Postcard from... Bali


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The last time Wayan Rendeh took part in a temple ceremony in his village of Juga, man had not yet landed on the Moon.

The ancient rite of Karya Padudusan Agung, which roughly translates to “great work”, is held every three or four decades to invigorate the temple’s waning powers and bring peace on Earth.

Mr Rendeh, 76, was among thousands of worshippers gathered on Tuesday at the temple of Siva – or Shiva, the deity of destruction – for the first such rituals since 1968 on the predominantly Hindu island. Young girls in saffron and white satin wraparounds, with head-dresses of coconut palm fronds and marigolds, danced in the temple complex .

“That last one was not so large as this. We were poorer,” said Mr Rendeh, a long-time resident of the village of wood carvers on the outskirts of Ubud, Bali’s cultural centre.

The 2015 celebrations cost around £100,000 with each family in Juga setting aside money each week for a couple of years to meet the budget.

Dodi, 25, had only heard tales of last century’s rituals from village elders but said Juga would continue to host the ritual cleansing in coming years. “In 2050, I don’t imagine it will be much different; maybe the buildings will be, but the spiritual power will not change,” he said. REUTERS