You might have known that we began the national wide lament from May. 19th, one week after the earthquake. But you might not know why it was that date, why we didn't do that earlier. Because in the Chinese tradition, the 7th day after one's death has a significant meaning. On that day, the spirit of the dead will come back to visit his beloved ones for the last time. Then he will forget all the happiness or sorrows of this life and go into his next reincarnation. So the 7th day is treated as the day for farewell.
For these 3 days from the 19th to 21st, all public entertainments are stopped and all media are broadcasting images & news about the earthquake. Yes, this is overwhelming, but not about the propaganda this time. It is too sad, too heartbreaking to see and to hear about the earthquake for non-stop. It is too difficult to keep back the tears even just to watch the TV for 20 minutes.
However, the most heartbreaking moment is not about seeing the fragile human flesh, or hearing the wawls. It is about seeing the numbness caused by such tremendous grief. I see people who have lost all the cloest family members, running around and trying to help without much face expression. They seem to feel nothing when getting wounds and cuts, and they are so unusually calm when talking about their late child or parents. All these indicate potential psychic trauma. When life goes back to the normal track, when they cannot keep themselves occupied again, the feeling of losing the beloved ones forever will finally attack. I still remember the feeling of like sitting in the dark universe all alone, and then realizing the only power that can save me from total collapse is my own will. So sincerely, I pray to whatever god above to give them strength to be shining again, even if it might take a long time.