Hsien Deng (or 善堂), is a Taoist funeral ritual commonly carried out on the last night of the funeral wake. There are many unique props involved in this traditional ritual which might confuse people in its purpose and significance to a Taoist funeral.
A Hsien Deng is conducted for family members of the deceased to guide their loved ones to the afterlife. In Taoist lore, the spirit of the deceased is said to wander and linger in the mortal world. If the spirit is unable to pass into the underworld, it can become lost and might turn vengeful. This ritual allows the family to ensure that the their loved one is taken care of and passes peacefully.