This is the 7th lunar month in the Chinese calendar. In this month, Chinese who are Taoists believe that hungry ghosts from hades are let loose to roam on earth for a month.
Therefore, these hungry ghosts are entertained with Chinese opera stage shows, modern style singing stage show (called koh tai), puppet shows and to cut costs, these hungry ghosts are entertained with Stephen Chow comedy movies!
The above photo is not so clear as I dare not use a flash. I hope you can make out the projector and its rolls of films. So ‘traditional’, don’t you think?
In the foreground of the photo, you can see a red table elevated on two chairs. This is the altar that they make offerings to the heaven. The yellow dangling things are sugar canes tied with some yellow papers.
In this photo, note the top left corner. What you see are huge, paper clothings meant to be burnt for the hungry ghosts. It is rather spooky to see these ‘clothes’ worned by olden Chinese hanging there as horror movies love to depict Chinese ghosts wearing these clothings.
On the table, are foods offered for the hungry ghosts. Rather like a buffet, ya? There is a Chinese belief that you are not to leave anything on the table because the hungry ghosts will devour everything on the table. And urban myth said that a woman who was helping out at the location, left her small baby on the table to sleepl while she carried on with her work.
Upon return, she found the baby lifeless. Yeah, you guessed right. The hungry ghosts mistaken the baby as food.
Here is the gatekeeper of hades. A huge black paper effigy with long tongue hanging out. He has very huge eyes and a mean face. Certainly very frightening, isn’t it? One wouldn’t want to end up in hades and face the gatekeeper ya?
These worshipping are carried out for 15 days and at the end of it, the effigy will be burnt.
If you are curious to know more, don’t hesitate to ask me questions. I have grown up with these culture and through grandma stories, we children had heard enough of spooky tales to know not to mess with the underworld.
**I am a Catholic and am writing this for information purpose only.**
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