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  • A visit to Dieng

A visit to Dieng

Adventure Spirituality

Dieng Plateau is a marshy plateau that forms the floor of a caldera complex on the Dieng Volcanic Complex near Wonosobo, Central Java, Indonesia.[1] Referred to as "Dieng" by Indonesians, it sits at 2,000 metres (6,600 ft) above sea level, far from major population centres. The name "Dieng" comes from Di Hyang which means "Abode of the Gods".

The Plateau is the location of eight small Hindu temples from the Kalingga Kingdom. It is unclear when they were built, estimated to range from mid 7th century to end of 8th century AD; they are the oldest known standing stone structures in Java. They are originally thought to have numbered 400 but only eight remain. The temples are now believed to have been named after the heroes of the Hindu epic Mahabharata.

Michell claims Dieng's misty location almost 2,093 m above sea level, its poisonous effusions and sulphur-coloured lakes make it a particularly auspicious place for religious tribute. The temples are small shrines built as monuments to the god-ancestors and dedicated to Shiva.The Hindu shrines are miniature cosmic mountains based on plans in Indian religious texts, although Schoppert suggest the design motifs have little connection to India.

"Tjandi Adjoeno on the Dijeng plateau" photo by Isidore van Kinsbergen

In 2011, in a review published by Romain, the temple is now believed to be related to Dravida and Pallava style temples of South India. The theory that poisonous effusions make it auspicious is now disputed as volcanic activity in this area from 7th to 9th century is yet to established, and records suggest the temple was abandoned after volcanic eruptions became common in central Java.

Dieng has a wet, subtropical highland climate (Cwb). In "winter" there is much less rainfall than in "summer". The average annual temperature in Dieng is 14.0 °C. About 2652 mm of precipitation falls annually. (Source: Wikipedia)