Power Of The Dead
When the demands of the dead is not fulfilled, many things can happen. The following story shows how a dead man tries to get his family members to do what he wanted.
Mei’s father in-law passed away about 17 years ago. She told the story about how her father in-law had hidden a piece of paper in a box. None of them found out about the hidden paper until after the funeral. That piece of note supposedly is a directive to the all family member upon the man’s death.
The funeral service was held at a funeral parlour. Following Chinese customs, the coffin was placed there for up to five days so that friends and relatives can come and pay their last respects. During the night, all the ladies were sent to another building to sleep. The men would stay up at the funeral parlour to keep an eye on things.
In the middle of the night, when everything was quiet, all the lights suddenly went off. They thought it was merely power overloading and someone was sent to correct it. The same thing happened twice that night. Everyone started to feel scared and one of the sons tried to talk to the father. He walked to the altar and said, “Father, please don’t do that. We are scared!”
Then, they had all the lights switched off except for one fluorescent light. The same thing happened again after a while. They then burn a joss-stick and told the father “Father, whatever you want, let us know please. Maybe you want the lights off, so we switched them all off except for one. Please don’t scared us.”
Everything was peaceful then and they had the single light on until the next morning.
Next morning, they called in a professional photographer to take the photo of Mei’s father in-law. According to Mei, they wanted to keep the photo for remembrance as well as to send one to her eldest sister in-law who could not join them for the funeral.
As the photographer came to work, he found his camera not functioning at all. Being a professional photographer himself, he was a bit embarrassed. At the same time, he felt scared as he was convinced that nothing was wrong with his camera.
Mei’s husband took the initiative to burn a joss-stick and told his father, “Please, Father, all we wanted to do is just to take a photo of you so that we can send it to your beloved daughter far, far away in England”
After that, they told the photographer to try again and everything went on smoothly. The funeral also went on smoothly without much disturbances later.
A few days after the funeral, when the daughters were busy clearing up the man’s drawer, they discovered the note that perhaps explains why all those strange things happened. The man had written the note in his own Chinese handwriting and had hidden it inside his drawer. In the note, he demanded that nobody should mourn and cry upon his death. He also demanded that nobody should spend the night at the funeral parlour.