It’s going to be that time of the year again; a period so intense, so dark and so scary you can’t help but cower in your bed every single night, protected by your sheets. I’m talking, of course, about my impending birthday. Another year older? Ain’t nothing darker and scarier than that!
Coincidentally, there’s something else happening at the moment that’s also pretty ominous too:
The Hungry Ghost Festival.
While it might not be quite as symbolic as my own birthday, the HGF has its fair share of followers, and indeed, offerings have been flooding the floors since the first day. But here’s the thing:
Did you know that they are like your best friend’s sister… untouchable?
Indeed, here are 8 things you should never do to the offerings during the festival, or as my best friend likes to put it…
You dare to touch, you die.
1. Don’t eat it
I know. You’re hungry, you’re famished. You’ve been out for the whole day and only had like five double stacker burgers with three sides of fries. Not nearly enough for a growing boy/girl like you, even though you’re technically turning the wrong side of 30.
As such, you chance upon some appetising offerings laid out on a grass patch, looking for all the world like a picnic prepared by a Michelin star chef. And naturally, you’re tempted.
“Surely one bite wouldn’t hurt…” you mumble, licking your lips.
Well, let me just stop you right there.
See, the offerings aren’t actually for you, but for our good bros across the realm (you didn’t know that yet?!).
And by eating their offerings, you’re effectively stealing their food. And let’s just say that like humans…
They don’t like their food being stolen.
Offerings post Hungry Ghost Festival, however, might be a different story, but you know what they say. #bettersorrythansafe
2. Don’t kick them
You’re starved of a football.
But that doesn’t give you leeway to channel your inner Cristiano Ronaldo with the offerings.
Just be empathetic and visualise a scenario, wherein someone kicks your double beef burger away. Would you like that?
Because I won’t.
So don’t kick offerings, because you never know…
Your head might be the next to roll.
3. Don’t touch them
Yes, no David De Gea action either.
Keep your hands to yourself.
4. Don’t joke about them
We all have that one friend who jokes about everything under the sun, from your uncle’s exposed butt crack to your entire life.
But stop him/her if there’s an incoming joke about offerings because that’s taboo.
Just imagine being hungry and angry, and having someone joke about your food. Would you like that?
Because I won’t.
So skip the offering jokes already.
Because they never bothered me anyway.
5. Don’t complain about them
Let’s just say that the dead wouldn’t take too kindly to your “walao eh, clog space” and “wa pianggg this one my grandfather’s road leh. Got ask him for permission to put your offerings here alnot?”
And let’s just say that when you’re washing your face at night later, you might see a little something in the toilet mirror.
“Who your grandfather? That’s my road you lil piece of shit.”
6. Don’t look under the altar, especially during prayer sessions
I know you’re curious, but let’s just say that oftentimes, curiosity does kill the cat.
So don’t look under the altar when offerings are on it, because you never know.
You might see a little something extra.
And I’m pretty sure that little something extra wouldn’t take too kindly to having their feast disturbed.
Through, seriously, I don’t know why you’ll want to do that.
7. Don’t add extra ‘seasoning’ to offerings
Especially your own baby.
And if you think I’m trying to be funny, here’s an urban legend that has been making its rounds.
A mother took her child to a Hungry Ghost Festival event. She place her child on the altar table while preparing her offerings, but when she turned to check on her child, the kid had already turned pale and passed away. Yep, the hungry ghosts have mistakenly devoured the kid’s ‘life essence’.
No extra seasonings. Just the MSG please.
8. Just… leave them alone
Don’t try to tamper with them. Don’t play with them. Most importantly, don’t treat them like free-flow buffets. In short, just treat them like sexily-dressed girls on the streets.
Can see, cannot touch.
And I reckon you’ll be pretty safe.
Unless of course, someone wants to disturb you because you’re either too attractive or funny-looking.
Then bo bian lo.
In the event that you do, somehow, touch any offerings by accident, don’t start panicking just yet. Simply apologise for your mistake, and the spirit should be all chill. Everyone likes a polite fellow, including the 好兄弟.
So thumbs up, good luck this Hungry Ghost Festival.
Also, if you want to know what you shouldn’t do during the ghost month, watch this video to the end:
- 7 Things to Take Note of When Travelling During the Hungry Ghost Month
- 10 Facts About Hungry Ghost Festival 2022 in Singapore
- Origins of Hungry Ghost Festival, Which Starts from 29 July 2022
Featured Image: aSuruwataRi / Shutterstock.com
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