The rich cultural heritage of Balinesian Hindu worship can be traced back to the 5 century B.C. and continues today with around 84% of the population claiming to be Hindu. The influence of this heritage is evident everywhere one travels in beautiful Bali in the form of ancient temples and ritualistic offerings. It was a delight to see these small, sweet offerings, called 'canang sari', that are seen everywhere.
They adorn every small shrine, every large temple, businesses, homes, streets, car dashboards, and even perched on the handlebars of motor scooters. They may be pretty and interesting for tourists to see, but they hold deep meaning for Balanese who carefully and lovingly prepare multiples of them each day.
The canang sari are made and offered every day except when there is a death in the family or village. At the end of the day, they are all swept away and will be replaced the next morning. It is disrespectful to step on or step over a canang sari, and one has to be careful, because many are placed on sidewalks, doorways and floors. It is especially disrespectful to disturb the offering while the incense is burning and the smoke is carrying the essence up to heaven.
If you are looking for a rich, cultural experience on your travels, in addition to a beautiful, tropical paradise, you won't be disappointed in Bali!