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Dajia Mazu Pilgrimage
Last Change Time:2015-07-29Published by:Planning Section
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March, the month for Mazu! Every year, on the third month of the Chinese calendar, there will be a whole Mazy craze in places all over Taiwan, celebrating her birthday. The most famous event is “Dajia Mazu Pilgrimage”, with a history over a hundred years. On the lantern festival of each year, the Dajia Zhenlan Temple will decide the date for the pilgrimage, mostly around Mazu’s birthday in March. The final destination of the pilgrimage is Singang Fenting Temple, going through the coastal line from Daiji through townships such as Qingshui, Shalu, Longjing, Dadu, Changhua, Huatan, Yuanlin, Yongjing, Tainwei, Beidou, Pitou, Xizhou, Xiluo, Wucuo, Erlun, and Tuku. The whole pilgrimage goes through four counties of the southwest coastal areas, sixty or so temples, with a total of 280 miles, 8 days and seven nights to complete the entire walk. It is often accompanied by participants up to tens of thousands of believers from all over Taiwan, even enthusiastic participants from aboard. This scene is grand and spectacular, being ranked as one of the world’s three major religious event.

Fentian temple, the religious center of Singang, is a well-known Mazu temple in Taiwan. Starting from Minguo year 77, being made as the final destination of Mazu pilgrimage, it attracted countless believers from all over the country. On the march of every year, believers of the pilgrimage all come into Singang, marking the busiest time for the little town.

The whole process of the pilgrimage include seven important ceremonies: beginning, temple sitting, celebrating the birthday, cutting fire, incense, journey, adding fire. On the afternoon of the first day, after a chanting, cleaning chair ceremony, Mazu will start on the journey, accompanied by the deep and solemn voices of the horn. The head of the formation is led a specially dressed “messenger”. Then the escorting team, chair group, incense group, and percussion will follow the magnificent Mazu sedan chair. Behind the formation will be tour buses, automobiles, motorcycles, bicycles, and even walking believers, holding incense and toting luggage all the way for 8 days and 7 nights.

Everywhere the formation pass by, there will be believers ready to worship, kneeling down on the ground and even crawling on the floor to let the chair moved across the body, in order to remove the body of evil filth. Along the way, believers will automatically prepare scrumptious dishes for the hardworking pilgrimage team. Local temples will also lead out groups to welcome them.

When Mazu arrive at Singang, there will be an embroidered flag team, 36 Deacons team, whistle team etc. lining along the two sides of the Fengtian temple. After the carriage undergoes the “Daxiaoli” in front of the temple, they will quickly go inside for the “temple sitting”. On the morning of the following day at 5am, a traditional blessing and birthday ceremony will be held. After the end, believers will pull out pig hairs or use knifes to cut off pig ears, asking for Mazu’s blessings. After staying in Singang for one day, a returning ceremony will be held in the middle for the night, traditionally known as “fire cutting” but now known as “Jiaoxiang”. A mage will take out incenses from the Fengtian temple into the small stove in Zhenlan temple then into a small box that is then sealed, completing the “Jiaxiang” ceremony.

On the way back to Dajia, those who want the incents can worship and pray to the Mazu with the order Head incense, second incense, third incense, fourth incense… also known as “pricking incense”. Once it returned back to Dajia, there will be a “town pilgrimage”, where believers flood into the town like water, with loud firecrackers and troupers several kilometers long. Lastly, the “add fire” ceremony will be held, inserted into each incense burner in the temple, completing the pilgrimage mission.
  • Activity location
  • Singang Township, Chaiyi County
  • Organizer
  • Dajia Jenlan Temple
  • Activity time
  • From 3Month to 3Month 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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