/ Yu Laan Festival
Establishment History: 1897
There are different tales from Buddhism and Taoism traditions about the origin of the Yu Lan Hungry Ghost Festival. The Taoists called it the “Ghost Festival”. According to the legend, the “gates of hell” opens every July for the unclaimed souls to return to accept offerings. Buddhist tradition tells the tale of Mu Lin saving his mother. From generations to generations, people organize Yu Lan Ghost Festival to pray for redemption and good karma for their ancestors and the lonely souls.
Hong Kong Chiu Chow Yu Lan ghost festical began in 1897. The traditional ceremony has been officiated by the community for generations. Yu Lan Ghost Festival starts from the first day of the seventh lunar month and continues until the end of that month. There are more than a million people originating from Chiu Chow in Hong Kong who actively carry on this tradition, with more than 60 active Yu Lan clubs. Having been held for more than 100 years, the festival is to offer sacrifices to ancestors and the wandering ghosts in the netherworld. The main activities include burning incense and joss papers, performing live Chinese operas and dramas for the ghosts, distributing auspicious rice and auctioning auspicious objects.
又稱「神壇」、「天地父母棚」。神案 前排擺放香爐,盡頭處是三組巨大的 帝冠、腰帶和長靴。The God shed
Also known as the “Altar” or the “Heaven and Earth parents Shed.” In front of the shed is an incenses pot. At the end, there are three huge objects – the imperial crown, the belt and the boots.
棚裡正對「經師棚」的是大士王又稱「鬼 王」。由竹架紙糊扎作而成約四米高,潮州的大士王青面獠牙,面目猙獰,雙腳站立,右手微抬,左手高舉 。主要恐防各方餓鬼雲集互相搶食, 用以維持秩序。在第三天夜 晚普渡結束時便舉行「化大士王」儀式,將大士王像焚燒,恭送大士。
Shrine of the King of Ghosts
Opposite the shed is the shrine of the King of the Ghosts. The paper statue is approximately 4 meters high. His face is green with grim teeth, both his feet are standing; his right hand rises a little while the left hand rises up. His angry face helps maintaining order so that the hungry ghosts dare not to strike for food first. On the third evening of the festival, there will be a ceremony to burn the paper statue and send him back to the under earth.
Yu Laan Festival Video Recording