It seems like the hype of New Year's eve was just a while ago, yet the celebration keeps going. After wrapping up the Lunar New Year and Valentine's Day, we are about to welcome another festivity, this time, the opposite of what you might think.
The new Caka year, according to the Balinese Hindu calendar, will fall on March 22, 2023. A day all of us here reside in the little paradise called Nyepi - or Silence Day. Unlike other New Year celebrations around the globe, Balinese Hindus commemorate the day without any activities, sound, or light. In total silence, in the dark.
Based on the myths and beliefs, the procession begins with a parade of statues representing the evil entities, called "Ogoh-Ogoh", on the eve of Nyepi. Percussions, shouts, and cheers accompany the spectacle as if inviting and taunting them. These spirits would come to the island and find it deserted and quiet. Thinking people abandoned it, they would go, leaving the island in peace.
This myth, in a way, is saying being silent is gold, after all.
If being silent and having no (or minimum amount) light seems doable, probably, you can challenge yourself to go deeper and immerse yourself in the actual practice according to the tradition. The core of Nyepi lies in the act of self-reflection, meditation, and self-discovery through the absence of routines. Some practice fasting for the entire day while spending 24 hours in silence and prayers. Being alone with your thoughts and your emotions and being able to access yourself in a deeper stage, means addressing your issues head-on. The outcome? The release of emotional baggage and traumas, finding forgiveness (others and oneself), and starting the new year with a new page, a clean slate.
And to be honest, if we can start every new year like this, wouldn't that be a good thing?
As the light shines the brightest in the dark, and so in silence, sounds become more audible. The breeze, songbirds, waves rolling, insects chirping, rustling trees, all the sounds you might not have noticed before, or ignored due to our 'busy' life, will become louder somehow. It feels like watching nature's ASMR channel.
With sundown and the land in complete darkness, the stars will come out to play. Avid photographers often take this opportunity to take photos of the milky way, as it will be visible across the sky at dawn. But take your time to sit idly, look at the bejewelled sky, and enjoy the moment - refrain from taking your phone out.
Just breathe, relax your mind, and allow yourself to feel and heal.
With no travel - including inbound, outbound, or any flight over Bali's airspace, no lights at night, and no activities around the island, the celebration gives Mother Earth a big break. Less air and noise pollution, less emission, and the following day will bring about the clear, bluest sky you've ever seen, fresh air, and the island's overall vibe feels 'different'.
Bali has just pressed the reset button.
Life has given Bali another opportunity for one year to do it all over again until the next Nyepi comes.
Ease yourself in this unique tradition. Mulia Bali offers a staycation deal so you can experience Nyepi Day while still having access to the comforts of a luxury resort getaway. The deal includes two-nights accommodation at Mulia Resort, daily breakfast at The Cafe for two (2) people and a lunch and a dinner for two people at selected restaurants. As part of your immersion into the unique culture, you can join various wellness and cultural activities, including a sound healing session with our certified therapist.
Click here to find out more and make your reservations.