Lubdaka : A Hunter on the Night of Lord Shiva's Ascension

The story of Lubdaka is a story that cannot be separated from one of the holy Hindu holidays which is held once a year on Purwaning Tilem Sasih Kepitu, namely Siwaratri Day. Siwaratri in Sanskrit means the night of Shiva, where this story tells of a hunter who hunts animals in the middle of the forest on the night Lord Shiva does semadhi yoga asceticism.

Jan 9, 2024 - 00:44
Dec 27, 2023 - 21:05
Lubdaka : A Hunter on the Night of Lord Shiva's Ascension
Lubdaka on the Bila Tree (Source: Author Collection)

The story tells of a man who had a profession as a hunter named Lubdaka. He spends his days hunting animals in the middle of the forest in order to support his family. Part of the results of his hunting were exchanged for goods his family needed every day and part of it he ate with his family.


Lubdaka (Source : Author Collection)


Lubdaka is a person who is very diligent at work and is quite an expert in his field, so it is not surprising that he always comes home with a lot of prey. It is said that one day he was unlucky because until late afternoon he had not managed to get a single animal. However, this didn't make him just give up, Lubdaka continued to walk quickly with his eyes looking for prey until before he knew it, the day had turned dark.


In this darkness, with his position in the middle of the forest, he couldn't find his way home, so Lubdaka decided to spend the night there and looked for a big tree to rest on. And he found a Bila tree which was quite old, but still standing firmly on the edge of the lake. This lake has calm water with a shrine in the form of a phallus in the middle of the lake.


Lubdaka on The Bila Tree (Source : Author Collection)


Lubdaka climbed the tree and immediately looked for a comfortable position to lean against. However, after he leaned against the tree, Lubdaka tried to maintain his consciousness even though he felt sleepy because he was afraid of falling while he was asleep and could become food for the wild animals down there. Therefore, to get rid of his sleepiness, Lubdaka plucked the leaves of the Bila Tree one by one and dropped them down so that the leaves hit the phallus beneath him.


Lubdaka did this without realizing that that night was Siwaratri night where Lord Shiva was doing semadhi yoga asceticism. And while plucking every leaf of the Bila tree to stay awake until morning, during that time Lubdaka began to regret all the actions he had done so far and was determined to stop being a hunter. Lubdaka pondered his sins for a long time, without realizing it, the day had turned into morning and he quickly packed up to go home.

Since that day, Lubdaka changed his profession as a farmer to suit his determination that night to stop being a hunter. However, his profession as a farmer meant that he did not move much, which made his body stiff and painful and in the end Lubdaka died in his old age.


Cikrabala Troops (Source : Author Collection)


It is said that after Lubdaka's spirit was released from his body, the Cikrabala who were Hell's troops came to take Lubdaka's spirit to Hell. This is because the Cikrabala think that Lubdaka's spirit deserves to be taken to Hell because during his lifetime Lubdaka always killed animals. However, at the same time Lord Shiva came to prevent the Cikrabala from taking Lubdaka's spirit to Hell. He said that although Lubdaka always killed animals during his lifetime, one day on the night of Siwaratri Lubdaka pondered his sins all night long and regretted all his sins in the past. Apart from that, Lubdaka also unknowingly carried out three Brata Siwaratri, namely :

  1. Monabrata, who does not speak, is what Lubdaka does to not invite wild animals to come closer to him.
  2. Jagra, which is not sleeping, which Lubdaka does because he is afraid of falling while he is asleep and could become food for wild animals there.
  3. Upavasa which is controlling eating and drinking which Lubdaka does because for the whole day he only focuses on hunting in the middle of the forest.


God Shiva (Source : Author Collection)


So, the spirit of Lubdaka has the right to receive forgiveness for doing brata Siwaratri. Even though this was not done intentionally, brata is the main thing that can cleanse all sins. No matter how many sins are committed, they will be melted away by the virtues of brata itself. Therefore, it is appropriate for Lubdaka's spirit to enjoy happiness in Siwaloka and in the end Lubdaka's spirit was brought to Siwaloka.


The Fight for the Spirit of Lubdaka (Source : Author Collection)


So, based on the Lubdaka story above, we can conclude that the Siwaratri holiday is actually a night of contemplation of sins, not a night of atonement of sins. This is intended for the purpose of achieving self-awareness where in Tattwa, Siwaratri is a symbolization and self-actualization in carrying out spiritual ascent in order to achieve the alignment of Shiva, namely the union of the Atman with the Parama Atman.