Bali Island is a very rich region, both in terms of natural beauty and tradition. The Balinese traditions and ceremonies are certainly have positive goals. One of them is Ngelarung, the tradition to harmonize human life.
The tradition of Ngelarung, or known as larung, is a ceremony performed at sea as a form of respect and purification. This tradition is carried out in various places in Indonesia. Like on the southern coast of Java. In Java, larung is not only performed on the coast. Communities around lakes or rivers also perform the tradition. Each region has a different structure of offerings. But the offerings are all taken from the produce of the earth. For example, a bunch of rice, tumpeng with side dishes or livestock such as buffalo, cow, goat, and chicken.
In Bali, the Ngelarung Tradition is based on the Tri Hita Karana concept. With the concept of Tri Hita Karana, the community can always maintain a balanced relationship between fellow humans, nature, and God so that the harmony of the universe will be maintained. People who carry out the Ngelarung Tradition believe that the sea is a place to melt and return to the original element.
Larung is one of the media to understand the natural cycle. For Hindus, earth is believed to have a soul, just like humans. Earth is not an inanimate object that can be exploited. The earth can communicate through its language, such as fertile soil, cool air, and even through disaster.
Philosophically, the Ngelarung Tradition is a way of asking for the balance of nature, maintain it, so humans could avoid danger and disaster. In addition, this tradition is carried out to give thanks and ask for harvest seasons to get abundant yields. To perform the Ngelarung ceremony, various equipment is provided. One of them is buffalo or goat's head. The head symbolizes 'foolishness' which must be removed. Humans must throw away stupid thoughts and study harder to become smarter. In addition to the heads of livestock, they also use wulung cane or black sugar cane which has a sweet taste as a symbol of the happiness of eternal life. Plus, a newly grown coconut tree. The coconut shoots are a symbol of 'a good start'.
Flowers or sekar are also needed during the Ngelarung ceremony. A fragrant flower has a symbol. Telon flowers are roses, kanthil, and jasmine. Roses and jasmine are expressions of beauty and kind words. While kanthil symbolizes the hope that the beautiful words spoken will leave an impression and stick in the heart. In addition to these three flowers, the Ngelarung Tradition also uses flowers that grow in the garden. This flower expresses a request to love one another.
The Ngelarung ceremony in Bali, is often known as pakelem. This ceremony is held once a year, precisely on Tuesday Kliwon or Friday Kliwon in the month of Sura.