Meng Po, often known simply as Lady Meng (‘Dream’), is the Buddhist Goddess who dishes out the Bittersweet Broth of Oblivion. This is a mystic brew made from herbs and pond water which she prepares for the souls of the dead.
She is waiting for you at the Ninth Chinese Hell in Diyu, where your soul will be ready to leave the recycling center and head for the reincarnation door. One sip of her Five-Flavored Tea of Forgetfulness and you will lose all memory of who you were. This ensures that when you are reborn you can start with a clean slate.
The only thing that passes from one incarnation to the next is Karma, which is why no-one remembers their past lives. This amnesia is supposed to be an act of mercy. It may not seem fair to lose the wisdom and knowledge you accumulate during your life — but on the other hand it does prevent cheating.
There is no known antidote to Lady Meng’s potion (although some people claim that hypnotic regression can help you remember past lives). Only Buddha himself managed to shake off the effects — after meditation revealed to him his previous lives.
Having read the gory details of what happens to you in Diyu every time you die, we’re very happy to forget the whole thing.
Meng Po Facts and Figures
Name: Meng Po
Alternative names: MONG-PO, LADY-MENG, MENG-P'O, MENG-PO-NIANG-NIANG, MI-HUNG-TANG, MENG-PO-NIANG
Celebration or Feast Day: Unknown at present
In charge of: Reincarnation
Area of expertise: Reincarnation
Good/Evil Rating: Unknown at present
Popularity index: 1991
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Article last revised on September 25, 2018 by Rowan Allen.
Editors: Peter J. Allen, Chas Saunders
References: Coming soon.