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Worship of Mother Goddesses in Bac Giang

(BGO) - The worship of Mother Goddesses is a pure Vietnamese indigenous folk belief with a long history. It has been developing together with the national history. There are many forms of Mother Goddess worship to adapt to social history. Initially, it was the custom of worshiping the Goddesses representing nature like Mother Earth, Mother Water, Mother Rice...

The Mother Goddess worship in Bac Giang province appeared quite early and has diverse forms such as the worship of National Mother Au Co in Tan Soi (Yen The district), the worship of Mother Stone in Tien Son (Viet Yen district), the worship of Mother Goddess of Highlands at Suoi Mo Temple in Nghia Phuong commune (Luc Nam district), the worship of Mother Goddess Thoai at Da Hy temple, Lang Son commune (Yen Dung district), the worship of Princess Nguyet Ho in Huong Vi commune (Yen The district), and the worship of Bao Nuong and Ngoc Nuong (Tran dynasty) in Da Mai, Bac Giang city...

Worship of Mother Goddesses, Bac Giang province, folk belief, long history,  national history, social history, diverse forms, myths and legends, Vietnamese women

Nguyet Ho Temple (Yen The), worshiping Princess Nguyet Nga, is associated with the worship of Mother Goddesses.

It can be seen that the Mother Goddess worship in Bac Giang has been expanded according to the historical process, from gods of nature and agriculture to heroines, princesses, queens or founders of crafts in association with many myths and legends. 

These figures, when alive, were talented people who had great contributions to the country and people. When they died, they turned out to be awe-inspiringly powerful to help the people obtain wealth and prosperity. Over time, cultural classes have been covered by the Mother Goddess worship belief.

The worship of Mother Goddesses in Bac Giang focuses on worshiping activities and rituals during ceremonies and festivals associated with folk performing arts such as “chau van” (a form of ritual singing) or “hau dong” (mediumship). The gods appear through the role-playing of mediums in colourful dresses and scarves in combination with a plenty of dances and songs.

Each “hau dong” session often depicts the lives and contributions of the deities to the people and the country. The outstanding value of the Mother Goddess worship belief is expressed through “chau van” songs, historical stories integrated into dances, songs and costumes or the way of decorating temples and shrines.

The Mother Goddess worship in Bac Giang has its own characteristics, but still has a common beauty in the Mother Goddess worship culture of the Vietnamese people to honor the tradition of patriotism and looking towards the roots, and to show the spirit of solidarity and sense of community, contributing to honoring the beauty of Vietnamese women as well as preserving and upholding the national cultural identity.

One of the well-known Mother Goddess worship centers is Suoi Mo Temple, where the worship of Mother Goddess of Highlands was initiated. The Mother Goddess worshipped here is Que My Nuong, the daughter of King Hung, who had the merits of expanding the land and teaching local people to do farming to have a prosperous and happy life.

Meanwhile, Nguyet Ho Temple, where Princess Nguyet Nga, also the daughter of King Hung, is worshipped. She had the merit of helping her father fight the enemy to protect the country.

Da Hy Temple, with the custom of worshiping Mother Goddess Thoai, the embodiment of Hue Nuong, the mother of Saint Tran Tuan Son, a deity who supported Tran Quoc Tuan, Tran Quang Khai and other Tran generals in defeating the Yuan-Mong invaders.

Quynh Son Pagoda still keeps the ancient documents ordaining the Mother Goddesses as proof for the start of the Mother Goddess worship in Bac Giang. The ordination by Emperor De Thich on the Holy Mother on the 16th day of the fifth month of the 44-1783 year of Canh Hung contains many good things...

The Mother Goddess worship space spreads in many villages in Bac Giang province. In addition to temples and shrines as Mother Goddess worshipping centres, village pagodas also have an area for worshipping Mother Goddesses. Currently, the belief is developing with many unique traditional cultural features and special values such as national history, temple and shrine architecture art, folk performing arts and music, dancing and painting.

There are also values of morality, patriotism, national pride, mutual mutual support, community solidarity, the tradition of “drinking water, remembering its source”, and desire for happiness and well-being of generations of people for long.

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Dong Ngoc Duong

Worship of Mother Goddesses, Bac Giang province, folk belief, long history, national history, social history, diverse forms, myths and legends, Vietnamese women
 
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