Kok was driving me and Min Xiang looking for food in town last Sunday, we were near to Thean Hou Gong and had decided to go into the temple and have a little prayer to Ma Zu, the Goddess of Sea or also known as the Heavenly Empress. We were 2 days late, it was the birthday of Mazu and there’s possession and parade going on at that area.
While searching for Mazu on the net, I found out that this Goddess has a few names of different language.
- Mazu (媽祖, literally “Mother-Ancestor”), or Mazu-po (媽祖婆, “Elder Lady Mazu”), pronounced as Matsu in Wade-Giles
- Tian Hou or Tianhou(天后, literally “Heavenly Empress” or “Heavenly Queen”) or Tin Hau in Cantonese, or Thiên Hậu in Vietnamese
- Tian Fei (天妃, literally “Heavenly Princess Consort”), pronounced as Tenpi in Japanese
- A-Ma or A-Po (阿媽, 阿婆, “Grandmother”)
- Tianshang Shengmu or Tianhou Shengmu (天上聖母, 天后聖母, both meaning “Heavenly Holy Mother”) or Thiên Hậu Thánh Mẫu in Vietnamese
I had actually been to this temple at Muntri Street when I was very small but I’ve almost forgotten about it. The place we small. People there was cleaning up the place after the celebration of the Mazu festival.
We did some prayers there and I snapped some photos inside. Besides that, I and Ah Kok qiu qian (made a divination) at there. It’s my first time doing such thing.
First, you need to ask a permission from Goddess Mazu but tossing the pair of cup, if one side face up and and another side face down, means that you got the green light. Then shake the sticks with number until one will drop out. Lastly, do the cup tossing again, if it’s both side facing up or down, you have to the shaking again. In the mean time, tell in your heart about what you are “asking” and introduce yourself. It’s just religious belief. =)