GUAN-YUAlso known as GUAN-YUN-CHANG, GUAN-GONG, GUAN-DI, KUAN-YU, KUAN-KUNG, KUAN-TI, ZHANG-YUN, CHANG-YUN, CHANG-SHENG, ZHANG-SHENG
God of War and Martial Arts
He is a DAOist deity who is also well thought of by Buddhists. As told in Romance Of The Three Kingdoms, he started life as a mortal vendor of soya bean curd (see TO-FU). But after a heroic incident involving the rescue of a harassed lady and the killing of a tax inspector, he got the taste for battle and embarked on a famous military career with LIU-BEI and ZHANG-FEI, becoming one of the Three Brothers of the Peach Orchard.Unusually for a God of War, he uses his skill to avoid confrontations if at all possible. A peace-loving deity, he tries to minimize every battle he's in. (Surely you've heard of Kung Few?) But his bravery is legendary.
In one famous tale, his arm was damaged in battle and needed surgery. To the incredulity of on-lookers, he calmly sat playing Solitaire while field surgeons did excruciating things to his tendons. (Just as well Solitaire is a one-handed game.)
Loyal GUAN-YU knew that changing sides during a war was not only immoral but also against the Law. For his bravery, and because he died defending legal issues, he also became the patron God of Police Officers.
Legend tells that after he died, GUAN-YU appeared before a meditating Master of Buddhism and asked for spiritual guidance. Which was only natural under the circumstances.
Quickly learning the Five Precepts, he became a Buddhist, reached Enlightenment, and now devotes the rest of his Immortality to defending the faith. A completely honorary position, but extremely well-regarded.
Finally, GUAN-YU is also worshipped as a God of Literature — because he managed to read a whole page of Confucius without going cross-eyed.
Authors: Peter J Allen and Chas Saunders
References: Coming soon.
COPYRIGHT © 1999-2013. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Please mention Godchecker.com when praying to deities.
Godchecker's article on Guan-yu is based on material from ancient texts, original references and our own research. We strive for accuracy and update regularly with new information. If you spot a mistake please contact us and we'll try to fix it.
Location : China
Gender : Male
Type : Deity
Celebration or Feast Day : Unknown at present
Pronunciation : Goo-arn Yoo
Alternative names : GUAN-YUN-CHANG, GUAN-GONG, GUAN-DI, KUAN-YU, KUAN-KUNG, KUAN-TI, ZHANG-YUN, CHANG-YUN, CHANG-SHENG, ZHANG-SHENG
Popularity index : 16178
Visitors often email us asking about Guan-yu statues, sculptures or carved figurines of Guan-yu. We regret we cannot assist with identifying such items.
REPRODUCTION REQUESTS. This site is copyright and all rights are reserved. If you wish to use our material in your essay, book, article or project, please consult our permissions information page.
SUPPORT THE GODS. Found this site useful? Consider donating a few pennies to the Godchecker Temple Roof Fund.
The Gods told us to do it.