chapter  5
8 Pages

Calendrical Observances

In addition to Fang yankou, a number of other rituals traditionally must be performed at certain times of the year in Chinese Buddhist monasteries. At Shuxiang si, most such calendrical rituals involve the shengguan ensemble. These include monthly observances for making offerings on the holy days of particular buddhas and bodhisattvas, rituals for holidays of the lunar calendar such as MidAutumn Day and Chinese New Year, and rituals for particular Buddhist holidays such as Yulanpen, or the week of the Ghost Festival. These rituals differ from ordinary rituals in that they will occur whether or not a donor sponsors them. In many cases, however, a donor will sponsor one of these rituals in order to gain the opportunity to take part in the ritual and accrue good karma.