Wednesday, August 25, 2010

If There's Smoke, There's Fire

Well, not actually a FIRE, but they're making FIRE!

Around 2pm, the temperature was 35*C and I was my way to Shi Da (School), all the people working in the buildings (business in particular) were out burning paper (ghost) )money in the big FLAME to honor their ancestors. In return, their ancestors will give them blessings and good fortune. Aside from burning money, they also offered FOOD.

Actually, today in Chinese Calendar is July 15, it's "Zhong Yuan FESTIVAL", meaning Chinese Ghost  FESTIVAL. According to their history, the gates of hell are wide open and ghost arrived in a mortal world. In Taiwan, Ghost Month runs through the entire month of July, and the gate of hell are open the whole month. That's why the whole month is known to be "not a good month" with many traditional taboos still being practiced. Like don't get married, don't buy house, don't go swimming, etc. to avoid bumping into a ghost.

Imagine how hot that was + the smoke that irritated my eyes!
But, they're doing it as their belief/religion.

21 comments:

White Oleander said...

I remember doing this when I was a child, though at that time I wasn't aware what it was for.

May I ask if you're Taiwanese or an expat living in Taiwan, if you don't mind :)

RuneE said...

Nice F!

Leo said...

wow.. nice one.. customs are sacred I think! :)

My ABC Wednesday Post

photowannabe said...

How interesting. Thanks for sharing the cultural traditions. I didn't know about this.

Roger Owen Green said...

Ah, July IS a hell of a month, temperature-wise. Interesting tradition.
On behalf of ABC Wednesday team, thank you! - ROG

wenn said...

interesting!

Sylvia K said...

Very interesting post for the day! I do enjoy learning about others cultural traditions! Thank you for sharing! Have a wonderful week!

Sylvia

Halcyon said...

A neat tradition! Hope your ancestors bring you many good things.

Francisca said...

What a great take on the ABC theme! My understanding from my Chinese family is that burning the paper money (or food, cigarettes, cars, houses, all kinds of luxuries, all in paper) is more custom or tradition than religion. It's a way to honor one's ancestors by sending them (their spirits) earthly goodies. :-)

Leslie: said...

I think I'd move out of town during July if that's what they believe. But that's just me. Interesting post.

Carver said...

Fantastic post for the F theme. Very interesting to learn about.

Kay L. Davies said...

Whatever the reason (and it may be one of those things lost in the mists of time) the fire made by burning paper certainly qualifies for the letter F. Too bad it hurt your eyes, though. Thanks for your post.

Mrs. M @ TLC said...

Great job on your F post. Fire, flame, festival, food, oh yes. They're all related to Chinese festivities.

Hope you have a festive week.

Linda said...

What an interesting post. I love learning new things.

Linda
ABC Wednesday Team

Tumblewords: said...

Interesting! Thank you!

Vernz said...

Human's can't live without... interesting...
My ABC Wednesday here
And Here Too
hope you can drop by, Have A Nice Day!

Jama said...

I've seen neighbours burning offerings to their ancestors during the hungry ghost festival. A proper bin are put in the neighbourhood but people still like to burn the offering in the ground, which make the job of the cleaners so difficult. They have to sweep away the ashes!

Wendy said...

How interesting that out of fire, fate comes along with beliefs and new friendships for those people who have suffered from the fire. Thank you for this post.

Carolyn Ford said...

Very interesting traditions...

Evelyn said...

I used to hear about the ghost month (7th month in Chinese calendar) in Malaysia, but since coming to Australia, I've actually forgotten about it. Thanks for sharing your photos lani.

Anna said...

That was interesting. I have never heard of that. I was almost going to do something with the word 'Fire' for the F-post, but I could not think of a good enough solution for the theme.
Best wishes,
Anna

Anna's abcWed-F-words

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