Bali Sekala & Niskala
Fred B. Eiseman, JR
In BALI, what you see --sekala-- is colorful world of ceremony, ritual, dance, and drama. What you don't see, what is occult --niskala-- is the doctrine underlying the pageants, the code underlying the rites, and the magic underlying the dance. In this book, author Fred Eiseman explores both tangibles and intangibles in the realm of Balinese religion, ritual, and performing arts. The essays collected her cover topics ranging from Hindu mythology to tooth filling to modern gamelan music. Eiseman's approach is that of a dedicated reporter in love with his subject -- he has the knowledge and patience to explain the near-infinite permutations of the Balinese calendar, and yet he still moved by the majesty of the great Eka Dasa Rudra ceremony. The author's 28 years experience on the island shows, and this book rewards close reading -- even by the most seasoned students of Balinese culture.
"The best book on Bali for the serious visitor..."
"Has the freshness of personal experience."
-----Dr. Hildred Geertz, author of Kinship in Bali and professor of anthropology at Princeton University
"The editor can cheerfully recommend this book, which is absolutely crammed with unusual lore and information."