Sunday, August 03, 2008

Chinese 7th Lunar month

The Chinese Lunar 7th month, more commonly known as the ‘Hungry Ghosts Festival’ commenced two days back on 1st August 08.

This is the time where offerings line the street, smell of incense fills the air, the streets come alive with the buzz of ‘Getais’ and prayer ceremonies adorn some public places.

This is the time of the Chinese Lunar year where the gate of hell is believed to open at the stroke of midnight on the first day of the lunar month, releasing souls and spirits for their ‘annual visit’ to the human world for a month.

To appease the spirits, offerings are made and performances ‘Getais’ are held to entertain them.

Some friends I spoke to shared the same observations as me that there is an uncanny increase in void deck wakes during this particular month, with the bulk held for the aged who have passed on.

This is the time when it is not advisable to go swimming or to indulge in physical activities where there is a certain element of risk.

And the timeless advice is for all to return home early lest we meet with some one we do not want to meet.

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