Saturday, August 06, 2005
Hungry Ghost Festival - Offerings
Many shopping centres and some offices have begun organising combined offerings to the wandering spirits. Some held on to the age old traditions of putting joss-sticks and the triangular paper flags (which we love to collect as kids) on every dish of food on offer.
It is interesting that this is one occasion that many offices would allow their staff to organise such an offering. It's for the peace of mind for the staff. Especially if there had been cases of accidents, all the more important. So, in construction areas, this is a almost a must for the workers. It's happening in the hotels too. For those with a big number of "subscriptions" - people contributing towards this prayer - it might include dinners and even street operas, on top of the pailful load of goodies to bring home. Auctions during the dinners are also common, as this brings in more income for the next year's prayers. A few charcoal pieces could fetch thousands of dollars.
Such prayers and dinners are also good opportunities for company or community gathering and interactions.