Nyepi (Silent Day)

Nyepi comes from a lonely word silent. The Nyepi day is actually a celebration of the Hindu New Year based on the Caka calendar, which began in 78 CE. Unlike the New Year’s celebration, Saka New Year in Bali begins with a pull off. No activity as usual. All activities are excluded, including public service, such as International Airport is closed, but not for hospitals.

The main purpose of Nyepi Day is to plead before the one true God, to purify Bhuana Alit (Human Nature/Microcosmos) and great Bhuana/Macrocosmos (universe). Before Nyepi Day, there are several ceremonies conducted by Hindu, especially in the area of Bali.

Three or two days before Nyepi, Hindu people do purification by doing Melasti ceremony or also called Melis/Mekiyis. On this day, all the offerings that exist in the Temple (holy place) are parsed to the shore or lake, because the sea or lake is the source of holy water (Tirta Amerta) and can cleanse all leteh (filthy) in man and nature.

The day before Nyepi, i.e. on “Sasih Kesanga” (the 9th month of death), Hindus perform Butha Yadnya ceremony at all levels of society, ranging from each family, Banjar, village, subdistrict, and so on, by taking one of the types of Caru (some kind of offerings) according to its ability. Butha Yadnya is each named Pañca Sata (small), Pañca relatives (moderate), and Tawur Agung (great). Tawur or a Pecaruan itself is a purgatory/Pemarisuda Butha Kala, and all Leteh (defilement) is expected to disappear all. Caru carried out in the house consists of Rice Manca (five) color of 9 different/package and side dishes, such as chicken Brumbun (colorful) accompanied by wine/Tuak. Butha Yadnya is addressed to Sang Butha Raja, Butha Kala and Batara Kala, by pleading so that they do not disturb the people.

Mecaru is followed by the funeral, which is Menyebar-nyebar nasi tawur, the home and the whole yard, shotting houses and yards with gunpowder, as well as hitting objects (usually Kentongan) to sound crowded/rowdy. This stage is done to expel the blindness from the home environment, yard, and surrounding environment. Especially in Bali, the Pengrupukan is usually livened up by a parade of Ogoh-Ogoh that is an embodiment of the blind Kala that is parched around the environment, and then burned. The same goal is to expel blindness from surrounding environment.

The next day, the Pinanggal Pisan, Sasih Kedasa (1st, 10th month), was the real day of Nyepi. On this day the atmosphere is like there is no life and quiet. There is no busy activity as usual. On this day the Hindus implement the “Catur Brata ” Plating consisting of observe Geni (no fiery/not use and or liven fire), observe the work (not work), observe the auction (not traveling), and observe the auction (not listening to entertainment). And for those who are able to also perform tapa, Brata, yoga, and so on. On this day the Hindus do not do their activities as usual. The environment seemed deserted, even like the dead city, no lights were lit, everyone was silent at home.

So for the new time, it really starts with a new white page clean. To start living in the New Year Caka, this basic is used, so that everything we do starts from holy and clean. Each of the people of Science (the Wruhing Tattwa Jñana) performs the Brata (the Prohibition of lust), yoga (linking Souls to the Paramatma (God)), tapa (suffering endurance exercises), and Samadi (to God, whose purpose is ultimately the sanctity of birth).

It is a must for Hindus to have an inner readiness to face every life challenge in the new year.

The last series of Saka New Year celebrations is the day of Ngembak Geni falling on “Pinanggal ping kalih ” (date 2) Sasih Kedasa (month X). Today the Saka New Year enters the second day. Hindus do Dharma Shanti with large families and neighbors, give thanks and excuse each other forgiveness (Ksama) each other, to start a New year clean sheet. The essence of Dharma Santi is the philosophy of Tattwamasi that sees that all people all over the earth as the creation of Ida Sanghyang Widhi Wasa should love one another, forgive all faults and errors. Live in harmony and peace.