Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Etiquette Of Visiting Graves (種人園)

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 dreams.


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 to resist.

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 compensation.


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.

Living With Good Brothers (好兄弟)

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)

·         Earth bound spirits (地主)

·         Good brothers (好兄弟)

·         Anonymous person (無名氏)

·         Deity on the roof (屋上仙人)

·         White tiger (白虎)

·         Grandfather (Datuk)


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 simple:


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.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Tips On Avoiding Inauspicious Houses

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.

·         Before entering 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 area.


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.


Sunday, July 28, 2013

A True Story From Aunte Yan

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’.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

It Is Not Ghost!

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.


He tried 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!”


After 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’.


When every 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 himself!


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…”


According 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!”


Hmm… you 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?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ghost Stories From Phuket

Earthquake 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!”


The driver’s 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 passenger seat!”


“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 at him!”


Well, to 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.

Eaten Alive By Bach Ho (白虎)

‘Bach Ho’ 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.


There is 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 away.


In 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!


As everyone 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!”


Hence, Andy 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.


A Social Escort’s True Experience

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?”


My replied 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.


The Baby Spirit That Never RIP

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.


Due to 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.


As recalled 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 imagination.


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!”


Ms Choo 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.


Friday, July 19, 2013

Staying In Haunted House (II)

For those 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.


For the 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.


This ghost 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.


Seemed the 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.


It was 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 RITUAL!”


Now, do you believe my story?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Coffin Nails In Taoist Magic (棺材钉)

A lady 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?


Coffin 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.


If coffin 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.


Then and again, I supposed the coffin nail bracelet can also be dipped into the rice water for 7 days and be worn after tat too.


Related links:


Borrowing Money From Our Ancestor (借陰財)

I think 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.


Borrowing money from spirit is nothing new, but such money once obtained must be done for good course. The method is pretty simple:


When you 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.


After that 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.


You should 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.


Please do 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.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Some Simple Lu Shan Magic (閭山派)

Lu Shan sect is one of Taoist sect as with Mao Shan. Basically there are two types of Lu Shan Taoists:


·         Ceremonial sacrifices and ceremonial drama specific (祭禮與儀式戲劇)

o   Offering rituals during festive, blessing ceremony

o   Deliverance ritual for the dead

o   Normally lengthy and large scale rituals that may last for days

o   Expensive and involve a group of Taoist and sometimes an orchestra

o   Somehow similar to the Chinese Opera

·         Magic specific (巫術)

o   Exorcism, cursing, blessing, black magic etc.

o   Simple and most of the time only involve one or two person

o   Voodoo type of magic


We will 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)


This ritual 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)


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


When you 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.

There are 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.