As serene as the beaches, as tranquil as the mountains, it is Bali Culture that is the true Beauty of this country. If you asked me one word to describe Balinese culture it would be “content”. Balinese people have a serenity, and aura of being truly happy and blessed in life. They give thanks for what they have, and if they don’t have much they appreciate every bit of what they have.
The main religion in Bali is Hinduism. Hinduism shapes Bali Culture as it is strongly intertwined in daily activities and lives. Not only are there many religious ceremonies celebrated regularly within villages, but religion influences Bali Art and dance.
It also influences homes people live in (called compounds). Certain buildings and there occupants are situated in the north, south, east and west of a compund for religious reasons, and Balineses people also have an area for religious statues, where they give offerings to the gods. If a family comes into any money, they upgrade these statues.
One thing you will see when your in Bali, are people giving offerings to the gods. They are a shallow basket made out of leaves, with incense and an offering inside. For example, if you have just had chicken and rice for breakfast, Balinese people would put a little bit of chicken and rice into the offering. These are then placed by religious statues, in front of homes and shop fronts etc. I spent many a day dodging stepping on these!
Balinese Arts form a huge part of Bali culture. In Bali, dance, paintings, wood carvings and stone carvings are everywhere. They are a way of life for Balinese people, who are often taught from a young age how to do these things, past on from generation to generation. One of our tour guides told us that each traditional village in Bali is known for one of these things. For example, his village were very famous painters in Bali, therefore he grew up learning the art of Balinese painting.
Things Bali Culture Taught Me
The first time I visited Bali, I had no idea how their culture and way of life would affect me. But it did, in the best way possible. I learnt (and still have to remind myself) to enjoy the now and appreciate what you have. The best thing I learnt though was probably to do with greed and excess. Until I went to Bali, I thought I was good with money. Before one of my trips, I was saving up for a car (mine had recently been written off). But when I came back, it just didn’t make sense anymore. Seemed like an awful lot of money when Chris and I could just share one. So we share…and it works, and I’m not in debt. Thank you Bali. Ok, so I haven’t changed the world, but even the little things make a difference. And thats what Bali Culture is all about…its the little things you do every day, the smiles, the offerings, that make up this thing we call life.