There is so much to learn from the Vietnamese … war tactics, the desire to live, the strength of one’s beliefs. In the little time that I had, I got a small peek into the beliefs of the locals. What intrigued me the most was their belief in life after death and traditional practises that carried out to appease the deceased. Read on to know what spiked my interest…
1. Most Vietnamese practise Taoism and not Buddhism … in the sense that they worship their ancestors and not Buddha. Offerings are kept on a pedestal to appease the departed souls.
2. The Vietnamese bury dead in their fields with the belief that the souls of the ancestors will protect them. Also, a grave on a parcel of land makes it more difficult to sell, ensuring that it handed down from one generation to the other.
3. Here is something very interesting practised by certain tribes in North Vietnam…While the deceased are buried, the process does not end there. The remains are dug up again after about two years, the bones are cleaned and the remains are buried again.
4. Vietnamese believe that the deceased have gone to a happier place and many a times, celebrate death.
5. The belief that the spirit needs worldly goods to stay ‘happy’ in the other worldly place is strong. Vietnamese burn fake money, fake cars and even fake iPhones to send them to the spirits!