Bali – Temples / Lotuses

I’ve been to Tanah Lot by the sea, Purah Besakih/Mother Temple on the side of Mount Agung and Tirta Enpul, the spring temple. Tanah Lot, the temple on the ocean, becomes accessible usually in late afternoon and at sunset, when the sea recedes and the land emerges from the water. It is, to me, one of the most sacred places in all Indonesia. Second is Purah Besakih. It’s the temple that truly touched me deeply three years ago. A Hindu guide led a group of us through different levels of the temple, doing rituals along the path. I featured some photos from that pilgrimage in my blog. I encountered a place where the sense of spirituality was striking. It was unpredictable and spontaneous. I can pinpoint a similar experience: it was when I entered the temple in Mendut in Yogyakarta and saw a statue of the Starving Buddha sitting under the banyan tree just as he did 2500 years ago in Bodhgaya: however the figure was all bones, veins and skin. A friend who traveled to India gave me a 7-inch statue carved from a stone. It is now sitting on my desk. Every time I sit to read or write, it is always in front of me.

There’s really no need for a caption here. These photos of lotus flowers were taken in one temple on the edge of town. I had already taken many photos of temples, so I decided to focus on the lotuses sitting in the pond. Well, I understand that there are about 4,000 to 5,000 temples in Bali. Some of them are just ruins or family residences. You can get templed-out after a couple of days. I have lived in a temple in Ubud with rooms that were rented out. It was close to the center of town but I realized later that it was actually more expensive than the more comfortable accommodations close by.

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