This myth has become legend and those who have carried the Keris in their native birth places in Indonesia and Malaysia swear by the power of this weapon. The spiritual qualities of the Keris are often a complex subject. These blades, for their owners, were and are considered to have a life of their own and were treated as valued members of the family. They are passed from generation to generation so that they stay within the ancestral family from where it originated. Kerises could be tested two ways. When one would first acquire a blade to be passed as a family heirloom the owner slept with the blade under their pillow and had a bad dream, the blade was unlucky and had to be taken away and another one found. The “bad blade” was not unusable, it was simply deemed not right for that particular person. That same blade may have turned out to be perfect for another owner, but the process of finding the perfect blade was considered a careful and intricate process. Harmony between the owner and the Kris was critical.
The stories of the power of the Keris is deeply embedded in the psyche of those natives of Southeast Asia where these blades were used for centuries. Legend has it that Kerises helped prevent fires, death, crop failure and innumerable other troubles. Amazingly they were purported to do more than avert trouble; certain Kerises could bring about prosperity to its owner or happy events to the family of the owner, such as the conception of a child. Kerises were also said to protect its owner in combat and during battle. There are legends galore of Kerises moving around on their own and killing individuals they disliked. When making a blade, the Empu could infuse into the blade any special spiritual qualities and powers the owner desired, thus if one wanted to bring prosperity the Empu would add these properties to the blade.
Some Kerises are considered sacred, and people believe they contain magical powers, thus specific rites needed to be completed to avoid calling down evil fates. For example, pointing the blade at someone is thought to mean that they will die soon, so in ceremonies or demonstrations where ritualized battles are fought with real krises, the fighters will perform a ritual which includes touching the point of the blade to the ground to neutralize this effect. Many of these weapons were thought to absorb the strength and heroism of their previous owners, and impart those virtues onto their present owners. Others could be used to extend and focus a user's personal energy to cultivate spiritual awareness.
As an object of occult , the Keris is much revered as the swords of the samurai. There are many myths associated with this blade. Some natives of Indonesia and Malaysia have confessed that they have seen water drawn from the weapon. It is also believed that the Keris could perform remarkable and stunning actions. The death of an enemy could be performed by merely pointing the weapon at the intended victim. This command is known in Malay as “tuju” and this brand of sorcery is highly feared. The kris is also believed to have the power to jump out of its scabbard on its own and engage in battle with an enemy. It is also believed to be to rattle on its own scabbard to forewarn its owner of impending danger or threat.
The obvious connection of supernatural power with the Kris is somehow linked to the mysticism of the Orient itself. The most interesting aspects of the kris is its close association with religion. This relationship can be explained by the common goal of protecting the believer and owner of the weapon from danger. It is believed that the powers of religion held within the Keris can only be manifested for good purposes and that to use the Keris in an evil manner will backfire and cause the harm to the initiator of ill will. Although there are many various weapons to be found on the archipelago, none even come close to possessing the highly regarded social and religious attributes associated with Keris. The Keris is considered a mark of social distinction and is regarded as an "inseparable brother of men." It is also regarded as man's learning spirit and is a method of communicating with ancestors.
Copyright © 2006: Zahir Karbani UK Registration Number 253932
This article was published on Wednesday 09 May, 2007.