Sunday 15 August 2010

Singapore: Hungry Ghost month

Food for Hungry GhostsThe seventh month of the Chinese lunar calendar is known as the Ghost month (10 Aug - 7 Sept 2010). The fifteenth day of the seventh month is known as the Ghost Day when ghosts and spirits, including those of deceased ancestors, come out from the lower realm. The living must make offerings of food and burn prayer money to appease the souls of the dead.
Hungry Ghost karaoke - Zion Street hawker centre
Across the city, tables of food and offerings are appearing and groups of men can be seen standing around braziers burning wads of fake cash. No wonder there are no bananas in the shops.

It is also necessary to entertain the dead during this time. At the Zion Street hawker centre, a temporary stage had been created for locals to entertain the spirits with karaoke and dancing. The front row of tables and seats had been left empty for the spirit guests. Judging by the amount of food and drink being prepared, the spirits and their earthly counterparts were not going to go hungry.

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