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Thousands of locals, visitors attend night seal opening, seal mark granting ceremonies at Kiep Bac temple

MONDAY, 12/09/2022 21:54:57

On the night of September 11 (i.e. the 16th day of the 8th lunar month), seal opening and seal mark granting ceremonies were solemnly held at Kiep Bac temple.



Leaders of the province offer seal marks to locals and tourists

At 10 pm, Mr. Le Van Hieu, Standing Deputy Secretary of the provincial Party Committee, Head of the provincial Delegation of National Assembly Deputies; Mr. Trieu The Hung, Deputy Secretary of the provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the provincial People's Committee; some members of the provincial Party Committee’s Standing Board; Mr. Nguyen Minh Hung, Vice Chairman of the provincial People's Committee, Head of the Organizing Board of Con Son - Kiep Bac Autumn Festival, and thousands of locals and tourists conducted seal opening rituals.

The rituals took place after a two-year hiatus because of the Covid-19 epidemic, resulting in the large number of participants, many of them came from neighboring provinces and cities from the morning of the same day.

After the Mat Niem (turning off the temple) ritual had been done by monks, the provincial leaders appended the seals and placed seal marks on an altar to perform the ceremony.

At 11 pm, the seal mark granting ceremony was carried out in the front yard of Kiep Bac temple. This year, the Organizing Board of Con Son - Kiep Bac Autumn Festival prepared thousands of seal marks for distribution to local people and visitors.

The sacred temple of Kiep Bac has been a famous place for centuries, where imprints of exploits of Tran Dynasty's army and people during three times defeating the atrocious Mongol invaders, affirming the strength of Dai Viet (old name of Vietnam) still remain.

This is also a place to honor the name and career of National Hero, Quoc Cong Tiet Che (Supreme Commander), Hung Dao Dai Vuong (Great Lord Hung Dao) Tran Quoc Tuan – the soul of Dai Viet soldiers and people in the holy resistance war against the Mongol invaders.

According to the Management Board of Con Son - Kiep Bac Relics, four bronze seals of Hung Dao Dai Vuong Tran Quoc Tuan are still kept at Kiep Bac temple.
 

Trance performances at Kiep Bac temple take place in a festive atmosphere

The first seal is a square one (measuring 10 x 10 cm) inscribed with the words “Tran Trieu Hung Dao Vuong Chi An” (Seal of Lord Hung Dao in the Tran dynasty). This is the most important seal, showing the power and strength granted by Saint Tran.

The second seal is another square one (measuring 5.5 x 5.5 cm) engraved with the words “Quoc Phap Dai Vuong” (Seal of Great Lord Quoc Phap or The great lord keeps the national laws) to request the Saint to grant power and strength to oblige all forces to obey the law.

The third seal is also squared (measuring 4.3 x 4.3 cm) and inscribed with the words “Van Duoc Linh Phu” (Sacred seal of Van Duoc temple). This is a sacred seal that helps everyone live healthily without diseases.

The final seal has a rectangular shape (measuring 5.2 x 7.8 cm) and is engraved with the words “Phi Thien Than Kiem Linh Phu” (Sacred seal of the supernatural flying sword) to pray for peace and eradication of evil spirits.

According to folk conception, people should ask for “Tran Trieu Hung Dao Vuong Chi An” or “Quoc Phap Dai Vuong” seal marks if seeking great things, social statuses, promotions, or right-wrong differentiation; “Van Duoc Linh Phu” seal marks if wanting to have children and abundant fortune; or “Phi Thien Than Kiem Linh Phu” seal marks if wishing to ward off evil spirits, diseases, etc.

Normally, visitors ask for a piece of golden silk stamped with all four seals at the sacred temple to hang at home or bring along to pray for happiness, wealth, longevity, and all good things.
 

Thousands of locals and visitors attend the Trance Performance Festival and the seal mark granting ceremony

Earlier, from 8 pm to 9.30 pm, the Trance Performance Festival opened in the front yard of Kiep Bac temple with the participation of thousands of locals and visitors.

This year's festival features Meritorious Artist Dang Ngoc Anh from Ha Noi city (performing after the opening ceremony), artist Dao Dang Long from Chi Linh city (September 12 evening), and artist Tran Thi Trung from Bac Ninh province (September 13 evening).

According to Le Duy Manh, Deputy Head of the Management Board of Con Son - Kiep Bac Relics, trance performance is a typical ritual at Kiep Bac temple to honor the merits, power, and virtue of Saint Tran in the struggle for national protection as well as the cause of building and developing Dao Noi, a Vietnamese religion.

Every year, hundreds of psychics go to Kiep Bac temple to do "the saint's work", helping believers present their wishes, like eradicating evil spirits, having good chances in love, having children, etc., to Saint Tran.

Therefore, the worship of Saint Tran and the trance performance ritual have gradually taken root in the folk consciousness and become indispensable spiritual activities in the life of Vietnamese people.

TIEN HUY – THANH CHUNG

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