Resurrecting gods: Where discarded deities wait for shelter (link)
Hong Kong, October 14: Tucked away on a coastal Hong Kong hillside is a different type of recycling point -- here, thousands of unwanted statues of deities look out to sea, gathered and repaired after their owners discard them.
Dedicated volunteer Wong Wing-pong attends to the colourful collection of figures which are perched on a rocky slope running down to the sea in the south of the city.
Twice daily he sweeps away leaves and burns incense sticks as offerings to the unwanted gods, ranging from Buddhist and Taoist to local deities and Christian icons.
A retired butcher, 85-year-old Wong has been looking after the statues for 17 years after stumbling across a small neglected collection on the outskirts of the site, near the residential district of Wah Fu, while he was out walking.
Back then there were a dozen unattended statues, some broken. Now the spot has grown into a popular destination for discarded figures, and is known locally as "A sky full of gods and Buddhas".
Wong says new statues arrive every month from a number of sources -- restaurants that are undergoing renovation, private homes where they can no longer be accommodated.
He spruces them up and some who have donated figures still come to worship them.
"No one should demean god. If they are out here, we should treat them well," Wong told AFP.article continues...