Balinese culture imbued by Hinduism is unique. Many people are curious to learn it, including the religion. Therefore, the graduate program of the Hindu University of Indonesia (UNHI) Denpasar opens an international training course on Indonesian Hinduism. “For those who want to learn more about the Indonesian Hinduism and its culture may join the program,” said the Organizer of the Training Program, Head of Postgraduate Studies, Hindu University of Indonesia, Prof. Dr. I.B. Gunadha.
The program, he added, would commence on Monday, February 25, 2013. To date, there had been six foreigners that had confirmed their participation, namely two professors from French and Mexico, a medical doctor from Malaysia, an author from Germany and a doctor from a university in Indonesia. In initiating the process of training, all the participants would be invited to attend a ceremony in accordance with Hindu belief (Upanayana). “If any participant is unwilling to join, we remain to appreciate it,” he said.
According to Prof. IB. Gunada, the program was designed for many foreigners wishing to further explore and understand about Balinese Hinduism being rich in culture. However, the program did not only apply to foreigners, but also to non-Hindu people of Indonesia. “This program is important for foreign researchers, Indonesian researchers, students and others requiring a lot of data, primarily on Hinduism and its culture,” he added.
The Curriculum Coordinator, I.B. Putu Suamba, Ph.D. said that since the nineteenth century foreign researchers had written about Bali, but they only highlighted a few aspects of the religion. They were interested in the aspect of nature, tourism, anthropology and so on. However, the spirit of Bali was less known. “This training lasts for two weeks with facilitators that have been experts in their respective field. This training program serves as an early start or a pilot project for the Graduate Program of the UNHI in the effort to open international class in the future,” he said.
He said it was the obsession of the UNHI in the future. This Hindu nuanced educational institution was worth acting out and introducing the potential to international community because the faculty and facilities owned were very adequate for that purpose.