A Balinese Folktale: Bulan Kuning
There was once a widow by the name of Men Bekung. She lived at the edge of ahuge jungle. She collected firewood in the jungle. It was said that she found a little child. As the little child’s skin was fair and the face was round, she was given a name Bulan Kuning (Yellow Moon).
One day Bulan Kuning was taken to the jungle by her adopted mother while collecting firewood. In the jungle Bulan Kuning was, unknowingly, separated from her mother. She was very confused and frightened. All of a sudden, she was caught by a female giant, Ni Raksasi. Bulan Kuning trembled as she was very scared. Although the catcher was giant, Bulan Kuning was very much loved by her.
It was told that the giant owned three kinds of amulets which dealt with fire, water, and wind. As she loved Bulan Kuning very much, she was told about the efficacy of the amulets. When the female giant was away, all the amulets were taken away by Bulan Kuning. But, alas, the female giant appeared out of nowhere and chased Bulan Kuning. She was almost caught when she threw the amulets at her; she soon died. Bulan Kuning was amazed when she heard a voice from the sky saying that she had redeemed the female giant’s sins.
It was told that the female giant returned back to heaven and became goddess. Bulan Kuning was then granted knowledge for healing so she could help anyone taken ill. Afterwards, Bulan Kuning returned to her mother, Men Bekung, who lived in the village. Many people came and asked her assistance to help cure their illness.