Each year in early spring,
Chinese people customarily go to tidy the grave sites of
and burn incenses to deceased family members who now either
live in a yin realm,
a parallel world characterized with a visual quality
similar to negative film in contrast to this fully developed
yet highly volatile reality, or have been reincarnated
back to this domain or other spaces in human form or something
else. Regardless where they are at the moment, many
Chinese believe that the feelings and the opinions of the
people in this world would have an impact on the current
situation of the deceased in other worlds (or a new human
life here), as all their past lives would do, thus the
graveyards are conveniently served as the message boards
for Chinese to leave feedbacks (all positive, of course)
on the previous performance of their beloved.
If you've ever observed
how anxious most sellers in online auction sites are when
waiting for their buyers to leave a positive comment -
especially at the time when their rating is so high that
they are expecting to abstain a power-seller status or
when their rating is so low that their account might be
restricted or suspended - you should realise how important
feedbacks are to some of the deceased who are looking for
an upgrade or trying to avoid a downgrade in their current
But realistically, not
everyone is available to physically sweep the tomb on
the tomb sweeping day for one reason or other, hence the
web sites providing virtual tomb sweeping services pop
up in large quantities in China like bamboo shoots after
a good spring rain.
The promoters of the sites
like to parade their service as being eco-friendly, since
the distance to a memorial hall just a click away so you
don't need to drive your car and pollute the air, and since
there is no carbon dioxide emitted when copying / pasting
an animated image that looks like a burning incense which
is the communication super highway channeling your thoughts between the worlds.
These are all true. And
in fact, the promoters have underestimated the significance
of their new service. It's not just going green or being
virtual. It is a way of getting people connected and helping
a nation being collective.
Take jibai.com, one of
the major memorial service sites in Chinese language. Their
young customers do not just log on to tidy the virtual
graveyards of the deceased from their own families. They
do more than that. And much more.
The following are the
ones who have received most tributes during this festival
on jibai.com and many other similar sites:
Mao Zedong, the founding
father of the People’s Republic of China who reunited the
Sun high, the leader
of Xinhai Republic Revolution (辛亥革命) that
drove away the parasite ruling group Manchus.
Qian Xuesen, the father
of China’s space program.
Lei Feng, a 22-year old
PLA soldier who lived a life of helping others.
Liu Hulan, a 16-year old
heroine who died a heroic death for the sake of a better
The Chile earthquake victims.
On the tomb sweeping day,
Chinese diplomats present flowers to the 134 national heroes
who fell on the battle field during the Korean War and rested
eternally in a foreign land far away from their home, which
Anying (毛岸英), China’s late leader Mao Zedong’s son who was died in
a U.S. air strike; Huang Jiguang (黄继光), who
blocked China's enemy South Korean troops' machine-gun with his own body; Qiu Shaoyun (邱少云) who
grinded his teeth to keep silent when burning alive by
an U.S. bomb, and Luo Shengjiao (罗盛教) who gave away his own life for saving a North Korean child.
Tiger Bites (4)