The Directorate General of Posts is now issuing a second set of four stamps on the topic of Taiwan Folk Activities, including "Water Lanterns," "Snatching the Flag for Good Luck," "Worship of the Just" and " Burning the Prince’s Boat."Brief introductions to the stamps’ designs follow:(1) Water Lanterns-the fourteenth day of the seventh lunar monthSetting off water lanterns is one of the many activites of the Chung Yuan Rite, or Ghost Day Ceremony, in the city of Keelung. The water lanterns are supposed to guide the seas’ lonely ghosts, who have no living descendants to care for them, to leave their suffering in the “water jail” and come ashore to feast. This practice is a display of people’s generosity and universal love.(2) Snatching the Flag for Good Luck-the fifteenth day of the seventh lunar month
Chiang ku, or Snatching the Flag for Good Luck, is part of the chung yuan putu (the deliverance of the spirits of the dead) celebrations in Toucheng, Yilan county. On top of a lofty kupeng (platform), offerings are placed for the people to snatch. Today, this activity is a good-natured competition of intelligence and strength.(3) Worship of the Just-the twentieth day of the seventh lunar monthThe term Yimin, or the Just, refer to a group of martyrs who sacrificed their lives protecting their homeland and people during Chienlung’s rule in the Ching Dynasty. Many shrines were erected thereafter to worship them in the areas in and around Taoyuan, Hsinchu and Miaoli. The yimin are treated like gods and people burn joss sticks and pray to them and hold pig competitions in honor of them.(4) Burning the Prince’s Boat-the ninth lunar month
For a hundred years, Tungkang has observed the tradition of welcoming Chiansuei Yeh, or the Prince, ashore once every three years. The Prince parades around the town to dispel epidemics and tame the ghosts and ghouls that haunt the town. The town folk build a boat ahead of time to take the prince back to the heavenly court. Burning the Prince’s Boat is now a solemn ceremony of praying for peace and good fortune.