My favourite temple will be Tong Whye Temple located at Jurong East which is quite near to my house. Every year, my family will go to the temple at least twice to pray to “Tai Sui” at the start of the lunar new year, and before the year ends. For my family, we believe that we have to pray to Tai Sui in order to get blessing for the entire year. Due to the zodiac, there will be different zodiacs that offend Tai Sui every year. For this year, it will be snake,tiger, pig (my mum and I) and Monkey(my dad). Interestingly, the animal of the year will definitely be in the “Fan Tai Sui” list.
The ceremony for praying to the tai sui is very simple. Firstly, we will have to prepare our individual Ang paos with the amount of money that represents our age. For example, my Chinese age is 22 this year, i will have to put $2.20 inside. Along with this ang pao, I also have to prepare the papers and some simple offerings to Tai Sui. The temple uncle (I am not very sure of the name) will proceed to recite some words of blessing and the ceremony is done. And also very importantly, if we asked for blessings in the beginning of the year, we must return the favour at the end of the year. This is also why alot of people nowadays are lazy to ask for blessings at the temple. However for me, it has become a tradition and I will continue on when I grow older too.
I like the temple as it has become so familiar to me since I visited it since young and I will feel calm and cleanse whenever I stepped into the temple grounds. When I was younger, visitors were able to feed the temple koi fishes which was also something that I looked very forward to doing when I visited the temple.