Barong rangda

Barong Rangda Dance, Understanding Rwa Bhineda – In Balinese Hindu mythology, Rangda is a leader figure for the leak in the fight against the figure of Barong. Rangda is portrayed as a woman with long, matted hair, wide eyes, large fanged, long-hoofed nails, protruding tongues, and long breasts.

Literally, the word “rangda” means widow. This meaning is in accordance with the origin of the story which tells of Queen Mahendradatta who took revenge for being exiled by King Dharmodayana. The former queen then avenged her heartache by killing half of the people in the kingdom.

Barong rangda
Barong rangda

Barong is considered as the king of good spirits displayed as a long-toothed lion with thick blond hair. In one of his mythologies, Barong is depicted accompanying King Airlangga, heir to King Dharmodayana’s throne, to defeat Rangda.

In other mythologies, Barong and Rangda are described as having a balanced force. Both are also endowed with eternity, resulting in an endless battle. Because equally strong, both continue to fight without one of the losing parties.

The story of this eternal battle is then raised in the art of barong dance. Barong dance has many versions. One simple and concise version is the Barong Rangda dance, which is performed regularly on the stage of the Garuda Wisnu Kencana amphitheater complex. This dance is an introduction for ordinary people to understand the concept of rwa bhineda which is part of the principles of Balinese life.

In the Balinese Hindu spiritual belief, there is a concept of rwa bhineda which literally means two differences that run harmoniously. In more depth, this concept explains the universe was created by the Almighty in conditions of pairs but has the opposite nature. Like the good paired with bad, man with woman, black with white, and so forth.

Pairs of characters that are different from each other in the Hindu concept are seen to be side by side with each other. The two do not deny or negate each other. Rwa Bhineda teaches two contradictory things that actually balance each other so that life goes harmoniously. For this reason, Balinese see differences not as barriers that must be removed, but made into harmony.

This concept of balance is manifested in the mythology of the relationship between Barong and Rangda. The eternal feud of Barong and Rangda symbolizes the good and bad that actually co-exist. Both bad and good, they cannot be completely eliminated from human life. Goodness exists because of the ugliness or crime that is the comparison. Vice versa. Something is considered as bad because there is goodness which is the comparison parameter.

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