The National Emblem of Indonesia is called Garuda Pancasila.

Indonesian National Emblem

The main part of the Indonesian national emblem is the Garuda with a heraldic shield on its chest and a scroll clasped by it’s feet. The shield’s five emblems represent Pancasila, the five principles of Indonesia’s national philosophy.

Scroll & Motto

The Garuda grips a scroll with the National Motto, “Bhinneka Tunggal lka.” It is commonly translated into English as: Unity in Diversity. This spirit of religious tolerance was an essential element in the foundation and security of The Republic of Indonesia.

Garuda

The Garuda is the mythical golden eagle, common to both Hindu and Buddhist mythology. Originally the Garuda had the wings, beak, and feet of the golden eagle, and the arms and trunk of a man.

As for the national emblem, the Garuda symbolizes strength and power, while the gold color symbolizes greatness and glory.

The feathers on the Garuda are arranged to reflect the date of 17 August 1945, the Indonesian Day of Independence. There are 17 feathers on each wing, 8 on the tail, 19 on the base of the tail (below the shield), 45 on the neck, corresponding to the “17/8/1945.”

Pancasila Perisai.svg

SHIELD

The shield is a martial symbol, standing for defense of the country. It is divided into five sections: a background divided into quarters, colored red and white. A thick, black line lies horizontally across the shield, symbolizing the equator which passes through the Indonesian archipelago.

EMBLEMS  ON  THE  SHIELD

Each section of the shield has a symbol corresponding to the Pancasila principles laid down by its founder, President Sukarno.

Pancasila Sila 1 Star.svg

The Star

The black shield bearing the golden star at center corresponds to the first Pancasila principle, belief in one supreme divinity or God. The color black represent the color of nature. Upon this shield is a golden, five-pointed star. This is a symbol common not only among Indonesia’s sanctioned faiths of Islam, Christianity, Hinduism and Buddhism, but of the secular ideology of socialism as well. (The Indonesian Constitution guarantees the right to the freedom of religion. However, the government only recognizes six official religions, namely Islam, Protestantism, Catholicism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Confucianism.)

Pancasila Sila 2 Chain.svg

The Chain

In the bottom right quarter, on a red background, is a chain made up of square and round links. This chain represents successive human generations, with the round links representing women and the square links representing men. The chain corresponds to the second principle of the Pancasila, of belief in a commonly bound humanity.

Pancasila Sila 3 Banyan Tree.svg

The Tree

At the upper right quarter, on a white background, is the banyan tree. This symbol corresponds to the third Pancasila principle, the unity of Indonesia. The banyan is known for having expansive above-ground roots and branches. The Republic of Indonesia, as an ideal conceived by Sukarno and the Nationalists, is one country out of many far-flung cultural roots.

Pancasila Sila 4 Buffalo's Head.svg

The Bull

In the upper left quarter, on a red background, is the head of the Javanese wild bull, the banteng. This represents the fourth principle of Pancasila, democracy by deliberation and consensus among representatives. The banteng was chosen to symbolize democracy as Indonesians saw it as a social animal. The banteng was also adopted as a symbol of Sukarno’s Nationalists, and later by his daughter Megawati Sukarnoputr’s Indonesia Democratic Party of Struggle.

Pancasila Sila 5 Rice and Cotton.svg

Rice and Cotton

In the lower left quarter, on a white background, are a gold-and-white paddy and cotton. These represent the fifth Pancasila principle of social justice. The rice and cotton represent sustenance and livelihood.

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