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Music & Spirituality in Bali


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A Presentation by I Gede Robi Supriyanto & Rebekah E. Moore
23 May 2013
Yoga Barn, Bali, Indonesia

Published in: Education, Travel, Art & Photos
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Music & Spirituality in Bali

  1. 1. Music & Spirituality in BaliPresented byI Gede Robi Supriyanto&Rebekah E. MooreYoga Barn, Bali23 March 2013
  2. 2. A City CacophonousThe sounds of worship:Odalan(Temple anniversary ceremony)
  3. 3. Reverence to all spirits, animate and inanimate: Rituals ofpre-Hindu Bali combined animism, polytheism, & ancestorveneration and followed the seasons of agrarian life.
  4. 4. Agama Tirta: Religion of theHoly Water• Archaeological evidence ofTantric, Shaivite, & Buddhistsects in Indonesia dates to the4th or 5th century AD• New spiritual traditions wereincorporated into the Balinesespiritual complex• Though the Indian godscame, the Balinese ancestors(kemulan) remained theprimary benefactors of prayerand ceremony
  5. 5. Sekala: The SeenNiskala: The Unseen
  6. 6. •ManusaYadnya:Rites for living humans•PitraYadnyaRites for the ancestors•DewaYadnya:Rites for the gods•Guru Yadnya:Rites for teachers•BhutaYadnya:Rites for the lower spirits
  7. 7. • Balinese spirituality wasnot officially called“Hinduism” until1962, when Bali wasobliged to conform to stateregulations recognizingonly monotheisticreligions• Thus, theanimism/polytheism/ancestor veneration of AgamaTirta became “Agama HinduDharma” &Brahma, Wishnu, & Sivawere merged into one God(Sang HyangWidhi)
  8. 8. Banten: Offerings to the gods and ancestors
  9. 9. “…beauty, withinritual, is a basicingredient of efficacy;it is a necessarycomponent of anyceremonialactivity, and in asense, any socialactivity at all.” —Edward Herbst
  10. 10. “Music and art are so ingrained into religion and into daily life thatuntil recently they had no equivalent terms in the Balineselanguage except as components of ritual work (karya)”—David Harnish
  11. 11. There is no good without evil;no light without dark• Rituals to honor the gods(dewaand dewi) as well asthe demons (bhutaandkala) so that the ideal ofcosmic equilibrium maybe achieved.• TawurKesanga(CaruAgung), the DayBefore Nyepi: Then thedemons come out to play
  12. 12. Taksu“The arts, do not merelydescribe worlds withinworlds [niskala], butinvoke them, provide themeans of access tothem, dissolve theboundaries between theillusory mundane worldof the village and themultiple realities ofwhich it is but a part.”—Steven Lansing
  13. 13. Gamelan: “its soundsare directed to thedeities who descend toenter their shrines forthe occasion…”—Michael Tenzer
  14. 14. • This presentation explores:– Cultural interaction andexchange– Diverse performing arts andtheir classification– An in depth look atunderground / indie music insouthern Bali– Threats to Bali’s musicaldiversityMusic in ritual to restore balanceRwaBineda: Cosmic PolarityEx. The Calonarang (Barong &Rangda)
  15. 15. Music: the right accompaniment for the right place, time, &circumstanceDesa, Kala, Patra
  16. 16. Ancient and sacred selonding: musicto honor the ancestors
  17. 17. Music to establish social order and civil service: Pregina
  18. 18. Entertain/Entretenir/to hold apartMusic, theatre, &dance entertain theancestors, gods, demons (the inhabitantsof niskala) as well asthe humaninhabitants ofsekala, this MiddleWorld
  19. 19. “What the Balinese showus, both by means of theirexample, and in their formalaesthetics, is that we havevastly underestimated thesignificance of art as a vehiclefor shaping and molding theimagination, and therebygiving pattern and meaning tothe world”—Steven Lansing