April 13, 2015

Qing Ming sucks

I am never one who believes in God or heaven or hell. I’d like to refer myself as an Atheist sometimes… but I am not sure really, for I don’t fucking know what I am. Most of the time, I’d follow what people do, more as a tradition than an affirmation of faith… and I do that out of respect to the people who had brought me up and wanted me to believe in all of those stuffs.

One of the many things that I had promised my late mom that I’d do, is to follow the Qing Ming tradition. If you do not know what ‘Qing Ming’ is, fucking read this please to save me some lengthy explaining.

In short, Qing Ming is the Chinese Halloween but way less cool without all those fancy cosplays. It’s a serious affair in the Chinese culture and people tend to frolic less during the Qing Ming month out of respect. It happens for the entire month (or something like that) instead of just 1 day, and everyone has to haul ass to the actual grave or niche of his/her ancestor/mom/dad/grandparent/[anyone] to fucking clean them on the prayer day. During the prayer day, family members will burn huge amount of incense, effigies, paper money, offerings, food, et al to the departed one and pray for good fortune/health through some supernatural intervention I suppose. Besides all that, family members also take the opportunity to get together, so that they’d live harmoniously in this mortal world under the supervision of the ghostly eyes of the dead ancestor…

Anyway, as you can probably tell, this has been a stressful affair for me. I just couldn’t stand the traffic and smoke and assholes elbowing their way to their ancestors’ graves, and I’m 100% against the idea of burning stuff to appease the dead. Trust me when I say this, when I burn the traditional paper money and gold ingots for my mom, a small part of me dies together with her, and a small part of my soul gets sucked up into the hot updraft of air of tinder and smoke. I just couldn’t understand why would she need all these worldly material in her underworld? The very idea of money or wealth is to court happiness, which is associated to the feelings a mortal has. If she’s already dead (and became a spirit?), why the fuck would she have feelings for these stuff then? She’d be free of all these confinements (sufferings), and all we needed to do is to leave her the fuck alone and let her rest in peace already.

If this is for remembering her, then won’t I be achieving the same effect just by looking at her photos? and without burning anything? (and I can do it anytime, right?) That’s why I think Qing Ming is ridiculous and suck. It might have been a good tradition in medieval times, but not for the 21st century. I’d say, someone should start thinking about making it less damaging to the environment by planting trees instead of digging more graves. We’d just grow a tree out of a dead person’s body, and the dead’s children can congregate under the tree during Qing Ming… just picnicking under its shade, running around and chasing the family dog. From the dead, grows a living tree that serves the same purpose of remembrance (you can put a sign like those you see in a national park or something, only that it reads “Herein lies John Doe, who fries killer fried rice…” instead of some scientific name of a tree). And instead of a smoky graveyard, you’d get a park full of trees and happy people having a day off. (dogs running around too, their turds nourishing the trees in a healthy ecosystem of happiness and rainbows).

My world is so different than everyone’s… I told my mom with my thoughts the other day during Qing Ming, that next year, I’m going to remember her with just fruits… And I ask for her blessing all the same if she could hear me…

Update 04 OCT 2015 : Someone actually started this idea. Check out this link.

michaelooi  | thoughts  | 

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