7 Bizarre and Unique Practices Only in Indonesia


There are many Tukangs or handymen that make life in Indonesia way easier.  In addition to these mundane everyday jobs, there are more professions & services that may stretch your imagination – and help solve many problems that you did not know could be solved!

These professionals and practices are so unique that you’ll probably never find them anywhere outside of Indonesia.

Pawang Hujan


This person with ‘extraordinary’ ability is responsible to make the sky clear. Usually, Indonesians hire them when they’re hosting an outdoor event to make sure that the day is sunny and clear. One of the methods that Pawang Hujan uses is by skewering shallots and red chili and put it at the venue of the event. Sometimes they will cast some kind of spells and prayers too. We don’t know how it works exactly. But it works!

Ketok Magic


Well, the name of this service contains ‘magic’, and they really do magical wonder to your dented car. Actually, the Ketoc Magic mechanic doesn’t use any magic to fix the dents. They only use simple tools such as hammer, wire and weld with a technique named ‘ketuk teter’.

Orang Pintar


Roughly translated, ‘Orang Pintar’ means ‘smart person’. But, the smart person here is not a person with high educational degree. They are simply those who posses supernatural or religious abilities. Usually, Indonesians run to Orang Pintar when they need certain help like alternative medicine or when they want to shield their house from evil spirit. Some people also ask an Orang Pintar a ‘holy water’ for them to drink, so they will have a good luck. Do you believe on this?

Dukun Beranak


There are many types of Dukun (shaman) in Indonesia, and one of them is Dukun Beranak. Dukun Beranak is someone, usually a female, who can spiritually help women to give birth especially in rural villages. These Dukun inherit their ability from generation to generation, and people tend to rely and trust Dukun Beranak than a midwife or doctor. Dukun Beranak also has abillity to make certain herbal medicines that will speed the recovery of mothers after childbirth.

Dukun Santet


Another kind of Dukun that people often use until now is Dukun Santet. Their work is often associated with dark magic, where they will ‘torture’ the target from afar upon request using mediums like photograph, hair strand, or the target’s undergarments. Usually victim will suddenly fall sick, find some weird things in their body (snails, needles, wires) or even sudden death. The practice of Santet is similar with voodoo.

Badut Mampang


We know that Mampang is the name of an area in Jakarta. This clown often wearing super huge mask that resembles cartoon character like Dora The Explorer or Malaysian cartoon Upin & Ipin. They will dance to dangdut music played by their colleague at intersection or at villages around Jakarta. These clowns seem so creepy actually, mainly because the shapes of the masks.


Mbah Marijan, the former famous 'kuncen' of Mount Merapi in Yogyakarta.
Mbah Marijan, the famous former ‘kuncen’ of Mount Merapi in Yogyakarta.

“Kuncen” is a Sundanese word for “juru kunci” or caretaker. Kuncen usually refers to guards of special places like a mountain, cemetery, or sacred places like temples. These guards also usually posses a supernatural ability to protect the places from evil spirits, or communicate with the ‘unseen inhabitants’ of the places.