Nov 21, 2014

The Indonesian Temple of the Penis

In Central Java, Indonesia, on the slopes of Mount Lawu (and eight hours by car from Jakarta), there's a low-sloping truncated pyramid called Candi Sukuh, or Sukuh Temple.

Covered with bas-reliefs of people in erotic poses.

Surrounded by statues of naked men, gods, and monsters.

An elephant-headed god  and his dog dancing with two men who are forging a sword.. Most of his gigantic penis has been broken off.

Men having sex with men.

Men having sex with beings of indeterminate gender.

A life-sized statue of a naked, muscular man grasping his two-foot long penis (it's so explicit that I can only show you the base).

There are phallic symbols everywhere, carved into the walls, protruding from walls, lying on the ground.  There was once a 6-foot tall penis rising from four giant testicles, but it's been removed to the National Museum in Jakarta.

The temple looks like a smaller version of an ancient Mayan pyramid, leading some para-archaeologists to claim that Mayans traveled halfway around the world in 300 AD. and established a beachhead in Java.

Or that both cultures were remnants of ancient Atlantis, or Mu.

Or that it was built by aliens and holds secret messages about the end of the world.

But relax: it's Hindu.

The elephant-headed god is actually Lord Ganesha.

The giant lingam (Hindu phallic symbol) contains a Sanskrit inscription proclaiming that this "sign of masculinity is the essence of the world."

Another inscription allows us to date the temple at 1440 AD, long after the Mayans.

Indonesia is staunchly Muslim now, but previously it was the site of several powerful Hindu kingdoms, including the Majapahit Empire, the largest in Southeast Asia, extending through modern-day Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

In 1440, Majapahit was in decline, falling to internal disputes and the incursions of the Muslim sultanates to the east.  So a crew of artists and builders came out to the jungle to ask for the help of Lord Ganesha, the power of masculine energy, and the penis.

See also: Top 10 Public Penises of Hinduism;