’re searching for,” his mother said wisely. “Thank you, Mother,” Andung Kuswara smiled happily.
The next morning, Andung Kuswara left his homeland to pursue his dream. He went overseas. He walked for weeks until he reached the kingdom of Basiang. On his way, he met a farmer whose body was full of ulcers and scabies. Andung Kuswara tried to help him. He cured the farmer with his medical skill.
The farmer was so happy. He offered Andung Kuswara to stay at his home. He also told Andung Kuswara that almost all inhabitants of the country were suffering from the same diseases. The news about Andung Kuswara’s medical skill quickly spread throughout the whole country. All sick people come to him to be cured from their sickness.
The king of Basiang also heard the news about Andung Kuswara’s excellent medical skill. The king then ordered his guard to brought Andung Kuswara to cure the princess who was also been sick. “My daughter has been on her bed for two weeks. She can not do anything. Many healers had attempted to recover her, but they failed. Will you cure her?” asked the king to Andung Kuswara. “My Majesty, I am just a poor wanderer and I have minimal medical skill. So, please forgive me if I also fail in recovering the princess”, Andung Kuswara replied.
Andung Kuswara was then allowed to enter the princess‘s room. The princess was very pale and weak. However, her beauty clearly seemed through her wonderful face. Andung Kuswara was amazed looking at her, “Ah, the princess is so beautiful,” he said to himself. He then tried to cure the princess with all his skill, but the princess did not move at all. Andung Kuswara then thought of another way. He took the necklace hanging on his neck. The necklace was soaked in the cup of water for a moment. After reading some prayers upon the water, Andung Kuswara spattered it on the princess‘s face for several times. Suddenly, the princess could move her body. Her eyes and lips opened, and her face turned bright. The princess was eventually able to sit on her bed.
The king was very grateful for Andung Kuswara‘s help to his only daughter. To express his gratefulness, he allowed Andung Kuswara to marry his daughter. The princess was happy to welcome Andung as her husband. The same was felt by Andung who fell in love with the princess.
A year passed, and the princess was pregnant. She told her husband that she desired to eat kasturi fruit that only grew in Kalimantan Island. Andung Kuswara‘s accompanied by several kingdom troops went to search the fruit. After arriving at the Kalimantan Island, Andung Kuswara headed to Loksado to find the kasturi tree which, according to local people, was bearing fruit. Andung Kuswara stood surprisingly after knowing that the tree grew exactly in front of his mother‘s small hut. Andung Kuswara immediately commanded the troops to return to the kingdom without taking the fruit to avoid meeting his own mother.
But suddenly Andung Kuswara’s mother went out from the hut. She saw her son among the troops in front of her home. “Andung…Andung…my son,” she tried to call her son. Andung Kuswara and the troops continuously walked to keep away from the old woman. However, she ran after them and kept calling for his son. Feeling ashamed in front of the troops, Andung Kuswara said angrily to his own mother, “Stop calling me as your son, old woman. I am a nobility of the Basiang Kingdom. I never know an old woman like you.” After that, Andung kuswara continued walking.
Andung Kuswara’s mother was shocked to hear those words from her beloved son. She cried and prayed with trembling lips, “Oh my God, show your power and justice.” Her tears had not been drying when the sky suddenly turned dark and thunder stroke repeatedly. After that, a sudden storm smashed and heavy rain fell dementedly. Suddenly Andung Kuswara‘s body slowly turned into stone.
Since the time, the locals called the mountain as Gunung Batu Bangkai (mountain of decease stone), because the stone that lays on it resembles human body. The mountain located in the sub district of Loksado, South Kalimantan .
Cerita rakyat from West Sumatra
Once upon a time, on the north coast of Sumatra lived a poor woman and his son. The boy was called Malin Kundang. They didn’t earn much as fishing was their only source of income. Malin Kundang grew up as a skillful young boy. He always helps his mother to earn some money. However, as they were only fisherman’s helper, they still lived in poverty. “Mother, what if I sail overseas?” asked Malin Kundang one day to his mother. Her mother didn’t agree but Malin Kundang had made up his mind. “Mother, if I stay here, I’ll always be a poor man. I want to be a successful person,” urged Malin kundang. His mother wiped her tears, “If you really want to go, I can’t stop you. I could only pray to God for you to gain success in life,” said his mother wisely. “But, promise me, you’ll come home.”
In the next morning, Malin Kundang was ready to go. Three days ago, he met one of the successful ship’s crew. Malin was offered to join him. “Take a good care of yourself, son,” said Malin Kundang’s mother as she gave him some food supplies. “Yes, Mother,” Malin Kundang said. “You too have to take a good care of yourself. I’ll keep in touch with you,” he continued before kissing his mother’s hand. Before Malin stepped onto the ship, Malin’s mother hugged him tight as if she didn’t want to let him go.
It had been three months since Malin Kundang left his mother. As his mother had predicted before, he hadn’t contacted her yet. Every morning, she stood on the pier. She wished to see the ship that brought Malin kundang home. Every day and night, she prayed to the God for her son’s safety. There was so much prayer that had been said due to her deep love for Malin Kundang. Even though it’s been a year she had not heard any news from Malin Kundang, she kept waiting and praying for him.
After several years waiting without any news, Malin Kundang’s mother was suddenly surprised by the arrival of a big ship in the pier where she usually stood to wait for her son. When the ship finally pulled over, Malin Kundang’s mother saw a man who looked wealthy stepping down a ladder along with a beautiful woman. She could not be wrong. Her blurry eyes still easily recognized him. The man was Malin Kundang, her son.
Malin Kundang’s mother quickly went to see her beloved son. “Malin, you’re back, son!” said Malin Kundang’s mother and without hesitation, she came running to hug Malin Kundang, “I miss you so much.” But, Malin Kundang didn’t show any respond. He was ashamed to admit his own mother in front of his beautiful wife. “You’re not my Mother. I don’t know you. My mother would never wear such ragged and ugly clothes,” said Malin Kundang as he release his mother embrace.
Malin Kundang’s mother take a step back, “Malin…You don’t recognize me? I’m your mother!” she said sadly. Malin Kundang’s face was as cold as ice. “Guard, take this old women out of here,” Malin Kundang ordered his bodyguard. “Give her some money so she won’t disturb me again!” Malin Kundang’s mother cried as she was dragged by the bodyguard, ”Malin... my son. Why do you treat your own mother like this?”
Malin Kundang ignored his mother and ordered the ship crews to set sail. Malin Kundang’s mother sat alone in the pier. Her heart was so hurt, she cried and cried. “Dear God, if he isn’t my son, please let him have a save journey. But if he is, I cursed him to become a stone,” she prayed to the God.
In the quiet sea, suddenly the wind blew so hard and a thunderstorm came. Malin Kundang’s huge ship was wrecked. He was thrown by the wave out of his ship, and fell on a small island. Suddenly, his whole body turned into stone. He was punished for not admitting his own mother.
Cerita rakyat from Bangka-Belitung
Long time ago in a small village in Bangka Island, lived a young man who was an expert in using blowpipe, especially for hunting. That why people in the village called him the blowpiper. He also had excellent medical skill that was passed down from his late father. One day, the village chief Pak Raje came to the blowpiper’s house, asking him to chase away the fold of wild boars that entered and ruined his paddies. Pak Raje told the blowpiper that his father once owed him some money. Thus, the blowpiper should work for him voluntarily. The blowpiper took the job, though he would not be paid.
In the next day, the blowpiper went to Pak Raje‘s field. He watched the field and did some patrols to every side of the fields. He watched the field everyday, but he still not found any suspicious movements. Entering the seventh day of his work, the blowpiper noticed a suspicious movement from the far distance. He walked slowly to the source of voice where he saw a fold of boars trying to enter the field. The blowpiper then hid behind a big tree with a blowpipe in his hand. When the fold of boars ruined the paddies, the blowpiper pointed his blowpipe toward one of the boars that was closest to him. He blew his blowpipe. The dart hit the boar, but it didn’t paralyze the boar as the blowpiper expected. The fold of boars then runs outside the field and disappeared from the blowpiper‘s view. “Hmm... My dart had hit one of them, it must hurt it,” said the blowpiper curiously.
In the morning, the blowpiper went to follow the blood trail of the boar he shot last night. The trail led him to the forest and finally it ended in front of a big cave. Cautiously, the blowpiper entered the cave. He was surprised to found a beautiful lady bleeding on a soft bed, surrounded by some other beautiful ladies. One of them was an old lady, the mother of the fainted lady. “Who are you? What are you doing here?” asked the old lady. “I’m sorry to interrupt. I’m looking for my lost dart, it was stuck to a wild boar,” the blowpiper explained to the old lady. “The stuff you are looking for is on my daughter,” said the old lady angrily. “How come it is on your daughter?” asked the blowpiper surprised. “That’s because... the boar that you shot with your blowpipe last night is in fact my daughter‘s manifestation,” explained the old woman sadly.
The old woman‘s explanation surprised the blowpiper. “So..., all of you were the boars that I saw last night?” asked the young man. “What you have said is right young man,” answered the old woman softly. “I did not mean to…. I am so sorry to hear that. I would not do that if I knew that the boars were you,” the blowpiper apologized. “Never mind,” said the old woman. “Forget all about that. The most important thing right now is how to release the dart from my daughter‘s body,” added the old woman sadly. “I can help you with that,” said the blowiper. He came closer to the beautiful lady and uncovered the blanket. He then took out the dart from her body and with his medical skill he immediately stopped the bleeding.
In a short time, the wound recovered, leaving no traces. “Now, she has recovered. Let me go home now. May be we can meet again someday,” said the blowpiper politely. “Yes young man... But before you leave, I have something to give to you as my gratitude,” said the old lady while giving the blowpiper a wooden box. “Do not open the box until you’re in home,” added the old lady. “Thank you for your kindness,” said the blowpiper. He then left the cave and returned home. At his home, the blowpiper opened the wooden box. Surprisingly, the young man found jewelry, gold and diamonds inside the box. “Wow...! I’m rich,” murmured the young man happily.
In the next morning, the blowpiper sold all the precious stuff and used the money he got to purchase a field, garden, house, and paid all debt his father had owed to Pak Raje. The news about the blowpiper fortune quickly spread throughout the village. Everyone knew including Pak Raje. He intended to be like the blowpiper, so he went to borrow the blowpipe from the blowpiper to hunt a boar in his own field. On the way, he met with a boar, and shot it with the blowpipe. Then he followed the blood trail left by the boar until he entered the cave. It was like what happened with the blowpiper. Pak Raje was asked to cure the bleeding woman, but he could do that as he had no such skill. Suddenly, tens of boars attacked him, making him bleeding and seriously wounded. With all his strength, he escaped from the cave. He fainted when he finally arrived in front of his own house.
Pak Raje’s daughter informed what happened to her father to the blowpiper. Hearing the bad news, the blowpiper rushed to Pak Raje‘s house to help him. With his medical skill, he tried to cure Pak Raje’s injuries. Finally, Pak Raje could make it and recovered from his serious wounds. After thinking about what he had been through, Pak Raje realized his own bad intention. He felt sorry for being greedy. “Thank you, young man. You’ve help me once again. As my gratitude, I would like to appoint you as the next village chief. Would you accept?” asked Pak Raje. “Of course, Pak Raje. Thank you,” answered the blowpiper happily.
After a week, the blowpiper asked Pak Raje’s daughter to be his wife. They live happily as a couple. The blowpiper was a polite and kind person, and Pak Raje’s daughter was a beautiful woman. Under the leadership of the blowpiper, all the villagers lived in prosperous and harmony.***
Cerita rakyat from Nusa Tenggara Barat
Once upon a time, there was a kingdom in Lombok Island that was ruled by a king named Raja Tonjang Beru. He was a wise king. He had a queen named Dewi Seranting. He also had a beautiful daughter named Princess Mandalika. It is said that princess Mandalika was the prettiest girl in the whole island. Everybody knew about Princess Mandalika’s beauty and kindness, even the people from other kingdom around the island.
Princes from all over the place wanted to marry her. One by one, they came to propose her. Princess Mandalika was a kind girl. She hated to make people sad. So, when those princes came to propose her, she was very confused. She could not decide, and she didn’t want to make them sad. She also didn’t want to cause a war to happen because of her.
To solve the problem, Raja Tonjang Beru then held a competition in Seger Kuta beach. He asked all the princes to take part in archery competition. The rule was simple; whoever shot the target perfectly will be accepted as Princess Mandalika’s future husband. One by one, all participants tried their best. After some time, there was no winner. All the participants were great in archery.
Because there was no a winner, all the participants started to argue. They claimed to be the best. The argument was getting hotter. Finally, they all were fighting. Soon, the fighting got bigger. It was like a war, because all the princes brought their soldiers in the archery competition. Princess Mandalika was really worried. She did not want the war to get bigger and hurt many people. Finally, she had an idea. "Everybody, listen up! I know you all love me and want me to be your wife. But I don't want you to fight because of me. And I don't want you to be sad either. I want you all to have me, but not as your wife. I want to be someone that everybody can have," said Princess Mandalika.
Raja Tonjang Beru and all other people in the beach did not understand what she meant. The king then came to her. But suddenly, Princess Mandalika jumped to the sea. She disappeared in the big waves. Everybody was surprised. It was chaos on the beach. All the princes tried to swim to find the princess, but they found nothing.
After several hours trying to search the princess, suddenly they found a lot of colorful sea worms on the beach. Raja Tonjang Beru then realized that his daughter had returned as sea worms. The worms were then called nyale. Until now, people in Lombok always try to catch nyale. Nyale is very delicious and that is why a lot of people come to Lombok to catch it. However, they can only find it once a year, in February or March. The tradition to catch the sea worms is called Bau Nyale.***
Cerita rakyat from Bali
A long time ago, lived a rich man named Begawan Sidi Mantra. He was very famous for his kindness and also for his supernatural power. He had a son named Manik Angkeran who liked to gamble. Because of Manik Angkeran’s bad habit, his father soon bankrupt. Begawan Sidi Mantra had spent all of his money to pay his son‘s debts. But, Manik Angkeran still liked to gamble and he still owed some people a lot of money.
Begawan Sidi Mantra wanted to help his son to pay the remaining debts. He meditated for days, and finally he got a clue from the gods to go to Agung Mountain. He went to the mountain. There, he met with a dragon named Naga Besukih. It is said that Naga Besukih could provide gold and jewelries to those who could say a certain prayer and ring the sacred bell. Fortunately, Begawan Sidi Mantra had the bell, and he also knew the prayer from his meditation. “My name is Sidi Mantra. I have a problem. My son likes to gamble. I’ve spent all of my money to pay his debts, but it’s still not enough. I came here to ask for your help,” explained Begawan Sidi Mantra after he met with Naga Besukih. “I’ll help you, but you have to advise your son so he would not gamble again,” said Naga Besukih. The dragon then shakes his body and cause some of his scales fall of. Magically, the scales turn into gold and diamonds.
Begawan Sidi Mantra took the gold and diamonds and return home. He paid all the remaining debt and advised his son about his gambling habit. Manik Angkeran promised to stop gambling, but soon he broke the promise. Bagawan Sidi Mantra had to go to the dragon for help once again. “What brought you here again?” asked Naga Besukih. “I’m very sorry, Naga Besukih. My son had disappointed me; he broke his promise to me. I beg for your help once again,” said Begawan Sidi Mantra to the dragon. “I’ll help you, but this is the last time,” said Naga Besukih.
Begawan Sidi Mantra once again paid Manik Angkeran’s debts and advised him not to gamble again. Manik Angkeran promised and soon he broke his promise again. This time, Begawan Sidi Mantra didn’t want to help him anymore. He was too ashamed to meet with the dragon.
Manik Angkeran knew that his father got the jewelries from the dragon. So, he stole his father’s sacred bell and went to Agung Mountain. After he arrived, Manik Angkeran rang the bell. Naga Besukih heard the bell but there’s no prayer. He decided to see who was calling him. “Hey, Manik Angkeran. What are you doing here with your father’s bell? Did you steal it?” asked Naga Besukih angrily when he saw Manik Angkeran. “Please help me, Naga Besukih. I really need the money to pay my debts. Those people would kill me if I don’t pay them in time. Please, I beg for your mercy,” said Manik Angkeran to the dragon. “Okay, I’ll help you. But this is the last time, and you have to promise to stop gambling,” Naga Besukih then give him the jewelries.
But suddenly, Manik Angkeran had a bad idea. He wanted to kill the dragon and take all the jewelries. So he drew his keris and attacked Naga Besukih. He managed to cut the dragon’s tail, but he was no match for Naga Besukih. With his great power, Naga Besukih burned Manik Angkeran and killed him instantly.
In his home, Begawan Sidi Mantra couldn’t find his sacred bell. He knew that his son had stolen it, so he went to Agung Mountain. He was so sad when he found out what happened in the mountain. “I’m very sorry, Naga Besukih. But he was my only son. I beg you, please bring him back to life,” Begawan Sidi Mantra begged the dragon for mercy. Naga Besukih agreed with one condition, Manik Angkeran had to stay at Agung Mountain. Naga Besukih said some prayer and after few moments, Manik Angkeran lived again. Begawan Sidi Mantra then used a stick to make a big line between them on the ground. From the line, water flowed. Soon it became a river. Finally it became a strait. It separated Java and Bali. People then named the strait as Bali Strait.***
Cerita rakyat from Riau
Long time ago in Riau, lived a kid named Dang Gedunai. He lived with his mother. Dang Gedunai was a stubborn kid. His mother was sad. Dang Gedunai was her only child but he never made her happy. One day, Dang Gedunai went to the river to catch some fish. “Mother, I want to go to the river. I want to go fishing,” said Dang Gedunai to his mother. “It’s cloudy outside. Rain will soon fall. Why don’t you just stay at home?” said his mother. As always Dang Gedunai ignored her. He then went to the river.
It was very cloudy when he arrived at the river. Soon it was drizzling, but Dang Gedunai was still busy fishing. Later rain fell down heavily. Dang Gedunai finally gave up. However right before he left, he saw something shining in the river. It was a very big egg. Dang Gedunai then brought the egg home.
His mother was surprised to see him brought a big egg. “What egg is that? Where did you find it?” she asked. “I found it in the river, Mother,” replied Dang Gedunai. “Be careful with the egg. It’s not yours. You should return it,” advised his mother. As always, Dang Gedunai ignored his mother’s advice. He planned to eat the egg even though his mother said not to.
In the morning, his mother was ready to go to the paddy field. Again, she advised Dang Gedunai to put the egg back to the river. Dang Gedunai did not say anything. When his mother left the house, he immediately boiled the egg. Then he ate it. It was so delicious. He was so full and suddenly he fell asleep. He had a dream. A giant dragon came to him in his dream. “Human, you stole my egg! For the punishment, you will become a dragon.”
Dang Gedunai woke up with fear. He was sweating. He felt very thirsty. Later his mother went home. She saw her son panicking. “What happened?” she asked. “I don’t know, Mother. Suddenly I feel very thirsty. My throat is like burning,” said Dang Gedunai. His mother then gave him a glass of water. It’s not enough. He drank another glass, and then another glass until there was not any water left in the house. His mother told him to go the pond. Dang Gedunai drank all the water until the pond was dried. But it was not enough. Then they went to the river.
Again it was not enough. Dang Gedunai knew his dream would come true. He would become a dragon. “Mother, please forgive me. I ignored you. I ate the egg. It was a dragon’s egg. I will change to a dragon. I cannot live with you anymore. I will live in the sea. If you see big waves in the rea, that means I’m eating. But if the waves are calmed, then it means I’m sleeping,” said Dang Gedunai.
Then Dang Gedunai left his mother. He headed for the sea. His mother couldn’t do anything to stop him. She just cried. Until now fishermen don’t want to go fishing in the sea when the waves are big. They know that the dragon is eating. They just wait until the dragon is finished eating and the waves are calmed.