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Ming-Ai (London) Institute © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
Do you know anything about The Chinese Ghost Festival? The 15 th day of the 7 th lunar month is Hungry Ghost Festival as well as Zhongyuan Festival, Yu Lan Pen Festival and Shi Hu. It used to be a religious ceremony in India. The Buddhist would hold the Yu Lan Pen Festival in memory of their forefathers. The Yu Lan Pen canon was compiled to encourage the Buddhists’ piety, so it went with the Chinese custom of commemorating their ancestors and became popular in many Chinese regions. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
This was a monk called MuNian. MuNian’s mum got eaten by a ghost and suffered. MuNian had no idea how to save his mum. MuNian asked Buddha for help. Buddha told MuNian the way to save his mother. MuNian saved his mother. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
There was a popular folk tale about how the monk, MuNian, saved his mother from suffering. MuNian had great magic power. One day his mother fell into the mouth of a hungry ghost and turned into flames in endless suffering. MuNian had no idea how to save his mother, so he went to ask Buddha for help. Buddha told him the Yu Lan Pen canon and asked him to save his mother on the 15 th of the 7 th lunar month with the help of Yu Lan Pen. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
Sacrificial altar ChairDi Zang Flour-made peaches Spirit tablets Funeral banners Sacrificial offerings Triangular paper banners Solemn music Sacrificial ceremony China followed the custom since the Liang Dynasty (502-557 AD) and it was evolved into the present Zhongyuan Festival. In addition to the fast provided for the monks, the present festival has special SARIFICIAL CEREMONIES!!! © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
At night, incense is burnt in front of the door of each household. The more incense, the better, for the amount of incense stands for the degree of prosperity. People flow water lanterns that are made by setting a lotus flower-shaped lantern on a piece of board. According to the Chinese tradition, the lanterns are used to direct the ghosts. Ghosts find their way back when the lanterns are out. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
On the festival, most shops are closed at night to leave the street to the ghosts. In the middle of each street, an alter of incense is set every 100 paces with fresh fruits and sacrifices displayed on it. The monks will sing songs that only the ghosts can understand. People hang out lanterns to celebrate for the ghosts on Zhongyuan Festival. However, as human beings and land belong to Yan, which means positive, so ghosts and water belong to Yin, which is negative. The dark and mysterious underworld usually reminds us of the gloomy sepulchral hell where the ghosts suffer. So at Zhongyuan Festival, lanterns should be flown on waters. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
Burning paper money is originated from the Buddhism and some Indian religion. Those religions believe that fire can help people to pass the treasure to the ones who have already passed away. However, burning paper money is originated from China. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
1.Celebrations of the Chinese Ghost Festival can boost the Chinese economy. WHY: The world is in the situation of the financial crisis and human population is increasing, therefore more people are celebrating those festivals, the shops are selling more paper money and lotus lanterns. 2. Celebrating Chinese Ghost Festival maintain the traditional culture of China. WHY: This is very important for a country, as people shouldn’t forget what has been passed on by ancestors. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
1.The celebration of Ghost Festival may be very not eco-friendly. WHY: World population is growing in an ever-increasing rate (exponential growth). The energy usages increase, which means more world resource is using up. 2. More deforestation WHY: People are burning more paper money for Ghost Festival, therefore the factories need to produce more paper for the public. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
More carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) will be produced. It contributes to serious world issue global warming. Sea level rising Maldives Climates change Animals can’t adapt fast enough Habitats lost Extinction © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
2. Organising some group celebration to sing songs. (Be careful with the NOISY LEVEL!!) 3. Making incense by using bio-degradable products. WHY: Products can rot naturally and won’t do any harm to the environment. 1. Use internet to process the celebration. WHY: convenient cheaper more eco-friendly HOW: send messages send virtual flowers burn incense © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
A. Christmas B. Valentine’s Day C. Halloween D. Chinese New Year E. Children’s Day This is what we are going to talk about!!! © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
The Celts Divided the year “light half” Spring & Summer “dark half” Autumn & Winter Days are longer Days are shorter Celebration (Samhain) Nov. 1 st The origin of Halloween from the Celts to the Romans. The origin of Halloween from Sacred to Secular, from Scular to Pagan, European empires conquered most of the world in the centuries The Age of Exploration Export Christian faith Spread festivals to the rest of the world. Secularism took root in Europe and spread the colonies abroad. Festivals like Halloween were secularized in many parts of the world. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
Halloween is one of the most widely celebrated festivals in the world. It’s celebrated on the 31 st of October. Whilst some feel it should not be celebrated as it glorifies evil, in our increasingly secular society it is mostly seen as a harmless bit of fun for the kids. 1.In the UK, the traditional celebrations are big on APPLES! HOW: Apple bobbing, which involves floating a number of apples in a bowl of water and trying to remove one by biting it. Hanging apples on strings and eating the apple with no hands. 2. Jack-o-lantern’s are very old tradition. WHY: It based on carving turnips or mangle-wurzels, a member of the beet family. Pumpkin carving is an American invention, the pumpkin being softer and much easier to cut than our native turnip. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
3. ‘Trick or treating’ has become popular in the UK in the last 20 or so years; it has been imported from the US. HOW: The ‘treat’ was based on an UK tradition called ‘souling’, where the poor would beg for food in return for prayers for the dead on All Soul Day, Nov. 2 nd. The ‘trick’ was originally something the child would do to earn their treat, maybe by singing a song, rather like carol singers. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
If you want to celebrate Halloween with your children, there are a few things to bear in mind: Children who go ‘trick or treating’ should be accompanied. Parents should make sure their children’s safeties and check it their givens are appropriate. If you hold a party ensure that the decorations, activities and costumes are AGE APPROPRIATE! If there is a wide range of ages, remember younger ones may be frightened by costumes that older children and adults regard as tame. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
FORAGAINST Halloween is fun. It’s full of costumes and candy, trick or treating and terrifying haunted houses, pumpkins and black cats. Many interesting games are played. Halloween is totally unnecessary! Halloween is celebrating evil spirits. People should not leave such scary and spooky memories on children’s minds. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
1.Celebrations of Halloween can boost the economy. WHY: The world is in the situation of the financial crisis and human population is increasing, therefore more people are celebrating Halloween, the shops are selling more costumes, sweets, pumpkins and apples on Halloween. 2. Everyone enjoy Halloween. HOW: Young people get together to have fun. It’s also a very good opportunity for families to get together to enjoy the special festival. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
1.Some Halloween celebrations are not eco-friendly enough. WHY: Most people buy different costumes every year. This is a form of wasting resources. Pumpkins are only used for once and then are binned afterwards. 2.There are some social impacts on people. HOW: Halloween is becoming more annoying for some people now, as nowadays some people start to ask more when doing trick or treating. They ask for money instead of sweets. Gangs of teens start to gather together on pavements and threat pedestrians. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
1. People should wear the same costumes for Halloween. WHY: To avoid wasting products as those special costumes are only worn once a year and they will not get damaged so easily. HOW: To exchange costumes with others. This can not only save the resource, money and energy to make products, but also satisfy people in the angle of fashion. 2.Make use of the Halloween pumpkins. HOW: Eat the pumpkins instead of throwing away after the festival celebration. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
Similarities Differences 1. There are web-memorials for both festivals. 2. Both of the festivals believe that the ghosts are all spirits of dead people. They live in some other spaces where we can’t see or never notice. And the ghosts will come back to earth at a certain time. 3. Both people who celebrate the Chinese Ghost Festival and Halloween believe that all kind of ghosts and spirits are not very friendly towards humans. 1. Eastern people are very pleased and respect ghosts and try to maintain the harmony between the ghosts and human beings, whereas western people dress trendily to scare the ghosts away. 2. The celebrations are hugely different, this may because of the different cultures and educations they receive that eastern people are more conservative whereas western people are more open- minded. © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
The different attitudes of people towards these two festivals. What do you think of after life? Do you think money is still important in the ghost world? Which directions do you think these festivals will develop in the future? Do you think these two festivals will become more commercialised in the future? What are the advantages and disadvantages of using internet to celebrate these festivals? © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
For more information, please visit our website www.ming-ai.org.uk © 2010 Ming-Ai (London) Institute
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