Avoid Bad Luck During Ghost Month
It will be from August 22 to September 19
By now, many of us are familiar with the dreaded Ghost Month. The Hungry Ghost Festival is a Taoist and Buddhist festival which usually falls on the seventh month (known as the Ghost Month) of the Chinese calendar. It is believed that the Gates of Hell are opened on the first day of the Ghost Month, allowing the ghosts and spirits of one’s ancestors to roam our world. It also honors the ancestors—as the family members offer food, light incense, and burn paper money for the spirits to use.
This year, the Ghost Month covers the period of August 22 to September 19. Some believe that spiritually, it will be a dangerous time—as spirits are believed to visit their families as well as exact revenge on those who wronged them. With such beliefs, many postpone important meetings, moving house, starting a business, and major construction work during this time. Whether you believe in the Ghost Month or not, it's not a bad thing thing to take note of a few reminders and pamahiin to stay safe during this inauspicious period. Check out the common beliefs below:
1. Keep the house well-lit.
Wandering ghosts are said to be attracted to dark and gloomy spaces. Keep a table lamp or any light source turned on in common areas. As much as possible, replace faulty bulbs and make sure they are in good working condition.
2. Don't wander at night.
Nighttime is considered the favorite time of spirits as they get stronger from the yin energy of the moon. Avoid going out at night, most especially with children and pregnant women, as they are believed to be more vulnerable to possession.
3. Postpone major renovation and construction projects.
Whether you're moving furniture around, planning to revamp the bathroom, or renovating the entire house, it's best to reschedule these projects after the Ghost Month. It is believed that spirits are captivated by noises like drilling and nailing. Use this time to gather pegs and bookmark pages for inspiration. By the time you meet with your designer, you're all set!
4. Light some incense.
You can light nine sticks of incense and go through each room in the house. This practice is believed to cleanse the spaces. You can do this every week during the Ghost Month.
5. Don’t kick, make fun of, or pick up offerings you find on the street.
You might be surprised to find several altars with food, money, and empty chairs set out on the streets during Ghost Month. These are not for you! These are offerings for the spirits, and if you kick, step on, make fun or pick up and take home these offerings you risk the wrath of the ghosts.
6. Avoid momentous events such as weddings or starting a business.
Put off special, life-changing events such as weddings until after the Ghost Month ends. It is believed that marriages started during this time will not end well. It is also considered inauspicious to start a business during the Ghost Month.
7. Stay calm when surprised, and be vigilant.
When you hear someone call you or tap you on the shoulder, do not just look over your shoulder. It is believed that doing so causes imbalance to your energy and will leave you susceptible to possession. Instead, turn your whole body around if someone calls you.
8. Avoid the excessive use of the colors black or red.
The colors black and red are believed to attract ghosts, and that wearing them during the Ghost Month is an invitation for them to follow you home.
PHOTOS: Dairy Darilag (Main) | Matanglawin (Temple) | Pexels and Pixabay (2, 3, 4) | Pat Martires
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