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Phuket Vegetarian Festival takes to the streets

Friday 12 October 2018, 02:14PM

The street processions began on Wednesday (Oct 10) with the first ‘Yew Keng’ procession held at the Choor Su Gong Shrine (Naka Shrine) in Wichit, followed by the devotees and Mah Song spirit mediums leading the procession from the Sapam Shrine, on Thepkrasattri Rd, north of Phuket Town, yesterday.

This morning, starting at 7:09am, people lined the streets to observe as devotees and Mah Song departed the Lim Hu Tai Su Shrine in Samkong.

Dressed in traditional white of purity, participants lit firecrackers to keep evil spirits away while assistants guided possessed Mah Song along the course of the procession.

Among the piercings featured in today’s procession were swords, skewers and other traditional implements that had been blessed before being used to impale the faces of their carriers, as well as an assortment of more modern furnishings, including wrenches, a ceremonial teapot and even a fishing rod.

Although many local residents lined the streets to observe today’s procession, the number of tourists not present to witness the event was noticeably evident this year.

The processions will continue tomorrow through next Wednesday (Oct 17), as follows:

Oct 13

6.00 am – Tai Seng Pud Jor (Chalong)

6.30 am – Jeng Ong Shrine (opposite Vachira Phuket Hospital in Phuket Town)

6.45 am – Sheng Leng Tong Shrine (Muang Mai)

7.00 am – Ban Tha Rue Shrine (near Heroine’s Monument in Thalang)

7.15 am – Tae Gun Tai Tae Shrine (Baan Pasak)

4.45 pm – Hun Jong and Choor Su Gong Shrines (Naka Shrine, Wichit)

6.45 pm – Kuan Te Kun Shrine (near Phuket Rajabhat University in Rassada)


Oct 14

6.00 am – Bang Neow Shrine (Phuket Town)

6.30 am – Gim Tsu Ong Shrine (Baan Don)

7.00 am – Sam Ong Hoo Shrine (Cherng Talay)


7.09 am – Jong Khee Tong Shrine (near Ton Sai Waterfall, Thalang)

3.00 pm – Tai Huad Tong Hun Shrine (Surin Beach) and Kuan Tae Kun (Rassada)


Oct 15

9.00 pm - Tai Huad Tong Hun Shrine (Surin Beach)

9.00 pm – Boo Seng Tong Shrine (Baan Kien)


Oct 16

2.00 pm – Gim Tsu Ong Shrine (Baan Don)

8.00 pm – Bang Neow Shrine (Phuket Town) and Tae Gun Tai Tae Shrine (Baan Pasak)

8.09 pm – Jong Khee Tong Shrine (near Ton Sai Waterfall, Thalang)

8.15 pm – Sheng Leng Tong Shrine (Muang Mai)

8.30 pm – Sam Ong Hoo Shrine (Cherng Talay)

8.30 pm – Tai Seng Pud Jor (Chalong)


Oct 17

3.00 pm – Kathu Shrine

7.30 pm – Sa Pai Kong Shrine (Bang Khu)



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ematt | 21 October 2018 - 09:09:17

"Attention children, listen up: Stop this fighting, because it's time for your naps now...."

Jor12 | 19 October 2018 - 17:39:12

I am well aware as would most intelligent people of the implications of the devotees in this festival. It obviously is at variance with 5 year olds hence the question. Devotees might also be curious.

Rorri_2 | 19 October 2018 - 06:22:08

Jor12, as you always say "I'm not here to do your research, do it yourself," very simple really, Google it.

Christy Sweet | 18 October 2018 - 20:52:40

Ariel Levy authored Female Chauvinist Pigs explaining why a small percentage of  women act like  behaving ridiculously men- or like men want them to act, a la Girls Gone Wild - all about the  pathology of approval.

Jor12 | 18 October 2018 - 16:05:17

That's excellent news RDD2. Perhaps now you can tell us what it signifies. If it is part of the festival, why is that?

Rorri_2 | 16 October 2018 - 16:14:25

"Well you did actually, that's because you have no idea of what the piercing signifies," piercings have NOTHING to do with the original meaning of the festival, go study the history, you continue to show your ignorance, you poor, poor soul.

Jor12 | 16 October 2018 - 12:48:02

Well you did actually, that's because you have no idea of what the piercing signifies. Go speak to some Chinese at their temple as to what it signifies.

Rorri_2 | 16 October 2018 - 06:11:48

Jadda Jor... I never said it is not originally Chinese, but what I meant was the piercing is NOT part of the Chinese festival. Once again you fail  to understand a simple, very simple, comment.

Jor12 | 15 October 2018 - 16:31:53

RDD2...ahhh...ok, from where does it originate if not Chinese?  Probably Afghanistan. PN has produced a video watch it. 

Rorri_2 | 14 October 2018 - 08:25:28

"Call it what it is, boys acting ridiculously for attention," sorry Christy, but your anti-male ranting has, at least this time, got it wrong, over the years there have been some women (yes with an "e") that have partaken in this bizarre ritual.

Rorri_2 | 14 October 2018 - 08:11:37

"It's just another devotion ritual by Chinese," you comment, is rubbish, the piercings have NOTHING to do with the Chinese, or the Chinese vegetarian festival, go study the history, you got it all wrong, wrong, wrong.... again.

Jor12 | 14 October 2018 - 00:55:42 all the devotion rituals practiced by the various cultures are to seek attention? That's new.

Christy Sweet | 13 October 2018 - 12:41:07

Call it what it is, boys acting ridiculously for attention, (BARFA) Ready, set...Look at me. Look at me! LOOK AT ME !!! LOOK AT ME!! LOOK AT ME!!! LOOK AT ME!!!!!!

Jor12 | 13 October 2018 - 11:32:15

Well it does actually. It's just another devotion ritual by Chinese. No different to self flagellation in Bangladesh (including by children); celibacy by Catholic priests; vine jumping in Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea. Maybe foolish to you, [words removed - Ed] , you are not part of, nor have an understanding or appreciation of their culture

BenPendejo | 12 October 2018 - 18:07:54

Yes Jor, the origins of the festival had absolutely nothing to do with some stupid fat kid putting bicycle handlebars through his cheeks.  I was interested in seeing the piercing processions when I first came here, but soon realized it is just foolish.  The festival has interesting roots, and I understand the value of it. But like so many things, its got out of hand and lost its meaning.

DeKaaskopp | 12 October 2018 - 16:47:57

It doesn't matter if some tourists don't wanna see it. No tourist is forced to look or to go there.

Jor12 | 12 October 2018 - 16:13:32

Best educate yourself on the origins of the festival. Don't take your kids to see it then.

Kurt | 12 October 2018 - 15:18:16

Vegetarian, yes.  But some photos show a lot of meat at the BBQ sticks.  
Many tourists, specially with young children don't want to see all that 'piercing'/self humiliation. Little kids get scared and can't sleep at night after seeing it.  ( with respect for people who feel spiritual good to do it)

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