July 13, 2020

Bhatara Turun Kabeh Festival In Besakih Temple, Karangasem Bali

Bhatara Turun Kabeh, the god descend together, is the most important ritual in a year. This is the culmination of the festival at Besakih Temple. This festival reflects on the unity of all the public temples in Besakih and also the unity of all Hindu communities both in Bali and more broadly.

Bhatara Turun Kabeh, Upacara Batara Turun Kabeh Di Besakih, Betara Turun Kabeh, Ida Batara Turun Kabeh

The gods of all public temples in Besakih Complex participated on the festival. The sacred god symbols are placed all together in the great meeting pavilion or Bale Pasamuhan Agung. This celebration consists of a series of rituals that last for almost a month. Here are some rituals (maybe still incomplete) that I quoted from several sources.

This complex ritual begins with the ritual "matur piuning" which is intended to convey or announce to the gods that the bhatara turun kabeh ceremony will soon be held.

The ritual "nedunang bhatara", where the sacred symbol of the deity is carried in the procession to Pura Penataran Agung and enshrined together in Bale Pasamuhan Agung.

The ritual "nuhur tirtha" is intended to invoke holy water from: the God of the Mountain (obtained from Tirtha Girikusuma) and the God of the Ocean (obtained from Pura Watu Klotok).

Then the ritual "melasti" or bathing ritual, where the holy god-symbols are carried in the procession to Tegal Suci or to Yeh Esah. At a certain time, when the Bhatara Turun Kabeh ritual coincides with the Karya Agung Panca Walikrama (every 10 years), the melasti procession is carried out to Pura Watu Klotok, one of the important sea temples in Klungkung Regency.

During the melasti procession, the sacred god-symbol of the Catur Lawa is in the front, leading the procession in a predetermined sequence, starting from: Ida Ratu Pande, Ida Ratu Pasek, Ida Ratu Penyarikan, Ida Ratu Dukuh Sagening, then followed by god-symbols from other temples.

Next, there is the "mapepada" ritual which aims to honor the animals that are to be sacrificed.

Also mentioned the "mapaselang" ritual, where the gods are carried in procession (walk around) three times clockwise at the temple courtyard. The gods then being enshrined at Bale Paselang and then continued with "pajejiwan", the reading of the text "sloka".

The mapaselang ritual is said to be related to the god and goddess of love (Bhatara Semara and Bhatari Ratih), who removes misery and misfortune and gives blessings of prosperity and longevity.

After the series of rituals, it is followed by "nyejer", where the gods remain in residence in the temple (Penataran Agung) for eleven days. This is intended to provide an opportunity for worshipers to pray to Besakih Temple.

Finally, this complex set of rituals ends with the "panyimpenan or panyineban", where the gods return to their shrine or their original place. The festival has finished and all Gods have returned to their heavenly abodes.

The bhatara turun kabeh festival is celebrated on the full moon of the tenth month in Balinese Calendar. This celebration aims to honor the deities of all the public temples in Besakih and ask for the salvation of the universe (Bhuana Alit and Bhuana Agung).

Pura Penataran Agung as the biggest and most important temple of Besakih Complex becomes the center of the celebration. This ritual attracts the public attention and is usually crowded with worshipers every year, to present an offering or "banten" and pray to the god.

This biggest annual festival is supported by all levels of society, government, and related parties. Besakih Temple will be decorated beautifully, complete with penjor, colorful fabrics and other unique ornaments. A fragrant scent of flowers and incense covered the entire place. Many visitors capture this special moment when they are in Bali.


  1. google.co.id
  2. wikipedia.org _ Besakih Temple _ on July 11, 2020
  3. Image : Original Collection

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