Banta Seudang

Banta Seudang | Edisi Indonesia

Folklore from Aceh

ONCE upon a time in Aceh there was a kingdom. The king and the queen were happy. They just had a baby. The king named him Banta Seudang.

The king loved hunting. One day, while he was hunting in a jungle, he got an accident! It was a terrible accident. It was so bad that made the king blind!

The king was no longer able to run the kingdom. He decided to cure his illness. In the meantime he asked his younger brother to be a temporary king. His brother was extremely happy. Nobody knew that he secretly wanted to be a king. When he got the opportunity, he really made good use of it very well.

The king's brother built a house in the jungle and asked the king, the queen and Banta Seudang to live there. Banta Seudang was still a baby when his father got the accident. He did not know why they had to live in the jungle.

Time passed by and Banta became a young man. He had become a good son. He always helped his parents. He also helped his father heal his blindness problem. Although, his father was still not able to see, Banta never gave up.

His parents never told Banta that his father was a king. They just wanted to treat Banta like any other kids.

One day Banta told his parents that he wanted to leave the house to find a cure for his father. The parents were touched. They knew Banta loved them and wanted to do anything. Although it was very difficult, they let Banta leave the house.

Banta had been away from home for many days. He arrived in a strange house. He saw some people were praying. Strangely, after they finished praying they disappeared. Banta stayed in the house.

On the following day, some people came to the house again. After they finished praying, Banta immediately grabbed one of the men's hands.

"What's the matter my child?"

"Can you help me? I need a cure for my father. He is blind," said Banta. 

"I cannot help you. But I know someone who can. He is a genie. Just wait here, a white elephant will come and take you to meet him." 

Not long after that the men disappeared. And it was true! A white elephant came. It was so tamed. Banta jumped and sat on the back of the elephant. They were going to meet a genie. 

Finally, Banta met the genie. 

"I know why you are here to see me. I will show you the cure. It is a flower that grows in the middle of a pond. I will take you there, but you have to pick the flower by yourself." 

They continued their journey. Later they arrived in the pond. Banta swam and picked the flower. Then the three of them went to Banta's house. 

When they arrived, Banta immediately put the flower in a glass of water. 

He asked his father to drink it. Amazingly, his father was able to see again. He was completely cured! 

The king then told the truth to Banta that he was a king. Later the king asked his family to go to the palace. Banta also asked the genie and the elephant to join them. The king's brother was surprised to see the king was able to see again. He did not hope that his brother would come back. He asked the king to leave the palace. He also ordered the soldiers to get rid of the king and his family. 

Well, the king's brother did not know that his nephew, Banta, had become a young great man. He was fighting against the soldiers. And he was not alone, the genie and the white elephant also helped him. It was not difficult for Banta, the genie, and the white elephant to beat the soldiers. They won! Then the king took his crown back. He punished his brother by sending him to the jungle! ***

Sumatran elephant

I Teruna Tua

I Teruna Tua | Edisi Indonesia

Folklore from Bali

A long time ago there was an old man. His name was I Teruna Tua. He was single. He only wanted to marry a girl whose birthday was the same as his birthday.

It was I Teruna Tua's birthday. He heard that his friend's wife just give birth a baby girl. I Teruna visited his friend. His name was Pan Kayan. I Teruna Tua brought his wooden stick.

"I want to put my stick under the baby's bed. I will take it back later," said I Teruna Tua.

"Sure, no problem," said Pan Kayan. 

Several years later, I Teruna Tua came to Pan Kayan's house. He wanted to take his stick back. He was so surprised to see termites had eaten his stick.

"Pan Kayan, the termites have eaten my stick.

Now the termites are mine. However, I will put the termites here. I will get them back later," said l Teruna Tua.

"That's OK. You can take the termites back later" said Pan Kayan.

Several years later, I Teruna Tua came to Pan Kayan'shouse. He saw Pan Kayan's hen was eating the termites.

Several years later, the hen was fighting with Pan Kayan's dog. The hen lost the fight. She died. I Teruna Tua saw the incident.

He said, "Pan Kayan, your dog killed my hen. Now the dog is mine. I want to put the dog here. I will get him back later."

Several years later, the dog was attacking Pan Kayan's buffalo. The buffalo was angry. He killed the dog. And again I Teruna Tua saw the incident. 

He said "Your buffalo killed my dog. Now the buffalo is mine. I want to put the buffalo here. I will get him back later."

The buffalo was sleeping under the mango tree. Unfortunately, a big branch fell down and hit the buffalo's head. The buffalo was dead. And I Teruna Tira then again told Pan Kayan that the mango tree belonged to I Teruna Tua.

Years passed by, Pan Kayan's daughter was a teenager. There were some mangoes in the branches of the tree. She liked to eat mangoes, so she picked all the mangoes. 

I Teruna Tua was surprised when there were no mangoes left. He knew that all the mangoes were eaten by Pan Kayan's daughter.

"Pan Kayan, your daughter ate my mangoes. She is mine now. I want to marry her."

Later I Teruna Tua and the girl got married. Later they had a baby. And when the baby was crying, I Teruna Tua tried to cheer her up. He was singing a song about his wife.

Your mother was first a stick, then changed into termites, then changed into a hen, then changed into a dog, then changed into a buffalo, then changed into a mango tree, then finally changed into your mother."

His wife heard the song. She was angry. She brought the baby and went back to her parents' house.

I Teruna Tua was sad. He tried to persuade his wife to come back to him but she refused it.

Pan Kayan held a ceremony under the mango tree. He gave some offering to the gods. I Teruna Tua was hiding behind the tree. He talked to Pan Kayan as if he was one of the gods.

"l will not accept your offering here. I want you to ask your daughter to give the offerings to her husband."

Pan Kayan heard the voice. He immediately asked his daughter to bring the offering to I Teruna Tua. And when she met her husband I Teruna Tua apologized and promised not to hurt her heart again. Since then, they have lived happily. ***

Balinese Mother and Child


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