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Dukun, the master of black magic

October 28, 2008

One aspect of the Indonesian culture that you’re not likely to get to see is the practice of ‘black magic’ or witchcraft. When you talk to regular Indonesian people they might tell you they believe in black magic, although they don’t practice it. Generally Indonesians do not like discussing black magic, especially their own experience with it, but its all around.


Today black magic, together with white magic such as fortune telling, love magic, healing massage and countless other forms, continues to play a dominant role within Javanese cosmology. Many local people believe in it wholeheartedly. All disasters, be they personal or communal, are attributed to black magic. Unusual or sudden death, crop failure, death of livestock, and marriage problems are all caused by a local dukun santet. Elsewhere in Indonesia, people will often consult a dukun to learn about the source of a relative’s illness.

 Dukuns probably have more of a hold in Java than in Bali. Most Javanese are Muslim, so they are not supposed to dabble in other supernatural practices. When personal family crisis arrives, people will often consult a dukun, behind closed doors. In Bali the daily offerings placed at intersections and doorways to keep evil spirits at bay, are part of Balinese life. Apedanda (high priest) will have special powers himself to ritually cleanse and offer blessings. Banyuwangi in East Java is a place associated with the practice of black magic.
Banyuwangi has long been known as one of the most powerful centers of black magic in Indonesia, along with Banten in West Java and the island of Lombok. Banyuwangi’s fertile land has bred a farming culture with close links to the spiritual world. As a buffer zone between the islands of Java and Bali, Banyuwangi also has a long history of violent struggle which in the past often met with failure. This combination of fertility and failure led to an obsession with sorcery among the peoples of Banyuwangi.
According to one history, black magic practiced today in Banyuwangi is a blend of animistic belief and Islamic mysticism which arose out of inter-religious conflict during the Mataram court from the 16th century onwards. Another account tracks the origins of Banyuwangi’s black magic to Tulung Agung, a region in the west of East Java.
Black magic in Banyuwangi takes on two major forms. The first is sihir, black magic used to kill another person. This generally comes in the form of busung, where the victim’s stomach will grow grotesquely in size. It is believed various items such as knives, nails, broken glass, even small frying pans or animals can be found inside the stomach. Busung victims rarely escape death.
The second type of black magic in Banyuwangi is rapuh, sorcery designed to make the victim suffer throughout their lifetime. Symptoms include sudden blindness or deafness, paralysis or uncontrollable shaking and trembling.
Dukun santet are feared, and feelings of revenge often occurs in villagers. However, revenge killings of dukun santet were rare. Banyuwangi villagers have long kept black magic in check at the local village level. A code of ethics among Banyuwangi dukun santet forbids them from using their magic against people in the same village. If this occurs the accused dukun must undertake an oath of innocence in the local mosque. A dukun found guilty by fellow villagers was usually exiled from the village and perhaps his home and possessions torched.
Dukun are indistinguishable from everyday people. Some are reverent teachers of Islam, some are comical, and some are gentle parental figures. All are strong characters and inspire respect in their own ways. Dukun believe that their spiritual powers are a gift from God. If those powers are abused through personal gain or nethical intent, they will be lost or weakened.
A person’s ability to become a dukun is generally passed down from their dukun ancestors. However, some form of preparation, at least initially, is necessary for dukun to receive their spiritual power. This usually consists of long periods of meditation and fasting for days or even months. Once the dukun has received this spiritual power, he or she needs to learn the skills and knowledge of dukun practice. Some dukun learn these skills from another dukun or from books on ilmu Jawa that are readily available in bookshops. Others say their skills were taught to them by spirits whom they continue to consult for advice on the diagnosis and treatment of their clients.
As the dukun practice is based on altruism, payment for their services is minimal. It is only a token of thanks, discreetly given to the dukun in a handshake at the end of the consultation. Payment can be in the form of money, tobacco, or consumables used during the consultation such as flowers, herbs and incense. It usually is between the value of A$2 and A$5. As such, dukun live modestly and are neither rich nor poor but have enough with which to survive. A well-off dukun is often suspected of fakery.
The dukun of Java have the wondrous ability to help people in all areas of their lives including the mind, body and soul through ancient practices. This intriguing and important aspect of Javanese culture provides hope, solace, healing and a sense of meaning for people in these uncertain and irrational times. It is no wonder the dukun trade is flourishing.

41 Comments leave one →
  1. yana permalink
    November 27, 2008 8:17 am

    penjual kebohongan, perusak akidah, penyebab mundurnya cara berfikir masyarakat!!

  2. April 15, 2009 3:48 am

    I want to ask about the White Magic Is demonic abyss, whether used in the reconciliation between the Alazoj, and how the length of the period for which the effect can continue, and whether affect effect if the person is false, was far from the place of witchcraft, magic, I mean after Thank you …

  3. umair permalink
    October 15, 2009 7:14 am

    Hi my name is umair, I have a stomach problem, that doctors cannot cure, I think its cause of black magic, I want to know if anyone knows someone who can remove black magic effects, I will pay money $ but I need a cure, email me at underplan101@hotmail.com

  4. judy permalink
    November 6, 2009 6:46 pm

    Hello,i want to ask about whether there are any black magic that can read a person’s mind?thank you

  5. Miguel Angel permalink
    March 6, 2010 11:39 am

    MIGUEL ANGEL..from Sydney

    I have been reading a few links on Google..About Black Magic and Spells ..Used in Indonesia.. It seems Real and a Fact that Peple Use this Magic..on Everyday Life. There!

    My Friend In Jogya is Suffering from Extreme condition of Body heat..And Headaches..She had this In the past about 3 Years Ago..she has mentioned..someone jealous had manage to place a spell on HER..Now again this condition has appeared..Feared to be A BLACK MAGIC SPELL..
    Can Anyone tell me is this condition Spell can Be Cure..or Reversed.. Or Are there any Doctors in Yogyakarta that can Help.
    Please!! Share your Information as She is really Having a Horrible time …
    I know nothing about Black Magic and I really would like to help her.

  6. Rizal permalink
    May 27, 2010 11:15 am

    Hi all….

    I have been having some personal problems and would like to seek the help of a strong dukun….please let me know or email me if anyone here knows a strong dukun who will be able to help please…..please help

    Email: rizal.haniffa@gmail.com

  7. INDRA permalink
    June 15, 2010 10:55 pm

    I want to learn black magic spells can anyone help me out plzz

  8. INDRA permalink
    June 15, 2010 10:57 pm

    PLZ someone help me out so learn black magic spells

  9. August 6, 2010 12:15 am

    Pregnancy should be celebrated more online than it is -http://www.naturalpregnancy.net

  10. August 7, 2010 5:34 pm

    I have an emotional problem and my girlfriend left me because of European influence by her mother, Can anyone who influence them and return to me that if Ahdj Emily gives me a recipe or e-fortune-teller to help me and thank you http://www.thwaini12@yahoo.com

  11. Lukas Irwanto permalink
    September 14, 2010 11:44 pm

    Hi i am from Scotland (Inggriss) i was born in pasuruan, east java. I am looking for good dukun if anyone knows good dukun please contact me on lukasirwanto@hotmail.com thanks

  12. Simon permalink
    March 2, 2011 11:47 pm

    hi there i would like your help to with dukun as got some personal problems could you e mail please thank you

  13. Rani permalink
    April 17, 2011 3:25 pm

    I have read your article, and my family are suffering from black magic. There people out there that are trying to split my family apart, and nobody wants to stay un the house any more…anytime we enter our hyouse there are big arguments and fights. My father have left us, and we think the black magic is coming from his family.
    I would really appriciate it if anyone can help us, If you know anybody or any place I can go for help, from an expert in removing balck magic..
    Please contact me as soon as possible
    heres my email: red-rose6666@live.fr

  14. ali permalink
    May 8, 2011 12:16 pm

    i,m ali from dubai i looking for good dukun in indonesia if any oen know please email me
    almaamary@gmail.com

  15. June 20, 2011 4:57 pm

    will u ples can u send to me telphon nembar for stromg man in black magic in indonisian — send to my email ansari2009@windowslive.com

  16. Jemzkin permalink
    September 5, 2011 10:14 am

    Miguel angel believe in god and u will be cured ur g/f only want ur money be carefull when ppl say they are demonize go to church god is more powerful or she should see a MD or a physicologist for her head

  17. eff jay permalink
    September 25, 2011 12:17 pm

    Here’s a gentle advice: stay away from black magic in whatever situation! If u suspect that u or someone u know has been spooked, look for white magic specialists – those who DONT dabble with the devil and his accomplices. Black magic tends to get back to you yourself. Stay clear.

  18. October 15, 2011 6:01 pm

    009656708871 plez col me

  19. sharon watson permalink
    November 17, 2011 9:32 am

    i have a problem that i need help with. does anyone know a good dukun that can help me. sharonwatson58@yahoo.com. please email me. thank you.

  20. Anonymous permalink
    November 21, 2011 2:22 pm

    hi I’m from india bt stayin in singapore. I’m having finance problem is there any1 who does black magic n solves the problem.im ready to come indonesia. plz let me knw asap. thanks.

  21. edy permalink
    November 22, 2011 10:28 am

    anyone can tell me where to find strong dukun,i will reward him
    luminous84@yahoo.com

  22. Anonymous permalink
    December 7, 2011 11:11 am

    miguel angel your friend is suffering from menopause either early or onset medically that feeling comes naturally she should seek menopause treatment not a wizard

  23. Anonymous permalink
    December 7, 2011 11:14 am

    indra why u would learn something god did not ordained to man go back to school and get a better education it will carry u a long way in this borrow time

  24. January 6, 2012 7:49 am

    I think it’s crazy
    but I think I want learn black magic to revolution

  25. January 27, 2012 3:55 am

    hi
    i want to lurn black magic if some one teach me plssss plssssss plssssssss just contect me in my email http://www.hajietess76@yahoo.com

  26. salman permalink
    February 5, 2012 12:50 am

    plz help me.

  27. Kathiresan permalink
    April 28, 2012 7:59 pm

    I was in love with a girl for 5 years and we lived like Husband and wife. And all of a sudden my girl friend wanted to go away from me obeying her parents and don’t wanted live with me. She is my life and i cannot live without her. I want my girl friend back for me to live happily. Will you be able to help me and how much do you charge ? And how many days would it take for you to do that. Please reply as soon as possible. And my email address is kathirsathi@gmail.com. Am posting this as i heard that Indonesian people are really good helping through Black Magic and make things happen.

    Regards,
    Kathir. T

  28. Zak permalink
    May 7, 2012 1:51 am

    Cursed are those who want to learn this damned demonic rituals, may God burn them in hell for eternity.

  29. Abbas permalink
    May 21, 2012 7:48 pm

    I live in Sydney, please if you a genuine Dukun let me know
    elshiekhabbas@hotmail.com

  30. Shane permalink
    July 7, 2012 8:32 am

    This type of blog does not help my argument with my wife #1, soon to be X, that because a beautiful Javanese girl, wife #2 has won my heart, my wife #1 thinks that this girl, wife #2 has a black magic spell over me..,, for fXXXs sake… life is so much easier as an atheist…

  31. Shahid permalink
    August 27, 2012 12:47 pm

    i have been suffaring for 20 years from BM. i not able to work or geting married. i am 45 years old suffaring from stomache pain that goes throu the head. Looking for help who can guide me to a super dakun. God bless you

  32. November 14, 2012 7:22 am

    Hi this Jan from France need hélp for some thing pléase contact me at Malang.jan87@gmail.com if some really do what i want i Will pay him how much he want

  33. ervin permalink
    December 18, 2012 8:13 pm

    aku mau kabogoh ka cwe,, dan uang banyak di aku

  34. lost girl permalink
    December 29, 2012 6:20 pm

    please helpe me i need dukun
    please please please

  35. Anonymous permalink
    January 23, 2013 9:48 am

    Hi..im in urgent need of a good dukun for serious personal issues..pls do contact me as soon as you can at aliazzurri4life@hotmail.com…thank you

  36. Anonymous permalink
    December 18, 2013 5:01 pm

    Hello everyone, I have deep problem so if anyone knows a good magic healer to give me his or her phone or email please. thank you
    vip4vip@hotmail.com

  37. Anonymous permalink
    December 18, 2013 6:04 pm

    Hi, I need back magic healer that can also tell the name who did black magic to me. if anyone knows a person please provide me with his contact numbers please
    thank you very much for your kind help
    my email fbi912@hotmail.com

  38. Sassy permalink
    February 25, 2014 10:36 pm

    Hey.. I’m really depressed about a lot of kings happening in my life.. Can someone please send me a number on my email whom I can contact and someone had positive experience with?? Please help

  39. March 16, 2014 4:03 pm

    god day pls. help me theres something moving inside my body. doctor cant cure me. thanks

  40. Liana permalink
    July 1, 2014 10:25 pm

    How to cure somebody who got black magic?. Thank you

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