James Duvalier

author, spiritual counselor & paranormal researcher


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Asian Traditions

Chinese New Year: The Year of the Rooster

Chinese New Year

New Year’s Eve and Day have always been fun for me.  I love the idea of ushering in the New Year through a night of celebration that does not have the commercial overtones of Christmas.  I celebrate and love Christmas as well but I feel that it should be a time of deep spiritual reflection, charity and kindness towards others rather than the materialism with which it has become associated in the modern age.  New Year’s is…
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P’chum Ben: A Celebration of the Ancestors

P'chum Ben Candles

I attended elementary school and high school in Amherst, Massachusetts where there is a large Cambodian community and every April we would have a school celebration for Cambodian New Year where students would perform traditional Cambodian dances. My favorite was always the Monkey Dance in which the participants would fly acrobatically through the air imitating monkeys. We would also eat Cambodian foods and listen to Khmer folktales. Years later, when I was working as a 5th grade…
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Chinese Lantern Festival

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One February morning many years ago, I walked into my first grade classroom to find it decked out with a plethora of red, ornately decorated glowing lanterns. As morning meeting got underway, our teacher explained that it was the Chinese Lantern Festival which marked the first full moon of the traditional Chinese calendar and was the culmination of the Chinese New Year festivities bringing a glorious end to fifteen days of feasting and celebration. As we listened,…
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The Charada China

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It is a commonly held belief in spiritual circles that we receive messages in our dreams both from our spirit guides and our own subconscious psychic intuition. In Cuban Santeria and Espiritsmo circles, a system has been devised that associates the images seen in dreams to numbers that may be played in the lottery. This system of dream interpretation is known as the Charada China. I have used it several times successfully myself and recommended it others…
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Obon: A Japanese Festival in Honor of the Ancestors

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In the past, I have written about several Asian holidays where the ancestors and the dead in general are venerated and presented with offerings, most specifically Qing Ming and the Festival of the Hungry Ghosts.  On the latter, it is believed that the souls of one’s ancestors are able to return to visit family and also another class of spirit known as “Hungry Ghosts” are particularly active as well.  These are the spirits who have nobody to…
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