King Yama - Chinese God

King Yama - Chinese God

If you have read the Journey to the West, maybe you have idea who is King Yama, and the post of his. According to ancient China mythology, In Chinese folk beliefs, King Yama is the judge of the dead, who presides over the hell and is responsible for the life, death and transmigration of human beings. He's said to have a book listing the length of life of every individual. When someone's life in the mortal world has come to an end, King Yama would order fearsome guardians of hell to bring the newly dead to the hell for judgment. If the person did good things before death, they could be brought to heaven and enjoy good wealth; if they did evil things, they could be sent to the hell for punishment.

It is said that he had a book listing the length of life of every individual, and that's also the reason why the Monkey King broke into hell and tore one page off that book. When someone's life in the mortal world has come to an end, King Yama would order fearsome guardians of hell to bring the newly dead to the hell for judgment. If the person was a good guy, he would be brought to heaven and enjoy good wealth, if he wasn't, he would be sent to the hell for punishment.

There was no concept of King Yama in ancient China till Buddhism was introduced to China via ancient India, when the belief in King Yama as the god of hell became entrenched. The term Yama  originally means "trussing up" in Sanskrit, referring to trussing up sinners.

Later, due to the interactions between Buddhism and Taoism, the indigenous Chinese religion, variations of King Yama with Chinese flavors were developed--the Ten Kings of Hell. They have their own functions and powers as well as ways to punish sinned ghosts. 

In folk culture, there are lots of popular sayings about King Yama, such as "when King Yama is away, the ghosts are free to do whatever they want", which means when someone in charge is absent, his underlings run wild; the saying "it's easy to meet King Yama, but the devils are hard to tackle" means low-ranking officials are even more difficult to deal with than their superiors; and the saying "if King Yama rules that your life ends at the third watch (midnight), you can't live to the fifth (dawn)" reflects "the fatalistic belief about the length of life".  

List of Gods : "Chinese King" - 8 records

Name ▲▼Origin ▲▼Description ▲▼
God name
"Chang Hs'iien"
Chinese Guardian god of children. According to tradition he was the mortal king of Szechuan killed by the founder of the Sung dynasty. His wife was captured and forced to become a concubine in the imperial palace. She was discovered by the emperor kneeling before a picture of her deceased husband which she identified as a local deity, “the immortal Chang who gives children.” This triggered the cult which began locally in Szechuan circa AD 100. Chang Hs'ien is depicted holding a bow made of mulberry wood and either aiming an arrow at the star Tien Kou, the socalled celestial dog which threatens the earth, or aiming the empty bow at a rat (see ERH LANG)....
Demon name
"Chung K'uei"
Taoist / Chinese God of the afterlife. He belongs to the heavenly “ministry of exorcism” and, though not the most senior (he is subservient to CHANG TAO LING), is probably the most popular within the category. He was originally a mortal working as a physician in the eighth century AD. He is depicted with a fearsome face, said to be so terrible that it can drive away any demonic spirit who dares to oppose him. He is engaged in combat using a sword and a fan on which is written a magical formula to ward off evil. Symbolic peaches are suspended from his hat and a bat circles his head representing happiness....
King name
"Erh Lang (master)"
Chinese Tutelary deity. Associated with a celestial dog, Erh Lang was once honored with a sanctuary in Beijing (Peking). According to tradition he and the dog saved the city from flooding. His attributes include a bow which he is depicted drawing, and arrows. The dog may be replaced by a rat, in which case the arrows are not included. The rat is a sign of impending wealth and therefore the drawing of an empty bow at the rat is a sign which invokes wealth of children....
Goddess name
"Hung Sheng (boly one)"
Chinese Guardian god. A deity who protects fishing boats and their crews against danger at sea in the Southern Ocean. His role is similar to that of the goddess KUAN YIN. Little is known of the origin of Hung Sheng, but he was allegedly a mortal who died on the thirteenth day of the second moon, which falls two days before the spring equinox when the sea dragon king, Lung Wang, is believed to leave the ocean and ascend into the heavens. The god is propitiated with cakes made from the first grain of the year, on the fifth day of the fifth month and in some traditions he is seen as an aspect of the sea dragon king....
Spirit name
"Kun Lun"
Chinese The Kunlun mountains are well known in Chinese mythology and are believed to be Taoist Paradise. The first to visit this Paradise was king Mu. He supposedly discovered there the Jade Palace of Huang-Di, the mythical Yellow Emperor and originator of Chinese culture, and met Hsi Wang Mu, the 'Spirit Mother of the West' usually called the 'Queen Mother of the West', who was the object of an ancient religious cult which reached its peak in the Han Dynasty, also had her mythical abode in these mountains.
God name
"Lu Pan"
Chinese God of artisans. The deity concerned with builders, bricklayers, housepainters and carpenters. He is particularly revered in Hong Kong. According to tradition he was born in 606 BC in the kingdom of Lu, where he became a skilled carpenter. He turned into a recluse on the Li Shan mountain, where he perfected his skills. He is said to have constructed the palace of the queen of the western heaven. Because of his powers he was murdered. He is also an invoker of harmonious relationships. His festival takes place on the thirteenth day of the sixth month, when the Rains are due. Attributes include a set square and carpenter's plane. He is also depicted with an ax, the symbol of a marriage go-between....
Goddess name
"NA CHA (here is a loud cry)"
Taoist / Chinese Guardian god. A somewhat ambiguous god who is generally regarded as benevolent, but whose traditions hint at a more destructive aspect. He was born a god of human parents, the reincarnation of an older deity, Ling Chu-Tzu, the “intelligent pearl.” According to tradition, his father was Li Ching, who threatened to kill his mother because she claimed she was made pregnant by the mystical actions of a Taoist priest who told her she was to bear the child of a unicorn. Na Cha is said to have fought in the Shang-Chou war on the side of the Chou dynasty circa 1027 BC. His chief adversary was the sea dragon king. Ultimately he became involved with the goddess Shih-Chi Niang Niang, accidentally killed her attendant and, in remorse, committed suicide....
King name
"Wu Guan"
Chinese king of the fourth hell. Chinese