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The Concept of Balinese Culture in Protecting the Environment

Hi everyone,

I am Herry from Do-Engineering Team. Here I will tell you the concept of Balinese culture that continues to bring me to my current passion in the field of renewable energy and the environment. The illustration of the future condition that the existence of natural resources, water, and land would be very limited. In the meaning of the decreasing environmental carrying capacity as a result of increasing population, growth in development, and shifts in lifestyle. Natural disasters that occur such as floods, landslides, erosion, pollution, and climate change show that humans have overexploited and utilized their natural resources or can be said to be unwise. As we can see from the explanation, one of the local wisdom in Bali can harmonize the relationship between humans and the environment.

The Balinese people are one of the people who still maintain the culture in their daily life, one of which is Tri Hita Karana. Tri Hita Karana has been a guide and way of life for Balinese people since time immemorial. Historical data shows that agricultural culture was already known in Bali in Caka 522 or 600 AD. At that time, Subak with the concept of Tri Hita Karana was already well known in Bali.

Tri Hita Karana consists of three pillars, namely the balance of human relations with God (Parahyangan), the balance of relations between fellow humans (Pawongan), and the balance of relations between humans and their natural environment (Palemahan). The pillar that strongly supports the harmonious relationship between humans and nature is Palemahan. Humans must be able to live together with their natural surroundings. We have an obligation to maintain and preserve because nature is a support system in human life. For example in Pedawa Village, Banjar District, Buleleng Regency, villagers implement the Palemahan concept in the form of customary law-based forest conservation or awig-awig. This conservation was formed because of the sincere feelings of residents who really understand the function of their forest as support for village life such as a source of wood, a source of food, and a source of water. As a result, Pedawa Village has never experienced natural disasters such as floods or landslides. The people of Pedawa Village live side by side with the forest and nature and work in harmony.

What do you think about this Tri Hita Karana concept? Can it really run sustainably in each generation to protect nature?

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Mako S
Mako S
Oct 18, 2021

I feel like it resembles to Japanese traditional village systems called “Satoyama”.

Both are based on the appreciation toward nature and nature as a connection with Gods.

In my view, these concepts develop when people are living with Environment around them and able to observe natural resources being utilized in daily lives. Unlike modern, urban culture, those who live around nature can actually see each phase of economy directly.

Oct 19, 2021
Replying to

Yes, that's true, this concept developed because of the awareness of the villagers on the importance of protecting the surrounding nature as a source of life support.

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