On October 4 the nation of Cambodia celebrated a unique festival called Pchum Ben. It is also called the festival of dead, celebrated on 15th day of the tenth month in the Khmer calendar. The 15 days long celebration is observed to pay their respects to deceased.
The Buddhist or Khmer Monks chant the hymns in Pali language continuously thought out the night until without sleeping, and at the start of the opening of gates of hell, an event that is believed to occur once a year. During this time, spirits of the dead are presumed to visit the earth and be more active.
Food-offerings are made to please them, this also an opportunity for some spirits to end their period of purgation and for some to leave hell temporarily before returning to endure more suffering.
People offer food even to Buddhist monks In temples to earn “merit” which indirectly benefits their dead relatives. In many temples, several rituals are performed like rice-balls throwing through the air, or rice thrown into an empty field, bull races, buffalo races, horse races and wrestling. Although it is a festival to pay respect and benefit the dead rituals it is community union of some sorts and is celebrated with a hint of joy than sadness.
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