In­done­sia FES­TI­VAL MUST-SEE: GALUNGAN AND KUNINGAN EX­PE­RI­ENCE GA LUNGAN A ND KUNI N GAN

May 30, 2018 (Galungan) and June 9, 2018 (Kuningan)

Asian Geographic - - Southeast Asia -

Galungan com­mem­o­rates the tri­umph of Dharma (good) over Ad­harma (evil) – a vic­tory that in­volved In­dra, the Hindu god of thun­der, and the Ba­li­nese king Mayade­nawa, who de­nied his peo­ple the right to Hindu wor­ship. Bat­tles raged, but given Mayade­nawa’s su­per­nat­u­ral pow­ers to trans­form him­self into an­i­mals and ob­jects, no one could de­feat the evil king, un­til In­dra stepped in.

De­feated, Mayade­nawa fled into the jun­gle, try­ing to ob­scure his foot­prints, but he was pur­sued and killed by one of In­dra’s magic ar­rows. To­day, the site where he died – a fresh­wa­ter spring – is where the Tirta Em­pul Tem­ple is si­t­u­ated; the tem­ple’s name trans­lates to “slant­ing foot­prints”; the Ba­li­nese honour the de­feat of evil Mayade­nawa through Galungan.

Nyepi – the Ba­li­nese “Day of Si­lence” – is the big­gest fes­ti­val on the is­land, but Galungan is more vi­brant. It also marks the time when an­ces­tral spir­its re­turn to Earth. The streets are lined with bam­boo poles dec­o­rated with co­conut leaf dec­o­ra­tions and fruits, sig­ni­fy­ing In­dra’s suc­cess in up­hold­ing Hin­duism and wis­dom. Devo­tees in colour­ful tra­di­tional cloth­ing make of­fer­ings of fruits and flow­ers at tem­ples and fam­ily shrines all over the is­land.

The last day of the cel­e­bra­tion is Kuningan, when the dead re­turn to the spirit world. To mark the end of the fes­ti­val, devo­tees make of­fer­ings of yel­low turmeric rice. A se­ries of sacred dance per­for­mances and rit­u­als are then per­formed, con­clud­ing the ten­day fes­ti­val.

WHEN WHERE

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.