Dajia Jenn Lann Temple in Taiwan, devoted to a prominent deity and dating back to the Qing Dynasty in the 1700s, has decided to launch NFTs. It is minting and selling non-fungible tokens (NFTs) of the sea goddess Mazu deity, which serve as a priority pass for the spring pilgrimage.
Mazu, China’s most powerful sea goddess, is at the heart of many beliefs and customs, including oral traditions, religious ceremonies, and folk practises, found throughout the country’s coastal areas and countless Chinese communities worldwide. Mazu is especially popular in Taiwan, where the Ministry of the Interior reports that there are over 1000 registered temples with Mazu as their main deity.
The pilgrimages and associated festivities have given rise to what is known as the “Mazu economy,” which includes contributions, shopping for Mazu-themed items, and commercial opportunities associated with the faith.
The MazuDAO NFTs went on sale in August for NT$ 18,880 (US$615) via the temple’s e-commerce platform MazuBuyBuy and other outlets. The temple has minted and sold over 2,800 NFTs so far.
According to estimates the nine-day pilgrimage can generate more than NT$5 billion (US$163 million) in spending. On the day when Mazu returned to the home temple, we saw about 500,000 people joining the pilgrimage, says Mingkun Cheng, vice chairman of the board of the Dajia Jenn Lann Temple.
Cheng stated that the MazuDAO NFTs attract an increasing number of younger pilgrims due to their youthful aesthetic.
About the elder followers, Mao-Hsien Lin, an associate professor at the National Taichung University of Education, says that they prefer the physical touch and direct contact with the statue of the deities more than worshipping online gods. Therefore, Lin thinks that the pilgrimage priority perk for NFT holders may not be appealing to traditional believers.
In order to get the elders and traditional believers on board, the NFT project team organized offline marketing campaigns.
Many elderly followers did not even own a smartphone, so the team had to set up promotional booths in front of the temple to introduce MazuDAO NFTs to those Web0 believers and help them set up crypto wallets with the assistance of their grandchildren.