Friday, April 8, 2016

The Green Face Datuk (青面拿督)

Uncle Beng owns a piece of agricultural land beside existing Bukit Mertajam Recreational Forest. He planted some durians and black pepper plants. Whenever we need to enter the place mainly to enjoy the durians, Uncle Beng will first bring us to a giant anthill to pray for the datuk spirit. He said that the datuk that guards the area is the so-called ‘Datuk Hijau’ or the ‘Green Datuk’.

There are some taboos on entering the Datuk Hijau’s domain and in particular the jungle:

First, one should not talk nonsense and control one’s language because this datuk is the ‘Datuk Hijau’ which is the hottest temper of all the datuks. So, one must be very careful as not to offend him unnecessarily.

Second, it is forbidden to bring along raw meats and bloods to the forest, especially the pork because those things will attract evil spirits; and pork will offend the Datuk Hijau since he is thought to be a muslim.

Third, it is best to call each other by nickname than the real name.

Forth, it is forbidden to bring items from the forest back in fear of the item may be haunted.

Fifth, it is forbidden to enter the forest after dark unless with the datuk’s permission.

This Datuk Hijau likes ‘kopi-O’ (black coffee), kemayan (benzoin), mutton curry with yellow sticky rice and tobacco.

According to Uncle Beng, the anthill is alive and it is constantly growing. The first time he saw this anthill, it was only 3 feet tall. Now it has grown to slightly more than 5 feet tall.

At the initial stage of forest clearing for planting durian, Uncle Beng spent a lot of money to buy food offerings to the Datuk Hijau and all went very well until two of his Indonesian workers for some reasons, tried to chop the anthill with machetes. Due to the chopping of machetes, a large hole was formed. It was said that some green smoke suddenly rushed out from the hole.

Both of the workers were scared and ran back to their hostel. Uncle Beng was coincidentally there and after he has learnt of the incident, he quickly rushed to the anthill with both of the workers.

To their surprised, there was no hole in the anthill. Apparently the hole was somehow sealed by something and the anthill looked just as before. Uncle Beng knew that his workers were in trouble so he planned to dismiss them as soon as their contract expired.

A few days later, surprisingly speaking; the two workers accidentally disturbed a big nest of ground hornet. Suddenly hundreds of hornets rushed out from the nest and attacked the workers. Strangely as it may be, the hornets seemed only interested in attacking those two workers and left ten others alone.

No one dares to assist the dual because most of the workers didn’t have protective clothing to fence off the hornets. Ten minutes later, the hornets dispersed. By then, both of the poor workers had died.

Uncle Beng later added that the incident was expected but he didn’t expect the retribution came so fast. Hence, whenever Uncle visits his land, he would first pray to the anthill said to be the emanation of Datuk Hijau.

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