Being in Hong Kong means I would prefer temples over other destinations that other more touristy-minded visitors prefers to spend the day. As I was accustomed to more meaningful journeys and some rare experiences, I look at one particular city where my interests rest on temples, churches, off-the-beaten paths and unexplored alleyways are my preference over the chaotic and expensive Disneyland. Don’t mistake me about my decision not to pursue a Disneyland tour and I have my own personal reasons. The trip in Hong Kong already had me bought tickets to Disneyland but choose not to spend my entire day trying not to die of my self-induced, unwarranted adrenaline rush. Also, I have been pass over my childhood pretty comfortably so I have no interests whatsoever on Disneyland and characters. What stoked me in Hong Kong is by Kau cim at the Wong Tai Sin Temple.
As I was trying to locate it from my map, I am already on the MTR train and trying to get myself to the right destination is a daunting task considering that for this temple, I have to change three (3) couches and those subway trains, though interlinked, have different lines to take. I carefully plotted my best stop and that would be Tsim Sha Tsui. I am, at this time, enamored already with the many temples I have had visited while in Hong Kong. I am optimistically expecting that the weather will be kind and give me the best vantage shots of the temple and perhaps, do some memorable deeds while at Wong Tai Sin.
Wong Tai Sin is a Taoist Temple and follows the teaching of the Great Immortal Wong. This temple is one of the best known temples in Hong Kong and what they are famous about are the thousands of granted wishes of its visitors. Their mantra as I subscribed too is “What you ask is what you get!” and so I believed in it, it compelled me to do Kau cim. I tried Kau cim to wish that my feet will feel the sands and waters of India in the years to come and silently, in my heart, I asked. Kau cim is a fortune telling practice which originated in China in which I asked for petition of my wishes through an oracle lot like Chien Tung or the Chinese fortune sticks. The sticks are flat, mainly made of bamboo and colored red. It has Chinese inscriptions unto it and is placed on a round bamboo container. All you have to do is shake it and after you are done praying for your petition, slowly tilt the container and one (only one) stick falls off. That fallen stick will contain the answers to your petitions and prayers. As to mine, I will keep it to myself until my petition is granted.
Wong Tai Sin is a temple run by the sect called Sik Sik Yuen, one of the best known in Hong Kong. This temple, like in Tin Hau, has its own MTR station. What I saw in Wong Tai Sin are great vista of Chinese influence and how rich its religion and practices are even to a cosmopolitan Hong Kong. Wong Tai Sin was built in 1921 and remained unscathed even during the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong.
Being stoked by Kau cim in Wong Tai Sin meant I am destined to a future that gives me more opportunity to be inspired and give back inspiration to those whose lives are intertwined with mine. I am indebted to the opportunities that my travels have made for me and for those who reads me. Hong Kong, indeed is not only about Disneyland or Ocean Park, it is also about getting to know their culture deeper and sincerely live by it while you can. After all, it was reflective of me being stoked by Kau cim in Wong Tai Sin.
How to get there:
- From anywhere in Hong Kong, take the MTR train on its Tsim Sha Tsui station on the Tsuen Wan Line then walk past through to East Tsim Sha Tsui on the West Rail Line and take the couch to Hung Hom. From there, take the train using the East Rail Line until Kowloon Tong and change train again that heads to Tiu Keng Leng and dropped off at Wong Tai Sin Station.
- This temple has its own exit so people pretty well can give you directions where to alight from the MTR.