Purification Ceremony at Tirta Empul Temple
Purification Ceremony at Tirta Empul Temple Ubud Bali. Tirta Empul Temple is a Hindu Balinese water sanctuary. Which is situated close to the town of Tampaksiring, Bali, Indonesia. The sanctuary compound comprises of a petirtaan or washing structure, renowned for its blessed spring water, where Balinese Hindus go to for custom decontamination. The sanctuary lake has a spring which gives out new water routinely, which Balinese Hindus view as sacred or amrit. Tirta Empul implies Blessed Spring in Balinese.
Tirta Empul Sanctuary was established around an enormous water spring in 962 A.D. during the Warmadewa line (tenth fourteenth hundreds of years). The name of the sanctuary comes starting from the earliest stage source named “Tirta Empul”. The spring is the wellspring of the Pakerisan waterway. The sanctuary is partitioned into three segments: Jaba Pura (front yard), Jaba Tengah (focal yard) and Jeroan (internal yard). Jaba Tengah contains 2 pools with 30 showers which are named as needs be: Pengelukatan, Pebersihan and Sudamala dan Pancuran Cetik (poison).
The sanctuary is dedicated to Vishnu, another Hindu god name for the preeminent cognizance Narayana. Purification Ceremony at Tirta Empul Temple..
HOW TO GET TO THE TIRTA EMPUL TEMPLE
Pura Tirta Empul, or the Tirta Empul temple, is located roughly 14km Northeast of Ubud. From Ubud, depending on traffic, it will take you roughly 30 – 45 min to get there. Visiting the Tirta Empul temple can be done in combination with the Tegalalang Rice Terraces as these are located roughly halfway between the temple and Ubud. Visit the Rice Terraces for sunrise, before the crowds come out, and head to the temple after! There are multiple ways to get to the Tirta Empul temple.
Rent a Scooter
Our recommended option if you feel comfortable riding a scooter through the hectic traffic in Bali. Renting a scooter is the most affordable and quickest option to get to Tirta Empul temple, perfect for those who are traveling Bali on a budget. Scooters can be rent from almost anywhere in Ubud, guesthouses or larger scooter rental companies are widely available in the town centre. You will get a helmet, or two helmets, included, and be sure to wear them as this is mandatory in Indonesia. From the Ubud town centre it is a short 40 min ride roughly to get there. Be sure to either have internet and to use Google Maps, or to download your map offline to get the right directions!
Expected costs: Scooters can be rent for 50K IDR – 100K IDR a day, depending on duration of rent and amount of cc’s of the bike.
By taxi or tour
Don’t feel comfortable riding a scooter, or planning to go with a bigger group? The best way to get to the Tirta Empul temple is by hiring a taxi service or to join a tour. Taxi’s are widely available in the town centre and your ho(s)tel or will be able to advise you on how much taxi services should cost. Besides that there are also many tour operators in the town centre through which you could book a tour to the Tirta Empul temple. As we haven’t used any taxi or tour services we are not able to advise you on the price.
TIRTA EMPUL TEMPLE
Once you arrive at the temple the first place you will see is the parking lot. There is assigned parking for your motorbike (should you decide to drive yourself). The cost of parking is 2000 IDR. From the parking lot you can see the entrance booth. Buy an entry ticket (15000 IDR per person) and walk a bit further to the direction of the temple. Before you head into the temple further you will find a sign with rules and a booth where you can grab a sarong to wear. Wearing a sarong is mandatory for both men and women, even if you are wearing long pants. There is no fee to rent the sarong, it is included in the price!
From here you can wander around the temple freely. The temple is divided into three different sections: Jaba Pura (front yard), Jaba Tengah (central yard) and Jeroan (inner courtyard). The most famous part, at least to the tourist, is Jaba Tengah, as this is where the pools are located and the purification ritual takes place. Jeroan, located behind Jaba Tengah, is where you can find the holy spring, a stunning and clear spring, this is the water that is used for the purification ritual. While Jaba Tengah is most likely the highlight of your visit, I would highly recommend walking around the temple to see the different areas, including the holy spring and the koi pond.
THE PURIFICATION RITUAL AT THE TIRTA EMPUL TEMPLE
If you are intrigued by the purification ritual, taking place in the Jaba Tengah section. You will be welcome to do the purification ritual. However, as noted at the entrance of the temple there are some rules to follow if you wish to participate:
You will have to sacrifice an offering to respect the temple and to keep the holy spirit of the ritual;
Find the information on the ritual before entering to know exactly what the ritual is;
You are not allowed to bring any type of camera into the holy water;
Don’t enter the water with the sarong that is provided you upon entry, there are special sarong for the ritual;
Women are not allowed to enter during their period.
So now that we have covered the rules, if you are wishing to proceed with the purification ritual you will have to rent the special sarong. When you look at the purification pools, on the right hand side you will see a booth. Here you will be able to to rent a sarong and a locker for 25K IDR together. There is a changing stall in the back of the locker room. For women it is advised to tie the sarong around their neck so the sarong will stay on during the ritual. Purification Ceremony at Tirta Empul Temple Ubud Bali…
Start with Rituals
Now head back to the baths so you can start the ritual. If you have no clue what to do, like I did, don’t worry, just stand there and look around and someone will approach you to help you. A friendly man approached me asking if I wished some guidance in the ritual, and after the ritual I would give him a small donation. He then continued to inform me on the background of the purification ritual and the process of the purification ritual. The small “donation” also included the offering, as mentioned in the rules above.
I listened closely as he explained the rituals…