Wednesday, 22 July 2015 02:02

Rituals in group

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Additional Info

  • Country: Taiwan
  • City: Kenting NP
  • Year: 2013
  • Author: Luca Fecarotta

Another key part of the ceremony: several groups of men, after carrying on their shoulders these types of small shrines, once there in front of the temple, incited by the screams of the audience and accompanied by the constant music (and blessed by the customary bow of the "priest"), they performed one at a time in this exhausting ritual.

The ritual was to swing these wooden shrines on the shoulders as hard as possible. Occasionally someone fell from the effort or needed a quick switch, because all this hard process lasted for several minutes. When finished, they continued with a procession through the streets of the villages... everyone was very tired but also excited for the challenging ritual.
I've seen a dozen of these groups get here carrying always different types of statues and shrines. The groups were always formed by young and (apparently) strong men... was not an easy task for sure. The group in the picture is the one that has struggled more, always in a corner of the atrium of the temple, accompanied the ritual of every group that came, performing and challenging them in speed. They have been the last to go in procession... maybe their shrine was the most important(?).

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