Because it's Bali

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Felicity, Jan 10, 2018.

  1. Felicity

    Felicity Member

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    Just found this article and wondering if you have the same or similar observations and experiences?

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    psychologytoday.com

    The Balinese Can Teach Us About Being Happier, Better People
    Posted Jan 10, 2018



    I want to share a few tales from the field with you today. I have lived and traveled extensively around the world, and what sticks with me the most after I leave a place is The Human Factor: Who are the people, what can I learn from them, and what kind of person do I become in their presence?

    At the moment, I'm in Bali. And while many people travel to Bali for the beaches and island lifestyle, the local people play a huge part in defining that experience — and teaching some valuable lessons.

    But you don't have to fire up your passport to reap the benefits. Here are 3 things the Balinese can teach us about being happier, better people:

    1. Everywhere Beauty

    Even in this extremely poor country, beauty abounds and is prioritized. Sure, it's naturally very beautiful, with lush rice paddies and sunsets for days, but everything from food to architecture is crafted and presented in a way that says, "I care."

    The Balinese are a deeply spiritual people and construct religious offerings from palm leaves, flowers, incense, and food, which are then placed throughout homes and public spaces. They labor over these, making new ones from scratch daily. Incense and flower offerings even make their way into public bathrooms and airport security. And even without knowing the symbolic significance of each offering, its beauty brightens my day.

    Even the poorest of communities has elaborately beautiful temples, and no detail is spared on the top of roofs. Ornate expressions of devotion abound.

    And in hip locations like Canggu, where I've been staying, every item is served in beautiful dishes with small little touches, like a frangipani flower. No occasion or moment is too mundane to make special.

    [​IMG]
    Source: Anna Akbari

    2. Finding Calm in Chaos

    As in many countries in Southeast Asia, most people in Bali don't drive cars to get around and instead hop on motorized scooters. And since I don't trust myself to drive one, I hail a scooter to zip to and fro. The scooters comingle with the cars and trucks, sometimes three to a lane. This style of weaving through dusty roads is definitely not up to U.S. safety standards, but there is a serene calm amidst the noise and dirt. To the uninitiated, it might look like a maddening scene. But you don't see road rage or angry exchanges – everyone falls into a continuous flow, a way of creating some semblance of peaceful order amidst chaos.

    article continues after advertisement
    This type of orderly chaos does not rely on law enforcement, but rather awareness, cooperation, and trust of those with whom they share the streets. "We're all in this together," they seem to be silently communicating as they drive around following local, unwritten codes of conduct. If that code is disrespected, everyone loses.

    [​IMG]
    Source: Anna Akbari

    3. The Art of Patience

    The Balinese are notoriously friendly, and their resting face is often a smile. Even if you're distraught or irritated, they are highly unflappable. Regardless of your mood or disposition, they look at you with grace and ease, and greet you with kind, gentle patience. As far as I can tell, no Balinese person has ever been in a bad mood. I am in awe.

    I recently went on the Creative Warriors podcast, and as a final question, the host asked me to name the "warrior" I most needed to channel. I called on the Warrior of Patience, and I'm pretty sure that warrior is Balinese.

    So assuming you aren't ready to up and move to Bali (which, for the record, would not be a bad idea), how do you similarly cultivate everyday beauty, find calm in chaos, and emanate patience? Which small pockets of your day could use a little aesthetic upgrade? Where do you feel out of control and long for inner serenity to take over? When does anxiety and impatience get the best of you? Please tell us in the comments, and let these questions linger in your mind this holiday weekend.

    [​IMG]
    Source: Anna Akbari
    psychologytoday.com (open)
     
  2. William King

    William King Well-Known Member Charter Member Cager

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    Total bollocks.....
     
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  3. Lee Bale

    Lee Bale New Member Cager

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    I'm never really sure about articles like this or who really writes them. It's a bit too hippie-like for my tastes. I'm sure whoever wrote the article believes in what they're writing but I'm more inclined to lean towards William King's train of thought. 'Everywhere Beauty', 'Finding Calm in Chaos' and 'The Art of Patience' all sound like nice take-away principles from a holiday but they sound very idealistic. I'm not sure these principles would describe the average weekend in Kuta for example. For me, this is at best mediocre, self-congratulating travel-blogging but if others can get something from it, then that's cool with me. :)
     
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  4. Davita

    Davita Well-Known Member Charter Member

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    I originally visited Bali in 1975, have frequently visited since 2007 while living in Jakarta, and lived permanently in Bali for the last 6 years and agree with the OP's post......generally.

    There is an aura about Bali that I never found anywhere else and, having a 50+ year career flying for airlines based in UK and Asian cities, I can say I have travelled extensively in the region.

    Of course there are frustrations for foreigners wishing to live in Bali but most have nothing to do with the Balinese people, nor their way of life. It has to do with the person unwilling to change the pace to be in tandem with theirs....which can be agonizingly slow and sometimes apparently illogical!

    Most of the problem in Bali has to do with the influx of tourists of the type that no-one really wants except for one fact....it funds the economy.

    Bali has gone down the path of greed and it doesn't suit them....it was already evident after the twin-bombing and they should have recognized and gone back to their aforementioned spiritual beliefs....but no....tourists are such an easy way to make money and, although I trust Balinese as they do not steal, they'll cheat the shit out of anyone attempting to inject their own business and they gang-up in defence of what they regard as interference.

    The Balinese have a community system called Banjar which pervades everything. It has a democratically elected Kelihan who heads the community, which is geared around the local temple (Pura). This is a unique way of life and commands respect in all things the Balinese do....from birth thru' marriage to death.

    There has been much written about the Bali Hindu religion so I wont attempt to discuss further except to say....I wish they would recognize their future would be to reject the reality of mammon and return to the lifestyle the OP's 'dream-heading' extolls.

    The question then is....how to feed and educate the kids, look after mum, perpetuate their family dynasty and contribute to the Banjar's ridiculously expensive ceremonials..... when growing rice, or carving pieces of wood, just doesn't pay the bills?
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2018
  5. Travellingchez

    Travellingchez Member Charter Member Cager

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    She obviously hasn't got beyond the veneer. Underneath you'll find back stabbing, racism , money grabbing, living in poverty due to religion.... There is always a darker side. She needs to take the rose tinted glasses off.
     
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  6. Balifrog

    Balifrog Member

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    Written by another dreaming poet ?
     
  7. scouser59

    scouser59 Member Charter Member Cager

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    Maybe the author has been taking some of the mind altering drugs or a kilo of magic mushrooms which are available on the island before she put her hands on the keyboard , bali is ok but it aint paradise.
     
  8. ChrisD

    ChrisD New Member

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    While I enjoy living in Bali, this lovey,. feely please like my blog twerp reminds me of a FB poster last year on one of the Bali Groups.

    They were asking if there is anywhere here that does intravenous ozone infusions :first:
     
  9. dafluff

    dafluff
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    I think it's part of the stages of living in Bali:

    Ooh, everything is beautiful and exotic ->
    Wait, it's not only beautiful, it super spiritual! ->
    Oh my god, I don't think I have ever been in tune more with the universe, I will dispense my new found Zen on the internet ->
    Man, this place could do with fewer ignorant tourists ->
    Hmm...stuck in traffic today ->
    This traffic sucks!! ->
    Wait, they do what with the trash? ->
    Oh my god everything sucks and everyone rips me off, and there are too many bogans. ->
    Why oh why, did I ever come here? Worst place ever, this place is literally hell on earth. ->
    Eh, if you stay away from Canggu and Legian it's an ok place to live... lol at you people still in the above stages.
     
  10. Puspawarna

    Puspawarna
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    She lost me at "extremely poor country," inasmuch as Bali is neither.

    Bali is enchanting, of course. But the writer is nothing but another one of those misguided "Eat, Pray, Love" types.
     
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  11. Anglian

    Anglian Well-Known Member Charter Member Cager

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    Probably hugs trees while some body is removing the 100 tons of accumulated rubbish per day off the beaches
     
  12. Bad_azz

    Bad_azz Well-Known Member Charter Member Cager

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    I'm not & never have been a fan of Bali & still stand by my premise that if it had been my first stop in Indonesia, I wouldn't have come back- for me it just seems to all be a thin veneer of happy clappy crap laid on for tourism.

    However, I have not seen all of the place & understand that there are some other "real" parts to it.

    I do enjoy celebrating beauty, I find it in most things I look at. All this crap about being in touch with spirituality and so on- well makes me wanna chuck up.

    I'd best qualify my previous comment... I think inner peace, contentment & spirituality (call it what you will) comes from inside, not from a place. It comes from life choices and decisions and more often than not the people we spend our time with.
    But that's just me & my opinions count for very little :)
     
  13. snpark

    snpark Active Member Cager

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    and probably a lot of it is HERS, from her starbucks soybean decaf quineoa latte plastic cup she just threw away on the way to her yoga class and smashed avocado on toast, and don't forget you can use the wifi free all day and be a digital nomad (no visa required)
     
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  14. ChrisD

    ChrisD New Member

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    Actually some parts of Legian are fine (we live in a gang of a side road and it’s peaceful without boganitus).

    Still trying to work out where I in dafluff’s stages of Bali perceptions (think I skipped to “who cares, I am retired and it’s warm” :becky:
     
  15. Davita

    Davita Well-Known Member Charter Member

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    Very funny ChrisD...I also tried to place myself on dafluff's list but there isn't a place...I think an extension to the list is necessary like...

    Help...get me outta here!
    I live in the north so I can tell those in the south how bad they live. Then complain when Hardy closed and have to travel 'n' hours to get cheese!
    It used to be great until my wife divorced me.
    When will my overseas pension kick-in so I can get out of this Kost.

    I'm sure there are more....?
     
  16. waarmstrong

    waarmstrong Well-Known Member Charter Member Cager

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    A lot of members seem to see Bali natives, transplants and visitors through a lense colored by personal biases and agendas. I live in Jakarta (when in-country); Bali by comparison is not so bad. I have found both places have a fair contingent of both assholes and angles sharing a variety of lifestyles.
     
  17. John_Oates

    John_Oates Member Charter Member Cager

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    Just come back from Bali with a pretty bad taste in my mouth. There are plenty of no Uber or Grag signs in the areas I visited. However, taxis were hard to find and many wouldn't put a meter on. So I resorted to the "transport Mister" guys who have doubled their prices in recent years.

    To be honest, I felt like an ATM machine for a lot of the holiday.
     
  18. lifelongexpat

    lifelongexpat Active Member Cager

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    I experienced the same last July. It seems the Bali taxi mafia can't tolerate a little bit of competition.

    When I mentioned grab would only cost a certain amount in Jakarta (150,000 for 10's of km vs 150,000 for 3km in Bali) , one taxi driver threatened to drive us all back to the airport unless I stopped talking.
     
  19. Felicity

    Felicity Member

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    Hilarious comments. I thought she's just having honeymoon phase or holiday spirit with too much dopamine booster. But her article is good for tourism so I'll leave her article in peace. :ranger:
     
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