Hungry Ghosts ritual
set for U.Va.
Over the past 1,000 years, Chinese Buddhists have created
an enchanting and colorful public meditative rite to ease the
suffering of hungry ghosts. These supernatural beings
are believed to be tortured by emotional and spiritual hunger,
said Hun Lye, a U.Va. doctoral candidate in religious
studies. The Rite of Universal Liberation is thought
to ease physical, mental and emotional anguish and heal the troubled
spirits of ghosts and people alike.
ritual, rarely seen in the West, will be performed by Chinese
Buddhist monks and nuns for the first time at an American university,
according to Lye, on Saturday in Newcomb Hall Ballroom. The performance
will be in two segments, the first beginning at 10 a.m. and the
second at 1:30 p.m. PowerPoint slides will explain the significance
of each element of the ritual as it is performed.
is free, but seating is limited to 200. Audience members are asked
to take their seats at least 15 minutes before the beginning of
this weekend, Dan Stevenson, an associate professor of religious
studies at the University of Kansas, will give a talk, Troublesome
Crossings: The Chinese Buddhist Rite of Water and Land and Distribution
to Hungry Ghosts, at 3 p.m. Friday in Campbell Hall 158.