#GoneOrOn Haw Par Villa
In the 1980s, Haw Par Villa was an early form of “edu-tainment” for Singaporean parents. A must-visit family outing where its most iconic attraction – The Ten Courts of Hell – had a vivid way of telling cautionary tales. Set inside a dark space, the statues in the Ten Courts of Hell preached messages of morals and Confucian ethics as well as Chinese mythology. And their gory stories left many Singaporean kids scared - and scarred - into behaving better.
Today, the Ten Courts of Hell is part of an upgraded and expanded Hell’s Museum, which houses an indoor gallery depicting death and the afterlife across religions. The depictions of horrible punishment for bad behaviours are all there.
But do parents today still think it’s a good way to teach kids to behave? Is visualising all that torture an effective method or is it a case of, uhm, overkill? #GoneOrOn?