|Part of a series on|
Yuanshi Tianzun (Chinese :元始天尊; pinyin :Yuánshǐ Tīanzūn), the Celestial Venerable of the Primordial Beginning or the Primeval Lord of Heaven, is one of the highest deities of Taoism. He is one of the Three Pure Ones (Chinese :三清; pinyin :Sānqīng) and is also known as the Jade Pure One (Chinese :玉清; pinyin :Yùqīng). He resides in the Heaven of Jade Purity. It is believed that he came into being at the beginning of the universe as a result of the merging of pure breaths. He then created Heaven and Earth.
He once was the supreme administrator of Heaven, but later entrusted that task to his assistant Yuhuang, the Jade Emperor. Yuhuang took over the administrative duties of Yuanshi Tianzun and became the overseer of both Heaven and Earth. At the beginning of each age, Yuanshi Tianzun transports the Lingpao ching (or "Yuanshi Ching"), the Scriptures of the Magic Jewel, to his students (who are lesser deities), who in turn instruct mankind in the teachings of the Tao.
Yuanshi Tianzun is said to be without beginning and the most supreme of all beings. He is in fact, a representation of the principle of all being. From him all things arose. He is eternal, limitless, and without form.
In the famous 16th-century "gods-and-demons" novel Investiture of the Gods , Yuanshi Tianzun is a superior man who has maintained his will for generations. He would be known as the master of the Kunlun Mountains, in which he had many disciples—one of such being Jiang Ziya. In time, Yuanshi Tianzun would tell Jiang that it would be time to head down to the world in order to attain a level of wealth and honor. Because Jiang Ziya was destined to assist in the creation of the new Zhou dynasty—as like Nezha—Yuanshi Tianzun would stay loyal to heaven's will and effectively send Jiang away to his new destiny. After telling Jiang what to do through a poetic format, Yuanshi Tianzun says his final words of farewell to his student.
Taoists claim that sacrifices offered to Yuanshi Tianzun by the king predate the Xia dynasty. The surviving archaeological record shows that by the Shang dynasty, the shoulder blades of sacrificed oxen were used to send questions or communication through fire and smoke to the divine realm, a practice known as scapulimancy. The heat would cause the bones to crack and royal diviners would interpret the marks as Yuanshi Tianzun's response to the king. Inscriptions used for divination were buried into special orderly pits while those that were for practice or records were buried in common middens after use. [ clarification needed ] The altar would have three tiers: the highest for Yuanshi Tianzun and the Son of Heaven; the second-highest for the sun and moon; and the lowest for the natural gods such as the stars, clouds, rain, wind, and thunder.Under Yuanshi Tianzun or his later names, the deity received sacrifices from the ruler of China in every Chinese dynasty annually at a great Temple of Heaven in the imperial capital. Following the principles of Chinese geomancy, this would always be located in the southern quarter of the city. During the ritual, a completely healthy bull would be slaughtered and presented as an animal sacrifice to Yuanshi Tianzun. The Book of Rites states the sacrifice should occur on the "longest day" on a round-mound altar.
The ten stages of the ritual were:
It is important to note that Yuanshi Tianzun is never represented with either images or idols. Instead, in the center building of the Temple of Heaven, in a structure called the "Imperial Vault of Heaven", a "spirit tablet" (神位, or shénwèi) inscribed with the name of Yuanshi Tianzun is stored on the throne, Huangtian Shangdi (皇天上帝). During an annual sacrifice, the emperor would carry these tablets to the north part of the Temple of Heaven, a place called the "Prayer Hall For Good Harvests", and place them on that throne.
Counterparts of Yuanshi Tianzun in other Asian cultures
Shangdi, also written simply, "Emperor", is the Chinese term for "Supreme Deity" or "Highest Deity" in the theology of the classical texts, especially deriving from Shang theology and finding an equivalent in the later Tian of Zhou theology.
The Jade Emperor in Chinese culture, traditional religions and myth is one of the representations of the first god. In Daoist theology he is the assistant of Yuanshi Tianzun, who is one of the Three Pure Ones, the three primordial emanations of the Tao. He is also the Cao Đài of Caodaism known as Ngọc Hoàng Thượng đế. In Buddhist cosmology he is identified with Śakra. In Korean mythology he is known as Haneullim.
The Three Pure Ones, also translated as the Three Pure Pellucid Ones, the Three Pristine Ones, the Three Divine Teachers, the Three Clarities, or the Three Purities, are the Taoist Trinity, the three highest Gods in the Taoist pantheon. They are regarded as pure manifestation of the Tao and the origin of all sentient beings.
Haneullim or Haneulnim, also spelled Hanunim (하느님), birth name Hwanin, also called Sangje also known simply as Haneul or Cheon, or Cheon-sin/ Cheon-shin, is the sky God of Cheondoism and Jeungsanism.
The Investiture of the Gods or The Creation of the Gods, also known by its Chinese names Fengshen Yanyi and Fengshen Bang (封神榜), is a 16th-century Chinese novel and one of the major vernacular Chinese works in the gods-and-demons (shenmo) genre written during the Ming dynasty (1368–1644). Consisting of 100 chapters, it was first published in book form between 1567 and 1619. Another source claims it was published in 1605. The work combines elements of history, folklore, mythology, legends and fantasy.
Śakra is the ruler of the Trāyastriṃśa Heaven according to Buddhist cosmology. He is also referred to by the title "Śakra, Lord of the Devas". The name Śakra ("powerful") as an epithet of Indra is found in several verses of the Rigveda.
Guangchengzi is a character in the classic Chinese novel Fengshen Yanyi.
Yang Ren is a character from the classic Chinese novel Fengshen Yanyi.
Wen Zhong is a character in the classic Chinese novel Fengshen Yanyi. Wen Zhong had been the top ranked official under King Da Yi since the times of old. Following the death of Da Yi, Wen Zhong crowned Zi Shou as the new king of the Shang Dynasty. In short time, Wen Zhong headed out on his great dragon to subdue rebelling demons within the North Sea.
Zhang Guifang is a fictional character featured within the famed classic Chinese novel Investiture of the Gods.
Saint is a manhua by Hong Kong comics artist Khoo Fuk Lung. It follows the life and adventures of Sun Wukong, the monkey king from the 16th century novel Journey to the West. It was first published by Jade Dynasty and is licensed by Yuk Long Limited.
Tianzun (天尊), literally the Lord of Heaven may refer to:
Amenominakanushi is, according to the Shinto Kojiki, the first kami and the source of the universe. In Japanese mythology, Amenominakanushi is described as a "god who came into being alone" (hitorigami), the first of the zōka sanshin, and one of the five kotoamatsukami.
The Legend and the Hero is a 2007 Chinese television series adapted from the 16th-century novel Fengshen Yanyi written by Xu Zhonglin and Lu Xixing. The first season started airing on CCTV-8 in February 2007. It was followed by a sequel, The Legend and the Hero 2 in 2009.
The Legend and the Hero 2 is a Chinese television series adapted from the novel Fengshen Yanyi written by Xu Zhonglin and Lu Xixing. The series was first broadcast on TTV from September to October 2009, and was preceded by The Legend and the Hero in 2007.
Thagyamin is the highest-ranking nat in traditional Burmese Buddhist belief. Considered king of the second heaven above Catumaharcika, he is derived from the Buddhist deva Śakra and the Hindu deity Indra.
Tongtian Jiaozhu (通天教主) or sometimes translated as Grandmaster of Heaven is the third disciple of Hongjun Laozu and younger brother of Yuanshi Tianzun and Taishang Laojun. He appeared as antagonist in many legends, classic novels as well as television series.
Shen Gongbao is a major character featured within the famed classic Chinese novel Investiture of the Gods. Shen Gongbao is a disciple of Yuanshi Tianzun, Jiang Ziya's junior fellow apprentice.
Chinese theology, which comes in different interpretations according to the classic texts and the common religion, and specifically Confucian, Taoist and other philosophical formulations, is fundamentally monistic, that is to say it sees the world and the gods of its phenomena as an organic whole, or cosmos, which continuously emerges from a simple principle. This is expressed by the concept that "all things have one and the same principle". This principle is commonly referred to as Tiān 天, a concept generally translated as "Heaven", referring to the northern culmen and starry vault of the skies and its natural laws which regulate earthly phenomena and generate beings as their progenitors. Ancestors are therefore regarded as the equivalent of Heaven within human society, and therefore as the means connecting back to Heaven which is the "utmost ancestral father". Chinese theology may be also called Tiānxué 天學, a term already in use in the 17th and 18th century.
[In contrast to the God of Western religions who is outside space and time] the God of Fuxi, Xuanyuan and Wang Yangming is in our space and time. ... To Chinese thought, ancestor is creator.
The Gods is a 2019 Chinese shenmo television series loosely based on the 16th-century Chinese gods and demons fiction Investiture of the Gods by Xu Zhonglin and Lu Xixing. The series is directed by Korean director Shin Woo-chul and starring Wang Likun, Luo Jin, Zhang Bo, Yu Hewei, Deng Lun, and Collin Chou. Produced by Mango Studio, Cathay Media Group, China Television Production Center and China Central Television (CCTV), The Gods airs on Hunan Television in April 2019. The series followed the love story between Erlang Shen and Daji in the two rival countries Shang and Western Zhou.