Friday, November 29, 2013

Harnessing Ancestral Power

Many of the Indochinese ethnics are ancestral worshippers. If a person follows the traditional Thai magic systems, he or she would probably aware that ancestors and related spirits are summoned in the Waikru ritual. Without this ritual, one’s power is said to have no foundation and malevolent spirits may harm the person than helping him or she. Likewise the traditional Chinese would have an ancestral shrine dedicated to them such as the Lim Ancestral shrine just to name one example.  


Let’s say that one has been worshipping his or ancestors so far and this person has no relation or training in magic what so ever, then he or she can request the help from his or her ancestors in many ways:


Avoiding a divorce or family problems


Bring some offerings to the ancestral shrine. After you have presented the offerings, take two joss sticks; plug off the wooden legs. Light both ends of the incense and put them horizontally in the incense holder then ask for your ancestors to help.


Prolong one’s lifespan


If one’s life is deemed ending, then one can light an oil lamp in front of the ancestral tablets in the shrine and beg for the ancestors to help prolonging one’s life. After that the person must ask some rice from 100 households. When the rice collection is completed, he or she can burn some incense in front of his or her house and then throw the rice out as a present to the spirits. Or the rice can be donated to charity as a means to accumulate merit for our ancestors.


Blessing a child


When a child is born, it is customary to go to an ancestral shrine and light an oil lamp there. This gesture is to inform the ancestors that the child is part of the family member and that the ancestors should help and protect this child until his or her coming of life.


Chinese generally believe that if the spiritual linkage between a person and his ancestor spirits is severed, then he will be facing hardship and lonely in life. So if ancestor worship is part of your culture, and that you aren’t doing too well in life; try praying to your ancestors for help!

Mr. Ong has kindly sent me this additional ritual:

My dad left mom in China to earn a living in Malaysia alone. My grandmother performed a ritual with mother during seasonal offering to our ancestors. Both of them uplifted the offering table and made a 360 degree turn-around, and prayed for dad’s comeback. Few weeks later, dad went back to China, and came with mom to Malaysia through Singapore. Mom said similar ritual could be used to soften the heart of any family member who ran away to return home. 


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