Water War Festival In Bali

Suwat Village Residents Held Water War Ceremony

Air Suwat Festival in Gianyar entered its fifth year. The theme raised this time is "Happy Together with Water". 

Various types of activities were held during the festival. But the main attention was paid to the environmental and hygiene issues. 

The ceremony of Siat Yeh or Water War was held at the end of the event at Suwat Village. The goal of the ceremony is to melt emotions and negative qualities in a person.

One of the initiators of the festival and Siat Yeh, Putu Darmen Sidanta explained, this activity aims to combat the emotions and negative qualities that existed in the participants for a year. He explained, this water war occurred the fifth time. 

"The opening of the festival happened on Monday 30 December 2019, and started with trecking. Committee, and residents of Suwat Village, Gianyar, combed the rice paddy roads, passing the terraces while carrying sacks. Trecking participants were required to collect garbage, especially plastic waste. Whoever collected the most garbage got entertainment prizes, "he explained.

On the next day, around 15:00, the event continued with traditional games in the middle of the rice fields, ranging from tug of war, catching ducks, carrying jugs and so on. It aimed to entertain the public, because in everyday life the community struggles with their work in the fields. 

"We wipe out at once and noetic feelings of hatred, emotions, and other negative qualities with this Water War. This War combats the negative feelings that exist in the self. This game seems to bring us to the past, a period where smartphones were not so addictive for children. Living in the village, playing in the rice fields in mud without hesitation. This event is open to the public. Anyone can join," - Putu Darmen Sidanta added.

On the third day, January 1 around 14.00, there were the peak and the final series of the festival. Residents gathered at the village crossroad (catus pata). Based on local cosmology, catus pata is the epicenter of meeting various energy elements.

"In this place, residents hold Siat Yeh rituals or Water Wars. Siat Yeh aims to wash, strengthen themselves to tread a new day, and a new spirit, in the new year. Flush each other. Another meaning is to remind each other that we become a person who is always soothing like the nature of water, " - said Darmen.

He added, besides Suwat residents, this war could also be followed by the general public. But the general public must follow the existing regulations by using traditional clothes. 

This time around 300 participants took part in 40 minutes long Water War.


Source: Bali Express; Photo Bali Tribune

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