Ubud Royal Family cremation attracts Megawati, Indonesian ministers and tourists

Two Balinese women wear traditional outfits during the cremation ceremony of a member of the royal family in Ubud, on Bali island on March 2, 2018. Photo: Sonny Tumbelaka/AFP

A member of Ubud’s royal family was cremated in Bali on Friday with a processional ritual that attracted much of Ubud along with the likes of former Indonesian president Megawati Soekarnoputri, members of current president Jokowi’s cabinet, and onlooking tourists.

The cremation took place at Puri Agung in Ubud on Friday afternoon and according to the Ministry of Tourism, is the biggest ngaben in Bali.

The Balinese cremation ritual, ngaben, is a sacred rite, requiring a lot of effort, time, and of course money, so you can image things got quite elaborate for a royal. Leading up to the ceremony, the coffin is carried on a bade, or tower.

Balinese Hindus believe cremation is intended to return bodies to the fundamental elements of fire, air, water, earth and void.

“The ngaben with the bade as tall as 27 meters is the biggest ngaben in Bali, witnessed by thousands of residents as well as local and foreign tourists,” reads a statement from Indonesia’s Tourism Ministry, as quoted by Detik.

Ministers in attendance can be seen in photos of the ceremony, including Home Affairs Minister Tjahjo Kumolo, Attorney General Prasetyo, Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti, and Tourism Minister Arief Yahya.

Weren’t able to make it yourself? Check out amazing footage captured earlier today by “Bramadity”, posted to Facebook:

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