CHILLING newspaper images of an undertaker carrying a fruit box with a dead baby inside shocked Singaporeans earlier last week. Sales assistant Wong Lih Tyng, 36, was charged last Wednesday with dumping her child in an employee's locker at Bishan Junction 8's NTUC FairPrice supermarket.
The body of Wong's premature baby, which may have been stillborn or died during delivery, is believed to have been in the locker for two weeks.
But while some babies are dumped, others at least have a resting place at the top floor of An Le Memorial Park in Choa Chu Kang. Sunny, lush with greenery and boasting open spaces, there is a placid calm around the columbarium, broken only by the chiming of soft Buddhist music and the peaceful rustling of leaves when the wind blows.
An Le's marketing director Thomas Chua says the top floor is the perfect place for baby spirits to play. The reason they need to be housed, says geomancy master Ang Boon Soon, is that 'as foetuses, these souls haven't been fully formed yet, so they can't be reincarnated.
That area on the top floor, which was opened just last year, is managed by the Yuan Zhong Xiu Geomancy Centre. An Le is the first columbarium here to group the niches of 'ying ling' (Mandarin for baby spirits) together.

Mr Ang says that distraught parents come to him for help when they feel that the spirit of their baby continues to linger around them after its death.
According to Mr Ang, the baby spirit may have been around all along, but was just not felt by them previously.
The parents' surnames are carved on the outside for identification, but - unlike ancestral tablets - parents are not encouraged to pay respects, lest the baby spirits 'cling on and don't leave'. At earlier stages of the foetus (embryo), many vertebrates share similar morphological features. Elephants are known to have shown affection to dead elephants even when it is not their own close kin. Later when he realized that the mother cannot be revived, he climbed on top of a tree and refused to come down and eat.
Therefore IMHO, I think the body which serve as the vessel is different from the soul issue.
It all boils down to one question, we do want to believe that life does not end when we die, we do want to know there is life after death. That IMHO, is the purpose why we explore the paranormal, that which cannot be explained by science, or which science, with its current technological limitations, cannot explain fully yet.

Every small step we take to unravel the mysteries around us, is a step we take to understand more about ourselves and our existence in this universe. Instead, the niches are for the spirits of months-old foetuses that may have died because of abortion or miscarriage. Mr Ang, 42, who is also the centre director, says he has seen a greater demand for these niches in the last few years.
Since it opened, more than 700 urns have been placed, with another 200 more to be added next month.
Couples have come to him 20 or 30 years after an abortion, claiming that they feel 'shadows' around them. It also makes it easier for priests to perform mass rituals, which take place a few times a year and give the baby spirits a chance at reincarnation.
These contain the hair and nails of the parents, as parents usually do not claim the foetus after birth.

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