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The Art of Offering in Bali

5 September 2014

For Balinese Hindu families, presenting offerings is an act of devotion. Each offering will be made as beautiful as possible, placed in a highly crafted container filed with colourfull flowers, delicious food, cakes, other ingredients and sometimes even a cigarette or coffee.

One example of offering is called Tipat. Tipat or Ketipat, rice steamed wrapped in woven coconut or palm leaves, plays an integral role in almost any offering. Tipat comes with many names and a vast array of shapes and sizes, all depending on the particularly ritual.

ketupat bali

The Balinese people, women and girl especially, view making Tipat and offering as an important part of their devotion to the creator, deities and ancestors. In the past, mother taught their daughter from a very young age how to braid the many different style of Tipat.

Nowdays, when modern Balinese families have mothers working outside the home, they may find it difficult to teach their children or daughter the virtue of making an offering due to time constraints ; to say nothing of the abudance of ready to use offering available in traditional markets and even in supermarkets. If their mothers work at home almost the time, the mother will teach their children to how to make an offering as well as braid Tipat. Children learn how to make different style of Tipat as well as their functional and meaning in Balinese ritual and daily life. There are many type of Tipat can be learn such as Tipat Kelan in rectangular forms. This type of Tipat is usually presented as part of offering Banten Pejati, the main offerings which are those related to human life cycle and deities.

Tipat Kedis are created in a bird shape. Kedis means bird in Balinese language. With the creativity, children added others decoration to make the bird-shaped tipat more attractive. There are also Tipat Talur or egg shaped Tipat. Weaving Tipat is both a domestic and spiritual art form to the Balinese as apart of Hindu Bali culture.

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