The Pejeng Sites

high-definition creative commons photographs from three Pejeng Sites, Gyanyar, Bali together with further information.


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Pura Penataran Sasih

(Including the Pejeng Moon Drum)

This was the main temple in the Pejeng kingdom, and is now famous as it houses the largest bronze-cast drum in the world in one of its pavillions, the drum being almost 2 metres long. It is believed to be fallen piece of the moon (sasih) hence the name of the temple.

There are a number of other pavillions inside the temple that collect something of a hodge-podge of broken antiquities, including statues and lingas. There is a kulkul wooden clapper pavilion also, with two well used blocks.

Pura Kebo Edan

We were unable to gain access to Pura Kebo Edan, which is where the so-called Pejeng Giant or Bhīma is housed. This is one of the more important relics, being a dancing figure of no less than 3.6 metres high. I reproduce a photo here from Wikimedia Commons.

Pejeng Giant

Siwa-Bhairawa, Photograph by Hiyotchi

Pura Pusering Jagat

(Including the Pejeng Vessel)

This temple has some interesting features. There are boars acting as door guardians; both the split doorways (candi bentar) and the main door (padaraksa) are wider at the base than normal. Inside there are a few pavilions of broken statues and lingas. But the most interesting monument is the Pejeng Vessel, a huge stone water vessel, carved with scenes which may depict the Churning of the Ocean.

Pura Arjuna Metapa

(Arjuna performing Tapas)

This is an isolated set of sculptures set in rice paddy fields, and is a little hard to approach. The figure of the Mahābhārata hero Arjuna has had its face broken off, and one of the two apsaras who were tempting him, has been taken away to a local Pura.

The story is based on a popular retelling of Arjuna’s story in Old Javanese, the Arjunavivāhu. On each side of Arjuna himself, stand his clownish pages, Twalen and Merdah, who, in the wayang imitate their revered master, while being unable to emulate his virtue themselves.

Notice that Arjuna and the remaining apsara hold spouts, which suggests they were originally placed at a Pool of Purification somewhere. Where the apsara which has been taken away was placed, is now a broken Bhoma head.

At the Arjuna Metapa

At the Arjuna Metapa, Photograph by Rodrigo Salazar



Photographs by Anandajoti Bhikkhu

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