Komaneka at Monkey Forest is designed for the atmosphere of being in a Balinese home, and it has numerous elements of traditional Balinese architecture. One example is the jineng, or rice barn.
The jineng is a steeply curved roof above a platform. Its function is to store agricultural crops, especially newly harvested rice. According to the laws of traditional Balinese architecture, the jineng is sited in the southeast of the house courtyard. It is normally found close to the kitchen. Our jineng at Komaneka at Monkey Forest is placed near the Garden Terrace Kitchen.
The jineng’s curved roof is a distinctive feature among the buildings in Balinese architecture. This upper part is used for storage. There is a space under the roof especially designed to let in the wind and let air circulate to preserve freshness. The platform is used as a work space.
A jineng may have four or six pillars, and sometimes more. In former times, the number of the pillars was determined by the social status of the owner.
Traditionally, during the rice harvest in the fields, Hindu Balinese set aside a small bundle of rice which is then purified and designated as a symbol of the rice goddess Nini (an aspect of Dewi Sri, the goddess of fertility and prosperity). It is composed of high-quality crops whose seedlings can be used to obtain better agricultural results. This token is placed in a high place in the jineng.
In recent times, the jineng has become rare in Balinese house compounds. Agricultural methods have changed, and it is no longer common to store bundles of rice at home: newly harvested rice is normally brought directly to a rice mill where it is processed, bagged, and sold to wholesalers. Old jineng thus fall into disrepair and are either not replaced or are modified for some other purpose, such as a gazebo.
One hopes that one day jineng will be used again in their original purpose, whose underlying meaning is to show the next generation how to live in a productive and sustainable manner.