Thursday, September 11, 2008

Hungry Ghost Festival - A story to share

Gosh, I can't believe it's been months since I last updated this little blog here!~
The reason I started this blog in the first place was due to the weird and intriguing stories from the other side which prompted me to share some that I've heard or in case of any supernatural (something which cannot be proved by science) cases which is interesting for all to read about.

Anyway, this update is about a story I wish to share; which I've heard from a family member.
This story took place in a place in Penang and it was during the month of the Hungry Ghost Festival.
Now, as you know, during this particular month, it is a Chinese tradition and custom to make offerings to those residing in the netherworld.
These offerings can be made in the form of paper paraphernalia, joss sticks, food, and even opera shows.
In Malaysia, the Getai is highly popular.

Wherever there is the mass offering, there the Getai goes.
**Getai is a local word for the street performances on the stage, singing, dancing, etc.

If you observe these areas, you will always notice that there is a long table with all the food and all sorts of offerings and at the end of the table there is a huge and gigantic paper statue sitting there.
The gigantic paper statue is made to resemble the Tai Su Yeah; who is also the guardian deity of hell and is honored to grant peace during the auspicious month of the Hungry Ghosts.

Now to the story, this happened a few years ago in this place in Penang where there was a famous temple to honor the hungry ghosts.
There was a mother with an infant baby in her arms who decided to play her part to honor the dead and to make offerings by burning the paper paraphernalia during that time.
As she was carrying her infant baby and at the same time, she had to burn the paper offerings, she decided to put her little child on the table while she goes around to burn the offerings.

Now it so happens that, after she was done with the burning and praying, she returned to the table and found the baby really quiet as if he was sleeping.
As she touched his hand, she was shocked to find that it was cold and he was motionless and not breathing anymore.
Within minutes, the baby was pronounced dead.

She couldn't understand the reason of his death as he was perfectly normal and health before they came out.

However, according to some of the folks there, the lady made a mistake by placing her boy on the table as it was the offering table!

The offering table holds all the food and offerings for the "brothers and sisters" from the netherworld and it was their understanding that everything there is for "their" consumption.
Furthermore, the Chinese believed that the dead are straight in their minds and will consume whatever that is on that table as they believed it is offered for them.

It was a rather sad story; but that was the story of how the lady wanted to do her bit to pray for her family's peace and harmony and ended having her own little boy made an "offering" as well.

So, according to my grandma and all the older folks, do be careful of what you place on the offering table, there is no turning back and that is why the month is known as the month of the Hungry Ghost.


Sweet Jasmine said...

Hi Christy, love your ghost stories over here...the lost of the baby's life is indeed scary...
There seems to be a lot of sprits roaming around at this time of the month...
Thks for visiting my place...will love to link you...

Christy said...

Yeah...I have added you to my list of must-visits too:D
Nice to meet you:)

U.Lee said...

Hi Christy, nice story....yes, I too have experienced quite a few, even carried one in my car which I posted sometime ago.
You have a nice day, keep well, Lee.

Christy said...

Hi u.lee, wow, I'm gonna read your story in the car!
Thanks for visiting:)