last night at my apartment complex, we had a halloween party for all the kids. it was fun- 12 kids aged 1 to 5. we had stories, candy, went on a candy treasure hunt. all good!
a parent asked me before the party if halloween was like ghost month. i told her that it was originally, but since christianity took over europe, that part of it (ancestor worship) was abandoned. now it's just a holiday for kids.
halloween isn't like ghost month. for one thing, we don't really beleive that ghosts, gobblins, and most surely not that vampires and werewolves come out on that day. even though halloween shows death and other gruesome scary things, it's all making fun of it! that's right. we made death into a temporary joke. rather than fear it, we make a joke and a holiday of it to say" yeah we're gonna die, but til then we're gonna have fun"
contrast this to ghost month- death is serious business. ghosts are real. and they'll cause serious havoc if you don't do according to the tradition.
can't swim, can't do this and that, cause ghosts rule! they will kill you.
yet, i have lived 44 years without following the traditions of ghost month, and NOTHING HAS HAPPENED TO ME. that's right, not a ghostly thing!
now why is that? i also don't follow feng shui beyond basic air flow for my room.and i don't read the chinese farmer's almanac. i'm doing just fine.
and i have tons of dead relatives that i don't pray to/for and never will. life goes on for me. i have a rich, wonderful life in taiwan.
what gives? if all these taiwan traditions are true, how come they don't affect me? and how come they don't affect the millions of people living in the West?
maybe because i have an armor that protects me that's stronger than those silly idols sitting in your temples.
and maybe just maybe, your religion is a lie- a lie created to keep the chinese people in spiritual bondage. think about it.