Monday, May 6, 2013

Sesaji - The Bali Tradition - Bali, Indonesia

Sesaji on our boat to Terunyan Village, Lake Batur
I was surprised to see this little basket filled with flowers, food, fruits or just about anything edible along sidewalks and almost everywhere all over Bali. Our guide told us not to step on the 'sesaji' as these are small offerings that  the Balinese made to their god or to the unseen thrice daily.  It is believe that the offering appeases the spirits and bring happiness to the giver. 
This sesaji was found on the steps of the temple in Tanah Lot

About 95% of Bali population adheres to Hinduism. Balinese Hinduism is strongly influence by animism and nature and as such they see the manifestation of supreme spirit in huge trees, mountain, unique grounds, demon, ogres and could be anything. The people of Bali have to abide by their religion and custom strictly. Compliance are closely monitored by the Custom Police (Polis Adat) and any defiance act will be subjected to punishment. 

There are thousands of temples known as pura in local language and every village in Bali has at least 3 temples and in many instances there could be more. Therefore, it seems that you will be meeting temples almost in every space in Bali.  Balinese performance of art, music and drama incorporate their religious rituals which usually take place outside the temples wall. Every performance begins with the preparation of sesaji by the spiritual leader.
Sesaji at Tampaksiring
Sesaji with flowers and biscuits in Uluwatu
Sesaji at Villa Chempaka balcony

Preparing sesaji before Barong and Keris (Demon and Dagger) Dance
Sesaji at Dreamland Beach
Preparing Sesaji container at Kintamani
The huge tree becomes an object of worship
Preparing sesaji before Kecak Dance

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