The Festival of the Hungry Ghosts 2013

Seven photographs from the Festival of the Hungry Ghosts (中元节), which ended in early September 2013. During the 7th month of the lunar calendar, Chinese believe that the Gates of Hell open once a year for a month. Spirits and ghosts are free to visit the human world. Humans place offerings of food, drinks, and items for the ghosts. There are also concerts, performances, and Chinese opera, where everyone is invited, but the front row seats are left empty for the ghosts. It is a fascinating festival to me because it shows the relationship to the afterlife. What happens when we die? Where do we go? I also overheard some Chinese tourists from Mainland saying that the festival is so much more elaborate in Southeast Asia.