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Monday, March 19, 2012

Pillar 'dragon' joss sticks.

Pillar "dragon" joss sticks.
Pillar 'dragon' joss stick being lit.
Celebration at the Tua Pek Kong temple in Sibu, Sarawak, on the night of the eve of Chinese New Year 2012.

Ashes pit.
Ashes pit. Left-over joss sticks are disposed in the incinerator.

One more for heaven.
A slight breeze fanned a joss stick while a temple worker lit another one.

Offerings to heaven

Pillar joss sticks.
Burning pillar 'dragon' joss sticks emit the fragrance of incense and smoke which is neither acrid nor irritating to the eyes.

Pillar joss sticks.
Joss sticks burning on the edge of the Rejang River. Photographed from the cargo boats jetty.

worship, visitors and vendors.

worship, visitors and vendors.
Visitors, worshippers and vendors at the entrance to Tua Pek Kong temple. Many people at the temple on the eve of Chinese New Year 2012.

Offering to heaven.
Temple worker removes burnt-out joss sticks.

Tua Pek Kong temple, Sibu, Sarawak.

Tua Pek Kong temple. Sibu, Sarawak. 22nd Jan 2012. Eve of Chinese New Year.  

View of the entrance and pagoda behind the temple.

Celebration at the temple.
View outside Tua Pek Kong temple. Smoke from burning joss sticks form a ring in the breeze.

Friday, March 16, 2012

joss sticks urn

Intricately detailed joss sticks urn at Tua Pek Kong Temple, Sibu Sarawak.

Tua Pek Kong Sibu. 22nd January 2012. Eve of Chinese New Year. This elaborate and tall brass urn is beautifully detailed. There are dragons embossed on the belly of the urn, with two of them forming the handles. The top is a Chinese pavilion with a two-layer roof, and little dragons perched at each corner. The four pillars of the pavilion are also intricately detailed.

The small joss sticks are lit and held in the hands during prayers in the temple, after which, they are placed standing in the sand filled urn and left to burn out. They are slightly fragrant.
Metal racks holding new pillar-like 'dragon' joss sticks are found on both sides of the urn. The urn is seated in front of a low decorated wall which also holds the large pillar joss sticks while they burn out. Beyond the wall is the Rejang River.

The smoke from these joss sticks are neither acrid nor irritating, emitting the fragrance of the materials used. All in all, there is a solemn ambience to these offerings to heaven.