Bali cleanses the evil spirits of terrorism
Kuta, Bali Indonesia - December 1 - During a recent promotion tour which included stops in Bali,
Sumatra and Mentawai island of Sipora surf travel adventure author Tony
Garcia took part in the Tawur Balik Sumpah or Cleansing Ceremony in
The usually busy street of Jalan Legian
which runs through the heart of Kuta Beach was closed down in front of the
burnt out building which housed the Raja Restaurant. This was the site of
one of the three
terrorist bomb attacks on the island in October which took the lives 23
people including the three bombers.
The Kuta Beach
traffic was brought to a standstill as the hundreds of the island's people
came together to remember those who died. The ceremony was initiated to help liberate
the souls of the dead and to cleanse the evil spirits which are plaguing Bali.
Offerings to the gods and
animal sacrifices were made as Brahmin priests invoked incantations and puppet
plays and dances were performed all in an effort alleviate the negative
energy that has shattered the community's sense of
The island's tourist trade has
suffered greatly in the latest terrorist attacks with hotel bookings and flights
down by 30%. The island whose economy is 80% reliant on the tourist trade
was just seeing a return to normality after the Sari Club bombing of
November 2002 which claimed more than 200 lives.
On October 1, 2005 the first
two explosions occurred at 6:50 p.m. local time, near a Jimbaran Beach
warung and the third at 7:00 p.m. in Kuta Square at the Raja restaurant.
The coordinated attacks were
carried out by at least three suicide bombers. The backpack bombs used in
the attack appear to have differed from 2002 Sari Club blasts in that most
deaths and injuries were caused by shrapnel, rather than chemical explosion.
The bombings occurred just
days before the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and 11 days before
the third anniversary of the 2002 Bali bombing. The attack coincided with
Australian school holidays and it was estimated that some 7,500 Australians
were vacationing in Bali.
The bombs blasts have
shattered many lives, not only those of the victims and their relations, but of ordinary
Balinese who are suffering economic as well as
the psychological hardship due to the cruel acts fueled by of religious
The publishers of the surf travel
adventure books Tracks of Tiger: G-land & Bali, Indonesia, Ollie's Point:
Witches Rock & Tamarindo, Costa Rica and Sword of the Prophet:
Anchor Point & Taghazoute, Morocco wish the Balinese people a speedy
economic recovery and a return to its rightful harmony with the
For more information about the