'Replenishing grain' custom remains popular in Donglan county


Updated: 2019-11-19


The 'replenishing grain' ceremony in Donglan county, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. [Photo/gxzf.gov.cn]

'Replenishing grain,' also known as food complements, refers to a custom in which children and grandchildren supplement the food for their elders once a year or once every three years, praying for the longevity of seniors.

The custom is popular in Donglan county, Hechi, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. It is believed that when a senior reaches a certain age, his or her 'food,' which refers to their life limit, may be cut off and that it is necessary for his children and grandchildren or other close relatives to come and 'replenish grain' for them.

The 'replenishing grain' ceremony is generally chosen on a quiet night. The relatives will give the elderly rice in turn by age and put the rice in a tank. After the grain is filled, these foods must be eaten up before the next ceremony by the old person themselves.

According to the custom, all families with old people should ask the Taoist priest to calculate the time and the date for ‘replenishing grain’ according to the birthday horoscopes of the seniors.