Posted March 3, 2007on:
Debus is a performing art of illusory torture and mutilation which is rooted in mysticism, magic and the martial arts.
A typical debus performance consists of a group of people who demonstrate their invulnerability to physical pain and harm by doing such things as chewing glass, carrying red-hot coals on their heads, drawing the blade of long sharp knives across each other’s tongues and throats, and stabbing themselves in the abdomen. All this happens without bleeding or apparents damage to the subjects, than to the debus master who schools the troupe members in the mystical arts and recites incantations before performances.
Though part of Sundanese culture, debus is mostly practiced in Banten, in the far west of West Java. In Bandung there are regular performances every Saturday night at Jl. Kebonjati 34.