Special Mention

Swati Krishna Sharan  

Bali- Gift of Gratitude

In June 2018, I visited Bali with my family right after celebrating my 40th birthday with friends from all over the world. It was a time for gratitude and reflection and Bali resonated those feelings as soon as we arrived at Ubud- a quaint little Balinese town nestled in a valley.

 

Through the drive from Denpasar to Ubud and even whilst trying to get to our accommodation, what I immediately noticed was the architecture of the homes. Most Balinese homes were ornate and artistic but what struck me most was that each one of them had a family temple built at the entrance of their home. The next day we decided to take on a little adventure- a 30 km bike ride from Mt. Batur, which is known to be one of the few active Volcanoes in the area. The route would take us down the mountain and through little villages and rice paddy fields and finally to the local market.

 

It was an early morning and I saw more houses along the way through the cycle ride and noticed that people were putting out these little bamboo baskets with flowers and incense outside their homes and shops after praying at the temple. I stopped to ask our guide a little about the ritual and he told me that every Balinese family placed the Canang Sari  outside their home and shop as an offering to God each morning. These are a symbol of gratitude to the Gods and a prayer to help maintain balance and peace on earth.
 

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Swati Krishna Sharan 

 Swati Krishna Sharan is a writer, photographer and filmmaker based in Bangalore. She runs a blog capturing human stories around the city https://thecityphotographer.wordpress.com
Her husband is a pilot and her teenage daughter is into art. They love to travel as a family and explore places around the world.

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