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Bali has the distinction of being the ultimate tourist island destination in the world. The mighty tourist dollar has created jobs, businesses and has to an extent raised the overall standard of living. But the flip side tells a different story. It reveals the ‘after effects’ of Hidup Manis (sweet life)…a burgeoning economy reflected in the frantic construction of dream homes for outsiders, a growing disregard for the basic tenets of Tri Hita Karana and the theft of its intellectual and cultural property by persons from other countries.
So how do many self respecting Balinese respond to this trend without upsetting the general flow of the economy and peaceful daily life?
Live Encounters has asked three eminent persons from the Balinese community and the brains trust of The Bali Heritage Trust (BHT), Tjokorda Raka Kerthyasa, Popo Danes and Made Sukma Swacita, to present their views/suggestions to the readers on the role BHT can play in safeguarding Bali’s heritage. Their message is loud and clear – accountability, education and empowerment of the people, and adhering to the supreme concept of Tri Hita Karana – harmony between human and God, human and the world, human and human – is the only path towards protecting and sustaining the ethos of the Isle.
© Mark Ulyseas