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The Vegetarian Festival occurs every year on first day of the ninth month of the Chinese calendar (so end of September or beginning of October). It is best known on the island of Phuket, but it's also a well-publicized and celebrated event in the larger, southern cities of Thailand.
Another familiar sight is to see them walking barefoot on burning coals or climbing ladders with rungs of sharpened blades. Amazingly, they demonstrate no sign of pain and evidence but a minimum of bleeding when their bodies are pierced. The "power of the gods" is believed to be the force that enables the "Spirits Doctors" to endure these feats without feeling pain. During the festival, they walk from one Chinese Temple to another. Faithful join them and in each temple they make donation, worship Chinese gods.
After the gods enter their bodies, the "Spirits Doctors" then begin their walking journey throughout the villages and cities. Huge crowds welcome them with shouts, applause and fireworks. The faithful give money, which is supposed to go for the upkeep and embellishment of the temples. Unfortunately, some of these monies either fail to reach the authorized persons, or be used for their intended purposes.
Some people say that the Chinese gods are angry because money is not used to embellish temples but used to build hotels, bars, discotheques, and massage lounges.
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