Fire War Tradition of Tuban Symbolizes Magical Power

Fire War Tradition of Tuban Symbolizes Magical Power

Indeed Bali has inexhaustible traditions and cultures. As carried out by Tuban customary village, Kuta, they perform a ritual handed down from ancestors through generations known as siat geni or fire war. This tradition is undertaken by two groups of customary youth club from two hamlets namely the Tuban Geria and Pesalakan in Tuban. They

Indeed Bali has inexhaustible traditions and cultures. As carried out by Tuban customary village, Kuta, they perform a ritual handed down from ancestors through generations known as siat geni or fire war. This tradition is undertaken by two groups of customary youth club from two hamlets namely the Tuban Geria and Pesalakan in Tuban. They attack each other by using embers of coconut fiber. This magical action is performed as part of the grandiose ceremony at local Dalem Temple.

Implementation of this fire war tradition involves hundreds of youths in mutual attack action by throwing embers. It is held once a year and poses an obligatory ritual in a grandiose ceremony. Before the ritual begins, the fire war is first commenced with presentation of offerings in the form of food or small-scale offerings, by circumnavigating points of the compass. It is dedicated to bhuta kala coming from different directions that will attend the ritual.

Fire war ritual generally starts in the evening, where the youth club members from two hamlets has been assembled, namely the Tuban Geria and Pesalakan. Anyone can get involved in the devotional service or ngayah. However, it is not permitted to have revenge in this fire war. Abstinence in the fire war is that people are not allowed to take firewood from cemetery area.

A fire war is performed by throwing fire of coconut fibers. In this game, boys will mingle and the players throw each other or attack each other. Fire war is a sacred game or ritual. Community leaders are still closely supervising this ritual game. This game in particular does not have any standard rules. Sometimes the youths are playing in their own way namely by banging coconut fibers to the ones carried by other players so that sparks a fire like fireworks. This ritual symbolizes the psychical realm or thing of beyond human logic namely the bhuta kala that releases its power in the form of Ludra’s fire to be presented as devotion to Bhatara Dalem.

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Besides, it also symbolizes supernatural forces believed to balance the environment, so that the great strength can be channeled into a positive force that is beneficial to natural balance of the physical and psychical realm.

Having performed the ritual in the fire war, all the players are given penglukatan (self-purification) and not allowed to keep any revenge. After the game finishes, all the participants getting involved in the games are saying prayers together to deities abiding at Dalem Temple for safety. Logically, this game can be considered to provide entertainment and a sense of integrity for supporting devotees or pengempon. Vivacity and brotherhood of both hamlets are getting stronger. This procession poses a system of belief that gives us an understanding to jointly maintain the balance of physical and psychical realms.

Destination

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