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Phuket Vegetarian Festival
Attraction : #Enjoy #Party
Soi Phutorn, Ranong Road Soi 4 - Phuket ( Phuket Town )
20 - 28 October 2017 - $   | View Events
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Phuket Vegetarian Festival

The Nine Emperor Gods Festival or Phuket Vegetarian Festival is an annual event held during the ninth lunar month of the Chinese calendar. It is believed that the festival and its accompanying sacred rituals bestow good fortune upon those who participate and those who religiously observe this rite. Despite some religious rites being very bloody, for visitors to Phuket this is a good opportunity to see a hidden and mysterious part of island, an open window about the mysticism of ancient Eastern philosophies. The conventional date of introducing of Vegetarian Festival, or “jia chai” in local Hokkien Chinese dialect, to the island began in 1825. When the governor of Thalang, Praya Jerm, moved the principal town of the island from Ta Reua in Thalang District to Laithu or Kathu District, where tin mines were flourished with mass influx of the Chinese migrants mainly the “Hokkien” or Fujian origin during the 19th century after the First Opium War. During the 10 days of the festival, local residents of Chinese ancestry strictly observe a vegetarian or vegan diet, refrain from all vices, do not eat meat or kill animals for the purposes of spiritual cleansing and merit-making. Sacred rituals are performed at various Chinese shrines and temples and aesthetic displays such as walking barefooted over hot coals and ascending ladders with bladed rungs are performed by entranced devotees known as "Ma Song". The afternoon before the beginning of the festival a big rod, Go Teng, is raised in each Chinese shrine, to invite the gods to descend. At midnight, nine lanterns will be hung up Go Teng to celebrate the beginning of Vegetarian Festival and to invite two important deities to take part in the ceremony: Yok Ong Hong Tae and Kiew Ong Tai Tae. During the festival you can attend different ceremonies, mostly kept into shrines but also street processions, such as the invocation of the gods Lam Tao and Pak Tao for the living and for the dead. Some participants pierce various parts of their body with many different objects, like swords, knives, metal rods, saws and so on. All ritual ceremonies are accompanied by the sound of the drums and the rumbling of the fireworks, which are very strong because the noise drives away evil spirits.
TEN RULES FOR THE VEGETARIAN FESTIVAL
1. Cleanliness of bodies during the festival
2. Clean kitchen utensils and to use them seperately from other who do not join the festival
3. Wear white during the festival
4. Behave physically and mentally
5. No meat eating
6. No sex
7. No alcoholic drinks
8. People at mourning period should not attend the festival
9. Pragnant ladies should not watch any ritual
10. Ladies with period should not attend the ritual
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