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25th Anniversary Village Projects

Çudamani launches its 25th Anniversary year with projects to improve the life of Pengosekan residents and the natural environment of the village.  Provide our banyan tree with more water.   A massive banyan tree is the most common and iconic marker for every village.  The banyan tree in Pengosekan began to suffer and almost died as solid pavement was laid all around the tree for the morning market and vehicles.  While it has recovered to half its previous size, the only way to insure its health is to repave the surface with materials such as concrete grid permeable pavers.  Consultation with village heads, merchants who sell food in the morning, and the neighboring temple Pura Dalem will take time.  Estimating costs and securing contractors are another involved process.  Cudamani considers this project of value on many fronts:  the environment; local cultural awareness on the importance of reclaiming water, social and business stimulus, and well being of our spiritual guardian, the Pengosekan Banyan Tree.   Our fundraising goal is to raise $5,000 USD by February 2023 for this 25th Anniversary Celebration.  Please donate what you can.

The sacred banyan tree is integral to the temple for the dead or Pura Dalem in Balinese villages. It represents the eternal cycle of death and rebirth and it protects spirits after death. Hindus believe the trees are inhabited by Gods and spirits of deceased ancestors, which is why the trees emit vast spiritual energy.

From a tiny seed in a fig grows the giant banyan tree. For the Balinese, this majestic tree, with its enormous trunk, far reaching branches and its voluminous thick roots running deep into the earth, the banyan is a symbol of humanity’s potential for perfection. Humans are like trees: We walk up right with our feet grounded on the earth simultaneously rising towards the sky, towards heaven and enlightenment.  Like the tree, we must be fully grounded, fully rooted with the energy of the earth, if we are to stand as the light of divine perfection that is our natural birthright. Humans, like trees, are mediators between heaven and earth. What an amazing Being we are, for inside of every one of us, just like the tree, is the entire Cosmos.

The banyan is an integral part of the Pura Dalem, temple for the dead, in every Balinese village. Pura Dalem includes the cemetery. The banyan tree represents the eternal cycle of death and rebirth and protects the spirits after death. The leaves of a Banyan tree are large, leathery, glossy, green and elliptical in shape. They are used in cremation ceremonies.  It is said that after Krishna devoured the universe (destroying it) he turned himself into a tiny child, wrapped himself up in the leaf of a Banyan and rested. Riding in this leaf, the banyan tree floated in the Empty Radiant Void until Krishna chose to re-create the Universe.  In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna says: “Of all trees I am the banyan tree.”

Educational Fund

All support for instruction and performances, including costumes, transportation, and meals, are provided free to students. Çudamani depends on tours, the Summer Institute, and your donations to cover these expenses. Our goal for the Education Fund is $4,000 USD.

Gamelan Çudamani is dedicated to teaching gamelan and dance to children in the Pengosekan and Ubud areas. Organized as a Sanggar (or school), Çudamani has dance instructions in male and female styles and gamelan classes for boys and girls.  A team of 10 senior artists form the key teaching team. They are paid as much as our budget can allow. We strive to increase their pay each year.

We raise funds from international touring, the Çudamani Summer Institute, the ACE program, and individual donations. The Foundation for World Arts has been a long term supporter of Çudamani.

The accomplishments of the teaching program are evidenced by the intergenerational presence of members at local temple ceremonies, family ceremonies, and arts festivals. At the forefront of promoting girls’ education and training, the Çudamani girls gamelan have been invited to perform twice in three years at the all-important Bali Arts Festival in Denpasar.

Considered the best girls group in the island, these girls also dance!

Gamelan Cudamani is dedicated to teaching gamelan and dance to children in the Pengosekan and Ubud area. Organized as a Sanggar (or school), Cudamani has dance instructions in male and female styles and gamelan classes for boys and girls. The groups are in great demand for local temple ceremonies, family ceremonies, and arts festivals. The Cudamani girls gamelan have been invited to perform twice in three years at the all-important Bali Arts Festival in Denpasar.

Before every performance Cudamani children pray at the temple.

Cudamani founders have a concern for the artistic, recreational, and social life of village youth. There are very few organized activities for the children of Pengosekan and the forces of modernization and electronic media easily find children lost in fantasy worlds that are disconnected from the social fabric of Balinese life.

All instruction and support for performances, including costumes transportation, and meals are provided free by Cudamani.  In any given year they teach about 75 youth ranging in age from 5-20 and have a faculty of ten.  Funds to pay expenses and teachers are raised from the Cudamani Summer Institute, international tours by the senior group, and fundraising from individuals.

Please help us in support of this exceptional effort by making a tax deductible donation to the Foundation for World Arts. 100% of your donation goes to support this teaching program.  Thank you for your consideration.

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