Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Offerings


There are little offerings to gods, ancestors and spirits all over Bali, just sitting out on the sidewalks in front of the shops and houses. You often see people putting them out, like this woman who came onto the beach at sunset.


According to our chatty cab driver, you're supposed to do three offerings a day, but some people cheat a bit. I wouldn't be surprised; I bet the cost adds up!

The Balinese are mostly Hindus, practicing a form of the religion that developed distinct from Indian Hinduism. The Balinese version apparently places less emphasis on reincarnation and more on the interaction with deities and spirits.

The small offerings vary from village to village, but almost always include betel nut, which a mild stimulant, and is associated with the major gods. The ones we saw were made on palm-leaf plates and contained leaves, flowers, rice, and a little cracker or rice cake on top. There are more elaborate ones for temples, holidays and ceremonies. They must be a boon for the local animals; one late night we saw a cat perched atop a temple, maybe eight or nine feet in the air, having a snack.

2 comments:

michele said...

this is a fascinating piece. thanks for making your blog subjects so diverse! the photos are wonderful. i feel like i'm there in bali - but for the tropical weather, international surfers and the like.

kopisusu2 said...

Thanks! I aim to please! It's also a good record for me, since I'm terrible at keeping a diary.