This year, the actual date for Cheng Ming (also spelled as Qing Ming or Cheng Beng) is on 5th April.
For many years, my mother made it a point to visit my grandaunt and my late dad each year during Qing Ming (Cheng Ming). When I was younger, I used to be very tired and drained after each of this visits. However, the scariest part is one year when I was driving my family back, suddenly I could not keep my eyes open and nearly got into a car accident!
I have share my experience in the video below in my channel:
The tiredness is not usual- it is like my energy is drained and I just cannot keep my eyes open. In the past, I’ve worked in shifts before and I used to drive back after graveyard shift without experiencing that sensation of struggling to keep my eyes open.
Over the years, I have learned how to protect my energies to avoid feeling drained and ‘having something’ follow us home. The annual Qing Ming/ Cheng Ming where people go to their loved ones’ tombs, graveyards and columbariums is a practice that should be respected as it is also a show of filial piety and love. I have never made excuses for myself not to go and through my own spiritual practice in later years, some methods in the videos are what I have tried and worked for me. I also include some olden beliefs that have been passed down from one generation to another for probably thousands of years.
Just a brief summary on how to protect our energies and avoid getting into trouble such as feeling drained, offending any spirits or having any follow us back (detailed explanation is in the video):
1. Be respectful– no joke, snide remarks, compliments (eg wow the photo on the tomb is beautiful, what a waste to die so young) and yes, taking selfies with the pictures on the tomb (someone really did that and almost lost her life)
2. Be mindful and keep our awareness inwards, This will bring our energy back within. Avoid any negative talk, gossip, idle chatter or thinking bad thoughts as it will attract negative energies towards us. While we can get away doing that in our own home or office, graveyards are different because it is filled with very heavy and ‘yin’ energies.
3. Never step, or go over, or kick on any offering items
A friend of mine got into serious trouble when he accidentally did that. But before that incident, I’ve heard him mocking that he did not believe in the existance of ghosts and even challenge them to come and look for him. Not long after that, he got into trouble.
4. Not eating the food after it is offered
This is just me, because I noticed I would feel ‘off’ and drained when I eat the food after that. For anyone else who did not feel that good after eating, it is better to just refrain from eating.
5. Certain groups of people should not attend
Pregnant ladies, newborn, baby, infant, toddler, elderly and persons who is weak and unwell should not go to this places. If one is not able to attend, one can also go to temple to do some offerings and donations and dedicate the merits to the departed loved ones.
6. Clean up after visit to the grave
Prepare a pail of water with pomelo leaves and/or loose flowers. Actually I always wash my hands and feet at the tap outside my house before entering my home. While it is not a gurantee, at least we are trying to shake off and doing our best to avoid bringing unwholesome energies or imprints from something we stepped on back to our homes. After that we would change our clothings and put in the washing machine to wash it, then take a bath with first scooping water from a pail of water with pomelo leaves and then let the water run down from our head down.
Some of these tips are also useful in situations where there seemed to be a phantom smell following us back. Either it is fragrant like jasmine smell or it really stinks like a rotted rat. I have encountered once while driving at night from my friend’s house and after passing an area, suddenly my car had strong carcass smell. I immediately focused my mind inwards and then did my chanting but I send kindness energy and did transferance of merits (ie I dedicated the merits I have to the being and wish it well and happy. The smell went off immediately after that. I’ve done a video a while back related to phantom smells:
Reason I write this article is so that it will benefit anyone is going through the situation that I’ve been through. Being energetically sensitive should not be an excuse not to go. Because there are many places, such as hospitals, packed trains, dark places and old buildings that would give us the same effect. We cannot be saying no and avoiding these places forever. We cannot change nor contorl factors externally.