Photo credits: Flickr Allison Mickel
According to Hindu calendar, last Saturday (3/9) was a special day for pets in Bali which is called Tumpek Kandang day.
Tumpek Kandang is a day in a tribute to animals. At the time, all pets are taken to be blessed in a ceremony, hoping that the pets will be protected from disease and to maintain the harmony of the ecosystem.
The tribute was also held at Bali Safari and Marine Park, Gianyar. Jero Mangku Karmayasa, who was leading the ceremony mentioned that the Tumpek Kandang is held in every 210 days. “It is part of the expression of gratitude to God for always protecting the animals”.
Later he added that the ritual is held to honour Rare Angon God, who looks after the animals.
During the ceremony, Balinese traditional offerings are given as part of the ritual. Among the animals at Bali Safari and Marina Park, elephants, pythons, ponies and weasels were chosen to be taken to be blessed. “These are symbolically representing all animals . We would splash tirta (holy water) on each breed,” Jero Mangku said.
The General Manager of Bali Safari and Marine Park, William Santoso explained that Tumpek Kandang was purposely held as it was also linked to World Animal Day. “It is an obligation in Hinduism, and not merely to attract visitors,” said Santoso.