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Fish touching in Segenting, Batu Pahat

Murphy was touching a gold Japanese Koi

Murphy was touching a golden Japanese Koi

I always heard about ‘Batu, a nice place to go’. Batu is the informal name for the place Batu Pahat (means ‘chiseled rock’ in Malay, 峇株巴辖 in Chinese), which is a district in the state of Johor.

Besides, I heard from my friend, Murphy of a temple in Segenting (石文丁), which is in the west zone of Batu Pahat, and the temple (崇龙宫大伯公庙) is well-known of fish-touching. There are a few arapaima fresh water fishes in the ponds of the temple. There are rumors saying that, touching of these arapaima fishes would bring good luck to the person.

Last week, I told Murphy that I wanted to go to Batu Pahat for a look, and the temple would be a must to visit too. Murphy made a generous offer of driving me there together with Desmond and Dylan. So the next day we departed to Batu Pahat. It took us about 90 minutes drive from Melaka.

Initially we wanted to go to the town of Batu Pahat and hang out there, but we could not make it as time was so limited. We departed late and we didn’t plan to stay overnight, so we gave our priority to the temple in Segenting. On our way to the fish touching temple, we saw many other Chinese Taoism temples in our 15 minutes car ride from the town.

Finally we arrived at the temple in a fishing village of Segenting. It was drizzling when we reached there, however the scenery was so beautiful. The place itself is a fishing village and it is also a tourism village for people who need a real retreat from the busy city life. We then headed to the famous temple by the beach.

The main god of the temple is Da Bo Gong (大伯公, which is “Grand Uncle” in Chinese). There are also Ma Zu (妈祖, the goddess of the sea), Hai Long Wang (海龙王, the dragon king of the sea) and others to protect and bless the villagers and the fishermen. And we did see the arapaima fishes in the pond of the temple. They were huge and would not bite. Some of the arapaima fishes approached us as soon as we put hands into the water. The fishes swam passed us and letting us to touch them. There were also gentle Japanese Koi fishes in one of the ponds.  

In addition, we could see the lover bridge (情人桥) from the temple. It is the jetty for the fishing boats and also a romantic spot for dating couples. Young couples regardless local or from outstation always take a slow walk on the bridge and enjoy the warm breeze and romantic sunset. The villagers believe that, after a guy and a girl take a walk on the bridge, they would fall in love and become couples.

Murphy at the outdoor pond waiting to touch the arapaima fish

Murphy at the outdoor pond waiting to touch the arapaima fish

Arapaima fishes in the pond. It is believed that touching one of these fishes would bring luck.

Arapaima fishes in the pond. It is believed that touching one of these fishes would bring luck.

Desmond (right) at the palace of the dragon king of the sea

Desmond (right) at the palace of the Dragon King of the Sea

Attap houses of the fishing village

Attap houses of the fishing village

The palace of the dragon king of the sea

The palace of the Dragon King of the Sea

Murphy (left) and Desmond at the beach of the village

Murphy (left) and Desmond at the beach of the village

The statue of the Dragon King of the Sea

The statue of the Dragon King of the Sea

The arapaima fishes were posing in a line

The arapaima fishes were posing in a line

What a fantastic view of the arapaima fishes queueing in a line

What a fantastic view of the arapaima fishes queueing in a line

The statue of Ma Zu, the Goddess of the Sea

The statue of Ma Zu, the Goddess of the Sea

The lover bridge at Segenting

The lover bridge at Segenting

The innocent and pure children from the village

The innocent and pure children from the village

Sculptures of the two dragon on the roof of the temple

Sculptures of the two dragon on the roof of the temple

"Huat ah!" (prosperity in Chinese)

"Huat ah!" (prosperity in Chinese)

The God of Fortune

The God of Fortune

A worshipper with incense sticks at the temple

A worshipper with incense sticks at the temple

In this trip, I learned something new from Desmond. Many Chinese believe in seeking the god’s advice by divination (掷筊). The worshipper usually poses a question, and then phrases an answer, two wooden divinatory blocks are held out upon the two palms, raised about to the level of the forehead of a kneeling worshipper, and allowed to drop on the floor. There are two positions in which each block can land: rounded side up or rounded side down. Therefore there are three combinations of positions, both blocks might land flat side down, both might land rounded side down or each might land differently. If the blocks land in the last combination, one up, one down, then this is taken to indicate confirmation of the answer.

It is believed that when the two blocks land rounded side downward and rock giddily on the floor before coming to rest, the god is amused at the statement put to him, and this position is called ‘laughing jiao’ (笑筊) but when the flat sides come to rest on the floor, so that the blocks fall and come immediately to an abrupt standstill, then anger is indicated. This position is called ‘negative jiao’ (怒筊). The positive fall is the combination of one up and one down, and it is called ‘sacred jiao’ (圣筊).

According to Desmond, it would be good to ask permission from the Grand Uncle in order to snap photos of the gods and temple. In order to show my respect, I dropped the blocks and I got the answer of ‘laughing jiao’. I guessed Grand Uncle was amused at the question I posed. I went to Desmond and asked about the answer I got. He said the god smiled at my question, and the answer was a no. He then advised me to offer incense sticks to the gods of the temple before I asked again. Guess what? Surprisingly after I did that, I got a ‘sacred jiao’ which was a yes to snap photos of the gods and temple.

The light of wisdom in the main hall of the temple

The lights of wisdom in the main hall of the temple

Grand Uncle (大伯公) in the main hall of the temple

Grand Uncle (大伯公) in the main hall of the temple

The main hall of the temple

The main hall of the temple

The girders with Chinese lanterns in the main hall of the temple

The girders with Chinese lanterns in the main hall of the temple

Incense sticks offered by the prayers to the gods of the temple

Incense sticks offered by the prayers to the gods of the temple

It started to rain heavily when we decided to leave the village to have our dinner in the town of Batu Pahat. We had no choice but to dine next to the temple for a simple meal although there were many fine seafood restaurants in the village. The rain stopped just as we finished the meals and we headed back to Melaka. On our way back, Murphy did a few stops for me, and I managed to snap the seaview and sunset of Segenting.

Dylan was looking for a good angle to snap photos

Dylan was looking for a good angle to snap photos

The Chinese pagoda of another temple in the fishing village

The Chinese pagoda of another temple in the fishing village

A fishing boat

A fishing boat

A kingfisher spotted at the seaside

A kingfisher spotted at the seaside

Chong Hwa Primary School in Segenting

Chong Hwa Primary School in Segenting

The dog, the old lady, and the bird

The dog, the old lady, and the bird

The sunset of Segenting

The sunset of Segenting

"Time to say goodbye" :(

"Time to say goodbye" :(

It was really a nice trip. How I wish I could be there longer. This would not be my last time to Segenting as I believe I would be there again. The next trip has to be a full day trip. I really appreciate Murphy for driving us there and thanks to Desmond and Dylan for their company. May everyone be happy.

This entry was posted in My journey, Photography and tagged , , , , .

11 Comments

  1. cind@ April 5, 2010 at 10:54 pm #

    Fishing boat so nice… :)

  2. cj April 6, 2010 at 1:04 am #

    it is really a nice place to go. i wanted to snap more photos of the fishermen and the lover bridge but the tide was low and it was raining…

    i’ll be there again ;)

  3. cind@ April 7, 2010 at 2:18 pm #

    :) nice one…
    feel wanna step over there also..hehe

  4. cj April 7, 2010 at 5:39 pm #

    not too far from melaka… about 1 hour drive.. :)

    there is another nice temple in batu, i heard from jason’s sister. she and her boyfriends go there often so they invite me to go next time.

  5. cind@ April 7, 2010 at 10:45 pm #

    :) cool..if i was at mlk..tell me

  6. cj April 8, 2010 at 12:55 pm #

    weekend only?

  7. cj April 21, 2010 at 10:22 pm #

    hope you can be there..may you be happy amy :)

  8. Charles Chee June 28, 2010 at 10:20 pm #

    My friend, try go on weekend around 2pm, there is a medium of Tua Pek Kong who will give you a lucky number.

  9. cj June 29, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    is it? nice… so lucky numbers will be given then?

    may you be happy :)

  10. princess October 1, 2011 at 1:33 am #

    did you know about the rest house at there?

  11. cj October 1, 2011 at 11:22 am #

    you mean the resorts? there are many over there ;)

One Trackback

  1. By Lover Bridge in Segenting on September 10, 2010 at 3:31 am

    [...] fishermen, they pray to the Deities for a good harvest. One of the well-known temples would be the fish-touching Chong Long Temple which I came in April with friends. After sharing the trip of fish touching, my friend, Tracy was so interested to go for fish [...]

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