The Nyepi (Silent Day) in Bali

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2014 Nyepi falls in March 31th. Every year the date is slightly different because this holiday is followed by the Hindu Saka calendar. It is said that the demons are all out on that day, so Balinese will make monsters to terrify the demons. (It is actually quite similar to the Chinese New Year story: we will use fireworks and red scrolls to scare the monster.) These monsters in Bali are called “Ogoh-Ogoh”. It usually takes a few weeks to build this big Ogoh-Ogoh and it takes more than 10 men to carry it. When we were there, we saw a lot of Ogoh-Ogoh just besind the street, ready for the procession in the evening of 30th.

Our flight is in the evening of the 30th, so we asked the taxi driver to take us to see one of the procession. Every team with their Ogoh-Ogoh is waiting in line to present their monsters and simulate a battle. After the procession, they will burn the Ogoh-Ogoh. The Ogoh-Ogoh we saw are all very creative and scary! There were even small version for kids to carry and present.

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We were very happy and satisfied to see the procession and headed to the airport. The next day which is the Nyepi, everyone must stay at home and can’t use any electricity. For tourist, they can only stay in the hotel. This is the day for Balinese to meditate and pray.

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