Pura Rambut Siwi
Jewel of West Bali, Pura Rambut Siwi is located between the villages of Yeh Embang and Yeh Sumbu, 78 Km west of Denpasar. Pura Rambut Siwi is an important legacy of the great priest Danghyang Nirartha, who came to Bali from Java during the decline the Majapahit Kingdom to fortify Balinese Hinduism against the spread of Islam occurring elsewhere in the archipelago. At the time of Danghyang Nirartha’s arrival in this temple in 1546, the ruler of this area , Gusti Ngurah Rangsasa, who obliged the great priest to pray in his temple. When the holy priest complied, the temple structures collapsed. Gusti Ngurah Rangsasa then fled and the community rebuilt the temple in honor of Danghyang Nirartha and his teachings. The name ‘Rambut Siwi‘ means “worship of the hair” since Danghyang Nirartha made a gift of his hair to this temple and since that time, the temple has been known as Pura Rambut Siwi.
The complex of Pura Rambut Siwi consists of three temple enclosures, which are Pura Luhur, Pura Penataran and Pura Melanting. The entrance of this temple is guarded by beautifully carved wild boar and dragon statue. The Pura Luhur where Danghyang Nirartha’s hair is kept is the first temple the visitors will encounter as they enter the temple complex. Pura Luhur is the largest and most important temple in this complex. A majestic candi bentar or split gate on the southern wall of the inner courtyard opens onto the cliff, offering dramatic views of the surf lapping below. Inside are shrines to Dewi Saraswati, the Goddes of learning and Dewi Sri, the rice Goddes.
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Following a path to the east along the top of the cliff to a winding stone stairway that descends to Pura Penataran, the original temple where Danghyang Nirartha is believed to have prayed. Since 1993 this temple has became the site of permanent painting exhibition.
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Following a path to the west, the visitors will encounter a small shrine at the entrance to a cave in the cliff wall. This cave is inhabited by duwe (mystical animals or holy beast of the temple). A well at the mouth of the cave (goa tirta) is a source of holy water for the ceremony in this temple. The path leads to the stairway that ascends to the Pura Melanting. Pura Melanting dedicated to the Dewi Melanting, goddess of prosperity.
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