Unlike most Indonesians, for whom Islam is one of the main religions, the people of Bali , for the most part, profess “Agam Hindu Dharma”.
Agama Hindu Dharma – a fusion of animism, Buddhism and Hinduism. Religion is built on the conviction that well-being in a person’s life can only be achieved through the blessing of ancestors. That everything happening on the earth originates in the world of energies, the world inhabited by spirits and deities. Objects can have a soul and can help or hinder the efforts of a person on Earth.
Three times a day – at sunrise, at noon, and when the sun sets, the locals bring gifts to the gods. Small flower baskets can be seen in the temples, at the threshold of the house and before entering the shop, at the restaurant and along the road. And before the stone figures in checkered sarongs (guardian spirits), incense is always smoked.
Bali Temples – Spiritual Hierarchy
The concept of three parts set by the divine triad – the keeper, creator, and destroyer – runs the red thread on the island. According to this concept, there are three temples in Bali villages.
The first is Pura Puseh, a temple of origin. As a rule, it is located in the upper part of the village and important ceremonies are held in it. The temple is associated with Lord Vishnu, who is considered the “keeper” and the main purpose of Pura Puseh is to keep the memory of the ancestors.
The second is Pura Desa, the temple of the village. It is located in the center of the village and is connected with God Brahma. Local conventions and regular ceremonies are held in the temple. Brahma – “creator” he is a reflection of the creative principle on which such important components of Balinese life as culture and art are based.
The third is Pura Dalem, the temple of the dead. Located in the lower part of the village and connected with Lord Shiva, known as the “destroyer.” The spiritual function of Shiva to destroy the negative in the world, at the same time, is inextricably linked with creation since in the process of continuous change destruction precedes creation.
Directly, the temples themselves, according to a clear separation, consist of three parts/zones, each with its function: at the top, the main sanctuary is farthest from the entrance, the main ceremonies are held in the middle, and the lower rituals are set aside for everyday rituals. the entrance itself.
Bali knows as island thousands of temples, their number ranges from 10 to 20 thousand. See all is impossible, but the 7 most significant creations, it is advisable to visit.
Mother Temple (Besakih Temple)
The millennial temple on the slope of the Agung volcano is one of the most important temples on the island. Balinese belief the volcano, the home of the god Shiva, thereby endowing the mountain sacred status. When in 1963, after a long lull of more than a hundred years, the eruption of a volcano killed 1,700 people and did not touch the temple (lava flows passed a few meters from the Temple of the Mother), the Balinese regarded it as a miracle and a sign of the gods.
Temple of Tahan Lot (Tanah Lot Temple)
One of the most beautiful temples in Bali – Tanah Lot (Tanah Lot Temple) was built in the 15th century. It stands spectacularly near the shore on an island, whose rocky sides are washed by water. In the location of the temple, there is a certain symbolism, because he is no longer on earth and not yet in the ocean. The place itself is fascinating and especially beautiful at sunset.
Uluwatu Temple (Pura Luhur Uluwatu)
Uluwatu is one of the temples protecting the island from evil spirits. The majestic Uluwatu sits on the edge of a cliff, which overlooks the blue expanse of the ocean. The official name of the temple is Pura Luhur Uluwatu (“Luhur” means “divine origin”, and “Uluwatu” can be broken down into “Ulu”, which means “end of the earth” and “vatu” – which means stone). On the territory of the temple live whole colonies of monkeys.
Temple Tirta Empul (Pura Tirta Empul)
Tirta Empul is one of the oldest temples, whose history goes back to the 926th century. It is believed that the spring water of its lake is sacred and has healing properties. Through the figured pipes, the water enters the four pools, in which the Balinese perform the ritual of ablution.
Pura-Ulun-Danu (Ulun Danu Bratan)
Pura-Ulun-Danu, or Pura Bratan – Indo-Buddhist temple built in the 17th century. on the islands of Crater Lake Bro. Its high thatched roofs are picturesquely reflected in the mirror-smooth surface of the lake. The temple is the second largest in Bali after the Mother temple and is dedicated to the goddess of rivers and lakes, Dana (in honor of the goddess, two Pura-Ulun-Danu temples were built on Lake Bratan and Ulun-Danu on Lake Batur in the Penelokan region). This is a place of pilgrimage, where bright ceremonies are held, which should ensure the fertility of the land and water supplies.
Temple of Goa Lavah (Pura Goa Lawah)
The temple was built in the 11th century and is related to rituals associated with the afterlife. On special days, the beach in front of the temple becomes a place for funeral rites. Goa Lavah is located near the coastal rock cave, where thousands of bats live. According to the legend, the cave extends to the Mother Temple, about 30 km away. And the huge dragon is the guardian of the balance on the earth, guarding the cave.
Temple of Taman Ayun (Pura Taman Ayun)
This is a royal family temple, built in the 17th century during the period of the empire Meng. The literal translation of his name means “beautiful garden” and the truth is, the temple is so beautiful that it is considered one of the most beautiful temples in Bali.
A little about the culture of clothing
- women need to cover their open shoulders;
- for long pants or a skirt, it is enough to tie a belt around the waist;
- on shorts or a short skirt, wear a sarong on top.
All elements of “temple clothing”, as a rule, can be taken at the entrance.