Instruction for the Trees: Tumpek Wariga
Today, 19/09/09, Balinese celebrate the birthday of the trees. This holiday is called Tumpek Wariga or Tumpek Pengarah. There are a lot some articles in this blog which describe how Balinese express their gratitude to the trees through the celebration of Tumpek Uduh and how this holiday serves as a remainder of the importance of trees for Balinese’s life and also serves as a message for the Balinese to preserve the tree. So this time I will put emphasis on unique mepengarah ritual which is practiced on the celebration of this ceremony.
Mepengarah ritual is a unique ritual in which Balinese give an instruction to the trees (menpengarah means giving an instruction). The ritual is conducted right after the ceremony to honor the god of the trees is finished. Balinese will tap the tree three times to wake it up and give the instruction to it. It runs as follow: Kaki-kaki titiang pengarah, malih selae rahina Galunganne, mabuah nyen apang nged. Nged, nged, nged”; the free translation of this instruction runs as follow “Grandpa-grandpa, I have an instruction, it is 25 days left for Galungan day, produce a lot of fruit, a lot of fruit, a lot of fruit.” In this ritual Balinese inform the trees that Galungan (Christmas a la Balinese) holiday will soon arrive and to celebrate the Galungan holiday many fruits and other and rice will be needed to make offerings which are going to be presented to the God and ancestors in this holiday and Balinese ask the trees and other plants to produce plenty of fruits and rice to fulfill the demand on this resources.
The instruction also serves as a sign that the Galungan series of ceremonies has begun and for the next 35 days Balinese will be busy with a series of various ceremonies which will reach its peak on Galungan holiday (25 days after Tumpek Pengarah) and end up on Kuningan holiday (35 days after Tumpek Pengarah).