TAOIST RITUALS

The wishing ritual will first require the washing of both hands. Barefoot, devotees will enter a shrine and light up some incense sticks. They will kneel before the altar holding the incense and say their prayers. They will then place the incense in a large pot that contains all other joss sticks offered by fellow worshipers.

Devotees will take two blocks of bean-shaped wood to make their wish. How the blocks appear after they are thrown to the floor generate different meanings. If both blocks face up, it could mean that a wish may be granted. If both blocks face downward, the wish may be put on hold for some other time. The worshipper can visit the temple again even though at the moment the wish request implied “No”.

Taoist temples are places of worship for those who practice Taoism, a religion founded under the principles and teachings taught by the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu. Taoist worshipers follow a number of rituals. One ritual involves climbing 81 steps up and down the temple every Wednesdays and Sundays. The 81 steps symbolically represented the 81 chapters of the Taoist scriptures. Worshipers also consult the monks about their future and light joss sticks during these days