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 Dragons of The Orient
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post Mar 29 2005, 11:02 AM
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The three-toed Dragon is Japanese, while the four-toed Dragon is Chinese and represents the earthly power of the Emperor. The five-toed Dragon is Chinese and represents the spiritual power of the Adept. The sphere which accompanies the Dragon represents the spiritual attainment of the the Adept, the Pearl of Great Price, Philosophers' Stone or Risen Kundalini. Dragons teach the "knowledge of the clouds," the direct knowledge of spiritual realms.

The Dragon is one of the most ancient symbols in China, with bronze castings predating the invention of writing. The Chinese considered the Dragon just, benevolent and the bringer of good fortune. As a symbol of authority, the Dragon was worn on the robes of the Imperial family and nobles. There are two kinds of Dragons, smooth and scaly, with separate words for each. The Chinese generally depict the Dragon without wings, although sometimes it appears with fins to indicate its aquatic nature. However, in the oldest depictions of the Dragon, a wingless Dragon is accompanied by one with wings.

The Dragon is paired with the Phoenix to symbolize long life, prosperity and wedded bliss, and with the Tiger to symbolize the forces of heaven and earth. Whenever Dragons are painted, the last thing done is called Awakening the Dragon, which is accomplished by painting in the the eyes of the Dragon.
The number nine is part of the Dragon mythos in China, with various legends stating that the Dragon is composed of nine creatures, that there are nine species of Dragons, and that the Dragon has nine sons:

1. Haoxian - a reckless and adventurous Dragon whose image can be found decorating the eaves of palaces.

2. Yazi - Valiant and bellicose, his image is seen on sword hilts and knife hilts.

3. Chiwen - Chiwen likes to gaze into the distance and his appearance is often carved on pinnacles.

4. Baxia - Baxia is a good swimmer and his image decorates many bridge piers and archways.


5. Pulao - Pulao is fond of roaring and his figure is carved on bells.

6. Bixi - Bixi is an excellent pack-animal whose image appears on panniers.

7. Qiuniu - Qiuniu loves music and his figure is a common decoration on the bridge of stringed musical instruments.

8. Suanmi - Suanmi is fond of smoke and fire; his likeness can be seen on the legs of incense burners.

9. Jiaotu - Jiaotu is as tight-lipped as a mussel or a snail. His image is carved on doors.

The Nine Dragon Wall is a famous Chinese artifact built in Beijing in 1756. This wall was an imitation of a legendary Nine Dragon Wall over a thousand years old.

(IMG:http://sacred-magick.com/img/ninedragons.jpg)
The modern Nine Dragon Wall in Beijing

Although Chinese culture is believed to have begun in the north, in the south, across the bay from Hong Kong Island is the ancient city of Kowloon (Chiu Lung--literally, 'Nine Dragons'), a stronghold of piracy, rebellion and black markets, where a 5,000 year old kiln and Neolithic rock carvings have been found.

(IMG:http://sacred-magick.com/img/scroll13.jpg)
Half of the Nine Dragon Scroll by 13th Century Taoist Chen Rong

The ancient Chinese believed there were five Dragon Kings, one at each quarter and the chief in the middle. When they change positions, they cause mountains to tumble; rising to the surface of the sea they cause typhoons and whirlpools; taking to the air they cause storms. In the springtime, when the constellation of the Green Dragon rises in the east at the beginning of the rainy season, Dragons ascend into the skies; in the fall they dive down into the depths of the sea. The Dragon Kings are immortal, and are said to be the same as the Naga (serpent) Kings of India.

The four types of Dragons are:
1. Celestial Dragon - carries on its back the palaces of the gods (guards the realms of the Immortals and the Fu-sang Tree of Paradise, with its ten suns representing the first spirit and its nine manifestations.)
2. Divine (Spiritual) Dragon - makes the winds and rains for the benefit of all life on earth
3. Terestrial Dragon - determines the course of streams and rivers, and the lung mei (paths of Dragon power across the earth)
4. Hidden (Subterranean) Dragon - stands watch over treasures forbidden to all men except those who gain Immortality.

(IMG:http://sacred-magick.com/img/dragonpic.jpg)
The Dragon is one of the four ancient Watchers in the Heavens: the Green (later, Azure) Dragon of the East / Spring, represented by the Dragon Heart (Antares)(the horns of the Dragon are Spica), the Unicorn of the West / Fall (later, the White Tiger), represented by the Pleiades, the Phoenix of the South / Summer(later, the Red Bird), represented by Sirius, and the Somber or Hidden Warrior of the North / Winter(later, the black tortoise), represented by the Void (there are no visible large stars in this quarter). These associations are at least 3500 years old, and may be from an even earlier period. The actual positional path of the Sun moves in the opposite direction from the seasonal associations of Spring and Fall.

During early dynasties, when the handle of the Big Dipper (the "North Seven Stars") didn't set below the horizon in China, these stars appeared to rotate counterclockwise throughout the year, in the opposite direction to the Sun's movement through the ecliptic; thus, they could have been used as a determination of the seasons. Alternatively, if this anomaly is due to the precession of the earth's axis, these associations would have had to have been created 18,000 years ago.

Chinese Dragon Wisdom
The I Ching hexagram Chien was said to represent the Dragon.
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Chien represents what is great, the creative penetration of the correct, the firm and the advantageous. Through heaven above and below we understand the relationship between the beginning and the end. Each of the six lines reaches its accomplishment at the appointed time. They mount the chariot drawn by these six Dragons at the proper hour, and drive across the sky.

Six (at the top) - The Dragon flies too high. There will be cause for repentance.

Five - The Dragon flies across the heavens. It is a favorable time to see the great man.

Four - The flight across the Abyss is not sure. He who is resolute suffers no reproach.

Three - The superior man is active all day long. At nightfall his mind is still full of care. Danger, but no reproach.

Two - The Dragons appears in the field.

One - The Dragon lies concealed in the deep.


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MoonShadow
post Mar 29 2005, 06:21 PM
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Woah...

Thanks for all of the info on asian dragons!

I'm very into cryptozoology, and before I read this post I did not know much about the Eastern dragons!

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GeNoCyDe
post Apr 20 2005, 08:12 PM
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The asian mythos about dragons is far closer to truth than the european version.good finds! (IMG:style_emoticons/default/egypt1.gif)


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Angalor
post Apr 30 2006, 10:34 PM
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Interesting to note also that the Eastern Dragon is mostly creative and constructive properties. Used for the benefit of mankind. The western ones were associated with distruction and chaos. (I watched an episode about dragons on the history channel (IMG:style_emoticons/default/laugh.gif))


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