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The Land
The People
The History
The village Community
The Religion
The Priest
The Cremation
The Mount Agung
The Cosmic Force and Spiritual Harmony
The Offerings
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The Temple Ceremony
Nyepi and Galungan
The Cockfight and Toothfiling
The Dances
The Popular Tours
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The Balinese Food
The Books on Bali
The Future

The Chronicles of the Island

The hunters of the early stone age were the first inhabitants of Bali. Probably related to the famous 'Java Man', who inhabited the archipelago while Europe lay under the ice age, they were probably among the first human inhabitans of the world.

Much later began the countless migrations from the Asian mainland which periodically washed over Indonesia. With them came the first ancestors of modern Indonesians and the cultures of the stone and iron ages. By 1500 BC, migrants from Southern India had introduced to Bali an elementery agricultural society based on village units, and by the Bronze Age (300BC - AD 100) the island was already well populated.

One of the most important milestone in Indonesian history was the advent of Hinduism, the religion subsequently adopted by Balinese and then preserved by them in the face Islam. The first waves of Indian culture reached the archipelago between the first and third centuries AD, penetrating and gradually spreading inland.

With Hinduism came the concept of kingship, and small scattered communities were gradually welded into larger and larger kingdoms.

tegalalang.gif

The impact of Hindu Java on Bali came later, but has proved enduring. Because of a dynastic link connecting Bali with rulers of the kingdom of East Java in the eleventh century, Javanese culture permeated Bali. In the following centuries, as ruler succeeded ruler, the island enjoyed an era of relative peace autonomy which ended when Kerthanegara, the storngest prince of the Javanese Singhasari dynasty, became king.


Tanah

Kerthanegara imprisoned the last member of the Balinese royal house and assumed control over Bali from his court in Java. But his triumph was short lived. Withon a few years, he was dead and his kingdom was absorbed in the raise of mightiest empire Indonesia have yet seen, the Majapahit dynasty.

Often described as golden age of Indonesia, the fortheenth and fifhteen centuries saw the spread of Majapahit influence until extends over almost all territory known as Indinesia today.

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The Platoon

During training the platoon commander forgot the expression "mark time." Without losing his composure, he turned to the soldiers and shouted,

"A-ten-shun! Pretend to go but don't ; pretend to go but don't..."

Contributed by Sylvia Mendes de Abreu, in the Reader's Digest. August, 1993.