Saturday, April 15, 2006

Bakersfield Joss House

Bakersfield Joss House Replica

"The goddess enshrined in the center of the main altar is Kwan Yin or Goddess of Mercy. She is the patron goddess of mothers and children. She sits on a lotus flower, the symbol of purity.

The figure on the left is "Tien Hou" or Empress of Heaven. She is the female counterpart of Neptune and is the patroness of sailors and travelers on the sea. It is believed that the Chinese immigrants enthroned her in the temple out of gratitude for her protection when they traveled safely over the ocean to come to California.

The god on the right is "Hua Tíao," God of Medicine, to whom the Chinese prayed during time of illness. The bamboo tube holds Oracle Sticks, which are used for divination. The Oracle Book would reveal the prescription of certain herbs, which would effect a cure for the sick patient."

From the website of the Kern County Museum:$119


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