Fri, 23 May 2003

World meditation center in Dieng

PURWOKERTO, Central Java: The government is considering turning Java's oldest Hindu temple complex at the Dieng plateau in Central Java into an international center for meditation.

State Minister for Culture and Tourism I Gde Ardika said on Wednesday that due to its historical importance, the Dieng complex deserved to become an important center for meditation.

He said many Hindu priests meditate at the temple complex, which is located on a 2,000 meter plateau 26 kilometers northwest of Wonosobo in Central Java.

Ardika said the plan should be carefully considered, taking the impact on the non-Hindu community living nearby the complex into account.

The Dieng plateau was formed by a volcanic eruption and the area remains geothermally active. Built around the 7th century, the temples carry the names of Wayang heroes. The name Dieng comes from Di Hyang which means "Abode of the Gods" -- JP