Taoists (and certain sects of Buddhism) believe in the realm of hungry ghosts, which is a sort of purgatory for people who had violent or unhappy deaths, those who committed evils in their life, or ancestors that have been neglected by their living relatives. During the seventh month of the Chinese calendar, the gates of the realm are opened, and hungry ghosts roam the earth seeking retribution. To combat these vindictive hungry ghosts, Taoists hold a big feast during which gifts are offered to the ghosts to ward off bad luck. Families offer food, livestock, cakes, rice wine, beer and other alcohol to the ghosts, who are called to the table by a bell. People throw the goods in the air to distribute the ghosts in different directions, sending them back to their realm.