Hsieh Tsunghui Bio
According to investigations, the two lineages of Daoshi and Fashi ritual traditions in Taiwan originated from Zhangzhou (漳州) and other counties near Quangdong (廣東), such as the Zhao’an (詔安) and Pinghe (平和) counties. In Taiwan, the spiritual tablets of the masters is distributed in the “Fulao Ke (福佬客)” (Hakka [客家] People who have been influenced by the Minnan [閩南] and Fujian [福建] people and customs) human settlements such as Taipei County, Taoyuan (桃園) County, Hsinchu (新竹) County, Miaoli (苗栗) County, and Yilan (宜蘭) County in north Taiwan; and in Taichung (台中) County, Changhua (彰化) County, and Yunlin (雲林) County in central Taiwan.
Recitations during rituals and the singing of Daoist songs in the ceremonies adopt a standard pronunciation that is different to the Quanzhou (泉州) accent of the Quan Daoist priests; and the “Zhengyi (正一)” scripture is often used for rituals of repentance. The contents of the scriptures used, and the actual use of the Daoist documents all claim to perform the ritual “in the name of the founder, Celestial Master Zhang (張天師). The Great Master of the Three Heavens and Perfect Sovereign of the Orthodox Oneness,” hence priests of this School do seem to follow the traditional rituals of the Orthodox Unity School.
The identity and actions of Fashi from the Sannai School were recorded in the early Taiwanese local chronicles under names such as the “Kezai Shi (客仔師)” in Chen Menglin’s (陳夢林) Jhuluo County Chronicles: On Social Customs (諸羅縣志‧風俗志), and the “Hongtou Si (紅頭司)” (Hakka Fashi who wore red headdresses) that were recorded in the Zhanghua County Chronicles: On Social Customs (彰化縣志‧風俗志) by the same author. This type of priest dealt with celebratory offerings and not with the merit and release from purgatory funeral ceremonies for the newly deceased. They mainly offer sacrifice for public rituals of universal salvations such as the Zhongyuan ritual of universal salvation (中元普渡) and the end of days ritual of universal salvation (末日普度), and wear red headdresses around their heads, hence they are also commonly known as the “red headed priests (Hongtou Daoshi [紅頭道士]).” These priests usually set up an altar at home, or append themselves to a temple to provide their services to the people, and perform small Daoist rituals and the lesser master rites of the Sannai School. Common Daoist activities performed are Dipper worship (拜斗), appease Taisui (太歲), appease the family spirits, worship the lord of heaven and the one-day three offerings ritual, or a large-scale jian jiao (建醮) ritual offering over five days. They also perform commonly seen lesser master rites such as praying for a child, foetus calming, fertility rituals, discontinuing romantic luck, exorcistic rituals that eliminate disasters, the wealth bringing and luck improving and evil spirit expelling rituals that the red headdress priests are reputed to be adept at in historical records.
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