The Story of the Snake Keeping the Palipa Pute Well in Pinrang, The Water Brings Blessings


The legacy of Palipa Pute’e or Palipa Pute in the form of a well in Pinrang Regency, South Sulawesi (Sulsel) is believed to give blessings. It is said that the well is guarded by a guardian snake so that no one can take the water.

The water from the Palipa Pute’e well is believed to hold blessings and is widely used as medicine. It is believed that the blessing of the well’s water is because the well was made directly by an Islamic preacher in Pinrang who was given the title Palipa Pute’e.

Every Monday and Thursday people from various regions come to visit Palipa Pute’e’s grave. The visitors who will enter the Palipa Pute’e tomb are also required to wash their feet from the well water that has been provided by the tomb manager.

“The water of this well is believed to be sacred. That’s why people who want to enter must wash their feet first before entering the tomb,” said the manager of the Palipa Pute’e Tomb, Aminah.

Pallipa Pute TombPalipa Pute Tomb Photo: Muhclis Abduh

In addition to purifying oneself before entering the tomb, sometimes the water is also brought home by visitors. The water from the Palipa Pute well is believed to bring blessings.

“Many people bring home well water. This means they want to take blessings from the water,” said Aminah.

Even though it is believed to bring blessings, it seems that the well also has a mystical story. That said, those who are allowed to take water from the well are only the descendants of Palipa Pute’e or the caretaker of the tomb because there is a guardian snake figure in the well.

“There was once an incident where a peddler stopped by to fetch water, he did not know the prohibition, and when he continued his journey he was followed by the figure of a snake guarding the well,” said Aminah.

However, according to him the snake did not harm, just followed. It’s just a lesson not to take water from the well carelessly, especially if you are not descended from Palipa Pute’e.

“If you are not a descendant, you can be sure there will be strange events. That’s why you are always ordered not to take well water if you are not a descendant of Palipa Pute’e,” said Aminah.

Aminah said that there was also another incident during a maddoa procession or a traditional procession where the water from the well became muddy or dirty. It was later discovered that this happened because a small child was collecting water even though he was not a descendant of Palipa Pute’e.

“Once the water looked like mud, even though the water was always clean. That was because a child was carrying it,” said Aminah.

The well’s water can become clean again if a trusted descendant of Palipa Pute’e fetches the water. After that, then the water returns to its original clear state.

“Later on, Wa Sakka (a descendant of the one who served Palipa Pute’e) would collect water from the well and the water would return to good,” he said.

Aminah then explained that it was believed that the well was made by Palipa Pute’e. He dug a well when he arrived at Kampung Katteong.

“This well was made when Palipa Pute’e came here. So it is already thousands of years old,” he said.

The well water also never runs dry or overflows. The community believes this is a sign that the well water holds blessings.

“It’s never dry or overflows. That’s how the water continues. It’s similar to Bujung Manurung Lalapakkita,” he explained.

The bucket that has been used since ancient times until now must be made of nipa palm leaves. The rope of the dipper is also made of woven nipa leaves. There is no specific explanation regarding this matter, but it has been maintained to this day by the descendants of Palipa Pute.

This article has been published on detikSulsel. Read more here.

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