Bali - subak.


Subak - rice irrigation system.  Spirit, nature and the human world in harmony.  


Suastiastu. I'm in the village of Tajen in the hills of Bali. We're here with our friend, Komang, who's kindly agreed to explain to us subak.


Subak is a 1000 year old democratic and egalitarian system of farming practices, particularly the control of water through canals and irrigation that enables prolific rice production over many villages in a whole watershed. Like most aspects of life in Bali subak draws together the realm of the spirit, the human world and nature. UNESCO lists subak as of outstanding universal value – to quote them:


“Water temple rituals promote a harmonious relationship between people and their environment through the active engagement of people with ritual concepts that emphasise dependence on the life-sustaining forces of the natural world.”    UNESCO


The village of Tajen is within the subak system.



A sea of greens, rice terraces, coconuts, bananas and woodland edge.



Subak is a unique system of controlling water and irrigation over a whole watershed, for many villages.  Water decisions are delegated to a village subak 'committee' that meet in subak temples.  Subak agriculture traditionally does not use chemicals.


Here water enters the village of Tajen, where a series of weirs control water flow to the rice fields and onwards downstream to the next village.



Komang explains the subak system.





In the rice fields are daily offerings to the rice goddess, Dewi Sri.



Whilst rice predominates, many other fruits and vegetables are also grown.



For more information on Komang's village Tajen, visit his website   Bali Village

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