Week 15: Hồ ly tinh – the fox spirit/demon

This week on #VNmyth, we’ll go over Vietnamese Hồ ly tinh (and some of its counter parts in other parts of Asia like Chinese Hu li Jing, Japanese Kitsune, Korean Gumiho). I. Differentiate the entities: Etymology: Vietnamese hồ li tinh is a direct translation of the word Hu Li Jing in Chinese, both means “demonContinue reading “Week 15: Hồ ly tinh – the fox spirit/demon”

Week 14: Thần trùng – a vicious demon that torture the dead

This week on #VNmyth, a demon responsible for chained death in a family. I. Description Thần trùng (“thần” being “god,” “trùng” being “repeated,” “repetitive,” “happening again”), also known as “quỷ trùng tang” (with “quỷ” meaning “demons,” and “tang” meaning “funerals”) is a feared demon throughout Vietnam, notorious for creating chained funerals of whole families. Appearances-wise,Continue reading “Week 14: Thần trùng – a vicious demon that torture the dead”

Week 13: A small collection of ghosts and malevolent spirits

This week on #VNmyth, instead of going through just one single myth or mythical creature, we’ll go over multiple ghost and malevolent spirits with similar pattern. I. Ma thần vòng “Thần” is the common word for “god(s)” but can also be understood as “the mind” (as in “tinh thần”). Since this is a relatively newContinue reading “Week 13: A small collection of ghosts and malevolent spirits”

Week 12: Ba bị, mẹ mìn, and ngáo ộp – Vietnamese trinity of child kidnapping Bogeymen

This week on #VNmyth, we take a break from the usual folklore and fairytale, to dive into the more urban legends type of myth with the Vietnamese versions of the Bogeyman I. The lore: Every Vietnamese grows up scared shitless of three Bogeyman figures. Whenever a child misbehaves or even takes too long to finishContinue reading “Week 12: Ba bị, mẹ mìn, and ngáo ộp – Vietnamese trinity of child kidnapping Bogeymen”

Week 11: Kim Quy – the Golden Turtle God

This week on #VNmyth will cover thần Kim Quy (lit: Golden Turtle God), a significant deity in Vietnamese mythos that still has shrines dedicated to him across the country. I. His roles and missions In most cases, he appeared as a messenger god (or more like aid and secretary) who carry out the will ofContinue reading “Week 11: Kim Quy – the Golden Turtle God”

Week 10: Curse of the Oil Sellers

This week on #VNmyth: The narrowing of Tô Lịch river or the curse of Lallo… Mr. And Mrs. Dầu. I. The story: During the Lý’s dynasty, there was a massive landslide on the ancient rivers of Tô Lịch, Nhị Hà. Some folktales attributed this accident to Cao Biền, or Gao Pian in Mandarin, an officialContinue reading “Week 10: Curse of the Oil Sellers”

Week 9: Mirrors in Vietnamese culture

I. First story: Once, there was a family with two sons, who both got married. The first daughter-in-law was jealous that the little brother’s wife was way more beautiful than she did. One night, she decided to stalk her sister to find out the truth about her beauty. During the Hour of the Ox (1-3Continue reading “Week 9: Mirrors in Vietnamese culture”

Week 8: Cường Bạo đại vương – if Noah were to rebel

This week on #VNmyth, the story of one of the times when Vietnamese rebelled against Heaven, and won. Disclaimer: I drew this comparison because technically, the last arc of this story is a flood story. It neither was an attack on anyone’s religion nor contained any religious motives. I. The story Cường Bạo was aContinue reading “Week 8: Cường Bạo đại vương – if Noah were to rebel”

Week 7: Legend of the Tết’s pole, or a story of the war against Demons

This week on #VNmyth, we’ll go over one of a more well-known folklore (compared to other folklore; generally speaking, no Vietnamese myth is well-known) that highlight how Vietnamese culture doesn’t just borrow from other cultures, we make our own. I. The story: In the old days, at the beginning of time, the land belonged toContinue reading “Week 7: Legend of the Tết’s pole, or a story of the war against Demons”

Week 6: Princess Liễu Hạnh – Mother Heaven

This week on #VNmyth – Liễu Hạnh. She is the Daughter of Heaven (yes, I mean literally), ruler over the sky realm and one of the four Vietnamese Immortals: Heavenly Mother (mẫu thượng thiên) Liễu Hạnh. I. Cosmology: To understand her story, one first needs some info on the cosmology in the Religion of MothersContinue reading “Week 6: Princess Liễu Hạnh – Mother Heaven”