by Akshay Parashar |Indian Intern| August 2, 2017 11:25 am 


Bali, the famed Island of the Gods, with its diverse scenery of hills and mountains, rugged coastlines and sandy beaches, blossoming rice terraces and barren volcanic hillsides. Every bit of Island given that a pleasing backdrop to its colourful, intensely spiritual and unique culture, stakes a serious claim to be heaven on earth.

This is Bali, the secret gateway to heaven. Could you repeat that? Is it the same Bali “Lost in Paradise”?

Bali the Wonderland – The reality on the ground is a lot more complicated.

The Island of the gods is the top tourism destination around the globe with Millions flying every year to admire its beauty. Bali is basically reliant on Tourism Industry for its progress. The Island welcome everyone, every bit of Island is mesmerizing. But the divine Land is facing the Onslaught of heavy tourism.  Bali is now completely losing its charm. The unique harmony with nature is in danger, the violation of nature law is at alarming stage, and it’s high time to act.

Is Tourism destroying the heaven on earth? Or there are other central actors sharing the accountability for this destruction. Now, it’s the need of the hour to opt for “Lost in Paradise or Lost Paradise”.

Reviving Bali via Palemahan
In Bali, the outlook and Philosophy on life is TRI HITA KARANA. It is a constituent of Balinese culture that was inherited from generation and functioning till now. Tri Hita Karana literal meaning is three causes of Happiness or well-being and it is based on three principles
1) Parhyangan (Harmony with god)
2) Pawongan (Harmony among people)
3) Palemahan(Harmony with nature)Tri-Hita-Karana-Concept-for-LifeTri Hita Karana Philosophy ©

The Balinese people are very particular about their philosophy. A local Balinese day commence with offerings to god and maintaining peace and harmony within itself and its community. This philosophy is a way of life. Although, the others aspects of Tri Hita Karana are honored but the actions and Principles in the direction of harmony with Nature is not.

It’s high time to regard and maintain balance with the way of life. The philosophy of life is losing its worth as people focusing only on Parhyagan and Pawongan leaving Palemahan in the rear.

Palemahan principle is a value system, to provide a blueprint for deeds towards nature, thus it becomes essential
for society to address this principle as well.
The welfare and happiness are achieved through Karma, Based on Dharma.
Dharma transforms itself into harmony with nature.

The environment distress ranging from Deforestation to water crisis is questioning the way of life of this Island.
The Paradise Island is blaring and it requests for peace and synchronization among all the principles.

Mr. wayanJuli, (local Balinese and Prominent environmentalist) on addressing the miserable condition of the Island said “Bali is in danger now, the over development, pollution, relaxing beaches are littered with waste, traffic is gridlocked, water crisis and rice paddies and lush green landscapes are turning into concrete Jungles. Where is the Secret gateway to heaven? Locals and government show concern about mounting tourist and fear for too much commercialization, but they just show, no actions are taking place to safeguard this Island”

He further added “Tourists are held responsible for everything that went wrong. Tourists flying here because they are fascinated by its scenery, rice paddies, rich culture not by luxurious accommodations and senseless overdevelopment. No doubt, tourists are accountable for exploiting this Island but Balinese society is also guilty and should be held responsible for not preserving own sacred land.”

The Palemahan is nature law; violation of this law would cause distress, turmoil and suffering. Drastic Climate change threats and other environmental shock by now impacting Bali and if this nuisance will stay on it will definitely going to damage the way of life.

Pak anggir, ( Balinese farmer idol) said “Bali is losing thousand hectare of paddy fields and forests every year, Balinese farmers prefer to sell their land for quick cash and later the paddy field will turn into a  resort. We the natives of this sacred land are responsible for its exploitation. Blaming heavy tourism and over development is just a sheer excuse. If the locals will not defend their land then how they can you except outsiders to do so?
Balinese people using chemicals, harmful substances leading to soil degradation. This is going on since 1970s almost four decades by now; there was no tourism that time.”

Bali will Revive

Balinese community can play significant role in preserving the land by performing the most essential principle of Tri Hita Karana i.e.  Palemahan. Harmony with god and harmony among people will only exist when there will be a peaceful and sustained environment. Few local communities and organizations in Bali are working in this direction but the efforts will be successful only when every single Balinese will come forward to safeguard the Paradise.

The nature forces the humans to act because they are responsible to take care. No one can afford to neglect the warning by Nature because every human being is helpless when nature strikes. It’s better to opt for sustainable Bali instead of   spoiling it.

All those who reap profit out of this land, enjoy and admire its beauty should also start off with safeguarding this Island. Revive Bali by working for sustainable Bali.


“If you kill the Nature, then you will be killed by Nature,
If you Keep the Nature, then you will be guarded by Nature.
Therefore Nature should not be killed,
Due to the Nature that is killed will kill you back.


 The author is a researcher at the Symbiosis School of International Studies,Pune.

 [Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author based on the Understanding and communication with people and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Tri Hita Karana Bali]