Watch What This Indonesian City Does To Gay People In Order To ‘Cure’ Them

Indonesian city
Photo by YouTube/NS

It seems some parts of the world are not fully ready yet to accept that there are people whose sexual orientations and gender belong to the LGBTQ spectrum. Regardless of how accepting a country is, there is bound to be gay people living there. Things can be difficult for them, especially if they live in an Indonesian city where they treat being gay as a possession.


As in, a traditional spiritual or demonic possession. It takes place in the Indonesian city of Padang, a place which is dominated by Muslim people. Now, Muslims are not exactly the most open religion to homosexuality, they can be very strict about being gay. Hence, members of the LGBT community in Padang experience this on a daily basis:

They call it ruqyah, an exorcism ritual which they consider as a treatment for homosexuality. Apparently, they believe that homosexuality is being caused by a djinn spirit (basically a mischievous genie) who possesses a person of its opposite gender. The ritual happens with a priest reading prayers from the Quran while bathing subjects in “holy water.”


“If the ruqyah [patient] reacts, it means that it has something to do with the genie. The reaction is sometimes dizzy, sometimes nauseous, and sometimes it may act like a bencong [an Indonesian term for a male homo‌se‌xual or tran‌sge‌nd‌er woman], like a man but graceful, that’s the term. Those are some c‌as‌es where we have encountered things like that. [After a ruqyah] the genie comes out of the patient’s body,” says the cleric.


The worst part is that the Mayor even works closely with Civil Service P‌oli‌c‌e (Satpol PP) to implement what they consider as “psychological rehabilitation.” Being a homosexual is not exactly illegal in Padang, but apparently, people there follow a traditional cultural standard they hold in a regard higher than their state laws. 


“Usually men are possessed by female genies, this is what many of us encounter with LG‌BT actors. In addition, the tran‌sve‌stite‌s will also be fostered by the TNI [Indonesian National Armed Forces],” says a member of one Muslim organization, regular practitioners of ruqyah.

Indonesian city
Photo by Nextshark

Bad time to be a member of the LGBTQ in Indonesia right now.

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Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo is a seasoned professional with a strong background in growth strategies and editorial responsibilities. Kokou has been instrumental in driving companies' expansion and fortifying their market presence. His academic credentials underscore his expertise; having studied Communication at the Università degli Studi di Siena (Italy), he later honed his skills in growth hacking at the Growth Tribe Academy (Amsterdam).


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