When you visit Bali, you may see something tall from coconut leaves fluttering in the air a long the road side. you may wonder what it’s that??
What is a penjor?
Penjor is a tall bamboo decorated with coconut leaves with sanggah cucuk. Sanggah cucuk is a small triangle box on the base that is used to place the offerings during certain religious celebration in Bali. The Penjor has length often up to 10 m and is placed in front of the house of the Balinese, or business place, it makes a beautiful effect in Bali’s streets.
What is the significance?
Penjor usually is erected in a Bali holiest day, Galungan. It is held 2 times a year in the Balinese calendar which one year has 210 days, so Galungan does not come in the specific date in the Georgian calendar. Penjor is not just a decoration to celebrate Galungan, it has deep significance, Penjor is like an offering to thank the Gods. The Penjor curved representes a mountain, of course the highest mountain in Bali, Mount Agung which is considered as the incarnation of God of the mountain called Hyang Giri Pati.
Balinese believe that during Galungan, the ancestral are supposed to come home, so Penjor and sanggah cucuk offers place to them, penjor also has significance to showing gratitude and hospitality from the house owner
When and where are Penjor erected?
Penjor are erected in front of Balinese Hindu home Tuesday before D-day of Galungan. Galungan is a 10 days period and ends with Kuningan (Kuningan is one of the Bali holiest day). When Kuningan comes, the ancestors return to their own realm.