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blues..
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Sep 13, 2012

இ WAKE


With less than only three days we would be looking forward to watch the assorted lanterns of all shapes and sizes to brighten up our streets after we bid farewell to the Hungry Ghost Month 鬼月 *Guǐ Yuè*. The most fearful 15th moon (full moon) of the 7th lunar month lunar where most Chinese believed the King of Hell opens the gates of hell allowing ghosts to visit the living world will be closed again on Sep 15, 2012.  When as a kid on the 15th moon (full moon) our old folks forbid us to roam the streets at night and we can only sing along with Creedence Clearwater Revival's Bad Moon Rising and the chorus goes like this... "Don't go out tonight, well it's bound to take your life, there's a bad moon on the rise'.




Western people have Halloween festival with similarity to the Chinese celebrating the Hungry Ghost Festival having the same purpose to honor the deceased.  The Hungry Ghost festival originated from China since the Liang Dynasty in 502 AD, it was then evolved into the present ZhongYuan Festival 中元節 *zhōng yuán jié* .  Much have been said by bloggers HappySurfer & Panda Foong about this ghostly festival, you can read them HERE and HERE and HERE. When we talked about ghost, death is closely associated and goes hand in hand. Both words are a strictly NO-NO particularly in this ghost month.  



image courtesy of www.themeapicture.com

This ghostly month Bananaz has attended two Chinese funerals, one Christian and the other Taoist and was wondering is there any correlation between death and Hungry Ghost Month?. These two funerals were before 15th moon (full moon) and hearsay if any seriously sick or dying person who can pull through the 15th moon will not likely to die soon. How true? As usual in funerals we have this traditional 'Wake' ceremony used to be held in the house of the deceased but as the years go by modern memorial parlours have mushroomed through out the country and gaining popularity among the public. According to Wikipedia 'wake' has evolved into the word "watch," and it is in this sense that people have a "wake" for someone who recently died. While the modern usage of the verb "wake" is "become or stay alert" meaning, a "wake" for the dead harks back to the antiquated "watch" or "guard" sense. This is contrary to the urban legend that people at a wake are waiting in case the deceased should "wake up". My grandma (mom's mother) woke up couple of minutes later after my mom and relatives dressed her up in those longevity dresses for the dead when she was pronounced dead by doctor. She lived for more than a decade thereafter the incident. Cannot imagine the helter-skelter if she should 'wake up' after placing her corpse into the casket. It is customary for Chinese to offer donation in a form of cash literary known as 'white gold' 白金 *bái jīn* or some may prefer giving a wreath. Colours are used to differentiate bereavement or wedding celebration thus 紅白喜事 *hóng bái xǐ shì* weddings & funerals. The red 紅 *hóng* signifies wedding and white 白 *bái* refers to funerals. 

63 Bunchesஇ:

wenn said...

yes, look at the color and we know if it's a wedding or a funeral..

[SK] said...

wooot!!! the Bananazஇ is back!! and back with a big talk about ghosts?? :p

Tekkaus said...

It's been...years? Haha :D Or was it months? :p

Tekkaus said...

Yes...colours can symbolizes a lot of things...more often than not it is used to differentiate ceremonies. Red is usually good right? Black reflects a sombre mode...

suituapui said...

Choi! Choi! Don't talk about bad things! Ptuiiii!!!! Wedding? In the 7th Month? I think most Chinese would not want to get married during this time.

Ah yes!!! Welcome back!!! Hope you're doing fine!

Cloudia said...

Here we go Bon Dancing. . .



Aloha from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral
=^..^=

> < } } ( ° >

> < } } (°>

Daisy said...

Welcome back! Very interesting post, Bananaz! I've never heard of Hungry Ghost Month. The Bill Gates and Steve Jobs picture made me laugh. :-)

Amelia said...

Hi Bananaz, welcome back! Good to see you back in action.

Thanks for sharing the wake up story.

Have a nice day, regards.

Small Kucing said...

welcome back! This means your eyes is better already ya?

Hmm...duno la...7th lunar month seems like many people will "Tong Tong Chiang". Ths month alone got 3 cases already that i know of.

yvonne said...

Welcome back, Bananaz! Miss you so~

White is associated with death? But nowadays brides wear white gown on their wedding days. Isn't it ironic?

Isaac Tan said...

happy mooncake festival ya

Isaactan.net

Bananazஇ said...

wenn இ people would differentiate attending ceremony by saying white or red.

[SK] இ Woot woot Bananaz is back haunting you with ghostly post haha.

Tekkaus இ 7 months into hibernation haha. Think most common we say either white or red ceremony. Got black ceremony?

Bananazஇ said...

suituapui இ attended one Indian Christian wedding dinner in Seremban recently. Both bride & groom are doctors and their father too. Guess the doctors has got no fear of the unseen beings. tQ am doing fine but with only one eye the right eye due for ops soon.

Cloudia இ let's go

Daisy இ glad you learn some ghostly festival & the windows & gates joke.

Bananazஇ said...

Amelia இ tQ been wanting to blog just heart & mind didn't sync haha.

Small Kucing இ tQ not really still using one eye hope to get right eye operated by month end.

yvonne இ tQ nice feelings to know Bananaz is being missed. Not on the colours of the dresses but as a way to distinguish the ceremonies. When someone says attending a white ceremony it refers to funeral. Closest example Bananaz can think of is, if the dress code for a dinner party says 'black tie' it means formal and not to wear a black tie. Hope this help.

Bananazஇ said...

Isaac Tan இ phew so much to handle with the do's & don't during ghost month. Yeah looking forward for a cheerful mooncake month in 3 days time. Happy moon cake festival to you and family.

lina said...

a new postgrom bananaz and itsinformative as always. :)

Yan said...

Yan attended a wake too just a week ago. My opposite neighbor, who was ill for many years, and became serious only in the month of 7th. After the day 15th, I thought she could pull through, but she still couldn't at the end. I offered her family 白金, after the funeral, her family offered me the angpow, 2 oranges and a pair of red candles for letting them use the space outside my house.

HappySurfer said...

Hello Bananaz! So good to have you back blogging! Welcome back!

Thank you so much for the links. I appreciate the kind gesture so very much. TQ again.

Yes, sure am glad that the 7th month is almost over and on to a more auspicious month of colorful and pretty lanterns and yummy mooncakes.

It is believed that more people "cross over" this time of the year than other months. The tomb-sweeping month is also much feared as well as major festivals which are considered like roadblocks esp for those seriously ill. The belief is, if (s)he can live through that festival, the life is extended until the next one or the next roadblock.

The incident about your grandma is interesting - first time I heard such a thing. Another decade is a long time to have lived after that.

It is also believed that buying a burial plot will enable the sick to extend his/her life. Not sure how far this is true though.

Along the same line of WAKE, your next assignment if you are up to it is: Find out about "Saved by the bell."

HappySurfer said...

Hope you are coping well with just one good eye until the other eye is corrected. Take care, ya?

Bananazஇ said...

lina இ tQ perhaps this would be the one post for Sep until my eye ops then break again it God's willing another post end of Sep.

Yan இ Oh then the hearsay about pulling through after the 15th moon is not that true after all. Wanted to go deeper about giving 'white gold' but can't get good resources and we Bananaz were asking around what is the English word for 'white gold' and sort of arrived & agreed that it's 'bereavement donation'.

Happy Surfer இ tQ for all the welcoming and its ma pleasure and should also thank you & Panda for the catalyst else would be still in 'hibernation'. I was too small then when that incident happened to mygrandma and not sure whether putting an umbrella over the coffin could prevent the corpse from 'waking' when a black car jumps over the coffin. Yeah heard and seen the buying pre-burial lot case it worked for some but not all people as my friend didn't make it maybe it was too late then. My late dad was a classic case. We practically grew up with a new coffin in our house, those scary huge old fashion type and my late dad bought the burial lot at age 50 with all the tombs done up. He passed on at age 92 years. He was not sick but a belief this will 'extend' and give him better fengshui.

Bananazஇ said...

HappySurfer இ Haha 'saved by the bell' think the latest era is to bury the hand phone together and renamed it 'save by the ring' instead. Good idea may do some research but may not have much to write about other then the pull string bell in the coffin unless could dig out some jokes about it. Coping OK with only one eye need more stops intermittently and after the ops would go for a new pair of reading glasses, sun glasses etc as the other eye is slowly out of focus. You take care too.

Keats The Sunshine Girl said...

Good to have you back! Yes, funeral parlours are quite top notch as I've witnessed.

Bananazஇ said...

Keats இ tQ glad to be back again after the long absence been missing lots of goodies over the months.

Leovi said...

Trojan horses are the most dangerous to build confidence.

London Caller said...

Bananaz, where have you been?
I thought you played buta tak nampak.
Suddenly you wake up.
We all got shocked now lah.
Now, I go peeing at night must switch on all lights.

You update me your old news lah.

Kian Fai Koh said...

Epic Bananaz Boss is Epic!

Ever since February til now, you have been missing long time period man . . . Welcome Back!!

Anyways, it is kind of scary about 'wake' method you had mentioned . . . and it often happen in other country such as taiwan (if no mistaken)

I attend red funeral before, it is my great grand-mother who pass-away when I was still in high-school. She is actually near 100 and my relative say that chinese calendar can add few years elder so they decide to put it in red . . .

this month hungry ghost for me got nothing special, but still . . . watching horror movie in premier screening and makes me imagine something terrible too lol

lucky I drive safe and nothing kacau me, I think me "Yang" Qi was more awesome! :)

Come comment my blog often bro, so I will be back for you too! *hug* (sometimes I really is a forgetful person)

mNhL said...

Hi...welcome back. It's been a long time......

I've heard of this news. One of my mum's relative suddenly woke up after doc pronounced her death. She lives for another few more years before really passed away. How scary. haha....

Bananazஇ said...

Leovi இ Yes they are extremely dangerous

London Caller இ Bananaz still alive and with leafy haha. Long story like a piece of cloth shall post em in your blog.

KianFaiKoh இ tQ never like any ghosts movie coz my mind can run wild for 3 days 3 nights very imaginative. Guess those great grands were made in China stronger bodies than local production haha. Sure will leave my peels in your box as often.

nNhL இ tQ great to be back and 'wake' after 7 months haha. That's the reason why many old folks still prefer burial instead of cremation hoping for a chance haha.

London Caller said...

What happened to you red eyes?
How could you kena again?
You watched which girl mandi ah? Ha ha..
You so kuning one. Ha!

Weddings in a row. Congrats!
You didn't send me red cards, no invitation?
OK lah, helped saving my ang pau money.

Tomorrow I go hiking in Austria.
I come back next week, you wait for me.
I buy you nice eye wash sourced from the Alps.
Very pure water can cleanse away any kotol things you watch one. Ha ha

Bananazஇ said...

London Caller இ CNY see people make so much with ton$ of money got eye red mah haha. tQ tQ tQ. You have fun in Austria yeah need crystal clear & pure Alps h2o for cleansing the eyes.

rainfield61 said...

So tomorrow will mark to start of a good month.

Many will get married, move in to new houses, etc.

I'll carry lanterns, looking for "Cang Er."

Leovi said...

That moon is wonderful.
Thank you very much, I hope your day be happy but missing the red colors.

Twilight Man said...

Welcome back Bananaz! I can we that you are so popular with sweet comments from far and near. Take care of your eyes and health. We need you to blog again forever!!

Bananazஇ said...

rainfield61 இ yeah the mid-autumn month would be full of wedding invitation, already have two invites this month. Hope you get to meet up with your 'Cang Er'.

Leovi இ So far so good no see red haha. tQ

Twilight Man இ tQ nice to know bloggers have not forgotten Pisang, Sure will love to blog forever if I could. tQ

Leovi said...

I hope the ghosts do not come to Spain.

Leovi said...

Yes, surprising for his grandmother.

Lrong said...

Good to be in contact with you again... autumn anywhere is really a nice season to cherish...

Autumn Belle said...

Bananaz, Welcome back! I thought the hantu gates already tutup, hence I am quite surprised when you start this as a comeback post. Talk about marriage mah, since already mid-autumn coming. Best of luck to you on your coming operation.

Charmaine Pua Li Ping said...

Welcome back Bananaz!
Hope your eyes are doing fine already! =)

Bananazஇ said...

Leovi இ too far for the ghost to go to Spain and cheap flights were closed after the 15th moon haha.

Lrong இ Yeah missed so much during the 7 month absence

Autumn Belle இ Not yet got 3 days more mah haha. tQ shall see if enough time to go for one more post. Talk about marriage, Chang 'Er story? haha

Charmaine இ tQ hope to come back soon after the ops.

foongpc said...

Bananaz is back? : D

foongpc said...

Thanks for the link! Appreciate it lots! : )

foongpc said...

LOL at the conversation between Jobs and Gates : D

foongpc said...

What?! Your grandma actually woke up after being pronounced dead by the doctor?!! And survived for more than a decade after that?! Wow!!!

foongpc said...

OK. the Hungry Ghost Festival is gone now. Let's look forward to MoonCake Festival! Yay!! : )

Leovi said...

Very interesting, I find it amazing the story of her grandmother.

Merryn said...

The thing is westerners CELEBRATES Halloween. We, chain ourselves at home the entire ghost month..

Bananazஇ said...

foongpc இ Yup Bananaz is back! Sorry being out of the scene too long. You are most welcome for the link. Yo looking forward for the mooncakes & the mid-Autumn festival.

Leovi இ There are more stories found in the internet. My late grandma's case is classic.

Merryn இ What to do still have th eold habits of taboos & fear haha.

Leovi said...

Behind the death? I think the answer is the same as for this other question: As created life?

EastCoastLife said...

yo bananaz,
Glad to see you back in action. Miss you leh! Best wishes for a successful op and we can have you back to blogging for good. :)

Quay Po Cooks said...

Hello my friend, welcome back. Miss reading your posts. Nasib baik, I married a HUNGRY GHOST, if not who is going to eat what I cook and bake everyday? LOL!

Yee Ling said...

Fuhh...after a long hiatus. Hello Bananaz! Hope your are doing great. 7th month has comes to an end...let's welcome the mooncake festival.

Netster said...

Do you scare of ghost iBananaz? :) Hope your eyes get well soon.

Leovi said...

No doubt you've queasy because my sea is ghostly. Greetings.

London Caller said...

Hello Bananaz!
How are you?
Just got from Austria.
So tired ah...
Not enough stamina to climb the mountains anymore.
Spent most of my energy on bed with gwaipo! Ha~

Bananazஇ said...

Leovi இ Always like to know the answer where do we go after death?

EastCoastLife இ Yo missed you guys too. Will be back soon now finalizing with the doctor most likely op next week. tQ

Quay Po Cooks இ tQ. QuayLO aka Ngoh Quay haha

Bananazஇ said...

Yee Ling இ Yah lost momentum need the extra push. Yes agree no more ghost for 8th month coming up with the mooncake thingy soon. tQ

Netster இ iBananaz scared of ghost would not see ghost movies can think of it 3 days 3 nights giving wild imagination. tQ

Leovi இ Wow ghostly sea huh..haha

London Caller இ What no stamina to climb mountains but climb the two mountains of gwaipo? Naughty naughty.

Leovi said...

Yes I see the ghost.

London Caller said...

Ha ha...
Like they say "no pain no gain" mah.
But going down the valley is easy lah.

Leovi said...

I find it somewhat strange word for a funeral celebration. To my only celebrated the joys.

Pete said...

Bananaz has been playing lantern kah? No wonder missing so long......longer than me leh....ha ha ha!

London Caller said...

Ha ha...
I didn't see Julie Andrews up in the hills though.
I went to see the Sound of Music in London a few years ago, bit disappointed.
The film was better than the musical. :)

Bananazஇ said...

Leovi இ Yup your pixz sync with our Chinese lunar ghost month, yes that should be the way celebration of life.

Pete இ You also MIA for some time after your prawns post but shorter that Bananaz. Wonder they do make banana shape lantern kay?

London Callerஇ Have not seen much musical but agree film should be nicer where its complete.

 
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