Photographs and Information about Taiwan's Culture, Nature and People by Rich Matheson

Faith in Tainan 台南的信仰

Steve McCurry recently posted A Matter of Faith. Steve McCurry needs no introduction for photographers, but for the non-photographer; Steve McCurry is the photojournalist who took the iconic National Geographic  ‘Afghan Girl‘ photo said to be the most recognized Natgeo photograph in history. David Sanger followed with ‘Images of Faith’ where he wrote “if you have your own selections of images please post them on your blog”. Craig Ferguson, a friend and photographer I follow, put me on to this with his own post ‘Of the East’. My photos are all local, except for one from my wife’s village, Namasia, a small Aboriginal village in the mountains. Here they are:

Bajiajiang (Eight Generals), Nankunshen Temple, Tainan. These religious performers, often decline to be photographed when at rest, but this time General Liu was happy to oblige.Elderly woman brings incense to censer, the most common public display of faith in Taiwan.Jigong (Mad Monk or Drunk Monk) takes a swig of alcohol from his gourd. After I took a photo (I was right under him with my 50mm) he offered me a swig. It was Kaoliang. Yum.Probably Bajiajiang, don’t know which general.Spirit medium (Dangki) with tiger pins piercing his cheeks. Worshipers come to Nankunshen Temple by the bus loads to pay their respects to the gods and often performance troupes and their local Dangki will accompany them. Intimate photo of woman getting guidance via a medium’s spirit writing and a translator on the right.

Beautifully robed Taoist priest. Nankunshen Temple, TaiwanRed-faced General Zeng, a Guanjiang Shou at Xin Guan Temple renovation ceremony, TainanWoman puts incense into main censer in Yanshui’s Martial (God of War) Temple, TainanYoung worshipers offer incense to Guan Gong in the Sacrificial Martial Temple, TainanFlaming censer in front of Nankunshen Temple’s Guanyin pavilion, TainanGuanjiang Shou in front of Nankunshen, TainanWufudadi, White Dragon Abbey, TainanA Christian Elder blesses a house in traditional Christmas ritual, Namasia, TaiwanIncense sticks are thrown into censer, Nankunshen Temple, TainanSpirit writing in Nankunshen, TainanDangki will perform acts of faith to increase their esteem in the eyes of their followers.One of the five demons of ZhongKui WuGui(鐘馗五鬼) from Banqiao at Nankunshen, TainanGrandfather and grandson pilgrimage to Tainan’s BeiJi Dian with their Supreme Ruler of the Dark Heavens tablet and statue.Bajiajiang (Eight Generals), Nankunshen Temple, Tainan

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7 responses

  1. travellingdarren

    Great set, really liked all of it

    March 1, 2011 at 12:25 pm

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