Bali Island

Balinese Folk Festival, Parade Ogoh ogoh

Ogoh – ogoh is a sculpture in Balinese culture that describes the personality of Bhuta Kala. In Hindu Dharma teachings, Bhuta Kala represents the immeasurable and undeniable power (Bhu) of the universe and time (Kala).

In the embodiment of the statue in question, Bhuta Kala is described as a large and frightening figure; usually in the form of a giant.


The Origin of the Ogoh ogoh Parade

The name ogoh-ogoh is also taken from the term ogah-ogah from the Balinese language which means something that is shaken.

1983 could be an important part in the history of the ogoh-ogoh in Bali. In that year, bhuta forms began to be made in connection with the Nyepi ritual in Bali.

When there was a presidential decree declaring Nyepi a national holiday. Since then, the community has begun to make the embodiment of the pile, which is then called ogoh-ogoh, in several places in Denpasar.

This new culture spread even more when the ogoh-ogoh was included in the XII Bali Arts Festival. Eight districts contributed. Where previously there were only parades without any form of embodiment.

Ogoh ogoh

Towards Nyepi, Hindus use ogoh-ogoh as an event attribute to surround the village with torches.

The ogoh-ogoh are paraded to the sema, which is the place where the Hindus are buried, before being burned and at the time of cremation. Then, the ogoh-ogoh that had been paraded around the village were burned.

Because it is not a ceremonial facility, the ogoh-ogoh are paraded after the main ceremony is completed accompanied by the rhythm of the Balinese gamelan, Bleganjur Statue. This musical instrument is usually made of bamboo, paper, and cloth.

These simple objects represent the creativity and spontaneity of the community to enliven the ceremony. Over time, ogoh-ogoh become attached to various celebrations to brighten up the atmosphere, including during Nyepi.

Ogoh-ogoh are often depicted in the form of living creatures in Mayapada, heaven, and hell, such as dragons, elephants, garudas, widyadari, and gods. Ogoh-ogoh are usually made of styrofoam, bamboo, old newspapers, cloth, paint, iron wire, and wood.

Balinese people make ogoh-ogoh bhuta kala like:

Kala Bang,

  • Kala Ijo, the Bajradaksa who was cursed by Bhatara Guru.
  • When Listen,
  • Kala Lampah,
  • Kala Ireng

Meaning of Ogoh ogoh

Ogoh-ogoh symbolizes human recognition of the power of the universe and time with a power that can be divided into two. First, the power of Bhuana Agung (universe) and second, Bhuana Alit (strength within humans).

These two powers can be used to destroy or make the world better. Balinese people believe that ogoh-ogoh represent bad qualities in humans. Therefore, they make ogoh-ogoh before Nyepi celebrations.

the appearance of ogoh ogoh is more of a form of symbolization. Symbolizing the negative energies of the bhuta kala, with a scary appearance to be spun, melted with water or fire.

For example, if you want to ward off evil, use an evil embodiment as well, this is called the concept of a taste glass, which gives a reflection of something that is seen.

Preparation of the Ogoh-ogoh Ritual

Before starting the ogoh-ogoh ritual, the participants of the ceremony or parade usually perform the ritual of drinking Balinese wine.

After that, the parade participants paraded the ogoh-ogoh to a place called sema (the place where Hindus are buried before being burned and during the burning of corpses). After being paraded around the village, the ogoh-ogoh are then burned.

Ogoh ogoh Becomes a Complementary to the Nyepi Ritual

Ogoh-ogoh is a new culture in Bali. Its presence is a complement to the Nyepi ritual.

The existence of tradition in the implementation of Hindu rituals in Bali complements each other, has blended into a unity.

Over time, many have studied the existence of ogoh-ogoh from the interpretation of religion, art and culture. After being studied and associated with the concept of religion, ogoh-ogoh is more directed to the form of tradition.


There are so many traditions in Bali, it is guaranteed that your days will not be boring while on vacation in Bali.

The atmosphere of the beach, the countryside, all things that are modern as well as complete traditions in Bali. Pack your suitcases, go on vacation to Bali and welcome to Bali.

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