A Russian influencer who disrespected a sacred tree in Bali is being deportated for her audacity. *TikTok voice* Oooh, this is my song!
Self-titled “yogi” Alina Fazleeva posted pictures of herself on Instagram where she climbed and posed naked on a sacred 700-year-old tree called Kayu Putih. Norks out and everything.
The tree in question was located on Hindu temple grounds in Bali’s Tabanan district and unsurprisingly, locals were pretty offended to see some western influencer using it as a prop to take nudes.
Things went tits up — pun intended — when Balinese fashion designer and politician Niluh Djelantik called out Alina online and urged others to report her to immigration authorities for disrespecting the site.
“She should be responsible for the cost of the cleaning ceremony to be carried out by villagers,” Djelantik wrote.
“Trashy tourist. Go home!”
Alina has since deleted the nude pic and instead posted another photo, this time of herself sitting on the ground next to the tree while praying. Fully clothed, I might add.
“I apologise to all the people of Bali and Indonesia. I regret what I have done,” she wrote in Indonesian.
“I am so ashamed, I did not mean to offend you in any way, I had no knowledge of this place.
“I just prayed under the tree and went straight to the police station to explain this and apologise.”
Sigh. When will western (read: white) tourists realise that not knowing it’s disrespectful to *checks notes* exposure your whole ass at a temple site is… not an acceptable excuse. Google exists!!!
Local police confirmed Alina handed herself in, and now the case is being processed. While it hasn’t been confirmed what charges she’s facing (if any), media reports said she could face up to six years in jail or a AUD$97,108 fine for “spreading pornography”.
Honestly, Alina is not the first and certainly not the last culturally-appropriating ~spiritual~ influencer to disrespect cultures and religions in Bali.
Just weeks earlier, Balinese immigration officials moved to deport Canadian actor and self-titled “mind-body healer” (sigh) Jeffrey Craigen after he also climbed a sacred site while naked. What is it with this caucacity???
Craigen streamed himself dancing nude on a volcano sacred to Balinese Hindus while also appropriating the Māori Haka.
Because disrespecting one culture isn’t enough, apparently.
There’s also been previously reports of western tourists masturbating under sacred waterfalls, splashing holy water on their holey bits and generally being a goddamn nuance.
But hey, the good news is Balinese officials aren’t taking these offences lightly — if these two threats of deportation are anything to go by.