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Home » Environment & Nature, Religion

Purnama: Full Moon  

by on Friday, 29 January 2010No Comment | 3,672 views

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Purnama, or full moon in Bali is always a special day for ceremonies and festivities. Hundreds of temples all over the island celebrate their anniversary on a specific full moon each year. Since full moon is also considered as an auspicious day, hundreds of ceremonies are held in all corner of the island on this sacred day. When a holiday such as Galungan is happen together with the purnama, the scale of the festivity and ceremony of this holyday is doubled, with more offerings and decoration than a Galungan without purnama.

Balinese believe purnama is a propitious day when God descends to the earth and gives His blessing. Balinese make special offering to the God in this holyday, give alms, reciting religious hymn, or set a pilgrimage to a remote temple, but for teenagers, the Jagatnatha Temple in the heart of Denpasar is the only destination. Balinese also believe that purnama is the best time for making good deeds or doing religious activities since the reward of them will be multiplied by 100.

Besakih Temple

Some purnama are considered superior than others. Purnama of Kadasa (tenth month of Balinese Caka calendar or April in Gregorian) is considered the brightest purnama. Purnama of Kapat (fourth month of Balinese Caka calendar or October in Gregorian) and Purnama of Kalima (fifth month of Balinese Caka calendar or November in Gregorian) are also considered superior.

Lately, in accordance with Ajeg Bali (Bali Stand Strong) spirit, every purnama, civil servants, teachers, and students wear Balinese traditional clothes and hold morning communal praying in their offices or schools. In the evening, the street of Denpasar or other cities in Bali will be crowded with thousands of pilgrims on their way to pay homage and pray in Jagatnatha temple of their respective regency that is located in the heart of regency’s capital city.

The religious activities on every purnama are usually last until midnight especially the reciting of religious hymn and the pilgrimage of the teenagers to the Jagatnatha Temple. Some Balinese also meditate on this sacred day until late at night.

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