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'Java Southern Sea' documentary: Where science meets myth

Anselmo Jason

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Mon, November 18, 2019  /  03:28 pm
'Java Southern Sea' documentary: Where science meets myth

Sea guardian: Penewu Surakso Jaladri, the caretaker of Parangkusumo Beach, looks across Yogyakarta's southern coastline in 'The Untold Story of Java Southern Sea', a documentary by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) that uses science to explore the truth behind myth. (Indonesia Institute of Sciences/-)

As an archipelago comprising many different tribes and beliefs, Indonesia is home to thousands of legends, myths and folktales that explain how things came to be. From the  legend about North Sumatra's Lake Toba to the legend about West Java's Mount Tangkuban Parahu, there is a good chance that a mythical tale is behind almost every landmark in Indonesia, natural or man-made. However, there is a belief that most, if not all, of the occurrences in such folktales can be explained through science, that some of these "supernatural" events were, in fact, natural phenomenon and have the scientific evidence to prove it. One example is the legend on the origins of the Mataram Sultanate in Central Java. It is said that the sultanate’s first king, Danang Sutawijaya, also known as Panembahan Senopati, ha...