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Panca Wali Krama: An Upcoming Decennial Ceremony at Pura Penataran Sasih in Pejeng, Gianyar

Panca Wali Krama: An Upcoming Decennial Ceremony at Pura Penataran Sasih in Pejeng, Gianyar

Pejeng is a village located in Gianyar, Bali, just out of Ubud, in the valley of Petanu River. Pejeng is known for its Museum of Archeology, better known as Gedong Arca, which houses artifacts from the pre-historic and historic era of Bali.


Aside from for its museum, Pejeng is also known for Pura Penataran Sasih, which is the one of the universal temples in Bali with a very long record of history, dating all the way back to the island's pre-Hindu era before the 8th century.


Pura Penataran Sasih is also noted for being the place where the artifact Moon of Pejeng is nestled. The Moon of Pejeng is the largest single-cast bronze kettle drum in the world and the largest known relic from the Bronze Age period in South East Asia.


Being an interesting destination as it is, most recent updates about the happenings around the island has notified us that the people of Pejeng have entered a once-in-a-decade kind of festivity and sacred season. Pura Penataran Sasih in Pejeng is currently preparing for one of the largest known temple ceremonies called Panca Wali Krama.

 

Panca Wali Krama is a ceremony held once in ten years. It is one of the forms of Bhuta Yadnya rituals which are ceremonies and sacred rituals that belong to the category of those dedicated to the elements of nature.


The Panca Wali Krama ceremony will be held at Pura Penataran Sasih on February 22, 2016. However, the series of ceremonies preceding the main and peak of the ritual to be held on the mentioned date above has started since November, 2015.


Naturally, the spiritual and religious aspects of life in Pejeng have been even busier and proportionally highlighted these days. Starting from the 11th of February there was a ceremony held on a daily basis, which is all related and leading to Panca Wali Krama.


It is a very important ceremony for people spread in the different banjars spread around the village. It is a rare ceremony that only comes along once in a decade; who knows what happens in ten years!


There are several parts of the ceremony that will take place on Monday, February, 2016. In the morning, there is a ceremony taking place at Pura Penataran Sasih as the temple adherents will visit the temple for a ritual. The following ritual is a sacred dance performance dedicated to the whole purpose of the ceremony, which is scheduled to be held after sunset. As the final stage of the ceremony performed during that day, there will be a midnight sacred dance ritual that might last until around 3 am.


To mark the completion of the entire series of the Panca Wali Krama, the series of ceremonies still continues for a few days within this month of February, followed by a couple ceremonies each in March and April.


We can't emphasize enough on how rare this opportunity to experience something like this actually is. And lucky us, Balinese people all around the island have always been known for being open and welcome to anyone who wants to be part of these religious ceremonies; to witness and experience them. Just dress properly; a sarong and sash is recommended! And please wear something with sleeves; no sleeveless shirts or tank tops allowed!

 

It is one of those days when many big ceremonies would be held, so it would be great to get yourself in town an evening before the D-day! Ubud perfectly counts as in town as it is easier to find a wide range of accommodation types on various budgets in Ubud than it is in Pejeng itself. However, if you are not on a tight budget, staying at a hotel or villa in Pejeng area during this festive season of the village will definitely add a total win to your experience. Plus, you will be on a walking distance to most happenings!

 

So, what do you say? I'd say, let's go and witness this decennial ceremony which has a very sacred place in Bali's spirituality, set in the village which was once known as the influential Kingdom of Pejeng. It does sound like a total yes! See you in Pejeng!

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