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.
新的一年即將到來,一位民眾去年十二月三十日到廟裡祭拜,並詢問安太歲事宜,祈求新的一年平安興旺。

PHOTO: MENG CHING-TZU, LIBERTY TIMES 照片:自由時報記者孟慶慈

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.

(LIBERTY TIMES, TRANSLATED BY LIN YA-TI)

不到一個月就要迎接兔年,民眾為祈求來年一切順利,已經開始詢問安太歲等事宜。

太歲為百神之主,尊貴不可犯,犯者必凶。兔年農民曆都已在上個月初出版,兔年屬兔者犯太歲,屬雞者正沖,馬、鼠偏沖。因此建議這四個生肖的人,到廟裡安太歲。

廟方人員發現,近年來年輕一輩朝主題式安太歲,而非籠統求平順,有人求感情順利、求財運,也有人求公職考試順利而來安太歲。

台南大觀音亭興濟宮廟祝表示,景氣好像真的好轉,問安太歲的人不太計較費用。前兩年不乏信眾問一次安多人可否打折,或問可否全家共同安一個光明燈。

廟祝發現,安太歲者年齡層亦呈下降趨勢,過去幾乎都是年長者安太歲,現在不少廿、卅歲的民眾自己安太歲。

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