Taman Ayun Temple – Royal Family Temple at Mengwi Bali
Taman Ayun literally translates as “beautiful garden’ and is generally regarded as one of the most attractive temples of Bali. Taman Ayun is situated in the village of Mengwi, 18 Km west of Denpasar, is indeed one of Bali’s most picturesque temple. It’s stately proportioned courtyards and large surrounding moat were built in the year 1627 B.C.
Pura Taman Ayun was built in 1634 by the Raja of Mengwi, I Gusti Agung Putu. It is a socalled ‘Pura Kawiten’ or family temple, a special temple where the deified ancestors of the Raja Dynasty of Mengwi and important gods of other temples are honored.
Pura Taman Ayun is one in six representative temples in Bali. It is secondly a big temple.
Raja Gusti Agung Anom built this temple in 1634. Raja Gusti Agung Anom is king in those days at maximum power Mengwi dynasty in Bali. Menguwi dynasty prospered until 1981, and this temple was royal family Mnguwi’s temple.
Menguwi dynasty is done the support by Gelgel dynasty and has grown up in the 17th century. Raja Gusti Agung Anom who was the king fought against the Buleleng country (It is a current Singaraja district.), it won splendidly in 17th beginning of century. However, after it had fought, Raja Gusti Agung Anom disarranged his mind.
And, Zen meditation was trained in the mountain to purify the mind and body. At that time, there was divine message that “Gather Dewa (Jinnee) who has scattered here and there on one place” from the god while training. Immediately, Raja Gusti Agung Anom returned to Menguwi kingdom, and Pura Taman Ayun was built. Afterwards, this temple was repaired in 1937.
Temple complex is divided into four different pages, one taller than the other. First court yard called Jaba which can be achieved only by the only bridge across the pond and the gate. Once inside there was a small monument to guard the entrance to his right and there is extensive building (Wantilan) where cockfighting chickens are often held there during the ceremony.
On this court yard, there are also memorial fountain that leads to the nine cardinal directions. As he headed to the next court yard, on the right road there is a complex of small temple with a temple Luhuring Purnama.
Thrid area or second court yard, his position is higher than the first court yard. To go to this page, visitors must pass through the second gate. Once inside, the view will be fixed on a building Aling-aling “Bale Pengubengan” decorated with reliefs depict “Dewata Nawa Sanga”, (9 Gods guards cardinal direction).
On the east side of this page there is a small temple called Pura Dalem Bekak, whereas in the west corner there is a towering Kulkul Hall.
The forth area or the last court yard is the highest and most sacred. Bight of the most central door will be opened at the moment there is ceremonies, where the outside entrance to the statues and other ceremonial equipment. While the Gate is on the left and right is to get out into the daily activities at the foundation. These court yards have some towering Meru with a variety of sizes and shapes.
Three court yards of this temple symbolizes the three-level world of cosmology, from the most bottom is the place / the human world, to a level that is more sacred gods places, and the latter symbolizes the Heaven where God Almighty placed. As recounted in the ancient story Adhiparwa, the entire complex of temples depict Mount Mahameru floating in a sea of milk.
This temple was destroyed by the big earthquake that occurred in 1917 and did not get restored until 1950. Temple minute and a pillar whose height reaches 16 meters in the inner pages are built according to architectural temples of Java, while the smaller temple who form the seat of stone fruit amounted to 64 times a megalithic monument in remembrance of the ancestors of the knights who died in battle.