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Cultivating the Soul

Ubud Writers and Readers Festival in Bali October 5-9, 2011 'Seeks to Cultivate the Land Within'.

Bali News: Bali, Indonesia, Ubud Writers and Readers Festival, Janet de Neefe, Pedanda Made Sideman, theme
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"Nandurin Karang Awak" or "Cultivate the Land Within" is the them of the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival which will return to Bali October 5-9, 2011.

Acclaimed by Harpers Bazaar magazine as one of the top six writers' festivals in the world, Janet de Neefe, festival founder and director, jovially commented: "The Festival has hopped into the Year of the Rabbit and there's a spring in our step and a heightened enthusiasm about this year's program. Our audiences came in record numbers last October and the interest at this early stage is intense."

The theme of "Cultivate the Land Within" is taken from the epic poem Gaguritan Salampah Laku by by Balinese artists Ida Pedanda Made Sideman. Considered one of Bali's greatest Kawi-Wiku, poet-priests, Ida Pedanda Made Sidemen penned numerous significant literary works, officiated at religious ceremonies and was an acknowledged expert on traditional architecture prior to his death in 1984 at the age of 126.

Janet explained, "developing the self in ways similar to cultivating rice fields, by sowing the seeds of truths, cutting down the stalks of desires, and carefully reaping a bountiful harvest for the finest grain is an important philosophical concept in the spiritual landscape of Bali."

"Ida Pedanda Made Sideman's statement reflects the optimism of the survivor, the person who possesses no land due to choice, poverty or exile, but holds an unwavering personal conviction of his or her own potential and possibilities - the land within."

Janet continued: "At a time in history when disputes over borders, sovereignty, resources, culture and economics are more acute than ever, we must remember that the greatest shared space in the world is in the mind and the heart. The 2011 Festival theme is devoted to redefining the boundaries of consciousness and connection with the vast, rich and mysterious territory within."

A stellar lineup of more than eighty writers representing an international gamut of literary genres will converge on Ubud, October 5-9, 2011, in a lavish celebration of literature, commencing with a tribute to Ida Pedanda Made Sideman. Readings, panels, workshops, lunches, debates and performances will enliven the landscape of Ubud - the cultural heart of Bali.

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