Re: Obon (盂蘭盆), an Important Event for Welcoming Our Ancestors Back

I think that a similar event is held for welcoming their ancestors’ soul back everywhere in the world, but we (Buddhists in Japan) have a custom to do it, too in the middle of scorching summer, on the 13th of Aug.
We went to our family tomb in the afternoon today, bringing a set of offering flowers, candles, incense sticks, small foods for the ancestors such as rice dumpling and seasonal vegetables, together with a lantern and a sutra book. Here, (my late mom used to say that) the smell of incense sticks is a “feast” for the God, and the lantern is for bringing the God’s soul back to our home, since the soul resides in the candle flame. After coming back to our home, we have to chant the sutra in front of our family alter. We believe that the ancestors will stay at our home from today to 15th. So, the family members, including our sons, daughters, grandkids gather together for Obon days in usual years, chatting and eating among the re-united members. (But, it’s a pity that our children and grandkids cannot come back in the last couple of years due to COVID-19’s spread. (😑) )

Our family tomb.
According to our family register of deaths, the oldest ancestors dates back to 1655, 367 years ago
All of our family’s ancestors have just come back to our family’s Buddhist Alter
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