As a Singaporean, it is fair to assume that most of us know what Hungry Ghost Festival is—it’s a month filled with rituals and reverence to the deceased within the Buddhist and Taoist community, and this year, it falls on August 19.
Devotees believe that on the 15th day of the 7th month in the Lunar Calendar, the gates of hell open, allowing the spirits of their dead ancestors to return to earth and visit their families. They religiously observe this sombre ceremony every year, presenting food and burning a variety of paper offerings out of respect for their deceased family members.
With the country overwhelmed by a pandemic, celebrations this year will be slightly different. Prayer services at temples will be limited to 50 people at a time, so in order to facilitate more convenient proceedings, Shopee has actually taken the initiative to launch a 7th Month Essentials campaign where they are offering discounts and bundles on all essential prayer items so that you can perform your rituals from the comfort of your own home.
Here are some of the items that you can purchase from Shopee as part of their campaign.
Paper offerings make up an integral part of Hungry Ghost rituals, and they come in all shapes and sizes—from gold bullions, cash, cars, houses with personal security guards, and even electronics like handphones and laptops.
For the discounted price of S$10.94, you can even get a papier-mâché massage chair. Shopee is having up to 10% off on all Joss Paper bundles that include a variety of such offerings per bundle, with this particular one from Kim Zua King going at S$52.20.
Another must-have for devotees this month are food staples. These include foodstuffs like sugar, salt, noodles, rice, canned food, and fresh fruits. As the name of the festival literally suggests, food represents an important part of the Hungry Ghost rituals.
Shopee is offering up to 14% discounts on food bundles that include vegetarian food options, biscuits, canned food as well as other items like a plastic container for you to place the offerings in. This bundle from Chuan Hong Seng costs S$58.96.
To encourage a smoother and safer joss-paper burning experience, Shopee is also presenting a discount for oils used for prayer and stainless steel pails. The discount rate is 8% for the respective items, with prices ranging from S$12.69 to S$30.91 for oil and S$15.45 to S$36.80 for prayer pails from An Lah.
On top of food and material objects, alcohol is also a popular choice of offering to the deceased. It is common to see drinks like beer and stout being placed in glass cups on prayer altars in front of houses as offerings.
For this reason, you can actually purchase a 24-pack of Tiger Beer at a 14% discount for S$45.80 on Shopee during the Hungry Ghost Festival period.
Fresh fruits are popular during this month, too, especially fresh oranges. For only S$5, you can get 4 fresh Sunkist Oranges when you shop at Shopee during the festival.
Get your essentials from Shopee here.
Price: From S$10.94 onwards
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