Sunday, August 15, 2010
Then Sze Koon Temple or Centipede Temple
Name : Then Sze Koon Temple or Centipede Temple
Perched on top of a hill in Ulu Temiang, Seremban, Negri Sembilan in Malaysia lies Then Sze Koon Temple or Centipede Temple. Spread over 2ha, the temple is run on donations and is a beautiful sanctuary.
There are temples around the world paying homage to monkeys, snakes, rats, tigers and other animals. But, hidden in our own backyard and relatively unknown is a holy place that is home to various species of centipedes.
the temple is believed to have been founded in the 19th century by a Taoist priest named Zhong San Koon.
One has to climb 176 steps to reach the top but with willpower, everyone can do it. Take one step at a time to enjoy the tranquil setting. A friendly frog sculpture awaits visitors halfway up.
However, the hill was retained. Centipedes roamed freely in and out of the temple grounds because the weather was cool.
In 1998, a reporter from a Chinese daily came to pray to the Then Sze deity and spotted a white centipede (probably an albino). He snapped its picture and decided to buy numbers from a gaming outlet. He struck first prize and, thrilled, wrote about it in the papers.
Since then every time someone spots a centipede, something good happens to them. Once an ice cream vendor was bitten by a centipede and he also struck lottery. He then came back to give free ice cream to the devotees. If you spot or get bitten by one, you can definitely expect some good fortune.
However, with global warming and the increase in temperatures, the centipede population has dwindled but they still “make their rounds” at the temple a few times a day. Soon guarantees that they come out in droves during Chap Goh Mei. Why do they appear only on this day? He is equally baffled.
Auspicious Time :
The most auspicious time at the temple is on the 26th day of the third lunar month, which marks the temple’s anniversary, and Chinese New Year. For these occasions when the devotees number 20,000, the temple brings in priests to conduct prayers.
Opening hours: 7am t o 7pm daily.