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Dragon folk custom



Folk Custom and Dragon Culture

The dragon traces can also be seen in the folk custom activities in Taiwan. We selected the following folk custom activities bearing dragoon images typically for explanation:


1.Lantern Festival~Dragon Lantern (dragon culture of light and shadow)

  The modern researches regard that the Lantern Festival is originated from the fire worship and praying for harvest in the New Year. People lighted up fire to expel worm, snake and beast and offered sacrifice to the full moon. The lighting up torches in the early stage was later developed into lighting up bonfires and the tradition of hanging lanterns respectively. Thus, the folk custom activity of praying for peace by lighting up festive lanterns came into being in recent years, a folk custom activity of dragon image representation by way of light and shadow.

▲Figure 2_3_1_1 :The main lantern of 2016 Lukang Huan Temple Festive Lanterns in the Year of Monkey is the “Flying Dragon and Golden Monkey” ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_1_2 : Dragon Lantern Close-up ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2_3_1_3 :Work Name: Welcoming Blessings with Dragon Boat (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_1_4 : 2016 Main Lantern of Changhua City: Female Monkey King ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure 2_3_1_5: Work Name: Guanyin Rescuing Living Beings upon Hearing Their Suffering, the dragon was said to be the mount of Avalokitesvara ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_1_6 :Work Name: Top the List ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )

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2.Dragon King Rite of Lukang (dragon culture of worship ceremony)

Changhua Lukang is one of the few places in Taiwan holding the dragon boat race in Dragon Boat Festival. Before the race, the Dragon King Rite and the rite of bringing the painted dragon boat to life by putting in the pupils of its eyes would be conducted and sacrifices would be offered to the Dragon King to pray that the race is carried out safely and smoothly. Each year, people would first go to Lukang Longshan Temple to welcome the Dragon King and then go to Lukang Mazu Temple to ask the Swami of Chinese Sacred Lily to go to the watercourse rite site together to perform the Dragon King Rite, praying that the race is carried out smoothly and safely. The dragon boats would enter the river after the rite of bringing the painted dragon boat to life by putting in the pupils of its eyes.


▲ Figure 2_3_2_1 :2016 Dragon King Rite/Lukang Dragon King Deity on Holy Palanquin, the deity is represented only by the dragon head, meaning seeing the head of the mystical dragon but not its tail ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_2_2 : 2016 Dragon King Rite/two dragons presenting good luck/ dragon dance and deity worshipping performance before Lukang Longshan Temple Main hall ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2_3_2_3 : 2016 Dragon King Rite/Lifting up Palanquin of Dragon King (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_2_4 :2016 Dragon King Rite/ Worship Ceremony of Two Dragons Protecting Deity ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure 2_3_2_5: 2016 Dragon King Rite/ welcoming the Dragon King to go to the watercourse to perform the rite of bringing the painted dragon boat to life by putting in the pupils of its eyes ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_2_6 :2016 Dragon King Rite/ dragon dance and deity worshipping performance before Lukang Mazu Temple ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2_3_2_7 :2016 Dragon King Rite/ transporting the dragon boats to the worship ceremony site(Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_2_8 : 2016 Dragon King Rite/the dragon eyes of dragon boats not brought to life must be covered with read cloth ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure 2_3_2_9: 2016 Dragon King Rite/Changhua County Magistrate Ming-ku Wei performing the rite of bringing the painted dragon boat to life by putting in the pupils of its eyes when the red cloth on dragon eyes were removed ( Source: Provided by the Changhua county government ) ▲Figure 2_3_2_10 :2016 Dragon King Rite/dragon boat into water rite, casting the sacrifices with golden paper (the underworld currency) into the watercourse, praying that the Dragon King and deities could bless the race is carried out safely and smoothly ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )

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3.Dragon Boat Race in Dragon Boat Festival (dragon culture of water)

   Known as one of the three major traditional festivals of the Chinese nation, the “Dragon Boat Festival” is also a typical dragon festival. The custom of dragon boat rowing existed as early as before Qu Yuan was born. Its purpose was to expel the plague with the image of dragon deity and the statement of memorizing the patriotic poet Qu Yuan was attached to it later. And the main purpose of civilians casting Zongzi into water is to offer sacrifices to the dragon deities in water. Lukang Dragon Boat Festival is held every year in Changhua Lukang and was held in the night for the first time in 2016. To increase the appreciation of race, the dragon boats also bear the dragon images. Since the dragon is the totem exclusive to the emperors, the dragon boat race also has another significance of Son of Heaven cruising river.


▲ Figure 2-3-1 :2016 Lukang Dragon Boat Festival/team of international friends in the race (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers) ▲Figure 2-3-2 : 2016 Lukang Dragon Boat Festival/shinning dragon boats ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2-3-3 :2016 Lukang Dragon Boat Festival/ Changhua County Magistrate Ming-ku Wei leading his team to participate in the race (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2-3-4 :2016 Lukang Dragon Boat Festival/beautiful dragon boats in night light ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )

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4.Other Folk Custom Craft Creation (dragon culture of crafts)

The dragon images can also be seen everywhere in other craft works.


▲ Figure 2_3_4_1 :Vegetable and Fruit Dragon Carving in Worship Ceremony/Taro Carving ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_4_2 : Dough Figurine Work/Dragon Dance and Deity Worshipping Performance ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2_3_4_3 :Grass Dragon (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_4_4 : Shell Dragon/ Shell Fuxing Temple ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure 2_3_4_5: Line-engraved Dragon Ornamentation of Deity Statue ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_4_6 : Line-engraved Dragon Ornamentation of Deity Statue ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure2_3_4_7 : Metal Holy-crown Dragon Sculpture (Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_4_8 : Holy-crown Dragon Sculpture Close-up ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )
▲ Figure 2_3_4_9: Dragon Ornamentation of Holy Robe ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers ) ▲Figure 2_3_4_10 :Dragon Ornamentation Representation on Holy Palanquin ( Source: Photo by Dragon Seekers )

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Trace of Dragons in Changhua - Meet the Dragon through Time  / Team:Dragon Seekers
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