Galungan & Kuningan Celebrations

Friday, October 20, 2017

Galungan Day on 1st November 2017 will essentially mark the beginning of a 10-day festival involving elaborate offerings, prayers and traditional food. It is a time to appease the gods and the spirits of defied ancestors who have temporarily descended to the physical world. The underlying philosophy of Galungan is to honour the universal victory of good over evil.  
Preparations for this special holiday period include the ritual slaughtering of pigs whereby the meat will be cooked in a variety of ways. Decorated bamboo poles and shrines, known as penjor, will also be placed out the front of every home and business to represent Bali’s sacred Mount Agung. Galungan is generally a time of great happiness for the Balinese people when extended families reunite and everyone gathers to pray and feast together. 
A number of symbolic rites will be performed over the following days and celebrations will peak with an important ceremony on Kuningan Day on 11th November 2017. It is believed that after all ancestral spirits have been worshipped during their time on earth they must then return to heaven. Special offerings will be placed in every family temple before midday as a symbolic farewell.  
Given the current volcanic activity of Mount Agung, every effort will be made by the Balinese to fulfil their religious obligations during Galungan and Kuningan. It is an opportunity to support and pray for all of the villagers who have been displaced by this unforeseen act of nature. This is also a timely reminder to respect Mother Earth and appreciate the precious resources that sustain each and every one of us.