I Made Runia, 63, is a retired pharmacy supervisor from Wangaya Kaja in Denpasar who lived in Surabaya all his working life.

What’s the greatest lesson life has taught you?
Enjoy your time with your family and make it be meaningful.

What’s most important?

Success. It’s good for the future, and competition.

What advice would you give the younger generations?

Be more religious. Young people today hardly go to the temple at all; it’s bad for Bali and the future of Hinduism here.

Are you worried about dying?

No, I am not.

When was the happiest time of your life?

When there was a big ceremony at home – it was a time for all family members to get together and I relished that.

And the worst?

When I was a child, and my parent died and us five brothers and sisters had to try and survive without them. It hurt a lot, but it made us all close, very close.

What’s humanity all about?

About trying to get on with other people and appreciating their opinions, even when they are different to yours.

Why are there so many conflicts in the world?

Because of land, greed and arrogance.

Is a peaceful world impossible?

No, I thin it is possible.

Are you disappointed with your life or happy at what’s happened?

I am happy.

How old do you feel?

Not too old – 50.

Is there anything you still want to do?

I want to make sure each of my children has a home in Bali.

Is one lifetime enough?

Yes, it is. It’s better that there’s no more suffering.

How has Bali changed since you were a child?

Such a lot. When I was 17 or 18, I went to Surabaya and returned to Bali when I retired, when I was 59. I was shocked to see Bali then, and not sure I could live here. The costs of living in Bali was more expensive than in Surabaya – a kilogram of rice was Rp500 (5 US cents) in Surabaya but Rp2,000 in Bali.

Is it better or worse?

Worse, especially for the way you enter Bali. It needs to be more secure. When I was young, security checks were good, and not everyone could enter Bali, only some people.

Has tourism been good for Bali?

It’s been good but there have been some effects that have made tourism bad, like so many foreigners coming – they want to enjoy the tourism but don’t appreciate Bali and its culture.

What’s the major difference between the East and West?

The cleanliness of the environment and neatness in dress. Westerners are much better than us in these respects, and we need to learn more about it.

Have you ever doubted your religion?

No, never.

What makes you so sure about it?

I feel comfortable with my religion; I think it’s my way to the Gods.

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