Saraswati Day – A Celebration of Knowledge
Bali is known for its wide variety of vibrant cultural practices. Most people are familiar with the larger ceremonies such as Nyepi. When the island goes dark it is a way of paying tribute to the Gods. However, in this article, we’ll be discussing a tradition that is perhaps not as well-known. We’re talking about Saraswati Day.
What is Saraswati Day?
As the name implies, Saraswati Day is a tradition to pay respect to the Hindu Goddess of Wisdom, Saraswati. They celebrate this traditional Balinese holiday every 6 months (210 days). During this “knowledge day” prayers are for the Goddess of Knowledge herself.
The practice of the Balinese to welcome Saraswati Day are evidence for the name. They are offering books to Saraswati, performing dances and gatherings. Prayers to the Goddess are also very important to impart them with knowledge and wisdom.
Since Saraswati Day is a traditional Balinese holiday – not a national holiday – most offices and schools remain open. However, the locals typically conduct a special prayer at the beginning of the day as appreciation and a tribute to the Goddess Saraswati.
Balinese believe that she symbolizes the free flow of consciousness, understanding and knowledge. Those who wish to transcend their knowledge to a higher state will truly embrace the meaning of Saraswati Day.
The Pura Taman Saraswati is a temple dedicated especially to the Goddess of Wisdom. Ubud, the cultural heart of Bali hosts this temple. The beautiful and ornate architecture, as well as the peaceful aura along with the iconic lotus pond embody this temple. This temple is also one of the most popular landmarks in Ubud.
Mara River Safari Lodge is located within a short drive from many locations in Gianyar. When you stay here, you can visit the temple of Saraswati (along with other places in Ubud). In addition, you also receive the added bonus of enjoying all the complimentary facilities at Bali Safari Park!