Ancestral Tablet Memorial park
The ancestral tablet is also called “soul tablet”, “spirit tablet”, “soul seat” and others. In Buddhism, it is called “lotus dais” or “lotus seat”. It is generally used as a temporary seat for the soul of the departed to reside, and convenience for the family members, relatives and friends to pay their respects.
Ancestral worship originates from the concept of the “immortal soul”. According to Taoist beliefs concerning the soul, every person has three ethereal souls and seven corporeal souls. Upon death, the seven corporeal souls are dispersed. Among the three ethereal souls, the “sentient soul” will reside at the cemetery or columbarium, the “rational soul” will reside at the ancestral tablet, and the “rational soul” will circulate in the six paths of reincarnation according to cause and effect. It is believed that the “rational soul” is imperishable. After death, it just “migrates” to another existence and the living can communicate with the departed and pray for blessings. The ancestral spirits must have a place of refuge so that the descendants can have an object of worship. Thus, the ancestral tablet becomes a refuge where the ancestral spirits reside. Because they are mostly made of wood, ancestral tablets are also called “Wooden Lords”.