The Legend of Tangkuban Perahu in Bandung, Indonesia
In West Java, precisely in Bandung Regency, there is a very beautiful recreation place called Tangkuban Perahu Mountain.
The name Tangkuban Perahu means a boat that is upside down. Given a name because it looks like an upside down boat. It is said that according to folklore, the mountain is actually originated form an upside down boat.
Here is the story of The Legend of Tangkuban Perahu.
Thousands of years ago, the land of Parahyangan was led by a king and a queen who only had a daughter. The daughter’s name was Dayang Sumbi. She was a very beautiful and smart girl.
Unfortunately she also was a very spoiled daughter. She had her live easy most of her life. She is used to be live with abundance. Whatever her wishes were must be fulfilled right away.
One day while she was weaving on the palace veranda, Dayang Sumbi felt weak and dizzy. She dropped her yarn to the floor too many times.
When the yarn fell for the umpteenth time Dayang Sumbi became angry. And then she inadvertently swore. She said she would marry anyone who would pick up the yarn for her.
Just right after she swore, a fairy dog named Tumang came out of nowhere and handed the spinning to Dayang Sumbi’s hand. So inevitably, in accordance to her swore, Dayang Sumbi had to marry the fairy dog.
Who would have thought that turned out Dayang Sumbi and Tumang lived happily together. And they were blessed with a boy in the form of a human but had magical powers like his father.
This boy’s name was Sangkuriang. During his growth, Sangkuring always accompanied by Tumang who he only knew as his family’s loyal dog, not as his father.
Sangkuriang grew into a strong handsome boy.
One day Dayang Sumbi told his son to go deer hunting with his dog. It was for a feast.
After searching for a long time with no luck, Sangkuriang felt desperate because he didn’t come across any deer at all. But he did not want to disappoint his mother.
So he was stupidly came with a solution. He took his arrow and aim it at Tumang. He planned to take Tumang’s meat and presented it as a deer meat to his mother. And so he did.
Arriving at home he handed Tumang’s meat to his mother. Dayang Sumbi who thought it as deer meat, felt very happy for his son’s hunting success.
Right after the banquet, Dayang Sumbi wondered she hadn’t seen Tumang for a while. She then asked his son where Tumang was.
Sangkuriang was scared and didn’t know how to react at first. But he convinced himself that his mother loved him and would forgive what he did. So finally he told his mother of what actually happened to Tumang.
Dayang Sumbi became very angry. In her total anger she impulsively hit Sangkuriang right on his forehead. He fell down and fainted.
Sangkuriang was lucky because he was not dead. He survived but his mother’s blow left a very wide scar on his forehead.
Ironically, for her actions Dayang Sumbi was expelled from the kingdom by his father. No one knows where she went, where she lived, or even wether she was still live or not.
The Grown Up Sangkuriang
A couple of years later, Sangkuriang grew up to be a very well strong young man. He wanted to know more about the world. He wanted to go for adventure.
So he started his journey and went wandering to see what the outside world had to offer.
Long story short in the years of his adventure, Sangkuriang met a very beautiful woman. He immediately fell in love with this woman.
This woman was not only beatiful, she was also kind and gentle to Sangkuriang. She reminded him of a motherly love he didn’t get after her mother expelled from his homeland.
The TRUTH is this woman is actually his own mother, Dayang Sumbi. But they didn’t recognize each other.
Dayang Sumbi hadn’t meet her son for a very long time. She didn’t know what her son looked like. And eventhough it’s been years, Dayang Sumbi was ageless. Sangkuriang didn’t remember his mother’s face.
Sangkuriang proposed to her, Dayang Sumbi accepted with pleasure. They decided to get married very soon.
Jumped to the day before the wedding day. While she was caressing her fiance’s hair, Dayang Sumbi saw a wide scar on Sangkuriang’s forehead.
She clearly remembered that scar she made, the shape and the exact place on the forehead. Then everything came together. She realized that she almost married her own son.
Knowing this, Dayang Sumbi tried to avoid this marriage. After thinking hard she finally decided to propose marriage conditions that impossible to achieve by Sangkuriang.
The conditions are:
- Sangkuriang must make a lake that can cover the entire hill.
- He must make a boat to be used to go down the lake.
- All that must have been completed before the dawn broke.
Sukuriang up to the challange and he started working as soon as possible.
His great love for Dayang Sumbi gave him a strange power. Not to mention he also had magic power he got from his father. He used that power to summon magical creatures to help him build the impossible lake.
These magical beings used mud and soil to stem water from the rivers and springs and eventually form a big lake. This task suddenly became possible with sort of powers.
Shortly before dawn, Sangkuriang cut down a large tree to make a boat. He worked on that boat fast.
When Dayang Sumbi saw that Sangkuriang had almost finished his boat, she panicked. She prayed to the gods to obstruct her son’s work. She wished to speed up the sunrise so Sangkuriang would fail.
The gods granted her wishes. Suddenly the roosters crowed and the sun rose faster than usual.
Sangkuriang saw this and he realized that he had been tricked. He was furious knowing he had set up to fail. He was mad Dayang Sumbi didn’t accept his proposal seriously.
With great anger and with his magic power, he condemned Dayang Sumbi.
He furiously kicked the boat to the middle of the forest. The boat landed upside down and turned into huge mountain.
Not far from that place there is a remaining tree stump from the Sangkuriang felling, now we know it as Tunggul Hill.
The lake made by Sangkuriang caused the entire hill to be filled with water and formed a lake. The lake where Sangkuriang and Dayang Sumbi said to be sank together and nowhere to be found.
That mountain now known as Mount Tangkuban Perahu. And that story is the legend behind it. What do you think?