Phuket

Phuket Vegetarian Festival 2014...PHUKET, THAILAND - SEPTEMBER 30: Vegetarian festival devotee of Jui Tui shrine parades through the streets on September 30, 2014 in Phuket, Thailand. Ritual Vegetarianism in Phuket Island traces its roots back to the early 1800's. The annual festival begins on the first evening of the ninth lunar month and lasts for nine days. Participants in the festival perform acts of body piercing as a means of shifting evil spirits from individuals onto themselves and bring the community good luck. The ritualized mutilation is performed at a local Buddhist shrine under a trance-like state and is carefully supervised.  (Photo by Borja Sanchez-Trillo/Getty Images)

Borja Sanchez-Trillo/Getty

Vegetarian festival devotee of Jui Tui shrine parades through the streets in Phuket, Thailand. The annual festival begins on the first evening of the ninth lunar month and lasts for nine days. Participants perform acts of body piercing to shift evil spirits from others to themselves to bring the community good luck 

A devotee of the Chinese Jui Tui Shrine, with two guns pierced through his cheeks, takes part in a street procession during the annual vegetarian festival in Phuket October 11, 2013. The festival, featuring face-piercing, spirit mediums and strict vegetarianism, celebrates the local Chinese community's belief that abstinence from meat and various stimulants during the ninth lunar month of the Chinese calendar will help them obtain good health and peace of mind.

Athit Perawongmetha/Reuters

A devotee of the Chinese Jui Tui Shrine, with two guns pierced through his cheeks, takes part in a street procession during the annual vegetarian festival in Phuket on Friday. The festival, featuring face-piercing, spirit mediums and strict vegetarianism, celebrates the local Chinese community’s belief that abstinence from meat and various stimulants during the ninth lunar month of the Chinese calendar will help them obtain good health and peace of mind.