The Hungry Ghost Festival is a traditional Buddhist and Taoist festival held in Singapore. In Chinese culture, the fifteenth day of the seventh month in the lunar calendar is called Ghost Day and the seventh month in general is regarded as the Ghost Month, in which ghosts and spirits, including those of the deceased ancestors, come out from the lower realm.
One Facebook user, Vincent Ng Aeria, has published a “Not To Do” List for the Hungry Ghost month.
According to him, this is what you can and cannot do during this Hungry Ghost Month.
During The Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival (11 Aug 2018 – 10 Sep 2018)
“DO NOT” Checklist after 00:00Hrs on 11th Aug:
1. Hang out late
2. Spit in the street or tree
3. Stare at the candlelight or burning fire
4. Step On Or Kick offering items / joss sticks along the Roadside
5. Cover up your forehead at night; always pin or put up your hair as high as possible
6. Stare at “them” if you really saw one; look or walk away calmly
7. Make funny jokes or comments on any display altar / offering items along the street
8. Look underneath the altar table when there is a prayer session
9. Shift your eyeballs from left to right or right to left repeatedly if you sensed something; always look straight and walk toward your destination calmly
10. Sniff and follow any pleasant or sweet smell ahead of you
11. Sit on the first few Front Rows of any public Chinese Operas
12. Open your umbrella at night, especially red color type
13. Wear red color costume with high heels and walk alone at night
14. Pick up any unique items found on the street or road
15. Stand Under a Tree in the middle of the night
16. Wait at The Bus Stop after Mid-Night especially already passed the bus service operating hours
17. Whistle alone at night; you may found someone singing along with you
18. Hang your clothes out in the middle of the night
19. Walk in the dark and near the walls; something maybe visible at your side view
20. Answer or respond when someone calls you, especially from behind
21. Turn your head when someone pat on your shoulders in the middle of the street
22. Use any Dark or Black color manicure
23. Comb your hair in front of the mirror in the middle of the night
24. Shout or scream in the middle of the night, stay as quiet as possible if you felt sudden coldness
25. Get emotional and cry in the middle of the night
26. Leave your bleeding wounds in a open air; always cover up the area with plasters or other bandage materials
27. Be a curious person or hero, if you hear some “strange” sound or noise, especially soft crying tone; always act blur.
28. Swim in the pool or lake in the middle of the night; something maybe waiting to pull your legs
29. Play at the playground in the middle of the night; especially the swings
30. Take up the challenge to enter cemetery area or abandoned houses
Festival of the Middle Season 中元节 (Zhong Yuan Jie) is commonly known as the “Chinese Ghost Festival” in folk culture, and perhaps misunderstood and thus translated as “Hungry Ghosts Festivals .
The festival Originated from China, and on the 15th Day of Luanr 7 Month, it is known as the Zhong Yuan Jie 中元节(Festival of the Midde Season), a day Taoists to perform worship to their ancestors and perform salvation rites for the deceased. This day is known as the feast day of Di Guan Da Di地官大帝 (The Earth Official) (中元地官大帝下降考校日). The term “中元” refers to the Earth Official. He is one of the Three Divine Officials – Heaven, Earth and Water （天，地，水三官大帝） in Taoist Pantheon of Deities. Worship of the Three Officials dated back to the Han Dynasty.
On this Day, Taoist Priests would be engaged to perform the Salvation rituals for souls to ascend to the Eastern Palace of Enternal Bliss 青华常乐界(Heavenly Realm). The Earth Official pardon sins and thus it is also a time to seek forgiveness and confession.
Another Taoist deity that Taoists will accord respect, especially during Taoist salvation rituals will be the Heavenly Lord Tai Yi of Salvation (太乙救苦天尊）. Taoists believes in seeking deliverance through Lord Tai Yi. Reciting his sacred name will also reap unlimited blessings and liberation.