Pagerwesi is also called “rerainan gumi” by the Balinese and means the holiday for everyone from every background (read: caste) from the families of priests to the common families. Pagerwesi is celebrated every 210 days on Wednesday of Shinta (the first week in the Balinese Pawukon calendar system). Etymologically Pagerwesi derives from the two Balinese words pager and wesi, which meansfence and iron. The iron fence is a symbol of strong self-protection and on pagerwesi the Balinese focuses on building a strong personal fortification to ensure that evil don’t enter their minds, speech and deeds, so won’t do harm their surroundings.
In Bali, the rich and endless cycle of Hindu ceremonies and rituals means that no matter when and how long you visit Bali, there is sure to be something interesting happening for you to see. One of the famous Hindu ceremonies is Pagerwesi. Literally meaning the day of iron fences, Pagerwesi is celebrated in devotion to the guardian of universe, Sang Hyang Pramesti Guru. It is a day to strengthen one’s fortification against the evil. Pagerwesi which is celebrated in every home compound and temple throughout Baliis the third most celebrated holidays in Bali after Galungan and Nyepi Day. Balinese Hindu usually celebrates Pagerwesi every six months according to the Balinese Lunar Calendar system called Pakuwon.
The God worshiped on this day is named Sang Hyang Pramesti Guru another name for Lord Shiva, who was believed to have descended upon earth as a manifestation of God to to wipe out all the bad and evil entities in the world and became a teacher of the universe – leading humans in how to live their lives appropriately, without giving into negative behaviors and evil desires. The Balinese show their gratitude to Sang Hyang Paramesti Guru by making offerings, praying in their houses, visiting temples, and erecting penjors (tall decorated bamboo poles). In many regions in Bali, Pagerwesi is considered to be an extremely important holiday, second only and celebrated excessively in a similar fashion to Galungan Day.