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Showing posts from October, 2015

River God He-Bo

The god of the Yellow River is called Ho-po, which is his commonest name. This means River Elder or the Earl of Ho. He is also often called Ho-shên or Spirit of the River, or simply Ho, 'The River.'
River God’s Domain Chuang Tzu tells a story in his The Autumn Flood that the Yellow River (the God's domain) is in flood. It is so wide that from one bank to the other one cannot distinguish a cow from a horse. In high glee the River God makes his way through glorious scenes of inundation till he comes to the sea. He looks eastward and can see no shore at all! In dismay he realizes that his own domain is insignificant compared with the limitless expanses of the great ocean.
The River God is Greedy Ho-po was a greedy god, often taking a fancy to and abducting mortal men's daughters, to add to his harem, or carrying off their sons to marry to his daughters. Sometimes he merely took a fancy to people's clothes.
The River God had to be appeased by giving him 'wives.'…

Yi Yin was born of a Hollow Mulberry Tree

Yi Yin's mother lived near Yi River, and she was pregnant. One day, a spirit told her in a dream, "if your mortar bowl leaks water, hurry to the east, but don't look back." Next day she did see her mortar bowl leak water, so she told her neighbors and hurried ten leagues to the east. But she looked back at her city -- there was nothing but water. Her body then transformed into a hollow mulberry tree.

The next day, a daughter of the Yu Shen clan was picking mulberry leaves when she found a baby in a hollow mulberry tree. She presented it to her lord. The lord ordered his cook to bring the child up. This was baby Yi Yin who was born of a hollow mulberry tree.

Yi Yin grew up and became a good man. T'ang the Conqueror heard about him and sent a messenger to ask if the Yu Shen clan would let him have Yi Yin, but the Yu Shen clan refused. T'ang therefore asked the Yu Shen for a bride for him to marry. The Yu Shen clan was delighted and they made Yi Yin a guarantor …