Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Haw Par Villa - Fu Lu Shou

The three main statues of Fu Lu Shou are favourite with many chinese. Fu means Good Fortune, Lu means Prosperity and Shou means Longevity.

Many chinese especially the older folks like to celebrate their birthdays with buns that looked like peach. According to legend, he was carried in his mother's womb for ten years before being born, and was already an old man when delivered. He is recognized by his high, domed forehead and the peach which he carries as a symbol of immortality. The God of Longevity is usually shown smiling and friendly, and he may sometimes be carrying a gourd filled with Elixir of Life.

The Lu star is believed to be Zhang Xian who lived during the Later Shu dynasty. The word lu specifically refers to the salary of a government official. As such, the Lu star is the star of prosperity, rank, and influence. The Lu star was also worshipped separately from the other two as the deity dictating one's success in the Imperial Examinations, and therefore success in the imperial bureaucracy. The Lu star is usually depicted in the dress of a mandarin.

Alternately, according to Taoist legend, the Fu Star is associated with Yang Cheng 阳城, a governor of Daozhou 道州. Yang Cheng risked his life by writing a memorial to the emperor to save the people from suffering. After his death, the people built a temple to commemorate him, and over time he came to be considered the personification of good fortune. He is generally depicted in scholar's dress, holding a scroll, on which is sometimes written the character "Fu". He may also be seen holding a child, or surrounded by children.

Source from wikipedia

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