- Gordon Dumoulin
The ghosts have returned to their spiritual realms...
𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘨𝘩𝘰𝘴𝘵𝘴 𝘩𝘢𝘷𝘦 𝘳𝘦𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘯𝘦𝘥 𝘵𝘰 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘪𝘳 𝘴𝘱𝘪𝘳𝘪𝘵𝘶𝘢𝘭 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘭𝘮𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘭𝘪𝘷𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘭𝘰𝘰𝘬 𝘧𝘰𝘳𝘸𝘢𝘳𝘥 𝘢𝘨𝘢𝘪𝘯...
Last week on August 26 marked the end of the "ghost month" for many Chinese people in China and around the world... The ghost month is the 7th month in the Chinese lunisolar calendar (this year from July 29-August 26) with the 中元 Zhongyuan Festival or (hungry) ghost festival on the 15th day of the lunar month (August 12 this year).
Chinese culture includes two festivals honoring their ancestors, 清明节 Qingming Festival on the 15th day after the Spring Equinox (1st day of the 5th Chinese calendar solar term Qingming) and 重陽節 Chong Yang Festival (double nine) on the 9th day of the 9th Chinese calendar lunar month.
However during ghost month, it is believed the gates of hell open up and ghosts come down to earth to be among the living. On the last day of the month, the spirits will return to their spiritual realm.
Chinese care for the ghosts to pay respect to their ancestors by offerings such food and joss paper and entertain wandering spirits with festivals and celebrations. The celebration reaches its peak on the 15th day of the month, Zhongyuan Festival.
While the intensity of actual celebrations and traditions largely differ between regions and ethnic communities in China and Asia, it is generally believed that the chance of misfortunes is likely to increase during the ghost month, for example regarding health or business issues. Some people keep vigilant and avoid making any major decisions or adventures. Starting a new business or moving into a new house at the month is sometimes considered not a good step during this month. Wwimming or staying up late are also traditions which some people avoid during the ghost time.
The ancient history of the Ghost festival has its origins in Taoism and Buddhism.
Ghosts have played significant roles in ancient Chinese culture. One of China's most well-known classic literatures related to ghosts is 聊齋誌異 or 'Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio' written by Qing Dynasty writer 蒲松齡 Pu Songling (1640-1715). The collection of his stories was published after his death in 1740, comprising close to five hundred "marvel tales" including lots of ghost and supernatural themes.
#ghost #zhongyuan #zhongyuanfestival #qingming #qingmingfestival #ghostfestival
Picture sources :
goodreads, jadeturtlerecords.blogspot, rove.me, hongkong cheapo, cgtn, chinadaily