What do I think of the Chinese Ghost Month? PDF Print E-mail


Comment from Jessie Liao, our student researcher


2009.8.26.  Fo Guang Temple (7)I think sometimes the way people celebrate the Chinese Ghost Festival may be very unsustainable.  This is because as the world population is growing in an ever-increasing rate (exponential growth), the energy usages increase, which means that more world resource is using up by people.  When more people are trying to celebrate the festival by burning the incense, the paper factories need to produce more paper for the public and which can lead to the more deforestation.  This means more forests are going to be cut down for paper producing.  Also, burning up more incense means that more CO2 is produced during this process and therefore it can lead to a very important issue -- Global warming.  There are many negative effects of global warming.  For example, it can lead to the rising of sea level, and many beautiful countries like Maldives are going to disappear within maybe 50 years.  Also, it can change the climate and many animals will lose their habitats and most of them cannot adapt to the climate fast enough, which leads to the endangeration and distinction of some species.


However, celebrations of the Chinese Ghost Festival can boost the world economy.  As we know, we are in the situation of the finacial crisis.  As mentioned before, the world population is increaing and therefore more people are celebrating these festivals, the shops selling more paper money and lotus latterns can help to push the economy.  This is one of the advantages of celebrating festivals in this old, traditional way.


To improve the environment, I suggest that we use some websites to process the celebration; this is more convenient, cheaper and less adverse environmental effects.  For example, we can express our feelings, emotions and love to the victims of the 5.12 Wenchuan Earthquakes in China by using a special memorial website.  People can send messages and flowers, and even burn incense on this website, and therefore it is more eco-friendly.


However, not everyone can use the websites for this kind of celebration, because old people may not know how to use the computer.  In order to solve this, we can organise some group celebration to sing songs to express our love to the relatives that have passed away on the Ghost festivals instead of burning too much paper money.


Also, we can make incense by using bio-degradable products.  This means that those products can rot naturally and will not do any harm to the environment.