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March 17 @ 6:00 am - March 18 @ 6:00 am UTC+8
A Balinese Day for Self-reflection
[Jakarta, LttW] Nyepi, the Balinese day of silence, is a day for self-reflection. Annually, this day of quiet reflection is held to celebrate the beginning of the local Caka calendar.
A Balinese friend told us that the silence can mean whatever you want it to mean, just as long as it involves self-reflection to improve one’s self. To us, it is a reminder that there are people who still celebrate silence. It can also serve as a remedy against today’s noises of materialism. Heck, it would train you not to panic if the internet goes out, or, God forbid, an apocalyptic phenomenon were to occur.
Perhaps it is the Balinese way of reaching a higher consciousness. Whatever it is, the Balinese seem to be ahead in comprehending the phrase ‘silence is golden’.
Nyepi this year is scheduled for March 17 & 18, 2018. Expect practically nothing during the 24 hours beginning from 6am on this day, be it from the island or Balinese people wherever they are. Lights will be kept low and streets empty on the island. Apart from hotels and emergency services, almost everything is closed.
Attractions can be found a few days prior, during Melasti, when seaside Pura (Balinese temples) would hold rituals to purify its sacred objects. There is also Ngrupuk parade on the eve of Nyepi, when Ogoh-Ogoh (monster-looking effigies) would roam the streets along with loud gamelan sounds. Also in the parade are drinking and dancing that can make Mardi Gras blush. The louder is the better, as all of these are meant to drive bad spirits away.
Yet the silence that comes the following day is nowhere less unique compared to these festivities; a definite experience unlike any other.