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Monkey Business a la Balinese  

by on Monday, 23 July 2007One Comment | 4,431 views

The monkey business in Bali is far from dishonesty or silly behavior; it is an honest, profitable business which involves monkeys, humans, and surrounding environment for the benefit of human, monkey and environment.

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The Balinese monkey business can be found at Monkey Forest in Ubud, Sangeh monkey sanctuary in Badung regency and Alas Kedaton in Tabanan regency. In these monkey sanctuaries, Balinese work hand in hand with the monkeys to preserve the surrounding forest, maintain the forest temple, provide revenue for the village, occupations for the villagers and protection for the monkeys.

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The Balinese monkey business depends mainly on the tourism. Entrance fees to the monkey sanctuary are the main source of income. The income from the entrance fees is managed by village council and used to maintain the forest temple and subsidize the cost of temple ceremony and anniversary and also for conservation efforts. The monkey business puts Balinese to work in the monkey sanctuary; it gives Balinese skills and income and keeps them from having to sell their land to hotels and other tourism businesses. The monkeys benefit, as well, a considerable part of entrance fee income is allocated for conservation funds, which is used to feed the monkey and preserve the monkey sanctuary which protects them from hunters and other dangers.

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Forest temple which resides in the heart of monkey sanctuary plays an important role in this business. The presence of the forest temple protects the monkeys and surrounding forest from danger since Balinese believe that the trees and the monkeys belong to the deities that reside in the forest temple. Harming the monkeys or cutting the trees will result the wrath of forest temple deities and the wrath of the deities is considered as source of terrible misfortune. No Balinese will even dream to harm a monkey or cutting a tree in the sacred monkey sanctuary.

The Balinese monkey business is a happy-for-all business.

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