Sacred Balinese Dances To Be Prohibited Outside Religious Ceremonies

Category : Adventure | Posted On Sep 22, 2019

Balinese Government has recently signed an agreement which restricts hundreds of Balinese dancers from performing sacred dances at commercial events. The signers of thiss agreement were Wayan Koster the Governor of Bali, The Dharma Hinidu Council of Indonesia, the Customary Village Council (MDA), the Culture Consideration and Guidance Council (LISTIBIYA), and the Indonesia Arts Institute (ISI).

Koster explained the reason behind this agreement is the sacredness and specialty of the Balinese art. It is not a very common art as it is born and crafted in support of the rituals in Bainese Ceremonies.  “That’s our advantage, we have gamelan and dances. The dances are sacred and they should be presented when there is a religious ceremony,” the governor told kompas.com on Jayasabha, the governor’s office in Denpasar, on Tuesday.

He further showed his regrets that these dances have been presented at commercial events ignoring their religious importance and sacredness. As there have been instances where these dances have been presented for personal gains such as making world records. He emphasised that such performances at various places can damage and reduce the sacredness and value they hold.  “In this way the sacred dances are reduced in value, which can damage the art and culture that we have inherited from our ancestors,” he added.

However Prof.Dr.Made who is a famous Balinese dancer and a cultural practitioner shared his concerns that the sacred dances that are prohibited to be commercialized were sorted based on a list from 1971. They are divided into three classifications, which are “wali, bebali, and bali-balihan”.

He further stated that Wali and Bebali dances should be encouraged to perform at the specific places and times. As Wali and Bebali dance should only be presented inside the temple so they can be classified as sacred dances. “Meanwhile, bali-balihan dances can be presented for entertainment outside the temple. They are appreciated for their art, and they can be presented at public places for tourism and other purposes,” he said.

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