Located on the outskirt area of Bukit Mertajam, which is called Machang Bubok, Hai Dong Ma Temple is a Taoist temple dedicated for the worship of Chinese deity Thean Hou (also popularly known as Mazu). The temple compound also houses various Chinese mythical beings statues including a set of Chinese animal zodiacs.
The 8.3 meters tall effigy of the King of Hades (or Tai Su Yeah) where devotees offered prayers to, during the 7th lunar month of the Chinese calendar in conjunction with The Hungry Ghost month.
This giant effigy was placed under a shelter beside a temple at Market Street of Bukit Mertajam old town, for 15 days until the annual Bukit Mertajam Phor Thor (Hungry Ghost Festival) celebration. The effigy will then be moved out to the street and burned on the festival day.
According to the Taoist belief, when the gates of hell open in the 7th lunar month, spirits would be freed to the living world while being watched by Tai Su Yeah. The Hungry Ghost Festival this year started from August 14 until September 12.