Uluwatu Temple is a small town at the very southwest corner of Bali, atop the high cliffs overlooking the western coast of the Bukit Badung. The town’s primary attraction is the Pura (“temple”) Luhur Ulu Watu, perched at the very edge of the high cliffs. The Pura is accompanied by a ‘monkey forest’, a natural reserve of Indonesian macaque monkeys living in the wild among the Hindu monks living on the ground.
There is a story about Hindu priest from Java called “Dang Hyang Nirartha” or ” Peranda Sakti Wawu Rauh”, full of mystical episodes since his arrival until his disappearance in Bali. One of Hindu teaching is the same as other religion that is concerning the world after death or the “here after world ” This world is contrasted into two polarization such as Eden garden and hell.
For those devotee, a promise of all goodness and happiness are there which is called “sorga” In the tradition of Hindu in Bali it is said that the “sorga” is undescribed by words, and undepicted with picture. Where truth is an absolute, and body is embraced into it, so it only exist ” enlightenment”.
But one can not enter the sorga with worldly body except their holy spirit when he/she during the life had completed duties and behaved as indicated by religious teaching.
The other way one can reach sorga by the way called “moksa”. It is not quiet clear what is actually meant by the word “moksa”. Many assumptions arose.
One thought it is a body sublimation, that one who has reach his stage of moksa disappeared in the world without living his/her physical body. This stage can only be reached with a severe body control on senses while developing knowledge by meditation or hermitage.
Others thought that when a person dead, their spirit become one with the absolute being, and will not experience rebirth ( Sanskrit : samsara ) anymore. Since life is basically a punishment of sins and misdeeds of their past life ( Sanskrit : Punarbawa ). So, actually based on the last teaching human being during his life is stirred to do the good thing.
Dang Hyang Nirarta is believed the one that have reached such stage, and he accomplished his moksa on a spot of land which is believed to be the sacred place. In this sacred place then was built a temple called Ulu Watu. That was why the place has been considered a very special place by the king in the past.
It is not only Uluwatu temple that is associated with Dang Hyang Nirarta, but many temple such as Ponjok Batu at North West Bali, Rambut Siwi in Negara regency and Sila Yukti in East Bali. It is probably the claim from Hindu priest in the past that their role in the society was unquestionable.
It is required that visitors wear appropriate clothing when entering a temple ground. ‘Appropriate’ clothing includes sleeved blouses and long skirts for women, and long pants /collared shirts for men. An option, if you are wearing shorts, is to rent a ‘sarong’, a cloth that wraps around the abdomen and covers the legs. Some temples (don’t recall whether or not that was the case with Ulu Watu) require a sarong even over long pants, and others will require you to buy the sarong, not rent. I also re-iterate the need to heed the warnings about the monkeys. remove and secure all loose items such as jewelry or eyeglasses, and hold handbags securely against the body at all times. The macaques are very quick and sneaky, and you’ll never see them coming!
Uluwatu is a short drive from Kuta Bay, Jimbaran and Nusa dua, and traffic is comparatively light. Meanwhile, and will certainly have improved its facilities over the course of the next year. I highly recommend a half-day visit around at 14.30 from hotel direct to Uluwatu and don’t forget to see the most popular Kecak dance show. Just watch out for the monkeys and kecak show!
Photo Gallery Uluwatu Temple
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