Archaeology Heritage & Conservation Journals and Publications

“Spiritual Landscape Characterization of Muara Takus Temple Compound and Surroundings Area”

“Spiritual Landscape Characterization of Muara Takus Temple Compound and Surroundings Area | Karakterisasi Lanskap Spiritual Kompleks Candi Muara Takus dan Kawasan di Sekitarnya”

by

Ari Adi, Nugrahadi Mahanani, Ery Soedewo and Gun Faisal

Keywords: Muara Takus, Landscape, Geoarchaeology, Ethnohistory

Abstract:
Muara Takus Temple Complex is one of the Buddhist monuments in the middle of Sumatra which is still mysterious. Until now, scholars have not been able to ascertain the span of its establishment because of very minimal historical sources. The landscape around the enshrinement has also changed drastically due to the construction of the hydropower dam in early 1990’s, making it difficult to trace the context of the surrounding area. This study seeks to reveal the spiritual landscape character of the Muara Takus Temple and surroundings using an ethnohistorical and geoarchaeological perspective. The people living around Muara Takus Temple are inhabitants who have lived in the area for generations, at least since the 19th century because of reports by European explorers. These people still remember how the landscape was before the hydropower dam was built. This ethnohistorical data is very important to be recorded before the memory gradually fades. The correlation between the temples and the meaning of the landscape by the people for generations is a key that can help explain the position of Muara Takus Temple is in the context of its landscape.

Kompleks Candi Muara Takus merupakan salah satu monumen berlatar Budha di tengah Pulau Sumatra yang masih misterius. Sampai saat ini, para ahli belum dapat memastikan rentang masa pendiriannya karena sumber sejarah yang sangat minim. Lanskap di sekitar percandian ini juga telah berubah drastis akibat pembangunan bendungan PLTA pada awal 1990-an, sehingga konteks dengan kawasan sekitarnya sulit untuk dilacak kembali. Penelitian ini berupaya untuk mengungkap karakter lanskap spiritual kompleks Candi Muara Takus menggunakan perspektif etnohistori dan geoarkeologi. Masyarakat di sekitar Candi Muara Takus merupakan penduduk yang telah turun temurun mendiami wilayah tersebut. Setidaknya tercatat sejak abad ke-19 dalam laporan para penjelajah Eropa. Masyarakat ini masih mengingat bagaimana kondisi lanskap sebelum bendungan PLTA dibangun. Data etnohistori yang cukup penting untuk segera direkam sebelum ingatan tersebut lambat laun memudar. Penjelasan mengenai korelasi antara percandian dengan pemaknaan lanskap oleh masyarakat secara turun temurun tentu merupakan kunci yang bisa membantu menjelaskan bagaimana kedudukan Candi Muara Takus dalam konteks lanskapnya.

Access the full article for free on the SPAFA Journal website at DOI: https://doi.org/10.26721/spafajournal.945pfx8qc3

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