Mystery, Myth & Magic

Understanding Reincarnation , The Balinese Way

Culture | Dec 01, 2014

Of course you’ve heard about reincarnation , right? Of course you have. But my guess is that you have heard about the formal, reformed-Hindu version of it: “you will reincarnate as a dog if you behave like one, meaning, you will bear the consequences of your deeds in your future incarnation(s). While some narrow-minded Balinese […]

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Mystery, Myth & Magic | Oct 31, 2014

The hippopotamus is the third-largest living land mammal, after elephants and white rhinos. The hippo’s proportions reflect its sedentary, amphibious existence. Its plump and bulky body is set on short, stumpy legs, with each foot having four toes. Although webbed, the toes splay enough to distribute the weight evenly over each toe and therefore adequately […]

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They Creep at Night

Mystery, Myth & Magic | Aug 11, 2014

Lions and tigers tend to hunt mostly by night or in the early mornings, and for much of the rest of the time they are overcome by lassitude. However, being opportunists they’ll hunt whenever the chance arises and that could be in the middle of the hottest day. Have you ever imagined how great it would […]

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The Second Smallest in the World

Mystery, Myth & Magic | Jun 02, 2014

The Sumatran elephant is native to the Indonesian island of Sumatra and is the second smallest elephant in the world – the largest is the African elephant and the smallest is the Pygmy elephant. Unfortunately, Sumatran elephants are now considered endangered because of habitat loss due to illegal logging. The heartfelt story of conflict between […]

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The Fate of the Little Ones

Culture | Jan 29, 2014

Historian and art critic Jean Couteau brings us stories depicting the life on Bali, sometimes real, sometimes myth, always meaningful. Village of Abian Gombal, year 1913, Jero Dasaran had now been consulting for hours. Dozens of his “patients” were waiting in silence outside his chambers. Roars and muttering could sometimes be heard, coming from inside, but this […]

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Ngendag : The Awakening of the Dead

Culture | Jan 02, 2014

Historian and art critic Jean Couteau brings us stories depicting the life on Bali, sometimes real, sometimes myth, always meaningful. Here he shares the story of Ngendag , a Balinese ritual in which buried corpses are exhumed to be cremated. This and other stories can be found in Jean Couteau’s book, Myth, Magic and Mystery in Bali .  […]

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Buy A Bererong

Culture | Oct 28, 2013

  Westerners and modern people have a bad habit when it comes to making money: they have a rational approach to economics. You work, they say, save and invest, and then you will earn x % or more, if lucky, in one or five years. There is little pleasure to be had, and no fear. […]

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Sauh Munyi – A Promise to the Gods

Culture | Sep 27, 2013

  The practice of oath taking is very common among the Balinese. It takes the form of barter. “If I am bestowed this favour from the gods, I will fulfil such and such a promise”. It can also apply to a promise between humans. “If I get what I wish for, I will do this […]

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Naur Sot and The Fulfillment of a Vow

Culture | Apr 29, 2013

  The atmosphere was not a happy one in Pan Koncrong’s house. His daughter was lying in bed, feverish. An old medicine man (balian) had come and muttered a few magical words.  But now he was gone, and neither his prayers to the gods, nor his potions were working. The child was lying helpless on […]

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