Adam's 28th year was brought in with a Balinese bang!
Our Balinese friend, Guli, invited a couple of bules (white people) to his family's temple ceremony. Thankfully, we were two of these lucky bules along with our new Colorado Springs friends, Rich and Danielle. The date of the ceremony was scheduled for an auspicious day on the Balinese calendar and just happened to fall on Adam's 28th birthday.
This kind of invitation is the ultimate travel experience for Adam and was quite the birthday gift to start off a new year!
This ceremony celebrates the birth of the temple and is celebrated every six months through two cleansing ceremonies in the clan temple and again in the family temple. We had no idea what this meant and what we were in for, so cheers to another #nuventure!
All six senses were bursting with new and foreign stimulus all day. From our first step into the compound, we were constantly adjusting and soaking in all the new visuals, sounds, and smells that come with preparing for and taking part in a Balinese ceremony. Just imagine this scene: roosters constantly crowing, incense burning for the offerings being sent to the heavens, constant ringing of the priest's golden bell as he prayed, the tonal pitch of eastern hymns, mischievous boys running and screaming around the temple, and the vibrant colors in the decorations, the attire and in the fruit and flowers.
We were soaking all of this in whilst being creative in our communication with Guli's family through broken English, laughing, and enormous smiles. We wanted to make sure his family knew we were so thankful to be there with them on such a special day!
We made our way to the clan temple for the first prayer and cleansing ceremony. As we were sitting on the bamboo mats in the clan temple, Guli was guiding us through the Balinese prayer ceremony we were about to experience. Just before it started he said, "I hope after today you will be better Christians."
The day ended and we crashed into bed with yet another day of our minds exploding from all the learning and our hearts full from the love we received from another beautiful Balinese family.
The next morning I woke up in a groggy stupor and realized I had no idea what had happened on Adam's birthday. I was in absolutely every moment. I saw it all, took in all the noises, smells, tastes, brilliant colors and smiles. We even took part in the same ceremony twice. I still had no idea what was sang, what was prayed, why certain colors were chosen, why they have three ladies praying instead of four, etc, etc.
Before I started googling the heck out of Balinese human temple ceremonies, I had a revelation. I was there. I don't need to google it. I don't need to know absolutely every intricate detail of what was said, what was sang or the purpose behind every small hand movement. The purpose of the day, the temple birthday and Adam's birthday, was celebrating life. Even though we all come from such different lives and backgrounds, we came together to celebrate. We united in celebrating life living in a world of the seen and unseen, the known and the unknown. To what we see and know, we all give thanks and for the unknown and unseen, we all get on our knees and pray.
Cheers to another year, Adam, of new, unknown adventures!