Salt of Peace Festival.

Several times a year, busloads of worshippers of Wufu Qiansui make a pilgrimage to Nankunshen Daitian Temple in Tainan. Today my Vietnamese-French friend Dinh and I are here to take part in the Kunshen Lords Pingan Salt Festival. To show respect, believers often hire performers, including traditional musicians, martial artists and even pole dancers to entertain the gods.
In Taiwan, people believe in many gods. People are magnanimous, and so are the gods. Today is the third lord’s birthday. His name is Wu Siao-kuan. He is the only lord out of the five who doesn’t have a beard. He is herculean and handsome.
Wufu Qiansui means “five gods,” but originally there were more than 360 gods that are a part of this group of Daoist deities, and most of them specialized in protecting people from plagues.
Most of the Wangye’s and their temples in Taiwan came from Nankunshen Daitian Temple. On the third lord’s birthday, their spirits come back and pay respect, greet each other and get together. If they need help with something locally, they’ll ask the main spirit for help.
During the festival, lucky charms with salt in them are passed out to visitors. The salt farms in the Beimen area are the oldest existing ones in Taiwan.
Wow that is so heavy.
Yes, you got it.
In France I used to go to church. And the churches are really different. You go to church and there are no shops inside. People are just praying, and very calmly. No one is screaming, so let alone imagining having go-go dancers and all these fairs and all those people and all those fire crackers too. That just doesn’t happen in my country, so it’s a really interesting contrast.