Sat, Jan 08, 2011 - Page 13 News List

Young people clear about what they want from Taisui 年輕人安太歲 願望很明確

A man worships at a temple in Tainan City on Dec. 30 last year as the new year approaches. He went to the temple to inquire about how to pray to the god Taisui and ask for a safe and prosperous new year.


With the year of the rabbit arriving in less than a month, people have started thinking about praying for a trouble-free year ahead, and have begun to ask temple workers how to keep the god Taisui happy.

Taisui rules over all other gods. He commands respect, and it is dangerous to anger him, as this will always lead to misfortune. The lunar almanac for the year of the rabbit was published early last month, and it shows that people born in previous years of the rabbit risk offending Taisui this year. The rooster is diametrically opposite the rabbit [on the Chinese zodiac wheel], and the horse and rat command the sides of the perpendicular axis of the wheel. It is therefore advisable for people born under these four zodiac years to go to temples to worship Taisui.

Temple workers have found that in recent years young people have been praying to Taisui with specific themes, rather than the traditional generalized prayers. Some people have been asking for a better relationship with their partner, others for luck with their finances, and others for success in civil service examinations.

The abbot of the Grand Guanyin Pavilion Sing-ji Temple in Tainan City says that the economy really is showing signs of recovery, as people coming to the temple to pray to Taisui are no longer nit picking over the fees. Over the past two years worshippers have been asking for group discounts, or asking whether they could just light one lantern for their whole family.

The abbot discovered that the age-level of people worshipping Taisui has dropped. In the past it was mostly older people, but now quite a few people in their twenties and thirties are coming to worship Taisui on their own behalf.

Interestingly, the younger generation is very specific about what they are praying for. One young couple came to ask Taisui to help them improve their relationship. Some young people are worried their boyfriend or girlfriend has changed, that they have become a little distant, and hope that Taisui can bring back some of the original magic to the relationship.

According to the abbot, prayers to Taisui are usually done prior to the Lantern Festival, which falls on the 15th day of the first lunar month. An older woman, who was worried her business wasn’t going too well, came to pray to the Taisui of the Year of the Tiger last year and in more recent visits she appears to be in much better spirits.

According to the Web site of the Lugang Mazu Temple in Changhua County, people born under the years of the rabbit, rooster, rat, and horse should worship the Taisui of the year of the rabbit in order to pray for good fortune and avoid misfortune. The ritual of lighting lanterns is for all people, and not necessarily for those who risk offending Taisui, to pray for good health and a bright future. This involves writing down one’s name, date of birth, and address on the lantern, and then praying to the gods to bring good fortune and longevity and protection against bad luck.







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