Qing Ming is the Chinese ritual of "Grave Sweeping Day" It occurs two weeks after the vernal equinox, the first week of April and is a time for families to visit the graves of their ancestors, bring fresh flowers remove weeds and debris, etc.

Historically it was a festival to celebrate spring and rebirth. It shares two things with Easter, the approximate time of year and the practice of colouring boiled eggs.

There is one other thing that takes place at Qing Ming, families bring offerings of food to the grave, and burn incense and spirit money.

The story I was told by my aunt is as follows:

A family was working in their fields when they were approached by a priest begging for food and shelter. They took him in, and before he left he told them that the next day they must leave their home to visit the graves of their ancestors. The family did as they were told and when they returned they found that their house had been crushed by a boulder.

I have participated in two Qing Mings myself, but I am now 700km from the grave of my grandfather.

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