Full Moon Rituals, Bali

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Making Many Blessings – Purnama Full Moon Fun!

Full Moon Rituals, Bali…

It’s interesting to look at how different people around the world mark the Full Moon and interpret its phases, waxing and waning.

The Indonesian word for Full Moon is Purnama, and in Bali, when the moon is at its biggest and brightest there are celebrations. It’s considered a special day for ceremonies and festivities and the hundreds of temples all over the island mark their anniversary on a specific full moon each year.

A Hindu country, Bali is rich in culture and customs. One of my favourite rituals are the offerings made to the gods, several times throughout the day. These take the form of a little bamboo tray with different coloured flower-heads and petals placed strategically atop a palm leaf, crowned with more foliage and a little bamboo decoration. A stick of incense is added, giving a gorgeous atmosphere that surprises and delights.

Better Than A Craft Class! Making Offerings At My Homestay…

They’re laid out on doorsteps, in shrines, on the pavement – everywhere! On the day of the Full Moon even more offerings placed around the home and streets, as it’s thought to be both an auspicious and sacred time.

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Offerings To The Gods Soon Washed Away By Rain And Squashed By Motorbikes

On a full moon, the Balinese believe God descends to the earth and gives His blessing, so they make offerings, give alms, recite religious hymns, and set out on a pilgrimage to remote temples. They also believe that purnama is the best time for doing good deeds or religious activities, with their intentions multiplied by a hundred.

Today, on every purnama, civil servants, teachers, and students will wear traditional Balinese clothes and hold morning communal praying in their offices or schools. This is Ajeg Bali or Bali Stand Strong spirit – I like their style!

Religious activities on Purnama usually last until midnight especially the reciting of religious hymns, and meditation.

Purnama is considered a good day for planting, especially for plants that will bear fruit. It is common for the Balinese people to delay their planting until the day of the full moon, when they are more assured of a successful harvest. Some Purnama are considered superior than others. Purnama of Kadasa (April) is considered the brightest, Kapat and Kalima (October and November) are also special.

Full Moon In Ubud, Bali

What to do on your Full Moon day and night during a stay in Bali?

Temple Trips

Pura Tirta Empul Temple and Tampaksiring see an increase in visitors on full and new moon, so if you’re in Bali during this time it’s well worth going to soak up the atmosphere – and perhaps the holy waters!

Fire Dance

The Kecak fire and trance dance is performed by the Taman Kaja Community of dancers (Krama Desa Adat Taman Kaja), which can be up to 100 men strong but is usually a lot less. Kecak is a form of Balinese dance and music drama that developed in the 1930s in Bali. It is performed primarily by men and makes the number two on the ‘Things to do in Ubud’ on Tripadvisor for a very good reason. If you’re in Bali I urge you to check out one of the dances, they cost 75,000 rp and are totally amazing – especially for a fire sign like me! Go to: Pura Dalem Temple, Jl. Sriwedari,Ubud, Bali 80571.

Be A Bathing Beauty

Some people believe that bathing in water perfumed by fragrant petals of the frangipani flower, under the light of the full moon will wash away your sins, while ensuring that you will remain youthfully attractive. There are lots of amazing spas all over Bali, in Ubud I liked the Sang Spa’s. Nothing fancy but a tried and tested one…

Where To Stay?

During my trip to Bali I came across a little sign, ‘Bali Moon’. I followed the path down to the rice fields and was greeted by the homestay, sitting proudly in the sun. I stayed.

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Bali Moon, Ubud.

Looking for astrology in Bali? Check out my listings of astrologers I found in Bali and workshops, here.

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Author: Kimberly Peta Dewhirst

Kimberly started Star Sign Style to gather together all things celestial in a honey pot of wonder. She's studied astrology in London and India, specialising in the fashion and beauty of the stars. She lives in Hong Kong with her New Yorker beau, and is a double Aries (sun-Venus), with a soft shell Cancer rising! Her Sagittarius moon lights up with talk of travel, while her Mercury in Taurus waxes lyrical over cosmic cosmetics.