The flag of Indonesia bears the name Sang Saka Merah-Putih which translates to “The Sacred Red and White.” The country is so vastly dispersed by its biodiversity, many islands, unique and diverse cultures, religions and backgrounds that it has a binding force in its national identity for a strong and resilient people. Very rich in culture and history, an interesting story as to its simplistic color scheme springs from the struggles against the Dutch colonization. It is told by some accounts that the red and white flag is actually the upper two-thirds of the flag of Netherlands. The blue bottom layer was told to have been ripped off as a sign of revolt and a cry for independence. The color blue supposedly suggested blue-blooded aristocracy of the Dutch settlers.
In its aesthetic simplicity, the two-colored emblem portrays the country’s history and the fullness of life in its culture and people. The flag is composed of two horizontal strips equally dividing the area in half – red on top and white at the bottom. Red symbolizes the people’s courage while purity is shown by the lower white portion. These two virtues blend perfectly with the other message of the choice of both colors. In another interpretation, red represents the human body or its physical aspect and the white portion portrays the importance of the spiritual aspect of human existence. The Indonesian flag shows two contrasting colors that show the ideal citizen – a combination of bravery and compassion and the blend of the physical and the divine. Its hues are also widely used in different aspects in their daily living especially in cooking.
As with other countries and states, the Indonesian flag is revered and must not touch the ground at all times and once tattered, must be replaced to maintain its dignity and pride. The flag must be raised right-side-up all the times with care.