For every Balinese cremation, whatever the scale, there are many, many preparations and preceding rituals to be done before the final send-off. Here we take a look behind the scenes for today’s royal cremation of the Ubud prince Tjokorda Raka Sukawati, inventor of the “Sosrobahu” engineering technique for building flyovers.





The trickiest bit to building the ‘bade’ tower is adding the top tiered roof ‘tumpeng’. This took place yesterday. Photo©Agus Suka Adi Surya



Just before dawn in the palace, a high priest performs rituals for consecration for the immediate family. A fairly private affair. Photo©Rio Helmi



Exhausted retainers who have been working the night through, catch a short break. Photo©Rio Helmi



The family of the deceased prays in the palace courtyard. Photo©Rio Helmi



One of several occasions when the family symbolically crushes the ashes. Photo©Rio Helmi



Under the waning moon, the ‘Pedanda’ high priest begins the consecration of the actual cremation ground. Photo©Rio Helmi



The pedanda consecrating the cremation ground after ritual measuring ‘nyikut’. Photo©Rio Helmi



A final prayer after the consecration of the cremation ground this morning, just before sunrise. Photo©Rio Helmi