Phuket Vegetarian Festival 2012 is here!

Phuket Vegetarian Festival or Tessagarn Gin Pak (Gin Jey) or Nine Emperors Festival 

Phuket - October 14th to October 23rd 2012

ประเพณีถือศีลกินผัก (กินเจ) จังหวัดภูเก็ต ระหว่าง วันที่ 15-23 ตุลาคม 2555

Phuket Vegetarian Festival 2012 - Jui Dtui Shrine

Phuket Vegetarian Festival 2012 - Bang Niow Shrine

Known in Chinese communities around the World the Vegetarian Festival of Nine Emperors Festival is an important part of Chinese Culture. Like all myths the true identity of the Nine Emperor Gods remains uncertain. Popular folk culture has it that the Nine Emperor Gods are actually sea pirates of the Ming dynasty that plotted to overthrow the Qing dynasty. According to Priest Long Hua, this information is inaccurate and considered derogatory to the actual teachings of Taoism as the Nine Emperor Gods are actually high-ranking Star Lords who preside over the movement of planets and coordinate mortal Life and Death issues.

Thanks to


The local people eat a strict vegetarian diet for the period of the festival and so the streets are filled with stalls selling all kinds of delicious vegetarian food. 

The people maintain a strict regime throughout the festival and wear white clothes to signify there cleanliness of body and soul. The rules that have to be followed are as follows:

1. Eat only vegetables and no meat or dairy products. 
    Cooking utensils should be separated from non- vegetarian ones. 
    Food should be prepared by someone upholding the rules of the festival.
    Do not eat strong smelling vegetables such as Garlic and Onions. 
 กระเทียม (หัวกระเทียม, ต้นกระเทียม) หัวหอม (ต้นหอม, ใบหอม, หอมแดง,หอมขาว,หอมหัวใหญ่) หลักเกียว (ลักษณะคล้าย หัวกระเทียม แต่เล็กกว่า) กุ้ยช่าย (ใบคล้ายใบหอม แต่แบนและเล็กกว่า) ใบยาสูบ (บุหรี่,ยาเส้น,ของเสพติดมึนเมา)
 see also:

2. No Alcohol or Drugs
3. No Sex
4. Do not kill
5.Think and do only good things, don't tell lies.
6. Pregnant Ladies cannot not attend rituals.
7. Menstruating Ladies cannot attend rituals.
8. People in mourning cannot attend the rituals.
9. Keep your body clean and wear white clothes as a sign of purity.

Starting off at any of several Chinese Temples (Sarn Jow) the spirit mediums having taken on the spirit carry out various ceremonies that include self-infliction, climbing a blade ladder and fire-walking. There are some very curious sights to be seen as the spirit mediums (ma song) seem to try and out-do each other, piercing their cheeks with an unimaginable range of objects! 

I still love the atmosphere of these processions, full of smoke and firecrackers, colourful and noisy, definitely not for the faint-hearted. 

The festival comes to an end on the ninth day of the lunar month with a ceremony to send off the gods at midnight. This last night is full of firecrackers and the wonderful feeling of completion of the ten days of rituals.

A full schedule of ceremonies and processions can be downloaded in English here: or you can view the embedded version below

ดาวน์โหลดคู่มือประเพณีถือศีลกินผักในรูปแบบ pdf ไฟล์ได้แล้วครับมีทั้งภาษา ไทย

See for general information in English and Thai

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