|ABOUT BALI - Confessions and Arts|
Exodus resulting explosion of arts and unique Hindhu
In the mid-1400’s, when Arab traders started to find their way to Indonesia they brought their Islamic beliefs with them. It was only a short time before all of Java became an Islamic island. The MAJA PAHIT (1293–1520 AD), the great Hindu kingdom which at one time was a huge territory spreading throughout most of Asia including East Java, was placed under great pressure by numerous small new Islamic communities.
Many people fled to Bali at this time to get away from this new force. Among these people were eminent Hindu artisans (puppeteers, architects, dancers, stone carvers, and writers) who merged with Balinese artists to form what has become known as THE EXPLOSION OF ART IN BALI.
Later, circa 1487, a Hindu/Buddhist High Priest by the name of NIRATHA arrived in West Bali. The Balinese gave him the name of BATARA GURU WAWU RAUH, which means THE GREAT GURU HAS FINALLY ARRIVED.
The reason for the rapid spread of Islam throughout Indonesia that at that time Hinduism in Java, Bali or in any part of Indonesia was the same as Hinduism practiced in India, which was ASRAM HINDU. Asram, Hindu allowed people to select their own god (according to, or inherited from their ancestors), from the three most powerful gods, BRAHMA, VISHNU and SIVA.
This created differences between the Vishnu followers, the Brahma followers, and the Siva followers. These differences provided the new Islamic community with opportunities and advantages in establishing Islam in Indonesia.
To unite the Balinese and to create a very strong community, Niratha introduced the TRI KAYANGAN HINDU (tri = three, kayangan = house of the god) system. This system required that everyone must follow ALL three gods. This brilliant new way Tri Kayangan Hindu, has played a major part in preserving Hinduism as it is practiced in Bali to this day.
After exploring Bali from the west to east as far as GEGEL the capital city at that time, and known today as KLUNGKLUNG, Niratha became Adviser in 1501 to WATU RENGONG, the King of GEGEL. This was known as Bali’s Golden Time. He later moved with his five sons, to MAS, a village about 30 minutes walk from Ubud center.