Be A Smart Traveller

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Vietnamese beliefs in ghosts

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There are many types of ghosts in Vietnam and do not fit into one category only. Some of them are pleasant and feared, harmless and dangerous, moral creatures and unhappy suicides, male and female, human and un-human. In general, ghosts are those who have undergone unnatural, premature, painful or violent deaths, and especially when people die away from home. They’re not the same with our ancestors who would have died a good death in their homes with proper rituals in place. It is believed that if a dead person wasn’t buried properly, his spirit will roam the countryside and steal whatever they can get along the way. They are known as the “hungry ghosts”. In Vietnam, ghosts are also viewed as aids to fortune-tellers and spirit mediums because they help the locals to gain an understanding about people’s lives.

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Liv Hambrett

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