Pura (Shrine) is a place where people of Hinduism religion pray. In Indonesia, puras can be found not only in Bali. In a “kampong” called Warung Loak, Bogor, West java, there is one famous pura. Its full name is Pura Parahyangan Agung Jagatkartya Taman Sari Gunung Salak, but it is mostly known as Pura Gunung Salak.
Pura Gunung Salak was constructed since 1995 and finally was open for public in 2005. They built the shrine atmosphere to be similar with puras in Bali as an honor to Prabu Siliwangi, the leader of Padjajaran, which is the last Hindu Empire on Java Island. Prabu Siliwangi was believed to be last seen in this area.
Pura Gunung Salak is divided into several areas. The main area is called Ning Mandala. It’s a sacred area and only accessible for people who adheres to Hinduism. Another area is Padmesana where God is believed to reside. There is also an area called Balai Pasamuan Agung. Here, visitors can climb the shrine’s steps to see the amazing scenery. At the end of the steps, visitors can see a vast grass field, with two Saungs (a kind of Gazebo) on the left and the right end. This area is called Madya Mandala and unfortunately it is also only accessible for Hindu people.
From a distance, behind a short concrete wall, visitors can see several sacred buildings as part of the Pura. Two of them are black temples which are believed to be the palace for Sri Baduga Maharaja Prabu Siliwangi, the origin of Sundanese people.
Considering the physical size, this pura is set to held “Utamaning Utama”, the highest level in Hinduism religious ceremony structure. In the ceremony, Hindu people from all over Indonesia come to the shrine to pray.
Although there are some restricted areas, Pura Gunung Salak is not only open for Hindu. Anyone can come to enjoy the majestic pura and the natural beauty of the surroundings. This location is also open for anyone who wants to meditate. There is a temple erected next to Padmasana (worshiping God in Hinduism) building that can be used for anyone of any religion to meditate.
The composing calm and peace are true to every soul who comes to this Pura.