Mahabharata (Indonesia)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Indonesia has a different version of the Mahabharata from the Indian version of Mahabharata in many parts of the story. The Mahabharata was translated into (old) Javanese under the reign of king Dharmawangsa of Medang (r. 990-1006).[1]

It is also known as 'Bharat Yudha' etc. and is often portrayed through the form of Javanese Wayang. A Characteristic feature of the Indonesian Mahabharata is that it gives more autonomy to other characters apart from the main characters - Krishna, Arjuna, Bhisma, Duryodhana. In the Indonesian version of Mahabharata more is said about the character of Shalya etc.

The main characters in Indonesian Mahabharata or Bharat Yudha are:

  1. Bisma (Bhishma - as in Indian Version)- Who is the great grandfather of the Pandawas and Kurawas.
  2. King Pandu Dewanata (Pandu - In Indian Version) Father of the five Pandawas.
  3. Destarata (Dhritrashtra - In Indian Version) Eldest brother of King Pandu Dewanata who is blind and fathers 100 Kurawa brothers.
  4. Dewi Kunti (Kunti - In Indian Version) Mother of Yudistira, Bima and Arjuna and wife of Pandu
  5. Gendari (Gandhari - In Indian Version) mother of Kauravas.
  6. Madrim (Madri - In Indian Version) Mother of the ashwin twins Nakula and Sadewa and wife of Pandu
  7. Karna (Karna - In Indian Version) Illegitimate son of Kunti and the Sun God, Suryadeva and a faithful friend of Duryudana and of evil Kurawas
  8. Durna (Drona - In Indian Version) The great teacher and mahaguru to both the Kurawas and Pandawas
  9. Duryudana (Duryodhana - In Indian Version) Eldest Kurawa brother who wants to be the king and hates the Pandawas.
  10. Sangkuni (Shakuni - In Indian Version) Evil and conspirator. A friend of the Kurwas.
  11. Arjuna (Arjuna - In Indian Version) Third Pandawa brother born of Indra(the War God) skilled archer, and hero of the Mahabharata.
  12. Yudistira (Punta Dewa/Dharmawangsa) (Yudhisthira - In Indian Version) Eldest Pandawa brother, rightful heir to throne of Hastinapura following King Pandu. Born of the God of Dharmadeva, truthful, patient, wise and never angry.
  13. Bima (Bhima - In Indian Version) Second Pandawa brother born of the Wind God, a very strong man with strength of thousands of elephants, a giant
  14. Srikandi (Shikhandi - In Indian Version)elder sisterof draupadi, a warrior princess and a skilled archer,she becomes a man by exchanging her feminity with a yaksha to kill bhisma.
  15. Dewi Dropadi (Draupadi - In Indian Version) Younger sister of Srikandi, married to 5 pandavas after an archery competition, and heroine of the Mahabharata
  16. Hastinapura (Hastinapura - In Indian Version) Original kingdom of the Pandawas and Kurawas
  17. Amarta (Indraprastha - In Indian Version) New kingdom made by the Pandawas
  18. Mt Indrakila: The place where Arjuna goes to meditate before the 'Bharata Yudha' or 'War of India' and where he receives his magic bow and arrow the Gendiva.


In indonesian version the Kings and Queens were the descendant of Gods. The story begins at Betara Guru, who became the first king of the kingdom of 'Medang Kamulang'.


  1. ^ Helen Creese, Women of the Kakawin World: Marriage and Sexuality in the Indic Courts of Java and Bali, 2004, Eastgate, Armonk, New York, p. 253