Friday, July 27, 2007

The Dark Lord of the North

Xuan Wu Stepping on Snake and Tortoise

"Lord Xuan Wu (also called The Dark Lord of the North or The Lord of True Martiality) is one of the most widely revered Chinese deities, ranking in popularity behind only Guan Yin and Kwan Kung.
The God is always depicted holding a magical sword, which he borrowed from one of the 8-Immortals named Lu Dong-Pin. Legend says that He borrowed the magical sword to beat off a powerful devil, and after he was successful, he refused to return the sword back to Lu Dong-Pin. If his palm opens, then his sword will automatically fly back to Lu Dong-Pin. Therefore he always hold this sword tightly.
Lord Xuan Wu is also always depicted with a tortoise and a snake, beneath his feet. He is revered as a powerful God, able to control the elements (worshipped by those wishing to avoid fires), and capable of great magic. He is particularly revered by martial artists, and is the 'patron saint' of Wudang Mountain in China's Hubei Province, where he allegedly attained immortality."

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