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The Jade Amulet and the Angry Ancestor on the Chinese Ghost Festival.

The Jade Amulet and the Angry Ancestor

The Jade Amulet and the Angry Ancestor on the Chinese Ghost Festival.

As a young child, I always looked forward to festivals, especially the Ghost festival. It meant visiting my grandfather’s house, where he would have a stash of toys for me to play with. Grandfather was a devout Buddhist and believed in the power of amulets to ward off evil spirits. Before the Ghost festival, he went to the temple and obtained a beautiful jade amulet for me.

On the day of the Ghost festival, we set out early in the morning to worship our ancestors at the graveyard. I wore my new amulet, which had a vibrant green and red color, but I wasn’t used to wearing something around my neck. My grandfather insisted that I keep it on, and I obliged.

As we arrived at the graveyard, I became restless and wanted to play with the other children. While my grandfather was busy worshipping the ancestors, I sneaked away with some boys. We ventured deeper into the cemetery, and as we did, the fog became thicker. The graves were neglected and looked like piles of dirt.

One of the boys suggested that whoever kicked the soil off the top of a grave would become our leader. Always up for a challenge, I eagerly kicked the soil off a grave. Suddenly, the fog dissipated, and the sky turned dusky. We realized it was about to rain and decided to head back to our families.

As we were leaving, I felt a weight on my neck and looked down to see my jade amulet had broken in two. Confused, I picked it up and put it in my pocket. Later that evening, I felt an uncomfortable sensation as if something was being pulled out of my body. I told my grandfather about it, and he immediately asked me about the jade amulet. When I told him what had happened, he grew angry and took me back to the cemetery.

He found the grave I had kicked earlier and cleared it with a branch. He made me kneel before the grave and beg for forgiveness, whispering to the ancestor that I was just a young child who didn’t understand the consequences of my actions.

After this, I felt better, and my discomfort faded away. My grandfather explained that the ancestor I had angered was from our village and that the jade amulet had prevented a terrible disaster from befalling me. Had it not been for the amulet, my soul could have been pulled from my body.

From that day on, I never ventured too far from my grandfather during the Ghost festival. I learned to respect the ancestors and the power of their spirits. And although I was still fascinated by the supernatural, I made sure to tread carefully in their presence.

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