The Chinese God of Wealth

I’ve started using Bing today and the image search feature threw up these pretty pictures.They were the beginning of a very interesting find:The Chinese God of Wealth-Cai Shen/Zhao Gongming.Till today I didn’t know that the Chinese even had a special God of Wealth.The fifth day of the Spring Festival is observed as his birthday.The pictures are from a folk perfomance where the actor plays the God of Wealth.

According to Chinese legends Zhao Gongming was a marshal during the Shang Dynasty (16th-11th century BC) who was empowered after his death to bestow good fortune and prosperity on those who honoured him.So for centuries the Chinese have prepared offerings to the God of Wealth on the night before the fifth day,or Po Wu, of the Spring Festival to greet Zhao on his birthday in the belief they would be blessed with wealth in the new year.Traditionally,on this day the Chinese light crackers at home to invite the God of Wealth into their homes and ensure good fortune and prosperity throughout the year.Sounds a bit like Diwali in India.Unlike the other days of the Spring Festival, instead of visiting relatives and friends ,on the fifth day, many people choose to stay indoors to clean their homes, burn incense sticks, adorn the entranceways of their homes with posters of the God of Wealth or banners printed with auspicious Chinese phrases and await the God of Wealth. Also  meat or vegetable dumplings are prepared to be eaten as they are said to closely resemble Chinese gold ingots – the currency of ancient China.

Think I want to go see China soon.

About Keerthika Singaravel

13 Responses to The Chinese God of Wealth

  1. Wesley Niewieroski says:

    Nice piece.

  2. Chung Volden says:

    Nice article.

  3. Samatha Konecni says:

    Nice post.Thank you.

  4. Jimmie Delarge says:

    Excellent post.Nice pics.

  5. Adolfo Haisley says:

    Excellent piece.Thank you.

  6. Solomon Copping says:

    Great post.

  7. Pingback: Chinese Wealth Symbols « Wealthymatters

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