Pas-taai – The Saisiyat Ceremony in 1936

From late November to early December in 1936, Utsurikawa Nenozo, professor of Institute of Ethnology, Imperial Taihoku University, guided his assistant Myamoto Nobuto to the Ta-ai ceremony ground in Hsinchu’s Five Finger Mountain area to investigate the Saisiyat ceremony, Pas-taai. With cameras, they documented the lively large-scale sacred events which lasted for days. Through the precious images, the people and the scenes of the ceremony of seventy years ago reappear before our eyes, including various clans beating glutinous rice cakes, the making of the dance hat Kirakil, ceremonial singing and dancing to entertain the spirits, and processes such as chasing the spirits, sending off the spirits, food worship, chopping hazels, destroying racks, etc.