Some people like to travel to visit urban jungles and watch other human beings, some likes to go hiking and explore natures of other countries.
If you are interested in hiking the mountains of Taiwan, it won’t hurt to hear some of the locals’ superstitions and guidelines before setting your foot on an unknown territory. After all, you never know who or what you might encounter in the foreign country. O_O
Shivers ~ As I was typing this post I did felt a chill down my spine, so just bear with me here.
1. Please say “Excuse Me” before peeing in the wilderness!!
In Taiwan aboriginal culture, every tree has spirit or god living inside, and they are sacred. When one must go due to biological needs, and you happen to pick a spot near a tree, do say “excuse me” before letting go ~
Another reality is, there are unmarked grave sites in the mountains, who knows where you step on is someone’s eternal resting place, might as well pay some respect first.
2. Do not call other people by name!!
There are mountain spirits in Taiwan that likes to trick people to walk off paths and into the unknown areas. Letting those spirits know your name exposes your identity, giving them a chance to lure your away by repeating your name in the mist of wilderness. There has been cases in the past when someone accidentally calls their hiking buddy by full name, and when the fog comes up in the middle of hike, their teammate goes missing. When later on the teammate is found, the teammate said he/she heard someone called them by name, so they walked towards the direction of the source, only realizing they are not on the same path anymore and got lost.
3. Sorry, telling ghost stories attracts……..
(you know what)
Remember the time when you and a couple of friends like to camp out in your living room at night, flashing light on your face and tell ghost stories to spook each off for fun?? Yeah, that is a big No-No in the mountains of Taiwan!!!!
Ghosts wonder around, they are curious, they also love hearing what we humans think about them XDD Ghost stories attract ghosts to congregate. In the mountains of Taiwan where accidents happen, you bet there are many wondering ghosts looking for something to do at night!! Rumor is that if you and your friends are brave souls who likes to talk about ghost stories while camping out in the mountains of Taiwan, that night your camp site will be rattled with many unknown occurrences. Next thing you know, you will wake up with panda eyes because you did not sleep well ~
4. Tapping shoulder means level down on protection!
There is also a taboo of tapping others on the shoulder and make other person look back over their shoulder. The reason is that in Taiwan, they believe people have three blub of fires on us that protects our souls, one of each side of the shoulder, and one on our head. Tapping on other people’s shoulder unexpectedly can spook other people, and even extinguish their spiritual fire on their shoulder, which makes them vulnerable to other spiriting lurking around.
For more realistic reasoning, some higher mountains of Taiwan have wild animals like black bear, big cats, and so on. Sometimes a tap on the shoulder may be from a bear……
5. A trip to night market or temple won’t hurt!!
If during the hike in Taiwan you feel that you have gone to several spots that made you feel uneasy or spooked, highly recommend that you do not go straight home. Rather go to a crowded places with lots of people like a night market and celebrate your finish of the hike there. Places with lots of people means positive chi, and can also distract ghosts away from you. Go to a temple and offer incense to thank the gods’ blessing for safe return is also a good idea.
If symptoms of high fever, unconsciousness happens during or after the hike, besides going to the doctors to get medicine, please go to the temples of Taiwan, sometimes the temple keepers and religious practitioners can spot who might have followed you back and caused your sickness. X___X
I wonder if other countries have any superstition when it comes to hiking too? If you know any please comment and let us know !!