Bali Culture : "The meaning of Canang Sari"
Intrigued by the content and meaning of Canang sari in Bali? Canang sari is one of the daily offerings made by Balinese Hindus to thank the Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa in praise and prayer.
You will see a small green box containing colorful flower combinations in some places that are considered sacred by Balinese Hindus, like’s the Balinese temples (pura), on small shrines in houses, and on the ground or as a part of a larger offering.
Canang sari is offered every day to Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa as a form of thanking for the peace given to the world; it is the simplest daily household offering
Balinese call it “Banten”. Here are each explanation:
- Ceper is a small offering place made of young coconut leaves. This is the base of Canang and symbolizes Angga-sarira (body).
- Rice or Wija symbolizes Sang Hyang Atma (spirit) which gives breath of life and symbolizes the seeds at the beginning of life from Ida Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa.
- Porosan is made from betel leaves, gambier and lime which symbolizes Tri-Premana, consisting of thoughts, speech, and actions such as Trimurti, consisting of Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma. Porosan also implies that every human being must have a heart full of love, mercy and gratitude to God.
- Snacks, sugar cane and bananas symbolize the strength of Upetti, Stiti and Pralinan in the life of the universe.
- Sampian Uras a round of coconut leaves consisting of eight segments that symbolize the wheel of life with eight characteristics (Astaa Iswaryanya) that accompany the lives of every human being.
- Flowers symbolize peace and tranquility. The arrangement of the flowers is sorted and each color of the flowers means each.White: arranged facing the East side, symbolizing Sang Hyang Iswara’s strength
Red: arranged facing the South side, symbolizing the power of Sang Hyang Brahma
Yellow: arranged facing the East side, symbolizing the strength of Sang Hyang Mahadewa
Blue or Green: arranged facing the North side, symbolizing Sang Hyang Wisnu’s strength
- Rampai flowers are placed at the top of all arranged flowers which symbolize the wisdom and symbol of the power of the Sang Hyang Panca Dewata. There are various flowers placed on the canang which are fragrant and odorless, which symbolizes that in human life it is not always happy or difficult.
- Boreh Miyik symbolizes good behavior and attitude
- Perfume symbolizes peace of mind and self-control
After knowing all the contents and meanings of the entire contents of the canang, of course a small box made of coconut leaves is considered very holy by Balinese Hindus. For this reason, for those of you who are on holiday in Bali, we recommend not stepping over or stepping on Canang Sari when walking because it is deemed not to respect the culture and religion of Bali.
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