By I Gede Sujana Ardika, EBPP Hindu Religious Teacher
Hinduism is one of the major five religions in Indonesia. The history of Hinduism was originally came from India, then spread to various areas including in Bali. There are differences between the ceremonial rituals in India and Bali, although Hinduism was originated in India. The Hindus especially those who live in Bali island have a lot of religious holidays, one of them is the Galungan which they celebrate once every six months and it is calculated according to the Balinese Hindu calendar BC.
Galungan in Bali is usually celebrated for four days, such as:
Sunday – The first day is called Penyekeban. On this day, everyone is busy making “tape” made from rice for the ritual preparation.
Monday – The second day is called Penyajaan. On this day, all women are busy making various kinds of snacks (complimentary food?) that will be used for worshiping or praying.
Tuesday – The third day is called Penampahan. On this day, all men would slaughter the animals (i.e. chicken and pigs) which meat will be processed into a wide variety of traditional dough for ritual complimentary.
Wednesday – The fourth day is Galungan. On this day, all people will be praying at a temple and also bringing all the goods they have prepared in advance. Starting from early in the morning until late afternoon people will pray together with all the family members at a temple at their own houses, nearby temple around the neighbourhood, and at the village centre. The Hindus pray and ask God for all the things on the earth are protected and be saved. After the praying rituals, all the families get together and feel happy because Galungan Day is known as a celebration day of the victory against Adharma by Dharma. Dharma is the positive and good element in ourselves, while Adharma is the negative and bad element.
On the next day (Thursday), all the Hindus will visit their neighbourhood and also their relatives to show some love and ask for forgiveness to each other. Galungan Day is a very special day for the Hindus in Bali, therefore, there will be no school activities for a week.