Most of these pokes rendered no reaction, apart from one which caused her to bolt upright and scream bloody murder.
Lontar are written in Sanskrit, Old Javanese and Balinese and hold a series of mantras, incantations (spells of sorts) and some drawings.
These mystical books — each one long, hard and slim like a pile of stacked rulers bound with two threads — have been in his family for generations.
In describing what I saw it’s important to note that I really can’t explain what I saw. ‘You can damage their work and reputations by trying to explain how they do things,’ Surya (our guru) warned. Even having seen and heard the things I’ve seen and heard in Bali, this still goes beyond my realm of understanding and I really do think it would even if I spent a lifetime trying to wrap my head around it. And as we know by now, most of Bali’s magic isn’t meant to be understood.
Cokorda Rai, aged eighty-two, is honoured in Bali as a direct channel of divine knowledge, a practice he learned from what’s written in a series of wooden holy books called Lontar.
It looked like a series of alien artworks, the kind of mural you might expect to be drawn before some fanciful cosmetic surgery on a spaceship. Ninety per cent of people he says come to him with a broken heart. ‘A broken heart is just an energy block,’ Surya told us. ) or just ask me when you see me 😉 But trust me, Cokorda Rai is a man you want to know.