Road trip Travels

daily rituals in Bali

June 28, 2016

I am just back from my first trip to Bali where I spent eight days in Ubud. Those of you who follow me on instagram, have already seen a few pictures. After going through my photos, I want to share different parts of my trip over there around four topics in four different posts. The first topic I want to talk about is, the daily rituals Balinese Hindus do by making offerings.

pile of Canang Sari

pile of Canang Sari

One of the first things I noticed the day I arrived in Ubud, are the small baskets full of colourful flowers and encens sticks in front of every house, in the streets, at the Temple…they were everywhere. Then one day, in the guest house where I was staying with my friend Céline (check her blog here – only in French though), I watched the owner’s mother making them. Another early morning, Nyoman the owner himself, was delivering them whilst making a prayer at the house’s shrine first and then placing them at each guest room’s door.

Statue with offerings

Statue with offerings

Balinese offerings on the ground

Balinese offerings on the ground

These simple offerings are called “Canang Sari” and are made of young coconut leaves that you “sew” with a wooden stick, although nowadays staples do the job which is faster as women have to prepare 20 to 25 per day! Then you place a first flower for the “heart” in the middle of the small basket and then you cover it with a combination of colourful flowers. Then you finish by adding little cracker or slice of fruit and/or a coin together with a tiny portion of rice on a banana leaf. Check the one I did before our cooking class, which I will talk about in my next post. 

Canang Sari made by me

Canang Sari made by me

These daily offerings are a ritual of giving back what has been given to you by the Gods. It is a sharing that is not based upon fear, but on gratitude to the richness of life. Offering appeases the spirits and brings prosperity and good health to the family. It is a duty and an honour at the same time, and in Balinese perspective a very natural and almost logical thing to maintain a good relationship between people and spirits. The offerings placed at houses’ doorsteps will keep the evil spirits outside the house by making them happy with the content of the basket. 

Balinese offerings

Balinese offerings

If you go to the Ubud central market, that is before 8:30 in the morning (before it changes into a big tourist attraction), you will find many stalls selling already made baskets, all sorts of flowers and leaves. 

Empty baskets for offerings at the market

Empty baskets for offerings at the market

Balinese offerings at the market

already made offerings 

 balinese offerings-0182

Baskets full of flowers at the market

Baskets full of flowers in baskets

Stay tuned for my next post on Balinese cooking!

Note: I have used my iphone and my DLSR during the trips, so each post is a combination of pictures.

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1 Comment

  • Reply Balinese cooking - Little berries & co July 20, 2016 at 6:20 pm

    […] the ritual offerings and made one little basket (If you want to know more, read my previous post here). We watched a demonstration of coconut oil making. This is something I will probably not make […]

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