John Tyman's
Bali: Ancient and Modern
5. Daily Life : 043-055

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043. People here work hard to please good spirits and try just as hard not to offend evil ones. They avoid doing anything that would harm the village, and also make regular offerings on their own behalf. The Hinduism practiced in Bali substitutes gifts of food and flowers for the animal sacrifices common in India and Nepal even today.

044. Every day Wayan and her mother prepare gifts for good spirits … grains of rice arranged on pieces of banana leaf, plus grains of salt, and sometimes flowers or gifts of money. They place these in the family temple, on shrines at the corners of their garden, at the gate, and outside every building.

045. Chickens soon eat up the rice, just as monkeys steal the food in village temples, but long before this happens the gods have taken note of the devotion these gifts symbolize. Because they live in sacred trees at the temple monkies are never molested.

046. Offerings to evil spirits are simply thrown on the ground outside the gate, where dogs eat them. Scraps of meat are offered daily, and rice and flowers every fifth and fifteenth day.

047. Behind Wayan's garden are the fields where the family grows their rice. Their farm is only 3000 square metres in size — not much bigger than their garden — but it is all they need.

048. They do not have machines, so much work is done by hand, in this case weeding along a narrow terrace wall.

049. They do get some help from farm animals, though, with ploughing and harrowing.

050. Like almost every other farm in Bali their land is steeply sloping, and it is divided into long narrow fields, or terraces ... twenty of them,

051. Preparing the fields and planting the rice is man's work, and is supervised by Wayan's father … who also keeps records of the money paid by tourists. Her mother looks after the house and garden, with hired help in recent years.

052. The few things which they cannot produce themselves are purchased from the market.  Like local markets worldwide there will be a variety of stalls: some sell fruit and vegetables, others meat or fish, others tools, and others cloth. And shopping is woman's work. So is cooking.

053. The family eats rice at almost every meal … flavored with a bit of fish or meat, coconut, salt and chili pepper. This was served on a banana leaf, but they now have plates plus knives and forks for the sake of tourists.

054. Wayan and her sister wear uniforms to their school, which is just a short walk away.

55. They will change when they get home, and either help with chores or play with friends in the garden ... in this case “mothers and fathers”. However, every child also has his/her share of work to do daily.


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