“..What Is in A Name..”

“..What’s in a name? That which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet..”

William Shakespeare


But then here is a quote from somebody’s blog about it : 

“..of course there is something behind a name

so give your children sweet names

as they are also a good prayer for them..”

I feel a bit blue tonight..just browsing without any purpose. The windows media player keep repeating the chants of Gayatri Mantra since I don’t feel like listening any ‘popular’ music. And then suddenly I just want to google my name. I’ve done it sometimes (just because) but usually end up with some website about Gayatri Mantra (or some articles I wrote long way back then). But tonight I find something new, quite interesting about my name. I like ‘Gayatri’ very much, such a beautiful name (thanks to my grandfather, he’s the one who give me that name). People said it’s a ‘heavy’ kind of name, but for all these years, I find out that I’m doing ok, get along quite well with my name. Many times I find myself in an interesting situations with people because of my name. They think the name ‘Gayatri’ is very spiritual and also historical (especially if connected with the Majapahit KIngdom).

Here are some of them when I google my name (quoted from Wikipedia in bahasa):  

Candi Gayatri adalah reruntuhan candi Hindu yang berada di dusun Boyolangu, kalurahan Boyolangu, kecamatan Boyolangu, kabupaten Tulungagung, Jawa Timur. Pada bagian tangga batu candi ini terdapat tulisan angka 1289 Ç (1367 M) dan 1291 Çaka (1369 M), yang kemungkinan dipakai untuk menandai tahun pembuatan dari Candi Gayatri, yaitu pada zaman kerajaan Majapahit.

Di dalam kawasan candi ini terdapat satu candi induk dan dua candi perwara di sebelah selatan dan utaranya. Candi induk berukuran 11,40 m x 11,40 m, mempunyai arca Gayatri (arca wanita dari ratu Sri Rajapatni, nenek dari raja Hayam Wuruk)) dengan panjang 1,1 m, lebar 1 m dan tinggi 1,2 m. Pada candi perwara di sebelah selatan terdapat arcaNandi, arca Dwarapala dan arca Mahisasura Nandini. Pada candi perwara di sebelah utara terdapat dua patung yoni yang disangga oleh kepala naga, arca Ganesa dan sebuah patung Jaladwara.

(*never been here, maybe I should just go there sometimes, I just love old historical places).

And another one (also from Wikipedia) :

Silsilah Gayatri

Negarakertagama  menyebutkan Raden Wijaya menikahi empat orang putri Kertanagara rajaterakhir Singhasari, yaitu Tribhuwanabergelar Tribhuwaneswari, Mahadewi bergelar Narendraduhita, Jayendradewi bergelar Prajnyaparamita, dan Gayatri bergelar Rajapatni. Selain itu, ia juga memiliki seorang istri dari Melayu bernama Dara Petak bergelar Indreswari.

Dari kelima orang istri tersebut, yang memberikan keturunan hanya Dara Petak dan Gayatri. Dari Dara Petak lahir Jayanagara, sedangkan dari Gayatri lahir Tribhuwanotunggadewi dan Rajadewi. Tribhuwanotunggadewi inilah yang kemudian menurunkan raja-raja Majapahitselanjutnya.

Peranan Gayatri dalam Perjuangan

Pararaton menyebutkan Raden Wijaya hanya menikahi dua orang putri Kertanagara saja. Pemberitaan tersebut terjadi sebelum Majapahit berdiri. Diperkirakan, mula-mula Raden Wijaya hanya menikahi Tribhuwaneswari dan Gayatri saja. Baru setelah Majapahit berdiri, ia menikahi Mahadewi dan Jayendradewi pula. Dalam Kidung Harsawijaya, Tribhuwana dan Gayatri masing-masing disebut dengan nama Puspawati dan Pusparasmi.

Pada saat Singhasari runtuh akibat serangan Jayakatwang tahun 1292, Raden Wijaya hanya sempat menyelamatkan Tribhuwana saja, sedangkan Gayatri ditawan musuh di Kadiri. Setelah Raden Wijaya pura-pura menyerah pada Jayakatwang, baru ia bisa bertemu Gayatri kembali.Pararaton menyebutkan, Raden Wijaya bersekutu dengan bangsa Tatar (Mongol) untuk dapat mengalahkan Jayakatwang. Konon raja Tatar bersedia membantu Majapahit karena Arya Wiraraja menawarkan Tribhuwana dan Gayatri sebagai hadiah.

Kisah tersebut hanyalah imajinasi pengarang Pararaton saja, karena tujuan utama pengiriman pasukan Mongol yang dipimpin Ike Mese ke tanah Jawa adalah untuk menaklukkan Kertanagara.

Setelah Jayakatwang kalah, Raden Wijaya dan Arya Wiraraja ganti menghadapi pasukan Tatar. Dikisahkan dalam Pararaton bahwa, kedua putri siap untuk diserahkan dengan syarat tentara Tatar harus menyembunyikan senjata masing-masing, karena kedua putri tersebut ngeri melihat senjata dan darah. Maka, ketika pasukan Tatar, tanpa senjata, datang menjemput kedua putri, pasukan Raden Wijaya segera membantai mereka.

Gayatri sepeninggal Jayanegara

Raden Wijaya menjadi raja pertama Majapahit sejak tahun 1293. Ia meninggal tahun 1309 dan digantikan putranya, yaitu Jayanagara. Pada tahun 1328 Jayanagara mati dibunuh Ra Tanca.

Menurut Nagarakretagama, Gayatri saat itu sudah menjadi pendeta Buddha. Ia lalu memerintahkan putrinya, yaitu Tribhuwanotunggadewinaik takhta pada tahun 1329 menggantikan Jayanagara yang tidak punya keturunan. Pada tahun 1350, Tribhuwanotunggadewi turun takhta bersamaan dengan meninggalnya Gayatri.

Nagarakretagama seolah memberitakan kalau takhta Jayanagara diwarisi Gayatri, karena ibu tirinya itu adalah putri Kertanagara. Mengingat Gayatri adalah putri bungsu, kemungkinan saat itu istri-istri Raden Wijaya yang lain sudah meninggal semua. Karena Gayatri telah menjadi pendeta, maka pemerintahannya pun diwakili oleh Tribhuwanotunggadewi.

Berita dalam Nagarakretagama tersebut kurang tepat karena pada tahun 1351 Tribhuwanotunggadewi masih menjadi raja, terbukti dengan ditemukannya prasasti Singasari.Nagarakretagama dan Pararaton juga memberitakan pada tahun 1362 Hayam Wuruk (raja keempat) mengadakan upacara Sraddhamemperingati 12 tahun meninggalnya Gayatri Rajapatni.

Quite a story, right? When I was in elementary (or maybe in Junior High School?) by the time we students start to learn about the Majapahit Kingdom, I had this special feeling about Gayatri, the grandmother of Hayam Wuruk. Especially when I learned that she had became a biksuni. I had that strange feeling that I-too- can become one. Later I  find out that  I actually have this big curiosity towards spirituality-maybe my name made me so..there’s a feeling of ‘responsibility’ for being given the name ‘Gayatri’. Only at this time being, I know for sure I won’t be a biksuni..

If I meet somebody for the first time, when we introduce ourselves, people promptly add ‘mantra’ after Gayatri. It has been going on and on since I’m in elementary school, so I really get used to it after all this years. But friends find it difficult to make a nick name out of it- some call me ‘tri’, but I guess it was started in junior high school that friends started to call me Gay (without –atri). I know what you think now..but it pronounced differently. With a clear ‘a’ (like in ‘dArk’). Some call me Gaya which reminds me of Greek Mythology : Gaia or Gaea, the mother earth. I really don’t mind my friends simply call me ‘Gay’. So it’s stay with me until today. 

When I had the chance to attend journalism scholarship in Sydney-my friends and our Australian Professor called me ‘siluh’ probably because it’s much easier to say than ‘gayatri’. This is for the first time in my life I’ve been called ‘siluh’. But actually it’s fine too. 

In the family, I have one name and it’s only for the family and my beloved one. And also another name my sister and brother ‘invented’ for me- when I was in college : boyis. It came from my teddy bear name- only god knows how it turned out to be mine :) 

In my first travel to India, I was told to be well-prepared when going through customs. I was nervous I held my passport so tight and the man who checked it first, he was sharp-eyed, so sharp like I was going through an x-ray device. I was sooo worried though I got nothing to hide.. The lady behind the counter, she had this straight face and I didn’t think she had been smiling all day. She looked at my passport and to my surprise, she smiled at me and said, “you have an Indian name..”. I was startled, I didn’t quite remember what was my reply, but I must have been smiling back to her, murmured something to say that I was agree with her. I walked lighter afterwards, what a relief.

Every name is connected with a form or rupa, that’s why it’s really up to us to create our own legend with the name we carry until today because there are no such coincidence. Otherwise, a name will be just a name, without having the intention to go beyond.

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