Topics: Southeast Asia, Srivijaya, Indonesia Pages: 2 (555 words) Published: September 11, 2013
"Devarāja" is the Hindu-Buddhist cult of deified royalty in Southeast Asia.[1] It could be simply described as Southeast Asian concept of divine king. The concept viewed the monarch to possess transcendental quality, the king as the living god on earth, the incarnation of the supreme god, often attributed to Shiva or Vishnu. The concept is closely related to Indian concept of Chakravartin (universal monarch). In politics, it is viewed as the divine justification of a king's rule. The concept was institutionalized and gain its elaborate manifestations in ancient Java and Cambodia, where monuments such as Prambanan and Angkor Watwere erected to celebrate the king's divine rule on earth. The cult of devaraja or God King was the ancient Cambodian state religion, while it may have originated in Java.[1] Circa 8th century, Sailendras allegedly ruled over Java, Sumatra, the Malay Peninsula and parts of Cambodia.[2] In ancient Java, since Sailendra dynasty, or even older Tarumanagara kingdom, the state religion regarded the king as god incarnated on earth. The Tarumanagara fifth century CE Ciaruteun inscription, inscribed with king's sole print, regarded King Purnawarman as incarnation of Vishnu on earth. The Kebon Kopi I inscription, also calledTelapak Gajah stone, with an inscription and the engraving of two large elephant footprints, associated king's elephant ride as Airavata (elephant ride of God Indra), thus associated the king also with Indra. In Medang kingdom, it is customary to erect candi (temple) to honor and sent the soul of a dead king. The image of god inside the garbhagriha (central chamber) of the temple often portrayed the deceased king as a god, as the soul of the dead king finally united with the revered god in svargaloka. Some archaeologists propose that the statue of Shiva in the garbhagriha of Prambanan main temple was modelled after King Balitung, serving as a depiction of his posthumous deified self.[3] It is suggested that the cult was the...
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