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You might wonder what the
hell this person is talking about; the grave is just a place for the
dead to rest. Some people jokingly call the graveyard as “human plantation” (種人園). Well for the most of us,
the graveyard is indeed a resting place for the dead body and a roaming place
for the unsettled spirits. Bearing this in mind, there are some etiquettes to
follow during grave visits:
Please don’t say pity if the person died young
This is an old story
happened few years ago in Taiping. A young man known by the name Ah Ming visited a
graveyard in Pokok Assam together with his parents during Ching Ming period. As
Ah Ming’s parents presented their offerings on the grandpa’s grave; Ah Ming
wandered about in the vicinity to do grave hopping due to boredom.
Just next to grandpa’s
grave, it is the grave of a pretty young lady with her photo attached to the
tomb stone. Ah Ming pondered in front of the lady’s grave and said, “She was so
pretty; pity she die young. Otherwise I want to marry her.”
After wandering off for a
while, Ah Ming was called to light some incense to pay respect to his late
grandpa. Soon it was time for Ah Ming and family to return home. Strange things
happened about 3 days later…
Ah Ming started to fall
into long sleep; i.e. from 3 to 7 days and according to Ah Ming’s mother, this
condition persisted for around 5 years. It was said that Ah Ming had wet dreams
almost every day during the period. As recalled by Ah Ming, a girl resembling
the one on the grave came to him and slept with him and wanted to be his wife.
He tried to resist but failed as the lady spirit seemed to have upper hands
most of the time.
When I saw Ah Ming, he was
very thin and pale. His temple area frowned and he could hardly open his eyes.
These are the very signs that one has overly indulged on masturbation or wet
I figured that Ah Ming’s condition
wasn’t very serious, so I performed an exorcism and send the lady spirit away.
Please don’t pass motion anywhere you think convenient
A young man, Mr. A
complaint about being disturbed by a ghost for a month or so, he was not himself
and felt drowsy. His limbs shook uncontrollably and felt asleep after he felt
tired. He couldn’t work so his boss asked him to take a long sick leave.
Mr. A’s parent went to
consult a doctor but was told that the man wasn’t sick and they went to consult
a medium and were told that Mr. A has urinated onto a lady’s tombstone. Whatever
the answers they received, the young man continued to be in semi-comma state,
according to him; there were many people yelling and cursing non-stop near his
ears. Mr. A also has many wet dreams with uncounted female spirits. Though he
knew the ghosts are coming to get him, Mr. A couldn’t resist nor has the energy
After listening to Mr. A’s
story, I negotiated with the spirits and they promised to leave Mr. A alone if
Mr. A would give them some food offerings and burn some joss papers for them as
I know; I hear you might
say: “Go away, Satan!” to the spirits.
Personally, I have not
tried it yet as I believe in a win-win strategy.
The best thing is not to
purchase a haunted house. But many friends who have brought such houses would
normally want to hurriedly sell off their properties; I assure you that this is
not necessary provided your religion allows you to compromise with these good
brothers of course.
The ‘good brothers’ are in fact the local
spirits known by many names:
·Wandering spirits (游魂野鬼)
·Good brothers (好兄弟)
·Anonymous person (無名氏)
·Deity on the roof
·White tiger (白虎)
First and foremost, you
should determine the spirits are the only problem: no other bad Feng Shui
elements exist. But I can assure you 90% of the time a house with a spirit is
an inauspicious house or the spirits wouldn’t have any chances to linger on.
Normally a haunted building is normally used as a warehouse, factory, office
building or automobile repair shops where no one really stays there after dark.
The basic steps are pretty
1.Choose a spot in the compound or house that you think
there are spirits.
2.You should prepare some food offerings and arrange
them on some old news paper or on a table. You should also prepare some incense
sticks and joss paper.
3.After everything is set, say the below prayers or
something like that: “You came first and I come later. I mean no harm, if you
are willing to help me in my business and daily jobs; I am willing to offer you
food and drinks every week/month etc. If you agree give me a sign!”
4.Take two 10 cents coin and throw them onto the
ground. You must get a favorable respond.
5.It is also advisable to prepare a small shrine or a
small altar beside the earth god’s altar for the good brothers. You may get a piece
of wood tablet and write one of the above titles in black. This is to prevent
the spirits from wandering off and scare your family or workers.
Finally, very important:
Please don’t let the good brothers know when you want to sell the house or move
away; or they will follow you to where ever you go.
Many potential first time
house buyers asked me the same question:
“What are the quick and
easy ways to know if a house is decent enough for a family to stay in without
consulting a Feng Shui master?”
Well, to answer the
question, there are many:
·Bring your young child,
children or pets to visit the premise. If a child laughs and runs about
playing; then the place is good. If the child starts crying unusually loudly;
then it is time to take a hike. Likewise if your dog barks at a spot in a house
but there isn’t anything around; think twice on getting the house.
·If you feel dizzy,
nausea, giddy or getting goose bumps; forget about the house. Likewise, if
there is a persistently strange strong smell; especially towards certain
corner, leave the house alone.
the main door of the house, first step over the door brim with your left foot
and pause for a second or two; what do you feel? If you hear high pitch sound
near your ears, forget about the house. If you feel that the empty house is as
if filled with people, again; forget about owing the house.
·Don’t visit the
house during rainy days only… the moisture will daunt your 6th
senses. This is a trick many real estate agents like to use. If you are serious
about the property, visit the location at various times: in the morning and evening;
during rainy days and sunny days alike.
·Enquire about the
past history of the house and land: the house may be built on former cleared cemetery
Although the above tips are
tested and true, it is still best to consult an expert as your one time
investment may be your worst nightmare for the rest of your life. There are
just too many details that cannot be seen by our naked eyes.
Aunte Yan is working in a
beauty salon in Ipoh and she was once a practitioner of Nichiren Shoshu (日蓮正宗) and worshipping Dai
Gohonzon. The below story is told by her regarding her personal experience:
As you know I was a follower of Nichiren Shoshu worshipping Dai
Gohonzon. The incense holder is as if a rectangular box where the incense once
lit is put horizontally in the rectangle box. There is a small bell that needs
to be stroked after every mantra recitation; and a small cup of plain water
also need to be prepared in front of the incense burner. The water will need to
be consumed the next morning.
I have a friend, Kim who has psychic vision and can see spirits; all
types of spirits. One day Kim came to my beauty salon but she
immediately fainted on entering my salon. I hurriedly sent Kim to hospital
where Kim was unconscious for full 7 days.
My intuition told me that was the working of Dai Gohonzon and I was so
frighten that Kim may die by the punishment of Dai Gohonzon, so I immediately
packed all of the stuffs realted to Nichiren Shoshu and throw the package into
Kinta River and let the package flow away. There was heavy rain and strong wind
right after what I have done.
It was quite a miracle that Kim regained consciousness right after I returned
from Kinta River. As narrated by Kim later that she bumped into a gigantic Sumo
wrestler who was trying to take her life but fortunately the spirit can only
possess her body but couldn’t harm her; added to that it was the right timing
for me to put all my stuffs for a ‘float test’.
This is quite
a well known hilarious personal story about a supposedly haunted house; many famed
mediums and masters have their good names tarnished due to this surprisingly
simple incident. The story goes like this:
There was always
a pool of water on the master bedroom floor of a semi-detached house. Majority
of the building materials are granite and mirrors. The house owner hasn’t got a
clue on the source of water as there were no signs of roof leaks, nor is there
any water sources in the center.
many methods to trace the leakage but couldn’t find any reasonable
explanations. So the wife went to consult some mediums and spiritual masters
and got a fairly unanimous reply: “There is a water spirit in your house!”
spending quite a handsome amount of money on exorcism rituals, and yes; they
even employ Taoists all the way from Taiwan and Hong Kong to perform ritual.
The pool of water kept showing up in the living room, especially from midnight
to 4 a.m.; the so called ‘witching hours’.
available spiritual source are exhausted, there were talks to sell the house as
it seemed that the spirit was so powerful and not even the gods or demons could
expel it. Some even suggested that the spirit in the house is the devil
One day, my
pal Mr. Lee who was an air-conditioning service engineer went to visit the
house after receiving complaint from the house owner that the air-conditioning
was not functioning properly. So Mr. Lee the engineer set an appointment and
went to answer the call.
After a few
rounds of checking, Mr. Lee said to the house owner: “There is nothing wrong
with your air-cond. Only that, the blowers are set to blow at the roof causing
the lower part of the living room received not enough air circulation… Not only
that, the continuous air blowing onto the ceiling has caused condensation on
the master bedroom… Since the air-conditioning was functioning almost 24 hours,
the ceiling felt below the dew point temperature of its surrounding and water
collected gradually on the bedroom floor…”
to Mr. Lee, as soon as the house owner heard his words, his face turned blush
and spanked the back of his head with his right palm while exclaiming: “Oh my
God! I spent all my money on all those buckers and nearly sold my house cheap!”
must be thinking why the basic scientific knowledge we learnt in our primary
school didn’t strike the brains of all the spiritual human beings huh?
at the outer cost of Sumatera on December 26th, 2006 caused
catastrophic Tsunami to South India, Sumatera, west cost of Malaysia and
southwestern part of Thailand. Phuket Island was one of the areas badly hit by
the tidal wave and hence gave forth to many ghost stories. Below are some of
the ghost stories I heard from a taxi driver when I last visited Phuket Island
quite a while ago:
“Mister, do you believe it or not? I have
personally seen ghosts! A few weeks after the tsunami, when I was passing Patong
Street; I saw a group of foreigners singing and laughing by the roadside. When
I was driving pass them, I habitually pressed my car horn to attract their
attentions just in case they would like to have a ride. But when some of them
turned their heads, I got the shock out of my living daylight: their heads were
swelling as if being soaked in the water for a very long time with some of the
eye balls fallen off from their eye sockets!”
story intrigued me a lot, so I instigated him to tell me more. This gentleman
didn’t disappoint me so I asked him to pull over a Tomyam restaurant by the
roadside to fill his stomach while listening to his stories:
“There was a famous haunted hotel where all of
the people in the hotel died during the tsunami. The hotel is now being
reconstructed. One of my colleges who had fetched a male passenger to the
abandoned hotel but the passenger vanished into thin air on arrival. There was
no sign of door opening or closing; what was left was a pool of water at the
“There was another incident happened to another
driver at the same hotel: the driver went pass the hotel at midnight but
noticed a lady was waving her hands indicating she wanted a ride. But he remembered
the ghostly happenings and decided to step on his gas and speedily away. The
strange thing was that the lady seems to be always in front of the taxi waving
tell you the truth I was a little skeptical; but since the story teller was so convincing
himself, why not just sit back and enjoy the stories.
or white tiger can mean a lot of things. In Chinese astrology calculations, it
means the yearly star in conflicts with the white tiger star. In serious case,
this may result in bloodshed injuries or even death; or in lighter case a
person may be involved with court cases, robbery or slander.
another type of white tiger; this type of white tiger means the wandering
spirits especially the forceful ones. Anyone who met with these types of
spirits will be in bad luck or suffer strange illnesses. Normally the spirits
are not really white in color; they are grayish white or even grey. They like
to hide in a person’s shoulder, back and waist. This will cause a person to
suffer from sickness and unknown body pain. In this case, a Taoist should be
employed to perform a ritual to cast off white tiger and send the tiger off far
Vietnamese magic, Bach Ho Ngai is a type of ginger plant said to be as fierce
as a white tiger. The below story is told to me by Andy Lau, a Vietnamese Ngai
master living near Ho Chi Min City. Ngai magic is pretty much feared off in
Vietnamese society still. The Ngai plants are believed to be able to consume
eggs or even live chicks. I have heard of the story that live chicks are left amongst
the Ngai plants at night and only feathers left in the morning. Although there
are no records that an Ngai plant can consume real human, they are believed to
be harmful to children.
Another story has
it that a young mother brought her 3 year old child to see Andy for a favor. The
mother presented all her offerings to the gods, goddess and the Ngai spirits. To
prevent her child from wandering off, she asked her child to sit beside the
food offerings so that she can have a watchful eye on the child. When
everything is ready, Andy started to chant to call upon the spirits to come and
consume the offerings and grant wishes. As the chanting was progressing half
way, the child suddenly collapsed onto the floor and that caused a commotion.
Everyone hurried to the child but only found the child was not breathing and
apparently he was dead!
was wandering on what had caused the mishap, Andy fell into a trance.
Apparently a Bach Ho spirit has possessed Andy. So an elderly man approached
the Bach Ho and asked about the fatality. The Bach Ho spoke through Andy’s
mouth: “I thought the child was my food!”
always cautions people not to bring a child near a Bach Ho Ngai plant. I
supposed the warning applied to all sorts of spirits as well.
Alice is my
customer, and I am her customer. This is a very bold lady I can assure you that
the word ‘fear’ is and will never be printed in her dictionary. Due to Alice’s
financial difficulty, she rented a small room upstairs a pre-war shop lot in
Georgetown. She complaint many times concerning strange happenings in her room
but due to reasonable low rental, she forced herself to stay on. That’s how we
got to know each other.
This is one
of her most remarkable stories I have ever heard in her own words:
“As you know, my room is pretty much haunted by
a lady spirit of the former tenant of this pre-war building. It told me in my
dream that it meant no harm but requires someone to set up an altar to worship
her daily. At first I was very reluctant and tried to fight this spirit with
all that I can. One night, it came into my dream again and I asked what it
wanted from me. The spirit repeated her demand that it wanted to have someone
give offering for the rest of the person’s life.
So I braved myself and asked the lady spirit
what it can give in return. The answer was pretty straight forward: whatever my
heart desire was. Since I am a gambler, I replied that I wanted the spirit to
give me 4 digit numbers. The spirit at once murmured a set of numbers and asked
me to put my bet the next day.
The next morning, I copied the number onto a
piece of paper and kept reminding myself that I must remember to bet on that
day. I think luck was not on my side, before I wanted to go a Magnum outlet; my
mahjong pal rang me up and asked if I was interested in a few rounds of mahjong
games, they were lacking one participant and would like me to fill in the gap.
You know that the mahjong game can go on and on
for hours. By the time I got out from my pal’s place, it was already 12 midnight.
Apparently I have missed my chance of betting on the number. So I thought no
big deal and hit my bed immediately on returning to my room. It was indeed to
my horror that the 4 digit numbers the spirit gave to me strike first prize!
Apparently not only my chance of winning 1st prize flied, I also
lost quite a lot of money during yesterday’s mahjong game.
The lady spirit appeared to me again and put
forward her demand. But I said to the spirit I have not won any money as I didn’t
bet on the number. The spirit didn’t accept my explanation and still keep on pestering
me ever since. Do you have any method to put a stop on this?”
was pretty simple: just do what the spirit wanted, since it has given a very accurate
number; it can certainly help her in achieving her wish. I supposed Alice
finally gave in to the spirit’s demand and set up a small altar for the spirit.
Apparently the spirit was true to help Alice as now Alice is a proud owner of a
small beauty salon. Though she moved to her new house, she continued to make
offering to the spirit in her new house.
This is the
personal story of Ms Choo. About 16 years ago Ms Choo was only in her 20’s.
Unfortunately after having intimate act with her boy friend she got pregnant.
None of the couple wanted the baby as they were still young and were not
financially sound to support a family. So they resolved to have an abortion.
guilt, Ms Choo decided to set up a tablet beside her earth god’s altar for the
baby spirit in the hope at least the little spirit would have a place to stay.
About 5 years later, Ms Choo married her boy friend Kenny. The couple has a
beautiful baby girl whom they named Lisa.
by Ms Choo that Lisa was a strange girl, by the time Lisa was about 4 years
old; she started to play with an imaginary ‘brother’. Ms Choo of course,
brushed this incident a side and thought that was the little girl’s vivid
The fate of
Ms Choo took an about turn as Kenny was involved in a work related accident and
killed. About a week passed Kenny’s funeral, Lisa ran to Ms Choo and said, “Mummy,
mummy! I saw koko (brother) is with daddy in the living room!”
tried to keep her cool this time and asked Lisa how old was the ‘big brother’
was then. Lisa immediately said that the ‘koko’ was about 10 years old and Ms
Choo almost fainted as it was about the age of her aborted baby!
So, Ms Choo
wanted to know what went wrong. I told Ms Choo that she should remove her
deceased baby’s tablet; it is precisely that the tablet and daily worship of this
little spirit made it to linger on in this world. What Ms Choo done is same as
keeping a kid spirit, a toyol or a Kumanthong.
people who have not seen a ghost before, they must be very eager to find out
the true experience of coming face to face with one of this spiritual brother
and sisters. I have many personal encounters with spirits about 20 odd years
ago when I was still in college studying my engineering diploma in Ipoh.
ease of travelling, I rented an apartment just opposite my college. It was a
three room apartment on the 4th floor of a building. At that time, I
frequently felt heavy breathing with excessive exhaling of air between 11pm to
3am. It is a kind of difficult to describe the feeling then… it was as if a dreamy
state but seemed a little hard to awake and open my eyes. My instinct told me
that it was a red shirt lady spirit who liked to strangle my throat causing me
to have difficulty in breathing and that I had to struggle for a fairly long
time before the spirit satisfied and decided to leave me for the day. I often woke
up with excessive palpitation.
To tell you
the truth, I couldn’t really make out of its face, my impression was that it
appeared to me as a bluffed figure; much like that of an out of focus photo.
However, I can vividly remember it was wearing red gown but its face was
without any features.
in red almost visited me everyday normally when I was about to fall into deep
sleep. Gradually it also visited me during day time when I was having my
afternoon nap. The spirit tormented me for about 6 months until I almost at the
brink of nervous breakdown.
luck was on my side: One of my distant relative known as Ah Pek who was a
Taoist came to visit me. After he learnt of my ordeal, Ah Pek gave me 7 color threads
and asked me to tie the threads onto my left wrist. After that he pulled three
pieces of hairs from the top of my head and attached them onto the head of a
paper manikin. The manikin was then plugged into a ceramic bowl filled with 5
types of beans. This assembly was then put in front of my bed, near to my head.
Ah Pek also
put some old coins below my bed and asked me to reverse my sleep position: now
my legs would be in my usual head’s position. Ah Pek also asked me not to
recite any mantra and pretend business as usual. Soon it was my bed time and I
followed Ah Pek’s advices 100%. Well, no harm trying don’t you think so? To my
surprise that I slept soundly throughout the night, only felt someone was
tickling my feet.
Ah Pek came
and visited me the next morning for breakfast. He took a piece of red cloth and
wrapped everything with it and then he took the threads on my wrist to tie the
bundle. We decided to go to Ipoh old town to try out the ‘koay teao’ soup and
when we passed the Kinta River, we threw the thing into the river.
interesting to know that the spirit never returned until my graduation day. It
was my last night in Ipoh, and I sat in the balcony to chat with a few friends
until past midnight. Once I have learnt that a friend of mine has similar experiences,
I told him of this method. You will never believe what followed next… Then
there came from distance a female voice screamed: “PERNG! DARE YOU REVEAL YOUR
asked me this question: my friend gave me a bracelet made of coffin nails. Why
is it that after I have worn it I always feel not myself, having bad dreams and
most of all my luck has not turn better?
nails, also called ‘soul catching nail’ (镇魂钉). Coffin nails are normally used in set of
seven. It is believed that the soul can rest in peace when a coffin is secured
by coffin nails. However, coffin nails can also be used to calm soul, remove inauspiciousness
and to bring in luck and also prosperity.
To tell you
the truth, coffin nails are used as they are: in their original shape. I have
not heard if coffin nails can be worn as jewelry.
nails are to be used to ward off evil and to protect a house, they can be hung
on top of the main entrance. On the other hand, if one wanted to be prosperous,
then dip the coffin nails into gluttonous rice water for 7 days. After that, retrieve
the nails and put into a red bag together with three pieces of one’s hair. This
bag is then put under one’s bed. That’s all to it.
again, I supposed the coffin nail bracelet can also be dipped into the rice
water for 7 days and be worn after tat too.
those people who have borrow money from their friends and any other external
resources would agree with me that the only persons who are more likely to give
us money are our parents or even our grandparents.
money from spirit is nothing new, but such money once obtained must be done for
good course. The method is pretty simple:
are visiting your ancestor’s grave, bring along a piece of red cloth. First you
should knell now in front of your ancestor’s grave and state your intention
briefly and promised your ancestor that you will use the money for emergency
and for good course only.
take a piece of dirt from the top of the grave and wrap it with the red cloth.
Bring the packaged back to your house and then prick your thumb to draw a drop of
your own blood onto the dirt; signifying you are from your ancestor’s bloodline.
If you have an altar for worshipping your ancestors, then put the grave dirt on
the altar to worship together.
routinely make offering to your ability including a pair of white candles and
three pieces of joss sticks to your ancestor on the 7th, 14th
and 24th day of every single month to the ancestor. After you have
presented the offerings, you should kneel down in front of the grave dirt and
ask for the ancestral spirit’s graceful help and protection.
not forget to return the dirt to the grave and not throw it away after you have
achieved your goal. Otherwise, what is given to you will fly away as well.
sect is one of Taoist sect as with Mao Shan. Basically there are two types of
Lu Shan Taoists:
sacrifices and ceremonial drama specific (祭禮與儀式戲劇)
rituals during festive, blessing ceremony
ritual for the dead
lengthy and large scale rituals that may last for days
and involve a group of Taoist and sometimes an orchestra
similar to the Chinese Opera
cursing, blessing, black magic etc.
and most of the time only involve one or two person
type of magic
leave the ceremonial drama alone for the time being as it will be an extensive
topic to discuss about. Let me introduce you some simple Lu Shan magic that
anyone can practise:
Purification of the salt and rice ritual (鹽米破穢法)
is quite common to other Taoist system; it is mainly used to purify the unholy
energies and spirits. It is best to use sticky rice mixed with salt and throw
the mixture around a haunted area, onto the head of a possessed person or throw
the mixture into water for bathing.
Stopping a child from crying at night (止小孩夜啼)
If there is
a child cry nonstop at night and there is a reason that there is the play of
spiritual realms, then take the salt-rice mixture and spread it all over the
child’s body, after that write “閭山陳大夫人在此百無禁忌” on a piece of red paper and then
paste it in front of the bed.
Removing evil spirits after night out (除夜行遇鬼)
Prepare a new dust brush
and tie a piece of red cloth. Hang the brush on the left side of your main
entrance. On the event that you return at night and feel something is following
you then use the brush to brush from your head to toe a few times.
Treating spirit possession
suspect a person is possessed, then prepare a bowl of water and two pieces of
red chopsticks. Encircle the chopsticks over the head of the possessed and then
dip them into the bowl. If the chopsticks can stand up, that means there is a
spirit in the person. Tell the spirit to leave the body and then take 13 pieces
of joss paper; encircle the paper on the person’s head and toe three times. Go
out of the house, the further the better and burn the paper.
of course many more simple but effective rituals to deal with daily spiritual
related situations. Suffice for now for a few examples. Perhaps we can look into the ceremonial sacrifices and drama for those who are more interested in the cultural studies.