It is considered the scariest period of the year. No, we’re not talking about Halloween or All Souls’ Day.
We are a week away from Ghost Month and while it is not generally considered a major event here in the Philippines, many Filipinos couldn’t help but be cautious anyway. Who is not nervous about the consequences should we disturb any lost and wandering spirits we may encounter during this period? (Although, honestly, being a ghost might be more of a concern for some.)
According to Chinese tradition, the Ghost Month is the period in which souls are given a “month’s probation” to wander among the living. An important Taoist and Buddhist celebration, it falls in the seventh month of the lunar calendar (from July 29 to August 29 this year). Its peak is on the 15th (which is August 12) when all the ghosts have finally made it out.
Aside from China, other countries that observe the Ghost Month include Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan, and India. What makes Ghost Month different from other festivals that honor the dead is that it also pays tribute to spirits without a home or family.
Prevention is better than cure, as the English proverb says. Here are some simple tips on how to locate our “good brothers” and “good sisters”, a better and more respectful way to call them, instead of “ghosts”, while attracting positive energy and attracting good luck to our living spaces.
Spirits are said to tend to lurk in the shadowy, underused corners of a home. Light brings positive energy to a space. Feng shui experts recommend keeping living spaces, including hallways and corners, well lit so you can counteract the negative energy that hungry ghosts bring.
If a corner or hallway doesn’t have a light fixture installed, here’s your chance to put to good use those decorative floor or desk lamps you proudly bought on your trips to the flea market. However, make sure you use energy efficient LED bulbs. There is nothing more positive than choosing to be ecological and economical.
Sprinkle some rock salt on your door sill, window sills, and corners of the house, especially hidden ones. Salt is believed to counteract bad energy, so a pinch of salt in these places around the house is said to dispel negativity.
When it comes to choosing colors for your curtains, sheets, and pillowcases, go for bright, cheerful colors. Yellow, orange, pink and pastel colors encourage positive energy and give spaces an uplifting mood.
Avoid black, white, and red for now: black because it’s generally the favorite color of ghosts, white because it’s traditionally worn at funerals, and red because it’s said to arouse strong emotions in spirits.
The key, according to feng shui experts, is to appease wandering souls and hungry ghosts so they don’t cause us any trouble that could bring bad luck. Make offerings of incense sticks by lighting them, as the spirits are believed to feed on their sweet smell, making them feel that we are not antagonizing them.
keep your space clean
It is often said that a clean place makes a happy space. Keep your home tidy to allow chi or positive energy to flow freely through it, protecting us, its occupants. Clutter, dirt, and dust are considered negative elements, so they prevent positive energy from doing its job.
Feng shui experts also suggest playing upbeat and relaxing tunes, as upbeat music keeps unwanted spirits away. If you have a water fountain at home, keep that running, too. The sound of dripping water is relaxing and also a wealth enhancer.
Sources: Inquirer Archives, Eresources.nlb.gov.sg, Oftaiwan.org, Maritessallen.com
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