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Da Shi ye Cultural Festival
Last Change Time:2017-12-05Published by:Section of Artistic and Cultural Affairs
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“Minsyong Da Shi Ye Cultural Festival”, Keelung Ghost Festival, Pintung Hengchun Qianggu, and Yilan Tuochun Qianggu are known as the four big festivals in July for Taiwan. Legends say that Da Shi Ye is an incarnation of Guanyin, that take the shape as the king of ghosts during the Ghost month, repressing the wild ghosts during Pudu. According to records, during the Qianlong era, every year around July of the Chinese calendar, there will be haunting sounds of ghosts crying around Top Street of Mingsyong, scaring the people. When a Da Shi appeared however, with red armor, blue face and fangs, roaring fire, the ghosts and wind immediately stop their noises. The people believed that it is Guanyin appearing to scare away the ghosts, so they painted a Da Shi red and put it on an altar to worship, suppressing the ghosts. This is known as “Top Street Da Shi Ye Event”. Later on, there are also the “Down Street Da Shi Ye Event” from 7/21 – 23, as well as the “Xiao Pu Da Shi Ye Event” on 7/29. These series of ceremonies lasted till now, becoming the biggest Pudu event in Minsyong each year around that time.

The annual Da Shi Ye Pudu Ceremony is also known as “Lan Pen Sheng Hui”. Near the time of the festivals, Minsyong Township would be covered with lanterns, as well as a paper statue “Da Shi Ye” in the temple for believers to worship. During the ceremony, there are also mountain gods, Tu Di Gong, and Guanyin Da Shi’s Puduo Mountain, Hanlin Yuan for the gods, rooms for ghosts, buildings etc. Before the official ceremony, a red paper will cover the face of the Da Shi Ye, until daybreak to reveal the face. On the last night, each house will have incense to worship, and the tables next to the temple square will be filled with offerings such as animals, fruits, rice and wine. The highlight of the event will be the cremation of Da Shi Ye.
After the three days Pudu ceremony, the paper sculpture along with others will have to be cremated, returning them back to the sky while taking the ghosts with them, leaving behind serenity and peace for the public. After the start off cremation ceremony, tens and thousands of believers will escort the paper sculpture to the incineration endure. Legends say that by touching the paper sculpture of Da Shi Ye, one can gain good luck, so the crowds are always fighting to touch the sculpture. With firecrackers and fireworks, the starting off ceremony for the cremation is majestic and lively. A raging fire will be burning for two to three hours, lighting up Minsyong’s night sky.

Minsyong Da Shi Ye Temple is a third grade historic site, as well as the original Temple for Taiwan’s Da Shi Ye Temples. In particular, for the last hundred years, there isn’t an actual physical Da Shi Ye sculpture, only a memorial tablet. In recent years however, with the agreement of the gods, a physical sculpture is finally erected in the temple for worship. The temple is originally constructed in 1797, but destroyed due to a major earthquake. For the reconstruction process, columns and stones from three other old temples were used, so the temple also worships the major gods of those temples, preserving Minsyong’s temple culture. Da Shi Ye’s Pudu legend not only marks ancestor’s struggle with harsh environment, but also embody the friendliness of the Taiwanese towards these good brothers (slang for ghosts).
  • Activity location
  • Minsyong Township, Chaiyi County
  • Organizer
  • No
  • Activity time
  • From 8Month to 9Month ever year
  • Remark
  • The specific details are accurate only through the organizers' announcements on time and location, please note the website for update.
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