Thanksgiving for hungry ghosts and National Day

Adrian David

KUALA TERENGGANU: Giving thanks to appease the souls of the dead annually, is something that is not forgotten.

And expressing their gratitude for a peaceful and harmonious Malaysia as the nation ushers in the National Day, is top on their minds, too.

Thus, the 41 stalls trading their food and beverage at the Kuala Terengganu City Council’s hawker centre in Kampung Tiong, did just that during the Hungry Ghost Festival.

The occasion saw the hawkers getting together for the occasion with their multi-racial guests at the centre which is popular among locals and tourists over the last 35 years.

(File pix) Traders of Kampung Tiong hawker centre in Kuala Terengganu with patrons at the recent Hungry Ghost Festival event recently. Pix courtesy of NST Reader

Event organising committee chairman Helen Puang said the day began with the offering of prayers by traders and patrons, followed by the burning of paper paraphernalia, such as gold and silver ingots, and hell notes.

“Then, we invited the hawkers’ families, regular patrons and tourists for a feast, with food and beverages prepared by the stall owners themselves.

“The evening culminated with karaoke singing, merry-making and lucky draws from prizes donated by well-wishers,” she said.

The hawker centre affronts the popular morning market square which is adjacent to the famous Kuan Thee Than temple.

In Chinese culture, the Hungry Ghost festival is celebrated from the fifteenth day of the seventh month in their lunar calendar.

During this period, it is believed that ghosts and spirits of the deceased ancestors come out from the realms of heaven and hell, to visit the living.

Thus, the living make offerings and perform rituals to transmute and absolve the sufferings of the deceased. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd