This morning you will visit a Brahman family in the village of Mas. Descendants of the holy priests who brought Hinduism to Bali in the 9th century, they will welcome you in their traditional home and teach you one of the most unique, yet for Balinese most common daily activities – the making of the traditional offerings.
Walking down any street in Bali, you will notice these offerings on the ground. Known as Canang Sari, they consist of small, square, woven baskets made from coconut leaves that are filled with flowers. Accompanied by an assortment of gifts for the Gods, the offerings are topped with a single smoldering stick of incense. In their simplicity, these modest offerings encapsulate Bali’s unique fusion of Hinduism. And while it is only women who craft the offerings, often entire families sit together chatting while these natural ingredients are magically transformed into beautiful creations.
You will join the family and learn how to make these Canang Sari offerings as well as the larger Gebogan – arrangements of fruit, colorful flowers and cooked chicken that are attached to a banana tree trunk by sharp bamboo skewers which come together to form a cylindrical tower. While Canang Sari are meant to be placed in houses, temples and on streets on a daily basis, Gebogan are carried by Balinese women on their heads during more important ceremonies.
Once you have finished the preparation, you will then have the chance to witness the family’s daily prayer. Dressed in sarongs, the women will place the Canang Sari in their house temple. A frangipani flower will be dipped into a bowl of holy water and sprinkled over the offering before an incense is lit. This act completes the fusion of earth, fire, wind and water. After three meditational waves of the hand and a prayer, the smoke wafts skyward, carrying the essence of the offerings up to God.
You will then drive to another Brahman house to witness how the larger Gebogan is carried to the temple. Upon arrival, it will be blessed and prayers will be made to this ancient family temple, which serves around 800 villagers. Once all rituals are concluded, the women will take the Gebogan back home and the food is shared amongst family and friends, including you.
Enjoy this traditional lunch, which includes chicken, rice, sambal and fruits before you say goodbye to your new Balinese friends and return to your hotel.
Mandapa, A Ritz Carlton Reserve Meals: Breakfast / Lunch