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The spiralling hopes of a devotee’s spiritual wishes January 23, 2008

Posted by asianpixmen in Activities, Craft, Culture, Malaysia, Places.


There are two emotions associated with a person who walks into a Chinese temple: It’s either awe or submission. Awe is usually reserved for foreign visitors of different religious persuasions.

Submission is the feeling exclusively reserved for Chinese devotees who more often than not feel humbled that he or she is walking on holy ground. Then there are the huge, colourful statues of dieties and the huge vertical joss-sticks or the spiralling ones.

Of late, the spiral ones have taken precedence at some temples because they could be hung from the ceiling, thereby giving the premises an aesthetic value of religious proportions.

Those spiralling joss don’t come cheap. But they do provide the devotee who buys them and then have them hung in the temple as a sign of his generosity and devotion to the religion. This practice has been going on for centuries. The temples were aplenty in the ancient Middle Kingdom.

  Today, eons later, Chinese temples have sprouted wherever the Chinese have sunk their roots. Traditions are part and parcel of the Chinese communities. They take their gods with them and build temples to remind themselves and the dieties that despite their worldly aspirations, a large part of their existence on earth is also a preparation for the hereafter.



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