Monday, 19 October 2015


When some of my colleagues and students saw the photos above, they were scared and some felt nauseous.  But to me this one of  the most exciting aspects of the Nine Emperor Gods Festival which is now into its seventh day.  Body piercing and other self mutilation acts which are rather gruesome to first timers are  held to invoke the deities. Those taking part in these activities act as mediums of the deities.  It is also an act of faith.  Who in their right mind would allow their cheeks to be punctured with the likes of skewers, plants, chains, swords and other items.  It is because of their belief and faith in the deities that make these men (and sometimes women) do the unthinkable. They do so in the belief that the Taoist Deities will protect them from harm, and little blood or scarring results from such mutilation acts.  Those who are faint of heart should not attend such ceremonies.
On the ninth and last day of the festival, which falls on 21st October this year, will see the firewalking and dipping hands into a cauldron of boiling oil.  I will be going as I look forward to this every year.  As a matter of fact, these ceremonies give me an adrenaline rush.  I get a Qi rush by being in such Yang charged activities.

This is definitely not recommended for the faint hearted to witness.

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