Sunday, May 31, 2015

Beware Of Fake Monks & Nuns Too (假和尚,假尼姑)


Sometime ago, in morning wet market in Malaysia, we could see many Theravada monks standing at the entrance of the market collecting donations. These monks can also be seen during lunch time and night at hawker centers selling Thai amulets.

Even though the activities of these monks of questionable identities had been exposed now and then in mass media; the shadows of them persisted at where the crowds are. Perhaps our local Buddhist Associations just hasn’t the power to curb these unscrupulous parties.

Just fairly recently, a friend from Europe also being disturbed by two apparently fake Chinese monks and nuns asking for donations and selling Guan Yin amulets. I didn’t know that now days, even Europe is being besieged by fake Chinese monks and nuns too! Perhaps the local Buddhist Associations too are also sleeping?

Fact about donation collection

A monk or nun should not accept money from anyone at any time especially outside of the temple. It is not a norm for a Mahayana monk to seek donation from general public more so to sell amulets. Theravada monks would only come out in the morning to ask for alms as they only eat one meal a day. Of course, they do not ask for cash from others.

What to do?

There are many things a person can do when the identity of a monk or nun is in suspicion:

·         Take a photo of the person and ask for his/her ID and his/her temple.
·         Ask the person to show the Permit for Donation.
·         Call the police to investigate.
·         Alert local Buddhist Association.
·         Walk away.
·         Alert the local community watch (this works faster).


As we all know that unscrupulous people would take advantage of our compassion heart to dig into our pocket. If one incident is not check, then tomorrow we shall see the number of fake monks and nuns increased by many folds just like epidemic. Perhaps by then, no one would believe in Buddhism anymore. Not a bad news for others though.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Field Investigation On Spirit Possession DIY (鬼附体调查)


Even if one does not involve in magic, in one’s lifetime; a person will have some opportunity to come face to face with ghost possession scenarios. This posting is a reference for parents, husbands, wives, concern friends or supervisors a like on how to probe with spirit possession investigation Do-It-Yourself before calling for an appropriate help.

Safety first

Preferably one should not perform an investigation alone especially the location is out in the field. On the site, please always stand face to face with the said possessed person and always keeping a watchful eye on the person. It is best not to have one’s back facing a window or a railing especially at height. In all cases, all activities should be performed at a safe place.

Data to collect before hand

As with any other investigation work, it is good to run a background check on the target if the person is a total stranger:

·         Name, date of birth, gender, work, address
·         A general description of the person’s recent condition
·         A person’s photo

Things to bring

There are some basic things one should bring along and please let others know where you are going and below things would be in order:

·         A bunch of keys
·         Phone (to call for help in case emergency)
·         A watchful eye

Actual investigation

1.      Approach the said possessed person from front and test his/her reaction. If it is a violent reaction then keep a safe distance.
2.      Start talking to find his/her reactions to verbal communications. If the respond is clear and logical, then the person is not possessed or insane.
3.      Start reciting mantras or prayers, if it is a genuine spirit possession; the person should show some kind of reactions. If there is no reaction, then take out the keys and swing them to produce some noise. Spirits would feel agitated against the sound of metals. If there is still no reaction, then chances are that the person is not genuinely possessed by spirits.
4.      In that case, approach the person and hold his/her hands or feet. If the body temperature is normal, then the person is not possessed. A possessed person would feel cold and sticky.
5.      Take the person’s pulse, if the pulse is normal and slow; the person is not possessed. A possessed person’s pulse would be faster than normal.
6.      Check his/her eyes. If there is no abnormal red or black vines and that the eye white is clear; then the person is not possessed.
7.      Check the person’s reaction towards instructions such as “I want to write something, please give me a pen.” If the person obliged, and hands you a pen; then the person is not possessed.
8.      Observe the person’s eye movements, if they are rapid and the eyes are bright; then the person is definitely NOT possessed.

Making conclusions

Now that we have enough information to conclude if further action is required:

1.      If a person is indeed possessed, then the spirits need to be exorcised. Unlike common belief, exorcism rituals can take 3 months to 6 months. In very rare case that a ghosts can be expelled in one setting.
2.      If the person is not possessed, then the only link to his/her problem is mental depression, insane or melancholy. There are many reasons for melancholy and one of them is the victim of deviant cults.
3.      Personal reasons: it may be simply the need to attract attention, donation or to earn respect amongst the community. This situation can be found in places where people are afraid of ghosts.

Further actions

According to one’s condition, further action may be in order especially if you are the one who can make decision:

·         The patient must be isolated from current environment. Please remember that it is at this environment that he/she has suffered his/her present suffering.
·         Seek modern psychiatry help.
·         If the person is in need for income to sustain life, then he/she should be retrained for new skills.
·         If the person needs religious counseling, then it is best to find a reputable character in religion for proper guidance.
·         Whatever situation it may be, the patient should be walked through together during the healing process and not be let alone.

Hands off

Unless the patient is one of the family members or close one, there are not many things one can do except giving out advices. The reason is that over tempering into other’s family issue is not a welcoming gesture to some conservative societies. So, it is best to hands off when you feel it is time.


It is good to make notes of your observations. It is also my hope that the above observations would be helpful for anyone who suffers from spirit possession issues. This would also be one of my few active postings for quite a while. This deviant cult issue is getting on my nerve.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Beware Of Deviant Cults (谨防邪教)

Deviant cults do not fall into the curriculum of traditional religions or of any standard magical systems. Even magic traditions have a set of training that can determine if one is going the correct way. Deviant cult has no self checking facility hence there is no psychic protection whatever for the followers. Most of the spirits contacted are of lower spirit realms.

Before I go on, let me share two news clippings about what harm can deviant cults do:

1.      On 10:19pm, January 15, 2015 a lady suffered from mental depression suspected of victim of deviant cults strangled her mother while screaming that her mother was a devil…
2.      On August 9, 2012 8 relatives suffocated a 3 year old girl with human pyramid. Worth mentioning that there is teacher, PhDs, masters etc. amongst those people

And I believe the above is just a few cases surfaced in Penang…

Perhaps the mentality of our local Chinese communities are going down the drains as most of these deviant cult practitioners are of highly educated and well to do folks…

What are the characteristics of deviant cults?

While the standard religions, magical streams and deviant cults practise meditation; meditation practice in deviant cult are quite different. In some cases practitioners would feel that some entities have entered into their body and that their heads and bodies would start to shake. Gradually these people would lose consciousness and possessed. This is the same as medium training.

There may be voices telling the persons that that are gods of higher realms that are coming into contact with them. And if these unwary folks believed what was said, then their bodies would be taken over by these spirits whatever that may be. The serious ones would become crazy or mentally unstable as both of the above cases.

After the initial meditation experiences, followers of deviant cults can speak through their tongues of seemingly nonsense to our ordinary ears. For example:

“By the 5th day of Buddha’s birthday, the Guan Yin would come to save the world…”
“We must go to the top of a mountain and fast for 49 days without clothing…”
“Everyone is ghost except I…”
“I am the reincarnation of Amitabah…”

Anyone who goes beyond this stage would be near insane in the eyes of others as these deviant cult followers would do many out of ordinary things such as the deviant cult followers would stop working to cultivate in their own house, their house would be dirty and untidy and these folks keep murmuring mantras non-stop while staring blank. At this point, at best; these deeply intoxicated folks would just stay quietly in one corner; at worse, they would attack innocent standbys unprovoked.

To the outside world, these deviant folks are ‘crazy’… to themselves; they had already achieved sainthood and being at the side of the Buddha…

So, if you have any friends who act weird, act fast; contact the social works department for counselling for if you turned a blind eye; other innocent folks would get hurt in very near future. Remember, the victim may just be you!

The Most Undesirable Case (最不想的事件)

Many people think that a magician would be able to handle all cases pertaining spiritual issues. Unfortunately, this is not true. Actually it is not so interesting to become a magician as one has to come to face with many abrupt clinical issues: true possessions, false possessions and people’s family matters…

Someone asked me what is the single most undesirable incident that one preferably not lends his/her hands on?

Basically magicians work with all types of spirits but one particular type is the spirit of a mother with a baby. A pregnant ghost carries more karmic influences towards a magician hence no magicians would want to interfere with this pregnant ghost.

Touch wood that I have not come across this kind of pregnant ghost but my Thai master did. A few years ago, a mistress of a rich businessman known as Grace came to my master for help. She was troubled by the spirit of the businessman’s pregnant wife. According to her story, Grace met the businessman in a pub in Bangkok and the businessman quickly has a crash on her.

After some dating, Grace was given an apartment in Bangkok and the businessman would drop by a few days a week to rest. This condition has continued for two years or so until the businessman’s wife finally traced what her husband has done.

So the wife paid a visit at Grace’s place to find a fight one evening, as both of the ladies were involving in a heated argument, the unfortunate businessman walked through the door…

At this point, the businessman’s wife wanted her hubby to give her an explanation and to choose between the two…  Somehow the businessman was reluctant to leave Grace, in a fist of fury; his wife rushed to the window and leaped out from 15th floor and she met her doom. It was later revealed after an autopsy that the wife was pregnant and the husband known nothing about the pregnancy.

Well now that the lawful wife of the businessman is gone, Grace automatically moved to stay with the businessman. However, Grace’s peaceful moment didn't last for long. Two weeks later, Grace found that someone was watching her at her back and at times, she could hear sounds of baby crying.

Gradually, Grace felt that there was always as if an ice bar lying between her and the businessman. Whenever Grace turned to embrace the businessman, she would accidentally touch something very cold and out of this world…

Months lapsed, and ghostly apparition of the pregnant lady started to be seen especially in the bedroom while Grace was doing make-up. Soon, the businessman started to notice strange things happenings to Grace and his house.

After some ghostly encounters, the businessman started to stay away from Grace. That was when Grace started to look for masters to exorcise the spirits. However, no one was willing to get involve as the pregnant ghost was too powerful to handle; and that it doesn't worth the risk. That’s when Grace ended up in front of my master’s door step.

My master did some divination and finally said to Grace:

“I can bind the pregnant ghost for 50 years but that would get me into her karmic cycle that I has no intention to be in. The only option is for you to become a nun in a temple and keep dedicating your merits to the ghostly mother and baby until their hatred subsided…”

I think Grace is still in one of the temples in Bangkok repenting for her sins and bagging for forgiveness from the vengeful pregnant ghost!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Penang’s Crazy Woman (槟城的疯女人)

My master once told me that there were many ‘siao char bor’ or crazy women in Penang. I didn't catch his meaning at that time until I came across a Penang crazy woman said to be possessed by many ghosts…

This story is about a not so well to do divorced old man and his daughter.

Well, there is nothing wrong with a father and daughter except that the father is a 65 year old man and the daughter 40 year old single lady. The father is already retired and his daughter is 40 years old and jobless due to said possession by multiple ghosts. So the father constantly visited various mediums to perform exorcism for his poor daughter.

I supposed that this loving father has never come into thought that how his daughter suffered from those so called exorcism ceremonies… Well, you know how exorcisms are… you will need a few tough guys to press down onto the poor lady until she finally admitted that she was possessed. Until such a stage that when I saw the woman, she just spread in her bed lethargic and expected that I would perform some kind of ritual on her…

My first impression was that this woman must had been molested and tortured during the process of exorcism. Bear in mind that her father has visited almost all spirits mediums he could find until so much so that almost all her clothes were torn after repeatedly being exorcised.

As I was told by the dad that the masters would tell him that his daughter has many ghosts hidden in her body; and they can only ‘extract’ 5 ghosts at a time. Little had this loving dad knew that if there are indeed so many ghosts in his daughter’s body; the lady would already been real crazy or even dead by now!

From what I can see that this poor 40 year old lady is too protected by her loving dad until such a stage that her dad wasn't aware his daughter is no longer his little girl any more. Wouldn't it be odd that a 65 year old man still dragging a 40 year old lady to walk about in the garden… and that the woman still needs to be fetched by her father to where ever she wants to go?

Unfortunately there is nothing magic or I can do: I told her best friend about the issue but she was too frightened that the ‘ghosts’ would harm herself… So be it. I supposed that the 40 year old lady also too lazy to fight for her own rights too.

After I had seen enough, I just thrown down a sentence:

“Who is going to feed you after your dad?”

While I sympathize on the father and daughter plight; I can’t condone the dad’s stubbornness to let his full grown daughter out; and also the daughter’s laziness to fight for her rights to survive.

Was it fate? Or it is indeed simply a case of lack of will power?

What I can be sure of; this is a crime that has nothing to do with ghosts!

Unfortunately, the number of ‘siao char bor’ has just increased by one in Penang. Hopefully some Good Samaritan can do something about this… I am sure too there are still many 'siao char bor' hidden in Penang streets...

Keep This To Yourself Please (见鬼莫言)

Many people like to huh-hah after seeing a ghost around…

Little had they known that this is not a good idea because once the ghosts know that you can see them, then that would be the beginning of your trouble. As we know that ghosts are pitiful beings as they normally lacks food and shelter and no one would heed them. Once ghosts know that a human can see them, then they would put forth their requests whenever possible… and to many people; that would be the beginning of their problems.

Bee Poh has psychic eyes (阴阳眼) ever since she was young and she has many encounters with these ghostly brothers and sisters. However Bee Poh normally keeps her experiences to herself as she was scolded since young by her mother whenever she said out loud what she saw…

One evening Bee Poh returned home after returning home from hospital and she saw a swing just outside in the playground swung automatically and due to curiosity, she venture out and took a closer look at the swing. There she saw a greyish small shadow sat on a swing.

At that time Bee Poh has forgotten the taboo her mother told her, and she called her hubby to come and have a look at the swing. As soon as Bee Poh opened her mouth, the ghostly kid turned its head towards Bee Poh. It stopped the swing and walked towards Bee Poh… while it was a few feet away, the little ghost spoke: “Mama, I want food… I’m cold; I want to go home…”

Just at the blink of an eye, the ghost kid was sitting in Bee Poh’s living room… At first she thought that the small ghost would leave the next morning. But it stayed on in the house and worse of all, the little ghost has attracted a few more other ghosts into the house! Now even Bee Poh’s baby girl was affected by these ghostly friends as the small girl would cry out loud at midnight for no apparent reasons.

One night, Bee Poh couldn’t stand the trouble no more so she gave me a call…

Bee Poh: “Mr. Liew! I have some ghosts in my house… what can I do?”

Me: “Hmm… get a bowl of cold rice with cold water and put it outside of your main door. After that, burn some joss paper to attract the ghosts. As soon as the joss papers are burnt, return quickly to your house and close the door.”

Bee Poh: “Would they return to the house?”

Me: “Not likely. Ghosts have very short term memory. As they are busily consuming the rice, they would have forgotten where they come from.”

A few days later, Bee Poh gave me a call and she said her problems were over. The ghosts never returned.

I supposed this is the only best way to get rid of the ghosts. I have seen many people attracted more ghosts than they can handle by visiting mediums and performing conjurations. Do you believe it or not?

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The Not So Dramatic Spirit Possession (不是附灵)

There are not too many real violent spirit possession cases around these days. By saying so, I am not saying that there are no spirit parasites attached to our auras and internal organs… Basically, an ordinary folk would have a few spirit parasites around to play with.

I have a real case that seems no shamans or Taoist would be able to solve…

Seems like that the poor young man was physically ‘possessed’ by vengeful ghosts and that his soul was being pushed out of his body… and my job was called just to fix the young man’s soul.

It was said that the young man was not himself anymore as the ghosts had taken over his body. Many shamans and healers had visited and defeated by the ghosts inside the young man’s body… so I was told.

As soon as the order was in, I started to perform some prayers and soul calling rituals and after a while, the answer from the other side was that the young man’s soul was intact and he has no spiritual but emotional issue.

Armed with this knowledge, I visited the young man and his mother greeted me. So I was led to the young man and there he was lying in the living room staring blank at the wall. So, I started to ask:

“Who are you?”

“Can’t you see? I am a ghost!?”

“If you are a ghost then follow me to my home; if you are a person then stay put.”

“Why should I follow you home may I ask!?”

“Then you admit that you are not a ghost!”

After some questioning, it transpired that his mother did bring in many mediums to cure him until he was so agitated that he just used ghost as an excuse to avoid unceasingly exorcism ceremonies.

My conclusion was that the man’s mother was too protective until he, who was in his late 20’s cannot find a decent job due to his mother wanted to make the final call on what job the young man must perform.

I had to tell the mother and son straight that unless they come to a term of what is best for both parties; I can only catch ghosts and my ability is far from perfect in the field of counselling.

So here you are, not all said possession is indeed a possession.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Between Possessed And Insane (附身与神经)

I have read many letters that one cannot tell from head to tail even after reading many times. That has caused me to rethink if I should just stop writing magical things. This is a concern as just too many people start writing gibberish things that are just nonsense at the end.

It is not difficult to differentiate from possessed and insane:

Well, if a person is possessed, then the person would not be possessed for the entire 24 hours. For example: it is likely that a person would be possessed and become another person after night. And that this person would just himself/herself for the rest of the day.

However, if a person remains to be another person for the rest of the day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year; then this person is insane.

If a person just talking gibberish, then chances are that if he/she is not taking drugs, then it is also possible that this person is possessed.

Let me elaborate with the below conversation:

Q: What is her date of birth?

A: she is born on the day of Buddha's enlightenment... vows day of the monks @ ABCD

(A more acceptable answer is December 25, 201 etc.)

Q: Tell me about the person…

A:  She is 24 hours not herself as she is possessed by demons…

(As I said before those demons don’t possess a person 24 hours, so the above person is most likely to have mental illnesses!)

Another example is that someone wrote:

$12345 is too expensive…
Mantra A is good…
She is the reincarnation of Amitabah…

(The above sentences don’t have specific aims…)

Please pay attention if anyone in your house is having the above behaviours… too much talking, too much ghosts, Buddha, gods, goddesses, devils etc. also indication of spiritual or mental illnesses. Unfortunately these types of disorders are very difficult to cure as first, people would not admit that he/she has a problem; secondly, it is very difficult to isolate the ‘patient’ for curing as his/her environment also plays an important part in influencing the patient.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Beware Of Secondhand Items (附灵二手货)

Some secondhand items look as if they are good buys as at times; secondhand items may be 80%~90% cheaper than new ones. However, there is a catch: there may be a string attached to these items. So, one should indeed beware of the below cheap items:

·         ‘Special items’ or ‘cheap items’
·         Cars with number plates from other areas
·         Popular car types selling super cheap
·         Good house selling below market price

Normally super cheap items especially vehicles would have its previous owners’ ‘life forces’ (生灵) attached and these life forces may affect the well beings of new owners.
If one does not have psychic abilities and intend to test if an item or car has any residual energies, then he/she can go to the item after sunset and then sits beside an item or inside a car or a house and meditate for about 15 minutes or so.

If an item, especially a car has experienced fatal incident, then the residual energy of the deceased would be very strong indeed. It is best to avoid purchasing such items however cheap, but if one need to be; then extensive prayers and rituals should be made until these residual energies are released for good. Otherwise, a new owner may suffer from the same mishap as the previous owner. For example: If a house owner was burnt to death in a house and this house is subsequently purchased by another person, then the new owner have a higher chance to be hurt in a fire incident also.

My friend, Chong studied and worked in Japan for 10 years. He once purchased a secondhand car to solve his travelling issues. Since he was on a budget, he could only afford a low cost one and after some search, he found a relatively new car with number plate from another state at a secondhand car dealer. Without much thought, Chong purchased the used car and happily went home.

After a while, Chong was quite satisfied with his purchase but one very nagging issue with the car was that there is a sort of mud smell lingered within the car; no matter how many times Chong cleaned the car, the mud smell was there to stay put…

During one weekend, Chong brought his family out for picnic and they spent the whole day beside the foot of Mount Fuji. It was in the early evening they decided to head back home as it was getting dark and looks like the weather wasn’t very good too.

As Chong was driving, the rain started to fall. Chong’s wife was at the passenger seat beside Chong, and their children were at the back seat. There were altogether four of them. When the car passed by a lake, Chong suddenly saw in his rear mirror, the reflection of two adults and two children at the back seat. At the same time, he lost control of the steering wheel as if it was pulled by an invisible force towards right side. After some struggle, Chong’s car plunged into a lake nearby.

The luck was Chong’s side as there were some people fishing nearby. So the family was quickly pulled out from the car and local folks sent them to a temple beside the lake. A Shinto priest came and greeted the Chong family and accommodated them for one night. Before Chong left the temple the next morning, the priest told Chong that there were four dead souls following Chong family and he would pray for the spirits to be delivered.

When Chong finally returned home, he went to the secondhand car dealer to enquire of the origin of his ill fated car. After some persuasions, the salesman finally revealed that the previous car owner and his family all 4 persons were drowned when the car plunged into a river a year ago!

Chong was lucky, but not all people are as lucky as Chong. As you can see, it is important to think twice before one purchase a used item… or he/she will find that he/she is not alone…

Anti-Witchcraft Kit From University (抗巫术商品)

My bro forwarded this super interesting article to me so I shall share with all… And I quote below:

Malaysian University sells kit to combat evil spirits for $2,500
By Brian Booker     May 1, 2015 in World

A Malaysian public university has announced that it will sell a special kit to ward off evil spirits for the low price of RM 8,750, or approximately $2,500.

The kit contains a mix of everyday items, most of which anyone could picked up at a local grocery store. Items include chopsticks, salt, vinegar and lime. A few items might be a bit harder to procure, including formic acid and pepper spray.

Malaysia's gross domestic income per capita weighs in at $10,803, so the price tag of nearly $2,500 represents a substantial portion of income.

The university in question is the Universiti Malaysia Pahang, and is located in the heavily Malay populated state of Pahang. As decreed by Malaysia's constitution, all Malays are Muslim, and the kit is clearly targeted at Muslims.

Apparently, students have been reporting bouts of exaggerated and even uncontrollable emotions.

According to researchers at the University, the kit is the result of three years worth of study. Apparently, the Quran and Islamic hadiths state that spirits are unable to tolerate salty, sour, or spicy items.

To put the kit's cost into perspective, the Universiti Malaysia Pahang charges only RM1,865 per semester, including all fees and a spot in the university's hostel system, meaning the “anti-hysteria” kit will cost nearly as much as the total cost of a three year degree.

The kit was launched at the Education Ministry in Putrajaya this past Thursday.
Besides the basic ingredients, most of which have long been used to combat spirits and witchcraft in Malaysia, those who purchase the kit will also be given two training sessions on how to use the kit. The university will also provide two free refills, risk management services, online consultation and additional treatment for chronic cases. University looks to combat “witchcraft”

The Universiti Malaysia Pahang is taking witchcraft and spirits seriously, having already set up a Committee for Advanced Studies in Witchcraft Law. The university has also laid out a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), which itself was a part of a two year study, to deal with paranormal activities. The two year study was supported by a RM189,000 grant from the Ministry of Education.

Witchcraft and black magic are often cited at Syariah (Sharia) Court hearings in Malaysia. Since there are no legal provisions governing black magic, claims are often dismissed.

Local Muslims must adhere to both national laws, and sharia laws, which are overseen by the country's royal families, who hold the final say in most religious matters.

So, my question is: should we still belittle the ‘power’ of witchcraft now that even a reputable Malaysian university is selling a ‘super’ kit to combat this!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Blowing Ritual Horns (角鼓与我)

There is an old saying:

(If one does not know how to draw talisman, the ghost and gods laugh;
If one does not know how to blow ritual horns; the ghosts laugh at gods!)

However, the above saying is not totally true as not all Taoist sects will need to blow horns… Mao Shan Sect (茅山) does not really need a ritual horn.

I don’t really use to blow horns and it is exceedingly difficult to get a good ritual horn at my area. So, I started to source from the intranet and started my own venture. And I finally got my first horn a few years back but it was quite difficult to blow, so while I was doing my horn blowing practices, I used a small electric drill to adjust the horn hole…

At that time, I tried to blow my horn during traffic jams, and I blew my horns after my work at night too. At times I went to an open field to practise my horn blowing. Well, to tell you the truth, the sound of horn blowing did scared many people especially at night. Many old folks related the sounding of horn to funeral services. Once during my horn blowing session at night, an old uncle passed by on his bicycle and this poor uncle was so startled that he fell off from his bicycle. The news travelled really fast the next morning in a local morning market. Since then I had to stay at a very low profile when blowing my ritual horn. Now that I am staying in an apartment, I certainly have lesser chance to blow my horn freely and at will.

It is very rare to hear the sound of horn blowing locally now a day as people would relate the sounding of horn to mourning matters. The fact is that the purpose of horn blowing is to invite gods/goddesses and to assembly solders. In fact blowing a ritual horn now carries the same meaning in ancient warfare; that is for conveying a message.  And different ways of blowing a ritual horn carry different meanings, some people say that 3 long blows indicate the summoning of gods and 2 long blows are to request gods to depart etc.

Indeed, it is true that a ritual horn should be blown in traditional Taoist funeral because the purpose is to invite gods and armies to protect a dead soul; and to escort this soul to the other side.

Common folks call a ritual horn as a “cow horn drum” (牛角鼓) but Taoist calls it a “dragon horn’ (龙角). In ancient times, the sounding of a horn was used to convey a general’s message; so Taoists use the same method to convey their messages to their military. 

Older generations even hold fast to the thinking that any Taoist should know how to blow a ritual and also to blow a horn beautifully. Otherwise if a horn is not blown properly, the gods would not come to assist and when this happens, the Taoist would not able to control spirits.

Of course, that really depends on individual Taoist sect. To a Lu Shan Taoist, the blowing of a horn is mandatory, other sects many not follow this practice. Whatever case that may be, Taoists who are proficient in horn blowing techniques are getting fewer. Perhaps we can attribute this as a loss in Taoist culture and I only mentioned this so that people aware there are various horn blowing techniques in Taoism.

For more information:

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mani Stone Of A Serpent (蛇精的宝石)

My Bangladesh and Indian friends believe that when a serpent lives long enough, it shall possess a mani stone and that it shall carry this stone on its head where ever it goes. Normally this serpent shall come out to feed only twice a day only. If it comes out, it will only come out between 3am ~ 5am and while it was drizzling in the sky.

It is said that when this serpent feeds, it shall temporarily put down this mani stone that is always on its head and feed in the vicinity. The snake shall not leave the stone too far as it fears someone will steal it. If anyone has gotten his/her hand on this snake’s mani stone, then it is worth billions of dollars.

My Bangladesh friend told me that there was a huge tree nearby where he lives. A giant white serpent with a red ruby stone on its head used to be seen active around the area. It didn’t disturb my friend but the tree was chopped down some time ago, and after that; the serpent was nowhere to be seen since.

According to my friend, he has not personally seen the said mani stone; but his cousin did came across one about 15 years ago:

My friend’s cousin known as Ahmed was a poor farmer who earned a living by planting the fields of a rich landlord. One day as he was hurriedly to the field after a drizzle; he suddenly kicked a stone and fell onto the ground. As Ahmed was inspecting his foot injuries, he saw the culprit was a round stone. Without thinking too much, Ahmed picked up the stone and tugged it near his waist and proceeded to the field where he encountered his landlord, Ali.

When Ali enquired about Ahmed’s reason for late to work, he told his landlord the story and showed Ali the stone. Ali was a learnt person, he immediately knew what the stone was and the value it carries. So Ali told Ahmed to hand over the stone and he shall reward Ahmed with 4 cattle and 500kg of rice. Since Ahmed was a simple minded person, he didn’t think of the incident too much and happily handed over the stone to Ali and went home.

Problems arose when Ahmed returned home and told his father the story. The old man was eager to have a look at the stone so he went to Ali’s place to ask for the stone’s return. Somehow Ali denied that he has the possession of the stone and a fight eventually broke out and the old man was seriously injured by Ali.

The commotion eventually stirred up the authority and all parties were brought to police station. After some interrogations, Ali finally admitted that he has kept the stone is a huge iron safe. Since the judge was also eager to have a look of the said mani stone, he ordered the safe to be opened.

And… to everyone’s surprise, there is no stone but a 6 feet living white cobra! As when the crowd was about to do something, the cobra suddenly vanished into thin air…

Well, that was some sort of anticlimax, but I made my pal promised that he shall bring me to his hometown to look for the mysterious mani stone.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mysterious Indochinese Miasma (瘴气之谜)

It is believed that miasma is a type of secretive poisonous vapour exists in Southern part of Chinese and Indochinese thick forests with beautiful sceneries, wide and deep hinterlands. When people enter into the forest, they would feel that the atmosphere is very pleasing with winter warmth and summer cool. Folks would unconsciously become enchanted and become carried away; and then losing control of themselves.

According to a local Vietnamese legend, during Vietnamese war against the French in the 50’s, there was once a 1,000 men French troop lost in a piece of picturesque Vietnamese mountain range and no one returned ever since. It was strange that there was no war at that area at that time… No one knows what had happened to the 1,000 strong men. No one knows whether they are dead or alive… Local Vietnamese said it was the work of miasma. The miasma has devoured the whole troop and transformed them into local landscape and misty fog…

The Chinese believe that miasma is actually poisonous gaseous substance formed by decaying snakes, centipedes, toads and etc. poisonous insect carcases. Once unwary folks entered into the jungle and this poisonous gases entered into their bodies; they would feel cold, hot, sweating and these people would die not long after that. In today’s terms, this is just like malaria.

I supposed it would take a long passage to prove or disprove the miasma phenomenon scientifically as it is suffice for a layman like me to know the symptoms and related remedies.

There are many formulas available to local Indochinese folks but the easiest formula is to consume some ipomoea root powder when one is attached by miasma. First, a person need to collect some ipomoea roots, dry them and then grind them to powder form.

When a person is attacked by miasma, he/she only needs to mix half an ounce of ipomoea root powder with a bowl of white rice and eats them all. The miasma syndrome shall subside the next morning.

The above formula was given to me by a Vietnamese who always travel into deep Indochinese jungle. I posted here in the hope that if you too would like venture into these uncharted Indochinese regions, please do prepare yourself adequately.

From Worm Poison To Ms Ong (翁姐蛊毒事件)

A famous late Hong Kong kung fu actress known by the name Ms Ong committed suicide on May 15, 1985. Many people attributed the cause of her suicide due to broken heart. However, insider said that Ms Ong was the victim of worm poison (蛊毒) and not as what was publicized in mass media.

According to an insider, there are two reasons:

1.      One week before her death, someone has said that he/she want to teach Ms Ong a lesson using worm poison.
2.      Ms Ong’s face, eyes and hairs were swollen and showed yellowish color, and that she was losing hairs. Further red spots were also seen on her body. In addition, green vines were seen on Ms Ong’s face and neck. She was not herself and she looked lost…

All of the above symptoms are in fact signs of worm poisoning. Perhaps Ms Ong’s poisoning case is not unfounded.

So, how do we detect is we ourselves are the victim of worm poisoning?

Well, it is not difficult. We only need to get a glass of plain water and then spit into the glass. If the saliva sinks; then chances are that we have become victims of worm poisons. Otherwise, we are safe.

Since it is very difficult to cure worms, then it is best not to in taking any of the contaminated food since most of the worm poisoning is due to food consumption. There is a quick and easy to test if your food is contaminated:

If we suspect that a cup of tea is being tempered with, its surface temperature and the bottom would be different. For example, while the top part feels hot, the bottom feels cold. In this case, one can choose not to drink the beverage. If there is no way to avoid, then he/she can rotate the cup away from his/her body.

In any case, prevention is better than cure. So, please stay away from bad company.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

The Story Of A Coin Sword (金钱剑的故事)

Now, let me tell you my grandmother’s coin sword…

My grandma was living in a rubber plantation about 40 years back in Kuala Kangsar. It was believed that a room in her old house was haunted and at nights footstep sounds can be heard walking in the house and at times on the roof too.

My uncle’s friend known as Mr. Lim was posted to Kuala Kangsar for a few days and this gentleman was said to be interested in supernatural things. So, he volunteered himself to put up with my grandma for a few days…

When my uncle put forward his idea, grandma said:

“Please don’t let your friend stay there, it is NOT clean!”

However, Mr. Lim insisted:

“No worries grandma! I don’t believe in supernatural things…”

As I was told that grandma kept refusing but Mr. Lim kept on insisting until grandma finally said:

“Alright, you have to be careful young man. If you feel something is not right, just shout!”

Mr. Lim acknowledged with an okay.

Rubber tappers used to sleep early as they need to wake up at about 4am or when the sun rises, the latex would freeze. Frozen latex worth much less than the liquid form. So, grandma and my uncle went to bed as early as 8pm. That leaves behind Mr. Lim alone in his room.

Somehow Mr. Lim dozed off too as the surrounding was quiet and pleasant…

It was somewhere around midnight or so as recalled by Mr. Lim that he was suddenly awoken by a series of footstep sounds in the room. Well, the sounds were more like someone was dragging his feet against the ground.

As the dragging sound approached Mr. Lim’s bed, he peeped through his blanket but he saw nothing was there. Mr. Lim then decided to disregard the noise and continue to sleep; but not long after that the sound of dragging continued and Mr. Lim felt that this someone was just beside his bed as he can feel the heavy panting sounds of a creature or animal. Mr. Lim started to panic and shiver, he could only cover his head with the blanket but he was too egoistic to call for help still.

Not long after that, Mr. Lim felt something was pulling his blanket and at the same time, a gust of cold wind penetrated under his blanket. Now Mr. Lim felt that his life was in real danger and he started to yell but not a sound came out from Mr. Lim’s throat!  Even though Mr. Lim was a freethinker, in his heart he started to call upon names of gods and goddesses and even Buddha was called but of no avail…

No one knows for how long Mr. Lim has struggled to produce a scream but my grandma was awakened by the sound of something dropping onto the floor making a ‘thub’ sound followed by an unearthly shriek. At the same time, Mr. Lim’s window was forcefully blown open by strong wind.

When everyone rushed to Mr. Lim’s room, they found an old coin sword fell onto the ground with some black liquid stain at its tips… It was really strange as the string used to hang the coin sword was not broken in anyway.

I was interested in my grandma’s old coin sword but as she told me that her old sword was nowhere to be found since the incident. It was quite a pity as this type of authentic item is getting very difficult to come by these days.

What is a coin sword?

Friday, May 1, 2015

About Traditional Thai Sak Yant (Tatoo)

An old Sak Yant manuscript.

Traditional Thai Sak Yant techniques are normally inherited from a master, and of course; there are those who self-taught ones too. Be it that one inherited from his father or guru, Sak Yant techniques are normally transmitted internally and only men were allowed to learn Sak Yant.

Whoever wishes to learn Sak Yant must first go through a Wai Kru (teacher’s) ritual and that normally the teacher’s ritual is accompanied with hefty fees too (nothing is free). In the past, Sak Yant masters would worship the grandmaster of Sak Yant, Pohuwuputcha.

It was said that the face of this grandmaster looks quite hideous as he has erected hairs with a pair of bulging round eyes; and a pair of protruding fangs. In addition the grandmaster’s body is also covered with thick hairs. He is said to hold a piece of magic stick called ‘ang’. In short this person is comparable to today’s notion of ‘devil’.

The best time for performing Sak Yant is on a cooler day though now days, there are no hard and fast rule over when and where to make a Sak Yant. Traditionally, however; there were some preferences on where to perform a tattoo:

Traditionally, there about 4 to 5 places suitable for performing Sak Yant. However, it is still the best to perform a Sak Yant in a secluded place such as in a jungle, on a river bank, in a padi field far away from crowd. This is to enable that the power of the Master Pohuwuputcha can enter into the tattooed body more readily.

The second preferred place is in part of a temple keeping Buddhist sutras.

The third place is in the house of the person who wishes to have a tattoo done.

The fourth preferred place is in the house of the local Sak Yant master.

The fifth preferred location is that one should visit Thailand, Laos or Myanmar to have a tattoo done; if one can afford the travelling price of course.

Where ever one chooses to have Sak Yant done, the preparation procedure is the same: preparations, praying, anaesthesia, drawing/printing pattern, piercing, scab off. One should also observe taboos before and after a Sak Yant is performed:

·         One should observe the 5 precepts: no killing, stealing, telling lies, no flirting around and no alcohol (or not getting drunk).
·         One should not consume foods that was eaten by others including of the food being eaten by a mouse.
·         One should not pass under a bridge for it is a taboo for someone to walk on the person’s head or the Sak Yant would lose its power.
·         One should not pass under a woman’s skirt.
·         One should not eat dog meat or mutton.
·         One should not consume fish, sour food, onion etc.

It is believed that if a taboo is broken, then the Sak Yant would lose its power; if the person consumed food that is forbidden, and then his body would rot.

Of course, no one would pay any attentions to the above taboo now days. Are they real? Only those who have tried would know.

Mei Shan Make Peace Drama (和梅山傩)

Mei Shan ceremonial drama is a type of religious activities meant for entertaining human and spirits alike. While a ‘make peace’ drama refers to an enactment of drama through rituals to make peace between spirits and human. There are three stages in having a make peace drama:

1.      To congregate spirits into an altar
2.      Performance drama to entertain spirits and human
3.      To make peace with spirits

Local folks think Mei Shan spirits are easily annoyed and once they are disturbed, these unforgiving spirits would create problems to human kind. So, a pacification ceremony is necessary.

In this ritual a magician (师公) would sing:


(Brother is making a make peace mudra in Mei Shan hall to make peace. Let us talk softly to make peace and let us not talk bad and hurt others.)

The first step is to evoke the Mei Shan spirits (请神). In the evocation process a magician would hold a ritual staff: ( in his right hand and then burns the talisman of Mei Shan King Hu (梅山胡大王) and then walks the below steps:

The second step is making sacrifices (祭神):

In this step, 5 sets of offerings are made to the 5 uncontrollable ones (五猖). The magician would disguise as the Mei Shan King and his assistants as the 5 uncontrollable ones. They would engage in a conversation similar to the below:

The master sings:


(Mei Shan on east route, your flag is green sitting at east;
Mei Shan on south route, your flag is red sitting at south;
Mei Shan on west route, your flag is white sitting at west;
Mei Shan on north route, your flag is black sitting at north;
Mei Shan on central route, your flag is yellow sitting at the center.
All spirits of 5 directions please take your seats...)

The master then says: “Are you 5 pigs here already?”
The 5: “Yes. We are all here.”

The master takes up a cup of wine and sings:


(A cup of wine pure and bright, tonight I accompany Mei spirits until the sprits laugh happily and hence protecting the owner in peace.)

He then takes up the rest of the 5 cups and do the same as above.

The master then asks:

“From where should I start making offerings?”

The 5: “From the east…”

The master (sings):


(I have drunk a cup of wine in front of the altar, I shall speak clearly and I shall not be long winded. One heartedly I respect the spirits, after that the spirits shall protect the owner.)

The third step is to meet military (会兵):

Now the master sings:


(You ask who the 9 barbarians are? I shall tell you their origins:
It was when the Xuan Yuan Emperor united the world,
He subdued the 9 Li tribes and they became the 9 barbarians.
They are so called: Big, small, square, yellow, red, black, white, wind and qiang.
You should know all their names. The pioneer is called ‘Bu De’ (布德), the green flag is the wood soldiers. The armies from the Qing state have arrived, they are led by Mr. Yellow…)

Following that, the master would dispatch the military (差兵) while singing and making below mudra:


(Your disciple:
If I do not command the military, they will not move.
They have taken off their red clothing and put on their armours.
They have chosen their war horses and their brave soldiers.
They have chosen their weapons.
Everything is readied for war…)

The final part of the drama is about making peace. In some places, the above ritual can take from a few hours to one whole day to be completed.

Sad to say, as time passes, this type of ceremonial drama is becoming things of the past as no one is willing to spend time learning up this difficult and time consuming art.