Friday, October 10, 2008

Chinese Door Gods (Mandarin: Men Shen, Hokkien: Mui Xin)

Door Gods at Raja Uda Tow Boo Kong Temple
Chinese door gods are used to symbolically guards houses, temples and buildings. They are actually portraits of China olden day’s military men. The most common door gods are Tang Dynasty generals, Chin Xu Bao and Yu Chi Ching Ter, who are loyal guards to Emperor Tang TaiZhung. Chin Xu Bao has pale skin and often carries a sword and YuChi ChingTer who has dark skin carries the baton. Other common door gods are Xhen Tou and Yu Lei who are brothers that lives during the Five Dynasties era. They fought against an evil prince that eat humans but was killed. The village folk honored them by placing their portraits on their doors. Sometimes you will see a single door god, which is very likely to be Zhong Kui who lives during the Tang Dynasty. Zhong Kui is a bearded fat man with a fierce appearance and is a scholar turned exorcist (chinese ghost busters).

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