A mong the traditional literature relating to the Wali Songo the name of Sunan Giri is especially prominent. Furthermore, his names are many, among them Raden Paku, Sultan Abdul Fakih, Maulana 'Ainul Yaqin, as well as Joko Samudra.
This last name is connected with the semi- legendary account of his early years. The story goes that he was born from the marriage of a Muslim scholar named Maulana Ishak with a princess of the East Javanese kingdom of Blambangan.
Forced to abandon the child shortly after his birth, his mother set him adrift on the ocean from where he was rescued by sailors and brought to Gresik. Here he was adopted by a woman named Nyai Gede Pinatih, who was a ship owner and the sailors' employer.
She subsequently named the young boy Joko Samudra, 'Samudra' meaning ocean. When he was old enough, Joko Samudra was taken by his mother to Surabaya, where he began receiving religious instructions from Sunan Ampel. It was not long before the teacher discovered the boy's true identity and thus, when he considered that the student had learned enough, sent him, together with his own son Makhdum Ibrahim (later to be known as Sunan Bonang), to broaden his education further afield.
It is said that the two travelled to Aceh, or possibly Malacca, where they were received by Maulana lshak. Here, Joko Samudra, or Raden Paku as he was known by now, learned of his real parents and the story of his abandonment.
The Other Wali
- Maulana Malik Ibrahim
- Sunan Ampel
- Sunan Giri
- Sunan Bonang
- Sunan Drajat
- Sunan Kudus
- Sunan Kalijaga
- Sunan Muria
- Sunan Gunung Jati