NaBloPoMo Day 12: Hungry Ghosts

“Would you buy your dream house if the price was right BUT you also were told it was inhabited by ghosts?”

I live in a predominantly Chinese country, which means that come August, I am surrounded by ghosts. The 7th lunar month is the Hungry Ghost Festival in which the Taoist Chinese believe that the Gates of Hell are opened and souls of the dead are free to roam the earth.

And you had better pay your respects. The streets are lined with small altars littered with oranges, rice, and brightly colored cakes, as well as bins to burn paper money. On the 15th day of the month, when spirits are at their highest, the ghosts are treated to an elaborate feast. If done well, you will not only appease them but earn their blessings.

The festival serves an interesting reminder that, no matter where you live, we are all haunted by the ghosts of our past. Feed them well so that they may leave, and you may live, in peace. At least for another year.

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