National Geographic : 1969 Jan
National Geographic, January 1969 (Continuedfrom page 10) Others were mining, lumber, and paper. "In effect the exchange turned landlords into industrialists and tenants into land owners. With both land and industry in pri vate hands, the economy prospered." Mr. Y. T. Pan is one of those new land owners. We found him feeding his ducks be side a pond stocked with fish. Lacy bamboo and papaya trees and thriving banana plants dotted the hill behind his 12 acres of prime rice terraces. With quiet pride Mr. Pan led us across a concrete threshing floor, past a motorcycle and several bicycles, into the sitting room of his sprawling brick house. Dominating one wall was the family altar, like a massive side board of carved wood surmounted by paint ings and images of the gods that the Taoist Chinese revere. As we sat on a sofa between a television set and a hi-fi, Mr. Pan told us how land reform had affected him. "My family has farmed here for genera tions. We used to live in a mud house. We paid half our crop to the landlord. If we had a bad year, we had to pay anyway. "Then the government bought the land and sold it to us. We paid in rice, and in ten years the land was ours-for less than we KODACHROMES () N,G.S . Plucked eyebrows, shaved hide, and red tax stamps glam orize the huge carcass of a hog for a pai-pai, or temple festi val. This Taoist ceremony celebrates the refurbishing of a temple at Chungli (background in picture at right). Handsome hogs earn much "face," or prestige, for families offering them in the pai-pai celebration at Chungli. Some weighing more than half a ton, the porkers arrive spread over bamboo frames to make them look even larger. Follow ing prayers, the families carry them home for the main course of an elaborate feast. The people of Taiwan practice a mixture of religions. Tem ples often serve both Taoists and Buddhists-in fact, most worshipers blend the teachings of Buddha with the mysticism and rituals of Taoism, liberally sprinkled with the philosophy of Confucius. Chinese ancestor worship pervades all faiths. While city dwellers may worship at temples that also double as community gathering places, rural residents offer their prayers at home shrines.