Visit Central Java Years 2013
The Most Stunning Chinese Heritage in Central Java Indonesia
"Sam Poo Kong Temple"
Sam Poo Kong also known as Gedung Batu Temple, is the oldest Chinese temple in Semarang, Central Java, Indonesia. Originally established by a Chinese Muslim explorer, it is now shared by Indonesians of multiple religious denominations, including Muslims and Buddhists, and ethnicities, including Chinese and Javanese.
Zheng He or Cheng Ho had a real name called Ma Ho,Born in 1370 He grew up from poor Hui Ethnic family ,in Kun Yang Regency Yunan Province Hui is a race Chinese Moslem originally half Turkish and Mongolian (Sea Grave, 1999).
At Ming Dinasty, the emperor Ming Cheng Zu (Beng Seng Tjo-Hokkien) trust Him to lead 62 ships,225 Jun or small ships, 27.550 sailors, Astronomyst, Politician, Doctors,Writters, and Missionariest, took a journey to the South and west, As an Admiral He startedd to sail in 1405 until 1433, 7 times sailing into 37 countries among of them are Nusantara Indonesia, Hindia Ocean, Sri Lanka, Qui Lon (New Zealand), Ko Cin, Kalikut (Calcutta), Ormuz, Jeddah, Mogadishu,Malindi,Campa up to India, Persian Gulf, Red Sea until Kenya coast ( Min Shi Story, The History about Ming Dinasty)
The foundations of Sam Poo Kong were set when Chinese Muslim explorer Admiral Zheng He arrived in the western part of what is now Semarang via the Garang River; the year is disputed, with suggestions ranging from 1400 to 1416. After disembarking from his ships, Zheng found a cave in a rocky hillside and used it for prayer. He established a small temple before leaving Java, but having grown fond of the area his deputy Wang Jing Hong and several crewmen remained behind. A statuette of Zheng was installed in the cave.
The original temple was reportedly destroyed in 1704, collapsing under a landslide. In October 1724 the temple was completely renovated. A new cave was also made, located next to the old one.
In the middle of the 1800s Sam Poo Kong was owned by a Mr. Johanes, a landlord of Jewish descent, who charged devotees for the right to pray at the temple. Unable to pay individual fees, the Chinese community spent 2000 gulden yearly to keep the temple open; this was later reduced to 500 gulden after worshipers complained of the expense. As this was still a heavy burden, devotees abandoned Sam Poo Kong and found a statue of Zheng He to bring to Tay Kak Sie temple, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) away, where they could pray freely.
In 1879, Oei Tjie Sing, a prominent local businessman, bought the Sam Poo Kong complex and made its use free of charge; in response, local Chinese celebrated by holding a carnival and began returning to Sam Poo Kong. The temple's ownership was transferred to the recently founded Sam Poo Kong foundation in 1924.
The temple received another full renovation in 1937. After the Japanese invasion of the Indies, the Japanese command installed electricity and provided the temple with a framed written appraisal for Zeng He During five years of revolution after the Japanese left the newly independent Indonesia, the temple was poorly maintained and fell into disrepair.
In 1950, Sam Poo Kong was again renovated. However, beginning in the 1960s increased political instability led to its being neglected again. From 2002 to 2005 it underwent another major renovation.
The Sam Poo Kong temple complex includes five temples in a mixed Chinese and Javanese architectural style. The temples are Sam Poo Kong (the oldest), Tho Tee Kong, Kyai Juru Mudi Temple, Kyai Jangkar Temple, and Kyai Cundrik Bumi Temple. An additional worship site, Mbah Kyai Tumpeng, is also located within the complex. The buildings are spread over 3.2 hectares (7.9 acres).
Tho Tee Kong (also known as Dewa Bumi Temple), is located just within the large gate at the northern end of the complex; it is used by those who seek the blessings of the earth god Tu Di Gong. Next to Tho Tee Kong is Kyai Juru Mudi Temple, the burial site of Wang Jing Hong, one of Zheng He's deputies. It is often frequented by people looking for success in business.
The main temple is built directly in front of the cave, located south of Kyai Juru Mudi. In the cave itself are an altar, fortune-telling equipment, and a small statue of Zheng He; underneath the altar is a well that is said to never go dry and to be capable of healing various ailments. Before the 2002 renovations, the temple measured 16 by 16 metres (52 by 52 ft); it now measures 34 by 34 metres (112 by 112 ft).
Further south is the Kyai Jankar Temple, named after a sacred anchor used by Zheng He held inside. The temple also contains an altar to those of Zheng's crewmen who died while fulfilling their duties. The southernmost temple is Kyai Cundrik Bumi, which is used to worship a weapon used by Zheng. Nearby is Mbah Kyai Tumpeng, a prayer site used by people wishing for their well-being.
So If you want to see this unique building , to introduce a history of Chinese anchestor in Java Island and documented in a movie, please dont be hesitated to visit Semarang Central java and call me Aryo Widiyanto at facebook :Aryo Widiyanto, Twitter @aryo_widi or email via firstname.lastname@example.org.