By Alexia Vlachou

ATHENS nike air force 1 basse pas cher , April 30 (Xinhua) -- Hundreds of dance lovers of all ages gathered in several main squares in the center of Athens to celebrate International Dance Day this weekend, sending a message against hunger and inequalities.

"This year the International Dance Council joined forces with the World Food Program to create 'Dance to Zero Hunger'," Kritsiotou Maria, member of the Athens Section of the International Dance Council told Xinhua.

More than 600 dancers and 30 dance troupes fired up the audience in a two-day event who enjoyed various dances from Greece and abroad with parallel events across the city.

Despite difficulties due to the debt crisis that has hit Greece, they all enjoyed a few moments of mental respite during the weekend dancing to the rhythms of Greek folk music, Bollywood, ballroom nike air force 1 mid pas cher , gypsy, can can, rock 'n roll and other forms of dances.

"We dance against those actions and intentions that create hunger either due to unequal distribution of wealth, either due to war and persecutions," Kritsiotou added.

As an art expression, dance promotes cultural exchange among nations. "There is a dialogue among cultures and that is very important. It is moving to see how migrants contribute to such events with their traditional customs," she stressed.

During the event nike air force 1 haute femme pas cher , which was organized by the Cultural, Sport and Youth Organization of Athens City (OPANDA) and the Athens Section of the International Dance Council, people get fascinated by the beauty of each culture and learn to respect each other, according to the organizers.

In the central square of Kolonaki, 80 performers presented a program under the title "Dance in the urban landscape" to show the kinetic potential of the human body.

From Kapnikarea square to Agia Irini, in the heart of Athens, a group of Brazilian percussions with free style dancers carried away even tourists and passersby with their passion and beat.

Just a few blocks away nike air force 1 haute homme pas cher , in Klafthmonos square, dancers sent a strong message against the stigma of mental health.

Dance not only entertains people, but cures as well. According to researchers, it can provide a healthy and comforting environment for individuals suffering from psychological disorders, mental retardation, and other conditions.

"We use all forms of art to help people with mental health to rehabilitate and integrate to work," Margo Liatira nike air force 1 haute pas cher , psychologist of PEPSAEE (the PanHellenic Union for Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Work Integration) told Xinhua.

Under the title "Mastering Steps", people with mental health problems along with professionals and volunteers from PEPSAEE presented their choreography.

"We danced all together to show that people with mental health problems are not different from us, to celebrate dance and to underline that dance unites, rather than divides people," she said.

But what excited Liatira was the enthusiasm of the participants. "It was amazing to see these people been happy, to feel satisfied with themselves, that they succeeded to present in front of an audience what they prepared Nike Special Field Air Force 1 pas cher ," she said.

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HO CHI MINH CITY, Aug. 6 (Xinhua) -- The Ghost Festival, also known as the Hungry Ghost Festival in modern days, is a traditional Buddhist festival held in many Asian countries in lunar July.

In Vietnam, it is viewed as the time for the pardoning of condemned souls who are then released from hell. The "homeless" souls should be"fed" and appeased with offerings of food. Merits for the living are also earned by the release of birds and fish.

The lunar July in which the festival takes place is colloquially known as Thang Co Hon (month of lonely spirits) and believed to be haunted and particularly unlucky. However, with social development,that belief has been changed with time.

Ha Thi Kim nike air force 1 07 basse pas cher , a 92-year-old resident in capital Hanoi, told Xinhua that she has practiced the worship in the ghost month for many years.

"When I was about 10 years old, I joined my mother in arranging the offerings for the ghosts, during which my mother explained to me every details relating to the worship. In all, it is one of our traditional rituals done to bring us a peace in mind, so I continue to follow that practice until now even when I am old and will hand it over to my daughter-in-law," she said.

Traditionally nike air force 1 07 mid pas cher , there are three ceremonies to be done in the ghost month. It starts with a worship for the family's ancestors and deceased members held at noon time and with offerings of delicious food, fruits, votive clothes and money, and incense joss- sticks.

On the same day in the evening, another ceremony is held with vegetarian food, rice porridge, cakes and candies nike air force 1 07 haute pas cher , and fruits, along with votive paper clothes and money, and incense joss-sticks. This is done for the worship of the homeless souls.

"Days before, my mother and I cut tinny clothes, about 20 sets, from old newspapers and dyed them in different colors, all for worship of the homeless souls. We also made tiny household utensils with cardboards nike air force 1 07 pas cher , and burnt them altogether, along with our best wishes to the wandering souls," the elderly woman said.

The third ceremony and also the most important event is held in the pagoda, normally in the evening of July 14 or 15, where a crowd of participants attend with utmost respect and devotion.

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