Pasek Tangkas - Arya Tangkas Kori Agung

Om AWIGHNAMASTU NAMOSIDDHAM, Terlebih dahulu, kami haturkan pangaksama mohon maaf sebesar - besarnya ke hadapan Ida Hyang Parama Kawi - Tuhan Yang Maha Esa serta Batara - Batari junjungan dan leluhur semuanya. Agar supaya, tatkala menceriterakan keberadaan para leluhur yang telah pulang ke Nirwana, kami terlepas dari kutuk dan neraka.

 
Pura Lempuyang
Pura Lempuyang (Lempuyang temple) is located on Lempuyang Mountain, Karangasem Regency, east Bali. The Balinese Hindu’s named it Sad Khayangan Agung Lempuyang Luhur, which is the place for Hyang Iswara and Hyang Agni Jaya. Puja Wali/ piodalan (sacred day) is held every six months, exactly on Umanis Galungan, Kamis (Thursday) wuku Dungulan, or the day after the Galungan ceremony. To go to Lempuyang temple from Denpasar, it is about 80 km, a 2 hour journey to the east. Along the way, you will see beautiful scenery, rice field panoramas and rivers. Lempuyang Temple contains a lot of mysteries from a long time ago, when Sang Hyang Pasupati recommended Hyang Gni Jaya together with Hyang Putra Jaya and Dewi Danuh to save Bali from disaster. Later, according to the villagers, as well as for praying, there are also people who come to Lempuyang Temple for other purposes, such as to recover from illnesses, avoid evil, and there are even politicians or officials who pray that their authority will be forever or to try to obtain a certain position. Usually they come in the middle of night, in order to avoid the public.
Balinese Temples
JBali is sometimes called the "Island of 10.000 Temples" (or "Island of the Gods") and this is not exaggerated. First of all, every village has at least three temples: the Pura Desa, where religious festivals are celebrated, the Pura Dalem for the Goddess of Death (this is the place where the funeral cremation rites start), and the Pura Puseh that is dedicated to the Gods of Heaven. Temples are everywhere, on the mountains and in the valleys, in the ricefields (they are small shrines for the Rice Goddess), and on the seaside, and every temple is different. The Balinese religion is still very much alive. Every morning you can somewhere in Bali see small or larger groups of girls and women bringing offerings to a temple and the important festivals are celebrated by everybody with large processions to the temple that are accompanied by gamelan musicians. The Balinese religion is based on Hinduism, but incorporates a lot of pre-Hindu, animist beliefs (primarily ancestor worship). In ancient times the founder of a village was revered as a god after his death by the village people. When the Hindu princes from Java occupied Bali (see ">Short Overview of the History of Bali) their form of worshipping their dead kings as gods came very close to the old Balinese ancestor worship. The many different gods of Bali (gods of Earth, Fire, Water, and Fertility) were now all viewed as different manifestations of the Trimurti, the Hindu trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, and the destroyer/creator Shiva.
Mantram
Sacred keys and magic words to God. Many common Mantram are used in the original Sanskrit language. However it is of utmost importance to truly know and be fully aware of a Mantram's true spiritual meaning. To benefit from its true and Divine Power of freeing and healing you should know the true meaning and you should fully agree with its meaning and identify yourself with its meaning and Divine power. For that particular reason we prefer to use Mantram in your own language or a language you truly understand. The Divine power of any Mantram is completely free of the language the Mantram is used in. It is your intent - your inner attitude that frees the Divine magic power contained in every Mantram. Words are magic. Use words consciously and concentrated. Be aware of what you say and use your words - and thoughts - always with Love for the greatest spiritual result and benefit. Anything else - any other attitude - may give any different result - may be even detrimental to your spiritual goals and detrimental to your souls well-being !!! Be wise in the use of Mantram - choose the path of Love and Mantram of Love only and do it with all the power of your soul and heart to result in ONENESS in God. What ever you do with all the Divine power of your soul and heart is always enough to lead you to the final destination of ONENESS in God in Love. If at any time you put all at stake that you have, all your possession, all your power, all your Love, all you ever have created, collected, earned, including ALL your memories and turn it ALL to God with Love - in Love - then it ALWAYS is sufficient to open and pass through the door of Love to God.
Ongkara
Ongkara, or the Balinese Om, is one of the most sacred symbols in the Balinese culture, symbolising the universe and life itself.When Au Kara meets Ulu Candra, the romanization is not “Aung”, but “Om”. And the letter has a special name Ongkara This word is used almost everywhere in the text, as it is the symbol of God Himself. The most notable sentences using OM are the greetings: Om Swastiastu (May God blesses you), Om Şanti Şanti Şanti, Om (May peace be everywhere)
Gayatri Mantram
om bhur bwah swah tat sawitur warenyam bhargo dewasya dhimahi dyo yonah pracodayat
Balinese Life
Rabu, 30 Juli 2008
Some religious ceremonies in Bali are usually completed with sacred or wali dances. They are closely related to the procession of the ceremony. By its absence, it may be considered incomplete, as this dance constitutes a part of the ritual itself. And,

of course, they are always performed in sacred places like at temples and other areas where the ceremony takes place.

They are called sacred dances since they bring offerings or ingredients like canangsari in the Pendet dance, thread in Rejang Renteng or yellow rice in Sidakarya mask. In addition, all dancers must have been ‘purified’ through mewinten rites for adults otherwise they should be underage girls who are still virgins or unmarried. Perhaps, the last but not least, this dance is never performed for commercial purposes like public entertainment or a theme for a dinner party.
Dance is also a devotion to the Supreme Being. Balinese people (Hindu devotees) would be very glad when they dance for this purpose. They call it ngaturang ayah (literally means devotional service). The more so, if the dancers are children, this opportunity becomes a beneficial process of learning where they are introduced to one core of Balinese art that is useful for their future learning, especially in dancing.
Sacred dances are performed on temple festivals, human exorcism rites, Ngaben ceremony and so forth. On the temple festival, when the melasti procession has just been completed, all divine manifestation has been put to their thrones, the devotees usually prepare a rejang dance in the middle courtyard. A group of young girls, fewer than twelve, make their devotion through dances. They show off their rhythmical dance in front of the shrine complex in bright yellow and white colors costume. Their headdresses are made of fresh young coconut leaf decorated with flowers.
In Hindu mythology, or Usana Bali chronicle, this Rejang symbolizes the vidyadhari (female angels) who accompany the deities come down to earth to witness the ceremony. While the gandharvas (heavenly artists play various gamelan) to accompany the dance. This mythology is then believed to be the base of the sacred Rejang dance.
Another sacred dance is wayang lemah. It is a puppet shadow play that’s presented without a screen and lantern at noon. It uses a thread and perforated coin tied on two dadap (Erythrina subumbrans) twigs instead of a screen. This symbol makes a bridge between the visible and invisible world so the performance of the ritual will flourish. In the Ngaben ceremony, the Balinese usually perform a puppet shadow with special titles like Cupak’s Passage to Heaven or Bhima Svarga in which both recount the journey of both figures to heaven. It is expected that this could become a ‘travel companion’ for the soul to heaven since both stories carry much information on what to do and where to go.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 00.00   0 comments
Meditation
Selasa, 29 Juli 2008
For hundreds of years ago, wise men and yogis have practiced meditation and extolled the benefits. In today’s hectic world there is no better time to take up meditation.

What is Meditation?
In simple terms, meditation is quietening your mind. If you stop for a moment and watch your thoughts you will notice that you are always thinking. You may be worrying about this and that, planning something, replaying earlier events or conversations. All the time your mind is an incessant chatterbox. With meditation you can clear your mind, quieten and even stop, the chatter - and reap enormous benefits.

Why Meditate?
The benefits of meditation are immense. Practicing meditation regularly has been shown to reduce stress and lower blood pressure. Living a calmer life allows you to live longer and more happily, you look younger than your years, and you are much more able to cope with life’s inevitable setbacks and difficulties.

Meditation has also been shown to increase alpha brainwaves. Alpha brainwaves are the type of brainwaves used in creativity and problem solving. The more you meditate the more creative you will become which could lead to both personal and professional breakthroughs.

How Do You Meditate?
There are tapes and CDs available to help guide you into a meditative state but they are not necessary. All that you need is to find a time and place where you can relax and not be disturbed. The environment should be quiet and comfortable. You can play soothing, quiet music if you wish.

The intention is to relax your mind. One way to do this is to focus on an object or a sound to occupy the mind and stop it chattering on about anything else. Some people who meditate focus on a candle flame or a flower. Or you could close your eyes and focus on a sound in your mind, such as Ah-umm or Ohmm.

The most important thing to remember about meditation is not to force anything.

Meditation is not concentrating, it’s not forcing, it’s not even trying. Meditation is relaxing and allowing. It is Being.

When Do You Meditate?
You can meditate at any time you choose - morning, noon and night. You can even fit in a session of meditation during your lunch break from work. There are no rules about meditation. See what works for you. And equally, there are no rules about how long you should meditate. If you can only manage five minutes a day you will still feel the benefits after a very short period. Some of the Eastern holy men meditate for hours, or even days, at a time. While their experiences might be more heightened than yours, it really isn’t necessary to meditate for great long periods.

Meditation is easy. Meditation is relaxing. And meditation is very good for you - try it and see for yourself.


posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 02.30   0 comments
Bali Art Festival 2008
Jumat, 18 Juli 2008
Bali Art Festival had been held for thirty times since it was proposed for the first time in 1979 by the late Prof. DR. Ida Bagus Mantra, who also the former’s governor. A lot of people still taken a great interests especially the artists both locally, nationally and internationally to the annual cultural event in Bali. Each year all participants of them always come and participate into the yearly event.

The Bali Art festival is already 30 years, three decades in its journey of cultural event in. it would become a good moment for developing and building art and culture as well as economy development because the annual event will be along with commemoration of 50 years anniversary of Bali Government and 100 years anniversary of Indonesia National Identity and also to succeed the Visit Indonesia Year 2008.

The Thirtieth Bali Art Festival 2008 will be held from June 14 until July 12 and this year theme as the cultural event overall is "Citta Wretti Nirodha—Self Restrain toward Balance and Harmony". The Thirtieth Bali Art Festival 2008 will be presented the masterpiece of art and culture to be appreciated by people.

The most awaited in the Bali Art Festival is the opening ceremony which always involved more than 300 artists to parade and perform on the street and in front of the stage of honor where Indonesian President usually open the festival officially. It is planned that President Yudhoyono will attend and open the Thirtieth Bali Art Festival. The opening ceremony will be held in Bali People Struggle Monument at Renon Square, Denpasar and from there, those artists will be marching down to Bali Art Center Werdhi Budaya at Jalan Nusa Indah Denpasar.

The Thirtieth Bali Art Festival 2008 will also be held international events along the 29 days of art festival like Asia Dance Music Festival and International Shadow Puppet Festival. Also from national scope of event are Java and Bali Art Ambassadorial Students (Jakarta, West Java, East Java, Central Java, Jogjakarta, Banten and Bali), Traditional Art and Handicraft Festival, Indonesian Keroncong Festival and from Bali will present maestro's masterpieces performance parade, colossal ballet, drama gong play, Legong Mask and many more to be enjoyed in a 29 days of festival.

The Thirtieth Bali Art Festival will also hold many contests and competitions for house making ladies, children, teenagers, and students. Beside contest and competition, Bali Art Festival will also held a full month exhibition for industrial products, handicrafts, designs, book exhibition, photo exhibition, painting and also architecture exhibition.

The Bali Arts Festival always taking place when the school holiday is on the way to attract students to involve and actively taking part in the Bali's biggest festival as performers, competitors or just visitors. Bali Arts Festival is indeed a positive influence for students and people.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 18.58   0 comments
Barong
Barong is a character in the mythology of Bali. He is the king of the spirits, leader of the hosts of good, and enemy of Rangda in the mythological traditions of Bali. Banas Pati Rajah is the fourth "brother" or spirit child that accompanies a child throughout life. Banas Pati Rajah is the spirit which animates Barong. A protector spirit, he is often represented by a lion, and traditional performances of his struggles against Rangda are popular parts of Balinese culture.

The lion barong is one of five traditional Barong. In Bali each region of the island has its own protective spirit for its forests and lands. Each Barong for each region is modeled after a different animal. There is a boar, a tiger, a dragon (or serpent) and the traditional lion. The lion is the popular one as it comes from the Gianyar region where Ubud (the home of tourist viewed ritual) is located. Within the calonarong, the dance drama in which the Barong appears, the barong responds to Rangda's use of magic to control and kill her to restore balance.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 18.56   0 comments
Rangda
Rangda mean is the demon queen of the leyaks in Bali, according to traditional Balinese mythology. Terrifying to behold, the child-eating Rangda leads an army of evil witches against the leader of the forces of good - Barong.

It is suggested that Rangda may be derived from the 11th century JavanMahendradatta who was exiled by the king, Dharmodayana, for allegedly practising witchcraft against his second wife. The tale surrounding this is that she proceeded to take her revenge by killing off half the kingdom, which by then belonged to her and Dharmodayana's son Erlangga, with plague before being overcome by a holy man. The name Rangda means "widow". queen

Rangda is important in Balinese culture, and performances depicting her struggles with Barong or with Erlangga in that tale are popular tourist attractions as well as tradition. She is depicted as a mostly nude old woman, with long and unkempt hair, pendulous breasts, and claws. Her face is traditionally a horrifying fanged and goggle-eyed mask, with a long, protruding tongue.

Bali is a Hindu island, and it is suggested that Rangda may also be associated with Durga, the Hindu mother warrior goddess, and Kali, the black mother goddess of destruction, transformation and protection in Hinduism. While Rangda is seen as fearsome and by many as the personification of evil, she is also nevertheless considered a protective force in certain parts of Bali, much like Kali is seen as a benevolent mother goddess in the Indian states of West Bengal, Assam and Kerala. The colors associated with her - white, black and red - are identical with those associated with Kali. Her iconography is similar to that of both Kali and Chamunda, who are closely related.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 18.47   0 comments
Melukat
Rabu, 16 Juli 2008
In Bali, there are so many ceremony that must done by everyone specially for Hinduism people. Because in Hinduism religion there are five level ceremony called "Panca Yadnya" that must executed for all hinduism people. The five level are Dewa Yadnya, Rsi Yadnya, Pitra Yadnya, Manusa Yadnya, and Bhuta Yadnya. Bhuta Yadnya is the lowest level cause this yadnya addressed for "bhuta kala" that is a other strenght according to hinduism belief. We must gave it a ceremony so that "bhuta kala" not bothering our life. Not less important is Manusa Yadnya. this ceremony adressed for human being. Example is "Melukat". Melukat is a ceremony for human being or people that purpose to cleaning our body and soul from bad spirit. Like at Tanah Lot, at segara kidul Tanah Lot usually used to Melukat.
Because Tanah Lot Temple have two source of holy water that needed for washing the body of human being. On this source of holy water, the holy water was taken and used for washing people which want to melukat. Melukat ussualy doing by all hinduism people according to readiness of them. The Hindu Balinese still has strong belief that diseases or anything that happen in this life caused from both natural (sekala) and supernatural (niskala) origin… the concept that can explain about two different world in our life in the world before died.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 06.28   1 comments
Sanggah
A sanggah, also called a merajan by Brahman families, is the family temple found in all Hindu-Balinese homes. The sanggah is always positioned outside, in the corner of the family compound which is most mountain-wards (in the direction of Mt. Agung). Here, the family will pray to God, known as Ida Sang Hyang Widhi in Balinese, other Godly manifestations (dewa or bhatara) and the family ancestors (leluhur). In most parts of Bali, family temples are made out of red or black brick and are elevated higher than the rest of the buildings in the compound.

A number of ceremonies are performed at the family temple. They are known as upacara yadnya and examples of these are - tooth filings, weddings, exorcisms, or temple anniversaries. Usually, family members will make offerings to place in the temple everyday, on auspicious days according to the Hindu calendar such as full moon, new moon and others. The family will gather together to pray at the sanggah’s anniversary, which occurs every 210 days. The temple anniversary is remembered on the day when the sanggah was purified after its original erection.

The total number of shrines in a sanggah varies according to the beliefs of the particular family, however they must include a shrine called padmasana (where one offers prayers to God), a shrine to pray for artistic inspiration (taksu), a shrine for ancestral worship, and one shrine called Rong Telu. Rong Telu is also known as Kemulan as it is the place where worshippers pray to the Bhatara Hyang Guru. Outside the temple there should also be a shrine called Penunggun Karang, which is believed to be the place where the spirits who guard the family temple, family and compound reside.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 05.08   0 comments
Mecaru
First round is the Mecaru then everybody pray under the lead of the priest. The ceremony begin from 11am starting with “Mecaru”The spiritual harmony of life's interaction with nature is an important aspect of everyday living for the Balinese. Thus a mecaru (cleansing ceremony) is also very important, and frequently seen on a variety of scales within the family home. One mecaru that we attended recently was diagonally opposite , where a close friend of ours - Gung Dek (from Jero Kawan in Ubud) - and his partner Tara are building a 'get-away-from-it-all' home. Due to a series of disruptive occurrences during the building process, it was decided that a mecaru should be held again with a pedanda (high priest) in attendance, to realign the balance of the land, once used for growing rice, but now to be built upon.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 05.02   0 comments
Odalan
Bali has been given many names in its colourful history, one of which is the 'Island of Temples'. Depending on what is classified as a 'temple' in Bali, there are tens of thousands of them scattered throughout the island, each of which has an 'odalan' (anniversary) every 210 days (6 Balinese months).

The temples in Bali range from the household temples or 'Sanggah' to be found in every family compound, through to the 'Kahyangan Tiga', the three major temples of every village, up to the 'Sad Kahyangan' temples that are used for worship by all Balinese, e.g. the temples at Besakih, Tanah Lot, Uluwatu, Batur, etc. With so many temples found throughout Bali, each having its own day for its 'odalan', visitors to Bali will rarely miss an opportunity to be able to witness one of these occasions somewhere in the area that they are staying. Depending on the cycle of 'odalan', the ceremony will either be a small one-day event or a larger ceremony, stretching over several days, depending on the number of people who will be coming to help in its celebration. For the larger 'odalan' of the 'Kahyangan Tiga', visitors come to pray from neighbouring villages, with long and colourful processions of people dressed up in their finest accompanying their 'barong' (something like a Chinese Dragon, a holy heirloom of the temple considered to be the protector of the village) as well as an escort by their village 'gamelan' (orchestra). These occasions are most important for the communal harmony of the Balinese, where whole villages will descend upon another village to pray at their 'odalan', adding their blessings for the success of the occasion. At such times the village holding the 'odalan' will organise a number of performances to help to entertain their many guests, as well as adding more to the blessing of the temple. Going well into the night, there might be a number of different performances, including a variety of the more classical dance performances enacting various stories of Hindu scripture, or Topeng (Mask Dance), Arja (Balinese Opera), or perhaps the most riveting of all of the performances, the Calonarang, an enacting of the eternal struggle between the Barong and Rangda.

As with other public ceremonies held by the Balinese, visitors to Bali are very welcome to attend an 'odalan' if they so wish, as long as they are ready to observe dress requirements & do not interfere with the proceedings of the ceremony. We help our guests with any questions that they might have about a particular ceremony, as well as give assistance with dress requirements needed. In this way we hope our guests will be able to develop a deeper understanding of the complex life of the Balinese.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 04.50   0 comments
Ngaben
Ngaben or the Cremation Ceremony is the ritual performed to send the dead through the transition to his next life. The village Kul Kul, hanging in the tower of the village temple, will sound a certain beat to announce the departure of the deceased. The body of the deceased will be placed at Bale Delod, as if he were sleeping, and the family will continue to treat him as if he were still alive yet sleeping. No tears are shed, for he is only gone temporarily and he will reincarnate into the family.

The Priest consults the Dewasa to determine the proper day for the ceremony. On the day of the ceremony, the body of the deceased is placed inside a coffin which is then placed inside a sarcophagus in the form of a buffalo (called Lembu) or a temple structure called Wadah made of paper and light wood. The Wadah will be carried to the village cremation site in a procession.

The climax of Ngaben is the burning of the Wadah, using fire originating from a holy source. The deceased is sent to his afterlife, to be reincarnated in the future.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 04.43   0 comments
Rejang Dance
Senin, 14 Juli 2008
Rejang dance is one type of ceremonial dance. The dance is used to welcome the descendent God during temple ceremonies along with other ceremonial dance like warriors dance (baris gede). Rejang is normally performed in groups by young girls in the middle or inner yard of the temple. While Baris Gede is performed by group of men or boys.

Here are some of the pictures I took from several occasions. They include rejang in Tenganan village with their famous and expensive double ikat woven cloth. Also Rejang of Asak with round distinctive headdress and typical pattern of single ‘ikat’. Others are from village of Ngis, Basangalas and Abian Jero, all located underneath of Lempuyang village. The headdresses here are dominated with colorful leaves. The clothes are rather common and not uniform but still very colorful. Danced by females, Rejang dance is a procession of those who have just barely learned to walk to those who can barely walk, moving in a slow and stately fashion towards the altar, twirling fans or lifting their sashes. Their costumes range from a very simple attire to an elaborate dress complete with headdress as you would likely find in Tenganan.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 13.17   0 comments
Topeng Dance
Inside the curtain booth, the topeng actor places his masks, all neatly covered with white cloth, in their proper order of appearance. After dedicating an offering, he unwraps the first mask, eyeing it for some time as if he were taking into his personality all that is individual about the character reflected in the immobile face. He quickly puts it on and turns. Already his movements are rendered as dance and a transformation is apparent.

The curtain trembles, the gamelan buds to a fervent pace of expectation, and dancing feet visible behind the curtain slowly lift and settle to the ground. A stoic-looking man with wide eyes and a questionable smile draws apart the curtain. In swift motions of defiance, he hovers inside the booth, uncertain whether to come out or not. He then begins to march forward, gazing inquisitively, putting a finger to his forehead, taking a bit of his clothing, and, in one delicate gesture, letting it drop from his hand. He resolves to dance, radiating the sound of' the gamelan in the vibration of his fingertips and pattering feet. After a few moments, he retreats to the curtain and vanishes.

The curtain shakes again. Suddenly, it is pushed aside in the grand gesture of a buxom movie star stepping into the limelight. There before you stands an extremely shy, effeminate young man who draws a limp hand to his mouth and blushes at his abrupt exposure. Languidly he clings to the curtain. Terribly sweet at heart, he cannot bear everyone laughing at him, which of course everyone is. Feeling he should come out for a moment, he coyly moves on stage, swinging to and fro with his hands dangling in the posture of loose noodles. Helplessly, he just stands there looking ridiculous, unable to move except to flutter his eye lashes, while the audience rocks in laughter. Such abusiveness is too much for him. He quickly seeks sanctuary behind the curtain. Thus was the introductory display of masks for one performance of Topeng. Both the stoic and the clown were enacted by one man-the principal Topeng actor, who by changing his mask impersonates a series of different characters.

Topeng means something pressed against the face-a mask. Topeng masks survive from the 1 6th century. Today's mask play, commemorating historical exploits of local kings and heroes, was influenced by the traditional Gambuh dance. Often called the "chronicle play", Topeng stories are drawn from the babad literature, genealogical histories of important noble families, set in the villages, kingdoms and temples of Bali.

The medium of a mask play necessarily alters the telling of history. The borderline between fact, legend, and the miraculous has little importance in Topeng, in which many episodes include divine intervention or acts of magic.

The intent is not to reconstruct exact personalities of the past, but to portray their types: sweet or manly, heroic or simple-minded. The noble characters, usually a king and his family, dance in the refined style. Their stature is so lofty, they do not design to speak and express themselves only in pantomime. They are accompanied by two clumsy clowns, who wear half-masks which leave their mouths free to talk as interpreters for their dignified masters. Along with the nobility and clowns is always a marvelous display of crude caricatures, whose sole function is decorative and entertaining. There are many forms of Topeng, depending upon the set of masks used and the style of the performers. A popular solo performance is the classical Topeng Tua, representing the movements of an old man. In a normal Topeng play, three or four actors, usually all men, impersonate the characters. A full set of Topeng masks, numbering from thirty to forty, belongs to the principal Topeng actor who is responsible for the series of eccentric personalities that produce the comedy of the play. To watch a good Topeng actor is truly inspirational. Through an endless resource of bizarre mannerisms and tones of speech, he manages to concentrate the whole of human folly into one serial panorama of grotesquely masked comics.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 12.59   0 comments
Baris Dance
Baris is a traditional dance of Bali, in which a solo dancer depicts the feelings of a young warrior prior to battle. Originally, Baris was performed as a religious ritual. The dancer may bear a kris, a spear, a bow, or other weapons, depending on the variant performed. baris literally means line or file, and referred to the line of soldiers who served the rajas of Bali. Just as the Legong is essentially feminine, Baris, atraditional wardance, glorifies the man hood of the triumphant Balinese warrior. The word baris means a line orfile, in the sense of a line of soldiers, and referred to the warriors who fought for the kings of Bali.

There are numerous kinds of Baris, distinguished by the arms borne by the dancers-spear, lance, kris, bow, sword, orshield. Originally, thedancewas a religious ritual: the dedication of warriors and their weapons during a temple feast. From the ritualistic Baris Gede grew the dramatic Baris, a story prefaced by a series of exhibition solo dances which showed a warrior's prowess in battle. It is from these that the present Baris solo takes its form.

The Balinese saya good Baris dancerisr are. He must undergo rigorous training to obtain the skill and flexibility, that typifies the chivalrous elegance of the Sale.

A Baris dancer must be supple, able to sit on his heels, keeping his knees spread wide apart in line with his body. His face must be mobile to convey fierceness, disdain, pride, acute alertness, and, equally important, compassion and regret-the characteristics of a warlike noble. The Baris is accompanied by gamelan gong. The relation between dancer and orchestra is an intimate one, since the gamelan must be entirely attuned to the changing moods of the warrior's imperious will. The dancer enters the stage-a field of action where he will display the sublimity of his commanding presence. At first, his movements are studied and careful, as if he were seeking out foes in an unfamiliar place. When he reaches the middle of the stage, hesitation gives way to self-assurance. He rises on his toes to his full stature, his body motionless with quivering.limbs. In a flash, he whirls on one leg, his feet patter the ground to the tumult of the gamelan, and his face renders the storm of passions of a quick-tempered warrior. Such a spectacular show of style, mental controf and physical dexterity would intimidate any enemy worthy of the Baris!

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 12.27   0 comments
Hindu Dharma in Bali
In Bali, many religious activities performed by the people, in devotional, magical and artistic spirits. They are kind of social affairs that bond people together. Prayer, music, dance, song, painting, carving, beautiful offering, flower, incense, fragrance, costume, etc. all give their charm to the activities. It is not like some people might think about some form of Hindu rituals, yoga practice in all of it's form, various postures, meditation, liberation through quest for knowledge for the absolute, through selfless actions, even fasting and penance, etc. The Balinese practice more on the devotional aspect of Yoga, known as the path of Bhakti.

Some people even think that the Balinese practice more the form of animistic rituals rather than practicing ritual of one of the world greatest religions. Other people still call the religion of the Balinese Hindu Bali. In fact that is not true. The Balinese learn, practice and have the spirit of Hindu Dharma religion more than other form of animistic and primitive religions, without losing respect to the later religions mentioned.

Sure that the Balinese have many things that still need to enhance, in the ritual, daily life, the quest for the ultimate, etc. in order to achieve the goal stated by Hinduism as the goal of Dharma; it is soul liberation and earthly welfare for all sentient beings. No direct meaning of Dharma in English, but we can say that it's include righteousness, duty and cosmic order.

The following are some fundamentals of Hindu religion which also called Sanatana Dharma
( Eternal Dharma ) as learned to be practiced by the Balinese.

Tri Pramana, three means to know something:
1. Agama Pramana, through knowledge from the scripture and sage.
2. Anumana Pramana, through experiment and analytical study.
3. Pratyaksa Pramana, through direct experience.

Panca Shrada, five holy convictions:
1. Belief in the existent of the ultimate One.
2. Belief in the existent of the Soul.
3. Belief in the existent of Karma Law.
4. Belief in the existent of Reincarnation.
5. Belief in the existent of Moksa or Liberation.

Tri Guna, three intrinsic qualities of matter:
1. Satwam, truth and goodness.
2. Rajas, active and full of passion.
3. Tamas, passive or inertia.

Catur Asrama, four stages of life:
1. Brahmacari, learning knowledge and wisdom.
2. Grehasta, build a family, collecting wealth.
3. Wanaprasta, toward more spiritual life.
4. Sanyasin, renounced earthly matter.

Catur Yoga, four ways to achieve unity with Brahman or the absolute:
1. Jnana Yoga, unity through knowledge and wisdom.
2. Bhakti Yoga, unity through devotion.
3. Karma Yoga, unity through selfless action.
4. Raja Yoga, unity through spiritual practice or meditation.

Catur Warna, four professional division of society:
1. Brahmana, religious matter profession.
2. Ksatrya, political and military profession.
3. Waisya, business profession.
4. Sudra, employee and physical work profession.

Tri Warga, three means to achieve Moksa or liberation:
1. Dharma, righteousness.
2. Artha, financial.
3. Kama, pleasure or desire.

One of the messages is, whenever we collect material things or wealth, and whenever we enjoy pleasures, we should always do such things in accordance or based on Dharma or truth.

Sadripu, six enemies:
1. Kama, pleasure or desire.
2. Lobha, greed.
3. Krodha, anger.
4. Mada, drunk or under influence of strong emotion.
5. Moha, confusion.
6. Matsarya, jealousy.

Sadatatayi, six types of sadistic killer:
1. Agnida, burn other belonging.
2. Wisada, poisoning.
3. Atharwa, practicing negative magic.
4. Sastraghna, run amok.
5. Dratikrama, raping.
6. Rajapisuna, slandering to the result of some one death.

Saptatimira, seven darkness or drunkenness:
1. Surupa, beautiful face.
2. Dhana, wealth.
3. Guna, knowledge.
4. Kulina, genealogical matter.
5. Yowana, youth.
6. Sura, alcoholic or unhealthy drink.
7. Kasuran, victory.

Trikaya Parisudha, three type of conducts that should be purified:
1. Kayika, physical action.
2. Wacika, speech.
3. Manacika, thought.

Panca Yama Brata, five things concerned with moral life:
1. Ahimsa, non violence.
2. Brahmacari, self control on passion.
3. Satya, faithful or sincerity.
4. Awyawaharika, act based on peace and sincerity.
5. Asteya, non stealing and non cheating.

Panca Niyama Brata, five things concerned with moral life:
1. Akrodha, not controlled by anger.
2. Guru susrusa, loyal to implement the teacher's teaching.
3. Sauca, purity of body and mind.
4. Aharalagawa, eat as much as needed.
5. Aparamada, sincerity in learning and practicing holy teaching.

Dasa Yama Brata, ten things concerned with moral life:
1. Anresangsya or Arimbawa, not egoistic.
2. Ksama, forgiving.
3. Satya, faithful or sincere.
4. Ahimsa, non violence.
5. Dama, able to advice one own self.
6. Arjawa, honest in defending the truth.
7. Ijya, loving all creature.
8. Prasada, purity of heart and never thinking about reward.
9. Madurya, polite and have good manner.
10. Mardawa, humility.

Dasa Niyama Brata, ten things concerned with moral life:
1. Dana, giving charity.
2. Ijya, devotion to the absolute and ancestors.
3. Tapa, self exercise for self endurance.
4. Dhyana, focus to the absolute.
5. Swadhyaya, learn and understand the holy teaching.
6. Upasthanigraha, controlling sexual desire.
7. Brata, faithful to one own oath.
8. Upawasa, fasting.
9. Mona, controlling speech.
10. Snana, purifying the body-and-mind, and praying.

Veda scriptures often mention sacrifice, in which Brahmana groups often refer to this as physical religious sacrifice such as using fire, water, food etc. Although some other Vedic scholars and Hindu sages refer to this as a general sacrifice that can be performed and offered by human, this include non-egoistic actions, learning knowledge and wisdom and propagate them to the society, devotion, etc. which is not always associated with physical religious offering. In Bali today, the first mentioned meanings of sacrifice is more prominent, although some more philosophical based Ashram and Hindu or Dharma religious groups has born in Bali to bring forward also their more philosophical meanings.

Panca Yadnya, five sacrifices:
1. Dewa Yadnya, sacrifice to God.
2. Pitra Yadnya, sacrifice to ancestor.
3. Rsi Yadnya, sacrifice to sage.
4. Butha Yadnya, sacrifice to nature and its spirit.
5. Manusa Yadnya, sacrifice to people and society.

Other mantras from Veda and other Hindu scriptures familiar to the Balinese are the followings.

Om Swastyastu, used when opening speech, writing etc. O The Supreme, may all in good condition.
Ekam sat viprah bahudha vadanti. One existence, the wise call it with different names.
Ekam eva advityam brahman. Only one without a second is Brahman.
Tat tvam asi. That is you. It means all is one.
Aham brahmasmi. I am Brahman.
Satyam sivam sundaram. Truth, goodness, beauty.
Moksartham jagaddhitaya ca iti dharmah. The objective of dharma if for soul liberation and welfare of the world.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 12.22   0 comments
Gamelan Gong Gede
Gamelan gong gede, meaning "gamelan with the large gongs", is a form of the ceremonial gamelan music of Bali, dating from the court society of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, and associated historically with public ceremonies and special occasions such as temple festivals. Usually performed by a temple orchestra of over forty musicians, music written for the gong gede is sedate and graceful, following an andante tempo. It fluctuates in cycles, one fast, one slow, one loud, and one soft. The beat is provided by the largest gong. During their colonization of Bali in the late nineteenth century, the Dutch dissolved the courts, and the use of the gong gede became limited to temple music. It was later superseded in popularity by gong kebyar, a more up-tempo form of gamelan played with smaller gongs, that originated in Balinese villages in the late 19th century and became widely popular in the 1920s and 1930s.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 12.15   0 comments
Besakih Temple
Besakih is known as the ‘Mother Temple’ in Bali. The largest and most important temple on the island, it sits on the western slopes of Gunung Agung along with 6 Balinese people and had a good experience. Visitors to Bali will be offered a trip to Besakih temple, by touts and streetside travel agents in Kuta and other places. Your experience may not turn out exactly as you had imagined though.

Besakih temple is really a collection of temples, sprawling down the hillside and its sheer size means it has become a tourist trap. When I visited with my Balinese friends, we arrived at 10pm, the touts, guides and hawkers mostly gone. During the day its a frenzy of activity.

Balinese people often visit Besakih temple to receive blessings and lay offerings at certain shrines. Special calendar dates are more auspicious than others and during a big ceremony it can be an impressive sight. The fact that Besakih is sprawling and that so many people have attached themselves to it, for commercial reasons, often takes away from the experience, for tourists. Best times of day to visit for a real feeling of the place are early morning and late at night, when the temple is more empty and quiet.

Many local Balinese men earn their living at Besakih as ‘temple guardians’. This title is self created, and they basically want to use the place as a turnstyle, charging you money for having them walk turn round.

One aspect of a Balinese temple is that worshippers will bring offerings. Besakih gets visitors from all over the island and the temple can appear strewn with the remains of the last days offerings, plastic bags, paper and drink containers. Quite the opposite of a church or mosque.

How to get to Besakih temple:
You can get to Besakih from Kuta, by heading to Sanur, then taking the Kusamba Bypass to Klungkung. Head north through Klungkung, taking the righthand turnoff at Menanga to Besakih. The journey fom Kuta should take about 3 hours.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 12.08   0 comments
Manusa Yadnya Ceremony
Many westerners have become Balinese through the Suddhi Wadani ceremony and the Manusa Yadnya (ceremony for human) ceremony. Suddhi Wadhani ceremony can be paralleled with taking a vow ceremony. In this ceremony someone make a vow to become a Hindu follower, but in order to become a Balinese another series of ceremony have to be performed. To be a Balinese someone has to be “reborn” in Balinese way. A Balinese is given various ceremony since he/she in the womb of his/her mother until he/she pass away, even long after he/she passed away a ceremony is held for him/her.

The series of ceremony is begun with the magedong-gedongan housing of the soul) ceremony on the seventh month of pregnancy. Next ceremony is birth ceremony; it is celebrated by welcome to the world ceremony (penyambutan). Next ceremony is ceremony of seven day for the fall of the umbilical cord (kepus pungsed), followed by the ceremony of the twelfth day, the forty-two day ceremony and the third month ceremony. Upon this third month ceremony, the child is allowed to touch the ground and given a name. After these ceremonies, there will be an otonan ceremony (Balinese birthday ceremony).

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.49   0 comments
Otonan Day
Contrary to most of people in the world who are so interested with their birthday party that they are fond of creating something to make their birthday to be a luxurious moment, Balinese prefer to celebrate their birthday with spiritual touch. Balinese call it otonan.

Otonan is quite different from common birthday party. It is held twice a year because its celebration is based on wuku. Wuku itself is based on Balinese Pawukon system in which each cycle consists of 30 wuku. Each Wuku lasts for a week; so a cycle comprises of 210 days. The wuku is a bit similar of zodiac; each name reflects characters of someone who was born on that wuku. What wuku and day a Balinese was born; on that same wuku and day the otonan is held. This birthday celebration needs not a fancy dress because Balinese use only simple traditional dress on that celebration.

Balinese believe that they were born with four guardian brothers or sisters (kanda pat). When otonan is held, the four siblings are called to gather around the child and protect her/him. Then the child is hoped to be aware of who she/he actually is with help from his/her four siblings. If she/he doesn’t care with these siblings, the they will leave him/her then she/he will be vulnerable to any magical attack and tend to do ill conducts. Otonan is a day when Balinese aware of their self.

An otonan is held every 210 days following the birth of a baby and is considered a most important rite of passage. It can be likened to a birthday and is celebrated with elaborate offerings, prayer and often a feast for close friends and relatives. The fundamental purpose of an otonan is to purify and convey spiritual strength.

Every Balinese knows their otonan as it is a common belief that the date can determine character traits and even destiny. Some families continue to celebrate their otonan every 210 days well beyond childhood as a token expression of gratitude to God Almighty.


posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.43   0 comments
Saraswati Day
Every Saniscara, Umanis, Wuku Watugunung, they celebrate Saraswati Day, the knowledge day. It is based on the Pawukon (Balinese calendar) system and the Saniscara (seven day cycle).

The name Saraswati came from "Saras" meaning flow and "wati" meaning a women. So, Saraswati is symbol of knowledge, its flow (or growth) is like a river and knowledge is very interesting, like a beautiful women.

Saraswati is the Goddess of Knowledge, symbolized by a beautiful woman with four hands, riding on a white swan among water lilies to tell humanity that science is like a beautiful woman. Her hands hold a palm leaf; a lontar, (a Balinese traditional book which is the source of science or knowledge); a chain (genitri with 108 pieces) symbolising that knowledge is never ending and has an everlasting life cycle; and a musical instrument (guitar or wina) symbolising that science develops through the growth of culture. The swans symbolise prudence, so that one's knowledge may distinguish between good and evil and the water lilies (Lotus) are symbols of holiness. The Lotus flower is the holiest for Balinese.

In the afternoon of Saraswati day we are not permitted to read or write the book because all the books are offered. In the evening, called Malam Sastra, people read books (especially religious books) in their houses or in the temple.

  • Pangredanan (the day before Saraswati)
    This is the day of preparation. All the books and lontar are collected together, cleaned and dusted.
  • Saraswati Day
    Saraswati day itself is celebrated by the Balinese people bringing offerings to their holy books and scrolls in their houses, while students celebrate it at school, usually in the morning, and the office-workers in their office. The philosophy of Saraswati day is that the most important thing for human life is knowledge.
  • Banyu Pinaruh
    The day after Saraswati Day is Banyu Pinaruh day. "Banyu" means water and "Pinaruh" mean wisdom. In other words, we must have wisdom which always flows like water and which is useful for human kind. We pray for Dewi Saraswati (manifestation of God) to give us cleverness and wisdom. The people usually take a bath in the sea or a lake or river and drink traditional medicine which is made from many various leaves which is very good for our health. The philosophy of Banyu Pinaruh day is the second most important thing for human life is good health.
  • Soma Ribek
    Two days after Saraswati Day, on Soma (or Monday), Pon, Wuku Sinta, is Soma Ribek day. "Soma" meaning Monday, and "Ribek" meaning full. On this day, Balinese bring offerings to the rice box. They thank God for food and beverage in their lives and pray to Dewi Sri (Goddess of prosperity, manifestation of God) to give prosperity. This celebration remind them to be selective when choosing food and not to over eat to improve their health. The philosophy of Soma Ribek day is the third most important thing for human life is food and drink.
  • Sabuh Mas
    Three days after Saraswati Day, on Anggara (or Tuesday), Wage, Wuku Sinta, is Sabuh Mas day. "Sabuh" means belt, and "Mas" mean gold. On this day, Balinese bring offerings to the deposit box or the place where they keep their jewelry. They thank Mahadewa (manifestation of God) for cloth, money, gold, etc in our lives. This celebration remind them to be selective when spending money. The philosophy of Sabuh Mas day is the fourth most important thing for human life is cloth and gold, etc.
  • Pagerwesi
    Four days after Saraswati Day, on Buda (or Wednesday), Kliwon, Wuku Sinta, is Pagerwesi day. "Pager" meaning fence and "Wesi" meaning iron. On this day, Balinese pray to Sang Hyang Pramesti Guru (manifestation of God). All Balinese have offerings to their Sanggah (temple in their home) and at all of their temples. This is the second biggest holiday after Galungan day for the Balinese. The philosophy of this celebration is that they must keep knowledge, health, food, cloth and gold high in their lives to keep the universe in balance.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.29   0 comments
Siwaratri
Balinese Siwaratri on the dark moon of the seventh month based on the Balinese lunar calendar system, Balinese will celebrate the Siwaratri or the Night of Siwa. This holy day is devoted to God Siwa, the destroyer. Balinese believes that on this day, God Siwa, the destroyer meditate for the welfare of the world, and the God Siwa will bestow a pardon for all sin to someone if he accompany the God Siwa in his meditation by observing some self restriction and meditate on the night of Siwaratri.

The celebration of Siwaratri, night of Siwa will light up the night all over Bali. On this night, temples will be full of the congregations. They stay awake all night long, recite prayer or old religious story, chat with friend (for those who takes a lesser self- restriction) and fight the sleepy eyes as hard as possible. The students will celebrate the Siwaratri, night of Siwa in their respective school, they gather in the school temple under the supervision of their teacher, recites prayer, read the holy book, or simply chat with other student.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.23   0 comments
Tumpeks Day
The Tumpeks occur when the sixth day of the seven-day week falls on fifth day of the five-day week, Keliwon. There are therefore six of them in each Balinese year of 210 days. The common characteristic of Tumpek ceremonies is that they show respect for objects. Man-made objects, when completed, are brought to life through special ceremonies. This applies to houses, temples, masks, puppets, musical instruments and weapons. Thereafter they must be treated with respect and given offerings.

They are:

Tumpek Landep

This is a special day for lethal weapons of steel, like krises, guns and cars. All receive offerings. The purpose is to reactivate their radiation and turn it to the good of man. Cars, busses and motorcycles receive elaborate palm leaf offerings tied to their front grills and side mirrors - prior to that they are washed, blessed with offerings, prayers, food, incense and holy water.

Tumpek Wariga

A special day for certain important trees, such as coconut trees, which are covered in Balinese clothes that day. They are requested to be fruitful.

Kuningan

The third one coincides with Kajeng-Keliwon, and is Kuningan. For details about Kuningan, see the article entitled Balinese Ceremonies.

Tumpek Krulut

This is special for musical instruments, masks and dance costumes.

Tumpek Andang

This is a special day for animals. They receive a bath and special pieces of cloth and offerings on that day, perhaps even a dog biscuit.

Tumpek Wayang

This is also Kajeng-Keliwon, special for Wayang Kulit shadow puppets, which are taken out and given offerings by their dalang, the puppeteer. For details on Wayang Kulit, see the article entitled Wayang Kulit: shadow puppet performances. It also happens to be very unlucky to be born on that day.

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.18   0 comments
Tilem Day
Tilem is one of famous ceremony in bali come in 15 days after Purnama. Long before calendars were invented, people watched the moon. An eclipse of the moon was a momentous event. Judaism, Christianity and Islam selected the new moon or the full moon for holy days. So did the Balinese: full moon is known as Purnama and the new moon is known as Tilem.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.11   0 comments
Purnama Day
Purnama day , the day of a 'full moon' & 'Tilem', the day of a 'new moon', are special days for the Balinese. On this day extra offerings are made around the family compound, as well as some offerings placed on the ground at the entrance to the house compound.

The towering 'sesajen' offerings are also often taken to the village temple. Depending on the time of year, many temples then hold various forms of entertainment for the village - dancing, wayang puppet performances, arja plays - to coincide with the special prayers for Purnama or Tilem.

It is considered a good day for planting on Purnama, especially for plants that bear fruit. So very often people will delay planting until the day of the full moon, when they are more assured of successful harvest.

Some people believe that to bathe in water perfumed by the fragrant petals of the frangipani flower under the light of the full moon will wash away your sins, while ensuring that you will remain youthfully attractive.

Very often an 'odalan' (anniversary ceremony) at a village temple that includes a day that happens to correspond with Tilem falling on the same day as 'kajeng kliwon' will see them organizing a performance of 'Calonarang', depicting a struggle between the powers of the Barong and Rangda, an exorcism of the village to ensure the continuance of harmony and balance. Of course the biggest of all of these exorcisms occurs on the 12th Tilem of the Saka Calendar year, where the whole of Bali carries out an exorcism on the eve of 'Nyepi' (Balinese New Year).

posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.04   0 comments
Kuningan Day
Also occurring once in every 210 days in the Balinese cycle of days, Kuningan is the end of the most important of the regular religious ceremonies for the 10-day Galungan period. During this period the deified ancestors of the family descend to their former homes. They must be suitably entertained and welcomed, and prayers and offerings must be made for them. Those families who have uncremated deceased ones buried in the village cemetery must make offerings at the graves.

Kuningan takes its name from the fact that special offerings of yellow rice (nasi kuning) are made by colouring ordinary white rice with tumeric (kunyit). It is a time for family groups, prayers, and offerings, as their ancestors return to heaven.

This Galungan period is also a symbolic representation of a battle between good and evil, and the most important function of Kuningan is to celebrate the victory of good over evil so that the balance and harmony of the world can be maintained.

Unlike the more public processions of village temple ceremonies and cremations, most Kuningan celebrations take place in the privacy of the home, in the shrines of the family temple and house compound.
posted by Arya Tangkas Kori Agung @ 11.01   0 comments
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