Skip to main content

Xingtian: the Headless Warrior

Xingtian and the Yellow emperor struggled against each other for ultimate power.

The giant Xingtian was a follower of the Emperor Yan. After the victory of the Yellow Emperor over Emperor Yan at the Battle of Banquan, Xingtian followed his master to exile in the south.

After the Yellow Emperor defeated and executed Chi You, Xingtian went forth with an axe and shield against the Yellow Emperor. He forced his way to the southern Gate of the Celestial Court and issued a challenge to the Yellow Emperor for a duel.

The Yellow Emperor came forth and the two engaged in a ferocious combat, sword against axe, all the way down to earth to Eternally Auspicious Mountain (the mountain of ChangYang). In a final blow, the Yellow Emperor distracted his opponent with a trick and lunged ... and in a flash decapitated Xingtian, whose head rolled all the way to the foot of the mountain and created a thunderous roar.

Instead of dying, Xingtian was able to continue moving and began groping about for his head. The Yellow Emperor raised his sword to strike the mountain. The mountain split open, the head rolled within and the mountain closed again, thus Xingtian’s head was buried under the mountain forever.

Xingtian gave up looking for his head, and instead, his nipples then transformed into eyes, and his navel became a mouth. He performs a dance with an axe and shield.

The lyric poet Tao Qian expressed his commiseration on our tragic hero:


Xingtian dances wildly with spear and shield:
His old ambitions still burn fiercely.
In vain do they cling to their hearts from the past.
How can they, a better day, foresee?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The wonderful pear-tree

Once upon a time a countryman came into the town on market-day, and brought a load of very special pears with him to sell. He set up his barrow in a good corner, and soon had a great crowd round him ; for everyone knew he always sold extra fine pears, though he did also ask an extra high price. Now, while he was crying up his fruit, a poor, old, ragged, hungry-looking priest stopped just in front of the barrow, and very humbly begged him to give him one of the pears. But the countryman, who was very mean and very nasty-tempered, wouldn't hear of giving him any, and as the priest didn't seem inclined to move on, he began calling him all the bad names he could think of. " Good sir," said the priest, " you have got hundreds of pears on your barrow. I only ask you for one. You would never even know you had lost one. Really, you needn't get angry." "Give him a pear that is going bad ; that will make him happy," said one of the crowd. "The o

The Legend of The Three-Life Stone

The Buddhist believe metempsychosis, or the migration of the souls of animated beings, people's relationships are predestined through three states of life: the past, present, and future life. Legend has it that there's a road called Yellow Spring Road, which leads to Fogotten River. Over the river there's a bridge called Helpless Bridge (Naihe Bridge), at one end of the bridge sits a crimson stone called Three-life Stone. When two people die, they take this route to reincarnation. if they carve their name on the Three-life Stone together while they pass the stone, they are to be predestined to be together in their future life. Although before their rebirth they will be given a MengPo Soup to drink and thereby their memory of past life are obliterated. In reality, San-Sheng Shi (三生石), or Three-Life Stone is located beside Flying Mountain near the West Lake, Hangzhou. On the stone, there is seal with three Chinese characters that say "The Three-life Stone," and a

The Fox and The Tiger

ONE day a fox encountered a tiger. The tiger showed his fangs and waved his claws and wanted to eat him up. But the fox said: 'Good sir, you must not think that you alone are the king of beasts. Your courage is no match for mine. Let us go together and you keep behind me. If the humans are not afraid of me when they see me, then you may eat me up.' The tiger agreed and so the fox led him to a big high-way. As soon as the travellers saw the tiger in the distance they were seized with fear and ran away. Then the said: 'You see? I was walking in front; they saw me before they could See you.' Then the tiger put his tail between his legs and ran away. The tiger had seen that the humans were afraid of the fox but he had not realized that the fox had merely borrowed his own terrible appearance. [This story was translated by Ewald Osers from German, published by George Bell & Sons, in the book 'Chinese Folktales'.  Osers noted that this story was