Monday February 25, 2013
Deity predicts pace to pick up further in second half of year
By ROYCE TAN
GEORGE TOWN: The country's economy is expected to improve in the second half of the year, according to the forecast of the Tua Pek Kong or God of Prosperity.
The deity predicted that the first trimester of the Chinese Lunar Year would be moderate.
The pace of the economy will be at its best from June onwards in the Year of the Water Snake.
The prediction was made during the annual Chneah Hoay (flame-watching) ceremony at the Hai Choo Soo (Sea Pearl) temple in Tanjung Tokong on Saturday night, the eve of Chap Goh Meh.
Thousands of devotees converged at the seafront temple to offer their prayers.
They included businessmen hoping to find out how they will fare by catching a glimpse of the flame.
“This is one of the strongest and highest flares I've ever seen in the past 30 years.
“I believe this will be a good year for all of us,'' said Poh Hock Seah Temple vice-president Tan Lye Hock.
The embers were fanned at 11.50pm, 11.53pm and 11.58pm representing every four months in the year.
The temple's lights, candles and oil lamps were put out at 11.45pm to enable the committee members to scrutinise the height and intensity of the flames.
Tua Pek Kong is said to be able to foretell the country's economy via the flames from some 60 burning joss-sticks.
It has been held annually on the eve of Chap Goh Meh since 1844.
Legend has it that the deity comes out to meet other resident deities on the 14th day of the Chinese New Year.