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Balinese Hindus Celebrate Kuningan Day Festival

on 2013/4/9 4:00:43 ( 2218 reads )

BALI, INDONESIA, April 6, 2013 (The Jakarta Post): Balinese Hindus will flock to temples throughout the island as they observe Kuningan on Saturday. Kuningan Day is the end of a series of ceremonies to celebrate the victory of Dharma (goodness) over Adharma (evil) that begins with Galungan on March 27. Galungan and Kuningan are observed every 210 days, or every six months according to the Balinese calendar.

Devotees carry colorful offerings in various shapes and sizes, such as Sodan -- a small offering of fruit, cakes and flowers -- or the larger, towering version Gebogan. Canang is the simplest offering made with fresh flowers and leaves placed on a square of coconut leaves. A small portion of yellow rice on sugar palm leaves is also placed on each offering, especially for Kuningan Day.

The word kuningan (yellow) refers to the colored rice, which is usually accompanied by traditional side dishes. These offerings are not only dedicated to God but are also intended for the family feast. All the food offerings are eaten once prayers are performed.

"Yellow is a symbol of wisdom. It reminds Balinese Hindus to be wise at every moment. Every single problem should be solved wisely," the Indonesian Parisadha Hindu Council (PHDI) Bali chapter, I Gusti Ngurah Sudiana told Bali Daily on Thursday.

Kuningan is also derived from the word ning, which in the Balinese language means clear. "It means that we have to keep thinking clearly," Sudiana explained. "Yellow is also a symbol of prosperity. It shows our gratitude for the prosperity we have already gained," Sudiana stressed.

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