The faces of Balinese Hinduism
I left for Bali knowing that religion was especially important to the Balinese, but I only truly understood the meaning of that once I arrived. For starters, Bali is special since most of its inhabitants are hindu, but live within the mostly muslim country of Indonesia. I felt lucky to attend these beautiful hindu ceremonies, but more particularly because I always felt like it was okay for me to be there – even though I was inconspicuously lugging around some fairly large camera equipment and was one of the only foreigners around. I couldn’t speak to the people there due to the obvious language barrier, but that didn’t mean we couldn’t communicate. I had to learn to speak with the eyes and with smiles. These experiences were truly special. Most of the photos were taken at Pura Ulun Danu, close to Mount Batur (an active volcano), where residents gathered for Purnama, presenting offerings and prayers to the gods. The area is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2012. The last three photographs were taken at Pura Tirta Empul in Tampaksiring, another sacred site in Balinese Hinduism where worshippers gather for purification.