Learning Hinduism in Madania
By Icha 12K
After studying here in Madania for about 12 years, I’ve learned a lot of stuff. One of them was learning Hinduism. It was fun learning Hinduism here, the study method persuades us, the students here, to learn more than just from power point presentation, papers, and pens like what we are used to in our base class. Here, we made displays, presentations, also we often discuss questions we want to ask from a particular topic we are currently studying. Although currently, I’m the oldest among Hindu students in Madania, it didn’t really make a difference from when I was the youngest 12 years ago. We, I and the other Hindu students in Madania, can still communicate and have fun despite of our age difference. However, sometimes I do feel lonely for not having anyone that can relate to all the problems I face at high school, that explains why now days, I find excuses not to join Tirtayatra or any activities if it involves going outside the school. Sometimes I do have something important to do like tests, yet, sometimes its just because I don’t have someone that I can relate with. Despite the atmosphere around Hindu gathering room, being a Hindu alone is honestly quite challenging. I often get questions from people about my own religion and to be honest sometimes I can’t even answer a few. But that’s okay, if it really bothers me I often asks Ibu Ayu about it, but most of the time, me being a shy person, I avoid to ask and just find the answer online.
Growing up, Hindu was never that hard. At least it’s not as hard as what a lot of my friends portray learning about their religion. They always describe religion as something “very hard” or “have to memorize a ton of stuff”. But as I grow, Hindu got a lot harder. Although I often study what I have studied before, but sometimes, the varieties of things I need to memorize and understand gets wider and wider, especially at high school. Honestly, sometimes I blame the authorities in Indonesia for changing its curriculum exaggeratingly every time. Hindu gets very confusing and hard to understand. That one time in grade 11, I believe, the curriculum asks me to memorize a huge book full of philosophy, the topic was called Sad Darsana, and I kid you not, it was the first time I need to do remedial studying religion. Often times, I repeat what I’ve learned before more than 2 times like when I learned Sad Ripu in Lower Secondary, at each grade. I get easily bored because of the repetition, also, my chances to learn a more broad topic of Hindu gets shrunk. Let’s take example, I was always excited to learn about Dasa Avatara, a topic I always see in displays of my juniors or even seniors, but I never got a chance to learn it because the curriculum keeps rolling.
Along the 12 years of learning Hindu here in Madania, the most interesting lesson I got was being able to memorize 8 Sloka of Bhagawad Gita. The first time Ibu Ayu told me about the existence of Bhagawad Gita was sometime around grade 2 in Primary school. What catches my attention is the word “Gita” in it, well, long story short, Gita is my name, and soon from then I got amazed by the meaning of it. Gita means singing, and for a very long time, singing has been a hobby of mine. That’s why, from then I started borrowing the Bhagawad Gita from the religion room. Even when we went on Tirtayatra to Bandung and could get Bhagawad Gita for free, I took 2 home. I read it and bring it everywhere, I brag to my friends, to my parents and siblings without really knowing what’s the real meaning of the sayings there, it’s just a very interesting story. For a very long time Bhagawad Gita was a very interesting topic to learn, I always got exited every time Ibu Ayu asks me to rewrite one sloka from Bhagawad Gita in our reflection book complete with my reflection of the sloka, but never in my mind I ever think of memorizing even one sloka from Bhagawad Gita. Until, when I entered high school I am forced and insisted to memorize at least 5 Sloka. Honestly, it was hard, memorizing it and being able to sing the Slokas, but once you got the hang of it, you’ll love it. Although for me, I don’t love it much enough to get me memorize more than 8 slokas I have memorized, maybe because I don’t really have time for it, but hopefully in days to come, I can memorize more slokas.
Hinduism room in Madania, both the old one and new one, is one of the legend witnesses of my life. On happy days or even sad depressing days. Despite of all the problems I face learning Hinduism in Madania, the experience has been amazing, I get to learn so many stuff, like literally from learning how to read and write here, to Balinese dancing, to singing, to recording dramas, and so many more amazing things. I thank Ibu Ayu for always giving me chances to become a better version of myself through teaching me Hinduism. Honestly for me, going to Hinduism room at 12 PM every day after a long half day of school is always a happy escape from my responsibilities, and that will soon be gone as I will attend college not more than 5 months. May Hindu in Madania became better and better throughout the years to come. It was a privilege to be inside of the history of Hindu in Madania.
16 November 2017
Made Ayu Gitagayatri 12K