A Gala of Traditional Arts Performance at the 2014 Baosheng Cultural Festival

To celebrate the birth and deeds of Baosheng Dadi, the Baoan Temple of Dalongdong organizes the Baosheng Cultural Festival every year. This year, the event will feature activities such as religious rituals, guided tour of historic sites, artistic workshop, fine arts competition, healthcare consultation service and academic symposium. The Family Surnames folk opera (jia xing xi) series will be performed by domestically known troupes in the forms of Taiwanese opera and hand puppet show.
The festival also attracts visitors from local and abroad with cultural events such as religious procession attended by other temples and organizations, as well as unique shows such as the setting-off of the Fire Lion fireworks and fire-walking ceremony.
The organizers welcome members of the public to join the festivity to celebrate the sacred birth of Baosheng Dadi, the God of Medicine, and to enjoy a premium journey into Taiwan's religious culture.

Event Schedule:
4/4 - 4/27: Family Surnames folk opera series Daily 19:00 - 21:30
Adhering to the ancient practice of paying respect and showing gratitude to the deities, Baoan Temple is dedicated to the passing on of local cultures and values via promoting the development of local opera performances and grass-roots folklore arts.
4/6: Painting Competition 09:00 - 14:00
To encourage fine arts education and creativity, Taipei Baoan Temple will hold a painting competition.

4/12: Baosheng Dadi’s Birthday Celebration Banquet 11:00 - 12:00
Feasts honoring the Deity's birthday usually take place during large-scale festivities or on the specific day marking the deity’s birthday. Solemn banquets are held to show gratitude to the Deities’ blessings and pray for peace and comfort. The grand celebration banquet will feature five sacrifices, twelve dishes, thirty-six desserts, six teas and delicacies from land and sea, highlighted by fruit and vegetable carvings. All the dainties are meticulously and fastidiously arranged to demonstrate the sincerity and artistic value of offering the “grand Chinese feast” (man han quan xi) .

4/13: Folklore performance/Deities’ parade Folklore performance – 10:00 - 12:00 Deities’ parade – 12:30 - 18:00
On the eve of Baosheng Dadi’s birthday, the Grand Deities’ parade will be staged to give a reception for the upcoming tour in honor of His supremacy. The procession, extending several kilometers, will travel to neighboring streets amidst the sound of rumbling firecrackers and drumbeats. Alongside the roads stand Taoist pilgrims holding burning incense, praying for safety and peace; everywhere sees the rejoicing crowds celebrating the event.
Baoan Temple also schedules a pre-parade event — a preliminary competition joined by folklore performance troupes coming from all over Taiwan. Prior to the deities' parade, folklore performance troupes from around Taiwan will perform together, symbolizing the introduction of countryside arts to urban cities. Visitors have a chance to immerse themselves in an atmosphere of nostalgia.

4/13: Fire Lion fireworks 19:00 - 20:00
Slated on the night of the Deities' parade, the Fire Lion firecracker show merges the magnificence of beehive firecrackers with the delicacy of traditional paste paper craft. After twenty-one gun salutes, tens of thousands of firecrackers will shoot to the sky from the Fire Lion – amidst thundering rumbles and sparks against a brightened night sky. It is not only a ritual to ward off evils and epidemic diseases, but also recreates a festive atmosphere reminiscent of temple fairs in Taiwan from earlier times.

4/14: Three Consecrations in celebration of Baosheng Dadi’s sacred date of birth 08:00 - 09:00

On the day of the sacred birth of Baosheng Dadi (the 15th day of the 3rd lunar month), the “Three Consecrations” ritual will be held. This ritual kicks off right after the three dignified drumbeats (san tong gu), followed by deity welcoming and incense offering, singing of the Taoist hymn Ode to Baosheng Dadi by Baoan Temple choir, the first consecration, recital of congratulations, the second consecration, and the final consecration. In celebration of the sacred birth of Baosheng Dadi, the Three Consecrations incorporates Confucian thoughts and Taoist beliefs, helping to pass down the ancient rites of Four-row Dance (si yi wu) and the Three Consecrations. Taipei Baoan Temple best preserves the religious culture of worshipping Baosheng Dadi in Taiwan.

A Gala of Traditional Arts Performance at the 2014 Baosheng Cultural Festival-24/14: Fire-walking 13:00 – 15:00
According to traditional Taiwanese religious beliefs, “fire-walking” is an important cleansing ritual paying homage to Baosheng Dadi. Some carrying Deity sculptures and palanquins and some holding command flags, the fire-walking troupes run barefoot across the red-hot coal strip on the road which is about ten meters in length. The thick blanket of smoke and exclamations of the crowd bear witness to the courage and strength brought by religious piety.

4/19: Birth Registry Matron (Zhusheng Niangniang)’s Birthday Ceremony 09:00 - 20:00
The 20th day of the 3rd lunar month is Birth Registry Matron’s sacred date of birth. Parents expecting birth are welcome to visit Taipei Baoan Temple, where they can offer incense to pray for children's health.

4/20: Baoan Temple Scholarship Award Ceremony 10:00 - 12:00
Each year, during the birthday of Baosheng Dadi, Taipei Baoan Temple grants scholarships to students showing high academic achievement and integrity and to those from disadvantaged families.

4/22: Heavenly Holy Mother (tian shang sheng mu)’s Birthday Ceremony 09:00 - 12:0
The 23rd day of the 3rd lunar month is the Heavenly Holy Mother’s sacred date of birth. All worshippers are welcome to visit Baoan Temple for the ritual ceremony.

4/26: Seminar on Religious Beliefs 14:00 - 16:00
As a culturally developed area where inhabitants possess profound Taoist religious beliefs, Datong District specifically holds seminars on religious beliefs to explore the origins that have become obscured by the passing of time and relocation of eldly inhabitants. Folklore experts will be invited to deliver lectures on the intrinsic part of religious belief.

4/27: Free-of-charge Healthcare and Medical Consultation Service 09:00 - 15:00
To pay homage to Baosheng Dadi's medical skills and his willingness to help people, as well as urging the public to pay more attention to their health, Taipei Baoan Temple will organize a free-of-charge healthcare and medical consultation service. The medical team, comprising a number of professional physicians and nurses, will provide free-of-charge health examination and consultation service to visitors.

4/27: Guided Tour of Historic Sites (I) 10:00 - 12:00 (II) 14:00 - 16:00
In an attempt to introduce the charms of historic sites and the architectural features – as well as historic values – of the magnificent building, Taipei Baoan Temple has invited scholars and experts to guide visitors on tours of the temple. The experts will use their profound knowledge to elaborate on topics spanning development of Dalongdong, establishment of the temple, introduction of the deities, architectural styles, and overviews of cultural relics. Visitors are expected to immerse themselves in the beauty of the temple, where religious belief is aesthetically attuned with the arts, tracing its variation against time through participation in the guided tour.

5/3 - 5/6: Baoan Temple Art Exhibition 09:00 - 17:00
Award-winning paintings and photos as well as the flower arrangement works by the Baoan Temple art class will be displayed at the Baoan Temple Art Exhibition. The exhibition will present the beauty of religion and arts.

5/4: Performance by Yunzhong Choir 14:00 - 16:00
The members of Taipei Baoan Temple’s Yunzhong Choir share a common passion for choir music. Hidden in every note they sing during each of their performances are the messages of “love” and “affection,” something which they hope the audience can feel in their music.

5/24: Shennong Dadi's Birthday Celebration Ritual and Deities’ Parade Shennong Dadi's Birthday Celebration Ritual – 08:00-09:00 Deities’ parade – 13:00-16:00
On the day of Shennong Dadi's Birthday Celebration Ritual, the Three Consecrations will be held in the morning and the deities’ parade will be held in the afternoon. The divine procession has the power to ward off evil spirits and quell disasters at places along its traveling route.

6/15: Symposium on Religious Beliefs 08:30 - 18:00

Taipei Baoan Temple grants scholarship to selected students working on their master’s and doctoral dissertation. The temple hopes to encourage more graduate students to conduct research on Taoism, folk beliefs, and Taoist deities. The temple will also organize a symposium where graduate students are invited to give talks on their research. Results can be used as a reference for the academia and other social communities in order to gain a stronger foothold of Taiwan’s local folk belief.
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