Culture of Indonesia
The culture of
Indonesia has took its current shape molded by several influences
that have been prevalent in the land, as a result of the long
process of interaction and acculturation between original
indigenous customs and a multitude of foreign influences.
Nestled between the
ancient sea trading routes between Far East and Middle East,
Indonesian culture, too a large extent has imbibed much of its
daily practices and art forms from the Hindu, Buddhist,
Confucianism and Islamic influences. These connections are clearly
evident mostly in its many trading cities.
cultural hue of Indonesia is largely cosmopolitan and need to be
distinguished from the original. The complex nature of this
culture can be easily gazed by various lines of faiths adopted by
people here, for example: Agama Hindu Dharma, a denomination of
Hinduism is now practiced by 93% of Balinese.
Other examples are
the fusion of Islam with Hindu in Javanese Abangan belief, the
fusion of Hinduism, Buddhism and animism in Bodha, the fusion of
Hinduism and animism in Kaharingan, and many others.
With the diverse influences, shaping up the perspective of the
Indonesian people, their lifestyle and values, the impact of the
cultural fusion is also noticeable in Indonesian art forms. For
instances, wayang- a traditional form of theatre show performed
with puppets was used to spread Hinduism and Islam among villagers
Similarly, in various Javanese and Balinese dances, often
stories about old Buddhist and Hindu kingdoms are told. In
Sumatra, especially in its Minangkabau and Aceh regions, one can
see direct architectural inspiration from the Islamic art forms
As far as the westernization of culture of Indonesia is concerned,
an imprint of it though cannot be ruled out, but it is mostly
limited to modern entertainment, such as television shows, movies
and songs. One of the major influences in this sphere are the
Bollywood songs and movies.