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April 25, 2010

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伏羲的故事 (fu2 xi1 de gu4 shi4) The works of Fuxi

GODDESS Nuwa, who created man and mended the sky, had an elder brother by the name of Fuxi. Fuxi's mother was a virgin when she became pregnant after stepping into the giant footprints she once found in a large swamp. Later, she gave birth to her first child.

Fuxi was born with the head of a man and the body of a dragon. He was able to walk at birth and grew into a giant in just a few days.

Years later, Fuxi's mother gave birth to his baby sister, Nuwa.

After Nuwa created men and women and taught them to gather fruit and hunt animals, life remained difficult for the earth inhabitants, particularly in winter when there was little to gather or hunt. So, they often had to endure the torments of hunger.

Seeing this, Fuxi decided to help.

First, he traveled around to look for different food for human beings. When he went to a big river and saw fish in it, Fuxi dived into the water and came back with a large, fat carp. But when he showed the carp to men and women, they didn't dare to eat it. So Fuxi ate the fish first and encouraged others to have a taste of it.

After people found out that fish was not only edible but also quite tasty, they were very happy and began to fish in rivers.

However, to catch fish with bare hands was difficult and painstaking. So Fuxi sought an easier way to fish.

One day when he was resting under a tree, he saw a spider weaving its cobweb between two twigs. Fuxi realized that something like the cobweb could be used to catch more fish than by using bare hands. So he gathered some long vines and wove them into a large fishing net. Fishing subsequently became an important source of food for human beings.

In addition to finding more food, Fuxi created many devices to edify them.

He studied carefully all types of phenomena in the world including the stars, weather, seasons and even the footprints, fur and hide colors and patterns of animals.

One day, he saw a chimera with the head of a dragon and the body of a horse emerging from a large cave. He was fascinated by the unusual arrangement of markings on its body. Inspired by the chimerical pattern, Fuxi created the famous Eight Trigrams, which was later used by ancient Chinese to record and interpret all things in the world and universe.

Fuxi also originated "I Ching" or the Book of Changes. In the ensuing more than 5,000 years, "I Ching" has been used as an aid to making decisions, predicting the future, and as a popular source of wisdom and inspiration.

As a result, Fuxi is widely regarded as one of the primogenitors of Chinese civilization.


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