Monday, March 23, 2009

Bedazzled in Bali

Hinduism came to Bali by invitation. It was not a religion foisted by conquering hordes or unloaded by traders as they exchanged gold for vanilla pods. What the traders brought with them were stories of India’s great Rajas and the Javanese chiefs aspired to emulate the luxurious lifestyle of these kings. There was just one little problem — these simple-minded people were unaware of political machinations and so Brahmin priests were brought in from India to accomplish their goal.

As the kings grew stronger, so did Hinduism in the region. This process went on from the 1st century to the 14th century. Buddhism came to Bali and the Majapahit Empire was the strongest and largest. But all this changed in the 15th and 16th century with the advent of Islam in Java and Sumatra. The aristocrats, musicians, artists and learned men fled to Bali to avoid conversion and Bali became what it is even today a veritable fairground of arts and crafts.

Bali Travel Information

Bali Travel - Top Bali Sites

Bali Travel Guide