ha ha ha ha ha.....
My Malaysian relatives came to Singapore in 3 cars, to visit my son. Before bringing them for lunch, the elders reminded us to offer thanks to the deities. It is a Chinese tradition to give thanks after a family member has recovered from an illness. We brought them to the famous Temple of the Goddess of Mercy (四马路观音堂) at Waterloo Street.
At the entrance of the temple, groups of people were queuing to rub this rotund, cheerfully smiling statue. The statue of Laughing Buddha (Maitreya) is usually found at the entrance of Chinese temples.
Chinese Buddhists sometimes worshipped him as a god of good luck and prosperity. His fat stomach, which protrudes from the robes he wears, symbolizes the largeness of his soul. It is also a symbol of happiness, luck, and generosity. His large elongated earlobes are a sign of wisdom.
Many believe that rubbing the Laughing Buddha's belly brings joy, luck and prosperity. I saw my elderly relatives rubbed their faces and then their grandchildren's faces after rubbing the deity's stomach. They want joy and luck. My cousins put their hands into their pockets (symbolizes putting wealth in their pockets) after rubbing the statue all over. :)
If you see a Laughing Buddha, RUB his belly, SEE what happens! hehe.....