[quote]Kertha Gosa means - “the place where the king meets with his ministries to discuss questions of justice.”
The story of Bhima Swarga is elaborate and all-embracing. Bhima Swarga in Balinese means, “Bhima goes to the abode of the gods.” Swarga literally means to any place where the gods happen to reside, Heaven or Hell.
Bhima, the second oldest of the five Pandava brothers, is forced by his mother Kunti with the mission to rescue from Hell the souls of his earthly father Pandu, and his second mother, Madri. After saving Pandu and Madri from Hell, Bhima must secure them for Heaven. Throughout Bhima’s journey to Heaven and Hell he is accompanied by his two loyal servants (the clown characters). These made up characters are highly important to the story Bhima Swarga because the ordinary Balinese can relate to the characters in the story Bhima Swarga because the characters represent ordinary Bali.
Bhima’s siblings go through hell right along with Bhima to rescue their parents. The siblings observe people being tortured for their sins. The siblings are Arjuna, Nakula, Sahadewa, Yudhishthira, and Bhima. The two clown characters whom accompany Bhima on his journey to Hell are Twalen and Mredah. Twalen wears a black checkered loin cloth and is the helper to Bhima. Twalen translates what is being said by Yudhishthira and Kunti. Mredah always wears red checkered loin cloths and he also helps Bhima along with cracking a joke to lighten the mood. Bhima goes to Hell to rescue his parents and when he arrives he finds his parents are in a huge hot water bath. Bhima tips the bath which his parents were boiling in and they are taken off to Heaven. The Demons did not like Bhima rescuing his parents and allowing them to go to Heaven. Bhima then has to fight off the Demons. Next, the Gods do not like this idea of Bhima taking his parents from Hell to Heaven. Bhima then gets into a fight with the Gods and Bhima dies in Heaven. The high God of all restores Bhima back to life and gives Bhima the drink of immortality. The last scene of Bhima Swarga shows justice, even with punishments of Hell.
The ceiling of Kertha Gosa is painted in a traditional Balinese style that resembles wayang, “shadow figure”. Paintings in the wayang style are related closely to shadow theatre art, relating to the Mahabharata and Ramayana stories. Wayang style paintings have been faithfully preserved that it continues today to reflect Bali’s Hindu-Javanese heritage in its traditional iconography and content. Iconography was used a lot in Bali’s culture. Iconoclasm is used because the Balinese people wanted to represent living things through pictures and shadows; it was prohibited to represent any living entity. [unquote]
Bhima Swarga: The Balinese Journey of the Soul: Pucci, Idanna
Halus (Delicate) and Kasar (Rough) Characters in a Scene from Bhima Swarga
Stutterheim W.F. (1956) An Ancient Javanese Bhima Cult. In: Studies in Indonesian Archaeology. Koninklijk Instituut voor Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde. Springer, Dordrecht
Keris Relief (Blacksmith Relief)
[quote]The scene in the bas relief depicts Bhima as the Blacksmith in the left forging the Metal - a Kris ; he extends its blade into the fire. A tier of three shelves above his left shoulder illustrate (1) the tools of his trade (bottom shelf: a file, hammer, etc.) (2) the weaponry he produces (middle shelf: a knife, etc.) and (3) the ceremonial objects he produces (top shelf: finials) , Ganesha in the center dances upon a platform while holding a dog , and Arjuna in the right operating the tube blower to pump air into the furnace pump that extend , along the bottom of the relief, to the forge in the left hand panel. The relief is highly celebrated, and has been exhibited abroad.
Keris Relief (Blacksmith Relief)
The wall of the main monument has a relief portraying two men forging a weapon in a Smithy with a dancing figure of Ganesha, the most important Tantric deity, having a human body and the head of an elephant. In Hindu-Java Mythology, the Smith is thought to possess not only the skill to alter metals, but also the key to spiritual transcendence. Smiths drew their powers to forge a kris from the god of fire; and a Smithy is considered as a Shrine. Hindu-Javanese Kingship was sometimes legitimated and empowered by the possession of a kris.
The elephant head figure with a crown in the Smithy relief depicts Ganesha, the God who removes obstacles in Hinduism. The Ganesha figure, however, differs in some small respects with other usual depictions. Instead of sitting, the Ganesha figure in Candi Sukuh's relief is shown dancing and it has distinctive features including the EXPOSED GENITALIA, the demonic physiognomy, the strangely awkward dancing posture, the rosary bones on its neck and holding a small animal, probably a dog.
The Ganesha relief in Candi Sukuh has a similarity with the Tantric ritual found in the history of Buddhism in Tibet written by Taranatha. The Tantric ritual is associated with several figures, one of whom is described as the "King of Dogs" (Sanskrit: Kukuraja), who taught his disciples by day, and by night performed Ganacakra in a burial ground or charnel ground.
The forging of iron, and in particular of the iron knife-blades known as Kris, or Keris, had a Spiritual Significance in Indonesia that is comparable to the special importance of sword-making in Japan. The Indonesian iron-worker was allocated to a special caste, that stood outside the typical Hindu caste system and did not necessarily yield, in precedence, even to Brahmins.[unquote]
Bhima. Nusa-Dua Bali Indonesia
Bhima. Wayang Kulit Klasik.
Bhima. Candi Sukuh. Indonesia. Bhima Relief In Wayang Style - A Carving Depicting A Womb with Mythological Creatures. "The subject of this relief is Bhima, a hero of the Mahabharata, posed opposite a God on pedestal within a horseshoe-shaped arch. The sides of the arch are formed by the exaggerated tails of two birds, whose heads and bodies appear below the relief. A kala-like ogre is placed at the top, between two more ogre faces at the tips of the birds' tails. The central figures are sculpted in Wayang Puppet style, and indeed resemble their leather-puppet counterparts in posture, costume, and sideways presentation. A triad of indistinct figures appears below, in the narrow neck of the arch; the upper figure of the triad supports a Shrine or pavilion on his upraised hand, while the bottom two figures appear to Pass something between them."
Bhima Overcomes A Foe "These reliefs show Bhima rushing into battle, with bow and spear. He is preceded by a smaller standard-bearer, whose flag is emblazoned with Bhima's image; appropriately, since Bhima was of course the general of his troops. The hero's curling hair is distinctive, and appears on both images of him.
In this relief, mighty Bhima (identified by his curled hair, as on the previous page) lifts a foe off the ground by the sheer strength of his arm. Behind the hero is one of his followers, a soldier equipped with shield and spear. An inscription above Bhima's head tells the story."
Some other reliefs depicting story of Mahabharata - Bhima
Headless Statue of Bima
Some more Reliefs depicting Life of Bima
Bhima (Bima), second of the Pandava (Pandawa) brothers, approx. 1960. Indonesia; West Java. Wood, cloth, and mixed media. From the Mimi and John Herbert Collection, F2000.86.157.
"Bhima (Bima) is the second of the Pandava (Pandawa) brothers in the Mahabharata, a great Hindu epic. He is the divine son of the wind god Vayu (Bayu), and is known for his military skill, physical power, bravery, and voracious appetite. Although Bhima has a tendency to demonstrate a lack of selfcontrol, his intentions are always honest and noble. While in exile because his brother Yudhishthira (Yudistira) has lost their kingdom in a gambling bet, Bhima marries the princess giant Hidhimba (Arimbi), with whom he has a son, who is named Ghatotkacha (Gatotkaca). Having descended from the wind god, Bhima has the ability to fly, as does his half-brother Hanuman (Hanoman) and his son Ghatotkacha.
In one story from the Mahabharata, the fierce warrior Bhima defeats a dragon, which then transforms itself into a poisonous serpent. Bhima wraps the serpent around his neck, declaring that it may bite him should he ever tell a lie."
Indonesia Bali Bhima Monument Kuta, Indonesia.
Stone Guradian Figure of Bhima, Majapahit Style, Indonesia. 15thC
Bhima. Sculpture. Ancol.Jakarta. Indonesia
"In the Mahābhārata, Bhima (Sanskrit: भीम, IAST: Bhīma, Tibetan: མི་འཇིགས་སྟན; Wylie: mi 'jigs stan) is one of the central characters of Mahabharata and the second of the Pandava brothers. Bhima was distinguished from his brothers by his great stature and strength.
His legendary prowess is celebrated in the epic: "Of all the wielders of the mace, there is none equal to Bhima; and there is none also who is so skillful a rider of elephants. In fight, they say, he yields not even to Arjuna; and as to might of arms, he is equal to ten thousand elephants. Well-trained and active, he who hath again been rendered bitterly hostile, would in anger consume the Dhritarashtra in no time. Always wrathful, and strong of arms, he is not capable of being subdued in battle by even Indra himself. Bhima a Maharati, capable of fighting 60,000 warriors at once, so mighty was he that when he were to roar in anger he would put to shame the proudest lion and frighten the most fearless warrior." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhima
Bhima. Museum. Wayang.
Bhima Shakti sculpture in Bali, Indonesia (L) and a statue of Hanuman (R). Pic courtesy: Thinkstock Photos