Seeking Fortune in Ba Den Mountain

In the South, many people believe that if they go to Ba Den Mountain without practicing these rituals, they will not be able to bring home luck and fortune.

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Ba Den Mountain is known as one of the three most sacred places in Vietnam and is also a spiritual symbol of the Southern people.

This mountain is the highest in the South. It is associated with the legend of Linh Son Thanh Mau which is revered by the people of the South, making a sacred land. There is a magnificent spiritual complex on the top of the mountain, with the tallest bronze statue of Tay Bo Da Son in Asia.

Seeking Fortune in Ba Den Mountain
Photo: baogiaothong.vn

Millions of tourists and Buddhists from all over the world come to Ba Mountain all year round to pray for fortune, good luck, and children, or to rid themself of bad luck. A ritual that almost everyone who comes to the Ba pagoda area performs is touching the hands or robes of the statue of Quan Am Bodhisattva on the head and body to pray for health and luck. Also in the area of Ba Pagoda, many people bring flower petals from the shrine home to bathe.

According to Phan Anh Nguyet (Tay Ninh), boiling warm water and releasing chrysanthemum petals taken from the shrine to bathe will help her stay healthy and drive away all bad luck.

People often chant at the area of the Sutra Pillars engraved with the Bat Nha Sutra in Sanskrit characters right in the center of the spiritual complex on the top of the mountain. In addition, they also perform a unique ritual: sit in the area of Ba Pagoda and listen to the bell to calm the mind. The sound under the bell is not loud but very gentle, people can feel the sound waves continuously spreading around.

“I have heard that this sound can be heard by both the underworld and the upper realm,” says visitor Pham Hung (Cu Chi). “Therefore, sitting and praying under the bell can dissolve karma and bring good luck.”

Seeking Fortune in Ba Den Mountain
Photo: baogiaothong.vn

Inside, there are many papers with names and birth dates of both living and deceased people. At the top of the mountain, right next to the Tay Bo Da Son Buddha statue, there is a place where everyone who comes here also stops to pray for fortune. That is the Temple of Son Than (mountain god). The Son Than Temple worships Linh Son Thanh Mau, the mountain god, and the soldiers who died at Ba Den mountain.

Seeking Fortune in Ba Den Mountain
Photo: baogiaothong.vn

When tourists come here, they often ask for ancient coins. Legend has it that the coin here represents heaven and earth, yin and yang. It helps the wearer to ward off evil spirits and bring fortune, for smooth and prosperous business.

If visitors pay close attention, they will see a lot of trees with their leaves tied. This is also a special custom that only exists on this mountain. After entering the temple to complete the ceremony, people will tie the leaves to hope for good luck to come.

Pham Anh (Binh Duong) said: “People believe that tying a leaf is to pack all the bad luck into the leaf. These tied leaves will not be removed because people believe that when untied, bad luck will cling onto them.”

For many people, a handful of soil or a little water from a stream on the top of the mountain contains the sacred essence of this place.

Seeking Fortune in Ba Den Mountain
Photo: baogiaothong.vn

According to Most Venerable Thich Niem Thoi (the Dharma owner of Ba Pagoda at Ba Den Mountain), the stream on Ba Den Mountain is said to contain gold, and many people go to the mountain to draw spring water to drink or bring back. “Many people believe that the water from the stream at Ba Den Mountain can bring them fortune and good health,” he said.

Ba Den Mountain is not only crowded with people at the beginning of the new year, but it is also a pilgrimage destination all year round. This is where many people return many times as a sacred fulcrum and find balance for their minds and body.

Da Quang