Eden | Urban Inter-Religious Utopia

  • Videshiiya

Taman Sriwedari Surakarta

  • 8.028 Sqm




  • Stephanus Theodorus
  • Ardianti Savitri Anggiasari
  • Russelin Edhyati

Sebab kebenaran Jina (Buddha) dan Siwa adalah tunggal
Terpecah belahlah itu, tetapi satu jualah itu.
Tidak ada kerancuan dalam kebenaran.

-Kitab Sutasoma Pupuh 139 bait 5B

United or Divided?

Bhinneka Tunggal Ika contains meaning of unity beyond differences but also conceive the consequences of division and separation when people blur themselves with differences rather than seeing the truth.
Indonesian first population census began on 1930’s conducted by the dutch but then stopped in the era of Soeharto (rezim orde baru) in the name of political taboo, fearing that difference of race or religion might divide the people and trigger revolution. This means in 6 decades, the Indonesians are forced to believe that differences are disastrous and roots of seperation, contradicting the national motto of Bhinneka Tunggal Ika.
Indonesia is a home for more than 746 traditional languages and 1.331 races living seperately in 17.508 islands, and as a religious country is the home for six legitimate religion institution. Beyond all that there are still seeds of division and seperation. The nation of rich diversity is not at all buletproof to disintegration.
Bhinneka Tunggal Ika as mantra of unity (as if) have lost its power, buried by ideologies of anti-consensual, intolerance, and anti-diversity.
“Berbeda-Beda Tidak Bersatu Jua”* is the reality.

Surakarta Government is actually asking for the design of a grand Mosque of Surakarta (although a grand mosque is already built nearby Taman Sriwedari) so we throw away the TOR and made a new one related to the relevant issue of disintegration in Indonesia. We think this is the moment to develop new program of inter-religious center where people of all religion and race will be able to pray altogether in the same area, proposing and projecting unity in such socio-climate.

Manifesting Understanding Through Observations
To understand each other is the very reason we design this facility. We need to get to know each other, therefore, we design observation windows on each religious facility. The proportions are varied in accordance with the religions percentage in Indonesia, the big one will become the door, other may become windows. Each facility is designed to be soundproof that’s why it form a solid building with unopenable windows and wrapped with circular ramp to give complete experience of observations from many direction with many ways of seeing: if the window is small, we should peek to see the ritual inside, but if the window is large enough then we may still need to see the whole “ceremony” respectfully.
While the second floor connect each facility so people may travel and observe from one facility to another.

Manifesting Faith Through Good Deeds
This place will not only house inter-religious facility together with their supported facility such as living dormitories and administration office for each facility managers, it will also house a community center which will be cross managed and operated together between each religious representatives.
This community center will function as a collective space of social activity supported with public bathroom, social kitchen and public cafetaria where each religious group able to giveaway free foods everyday, public bed rooms to serve the homeless.
In the end religious institution should serve their God by serving the people and the public by creating social service program with humanitarian spirit.





Urban Inter-Religious Utopia
Accepted or not, the birth of our heterogen race should develop us to become high tolerance group of people without judging race, groups or religions.
This proposal is the anti-thesis of the majority and respectfully rejecting the T.O.R.
to reminds us all (if it can not be accepted) that there are other groups within our society (which are also legitimate and recognized by the government) that has not been considered equally.
To be united or to be divided?, to dream or to be realistic? Let our urban space revealed it soon as part as manifestation of its inhabitants; the human.

In the end this proposal is a demand. To treat everyone equally.





* “berbeda-beda tidak bersatu jua” means “Never been united due to differences” contradicted to the meaning of Bhinneka Tunggal Ika, which translated to “United despite of differences”