Otonan - Unique Ceremony for Birthday Celebrations In Balinese Way








In Bali island, you can find many traditional ceremonies (that are very much related to Hinduism) everyday. I would like share to you one of ceremonies in Bali is Otonan. Celebrating a religious ceremony means they have to prepare one or more Banten (offering = something made by the Balinese and present to the God).
 

The offering is consisted of fruits, cakes, Tumpeng (rice shaped in mountain-like), Tebu (sugar cane) and decorated with Sampiyan (made from young coconut leaves). The size of the offering made for the Otonan varities from one village to another village. The details of the offering are also diverse according to the tradition of the hometown and creativity of the preparer, but the essence always remains the same.



Otonan or Ngotonin is a ceremony commemorating the birthday of 1 year, based on Wuku (6month times 35 days = 210 days). The fall day of otonan will coincide with Sapta Wara, Panca Wara and Wuku. Otononan ceremonies is purposes to give thanks to Hyang Widhi for the gift of longevity, as well as please the safety and welfare.

Different with the birthday anniversary of using only the calculation of the date and month. Otonan conducted every 6months once by using the calender calculations of Bali. ( 1 month = 35 days)
Otonan ceremony accompanied in prayer, along with giving a string bracelet to someone who was conducting otonan ceremony. Prayer has the meaning of hope to be physically strong, strong in determination, strong in belief in God and Truth, and strong in facing all challenges of life.


Symbolic meaning of the bracelet thread:
1. Yarn in Bali was "Beneng" means straight, and also because the treads are often used to saw something and become straight. The point is that the heart is always on the straight and true.
2. Yarn has flexible nature and not easily broken as symbol of resiliency of the heart and and not easily discouraged.
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