|1904||- Wood Dragon|
|1916||- Fire Dragon|
|1928||- Earth Dragon|
|1940||- Metal dragon|
|1952||- Water dragon|
|1964||- Wood Dragon|
|1976||- Fire Dragon|
|1988||- Earth Dragon|
|2000||- Metal Dragon|
|2012||- Water Dragon|
WOOD DRAGON: The Wood Dragon is creative, imaginative, and inquisitive. He is both a thinker and a doer and is capable of brilliant new concepts. His every move is guided by sound logic. His drive and ambition allow him to put many of his ideas into practice, nevertheless this Dragon is capable of concealing his domination and tries not to offend. He will even compromise if it is advantages. Although not as self-centered as other Dragons, he is still outspoken and fearless when challenged.
FIRE DRAGON: The Fire Dragon is the most extroverted and competitive Dragon. He tends to push too hard and expects a lot from everyone. His criticisms are objective and he has the ability to arouse massive popular support. His insatiable ambition can make him short-tempered and intolerant. He is an empire builder who needs to master his less favorable traits and learn how to communicate more humbly with people as individuals.
EARTH DRAGON: The Earth Dragon is a quieter, more reflective Dragon, He will be appreciative of other's opinions even if he fails to agree with them. He is reasonable in his approach to problems and his leadership is less dictatorial. He is not given to outbursts of temper, but at the same time demands respect. He knows the value of cooperation and is more diplomatic than the other Dragons. He is ambitious, but his initiatives are less hurried and more carefully thought out.
METAL DRAGON: The Metal Dragon is the most strong-willed Dragon. He is inflexible, unbending, and combative. He gives little regard to the feelings of others. This ruthlessness can result in a rapid rise to a position of authority, but often at the cost of destroying important relationships. It is futile to attempt to convince him that certain things are simply undoable. He will go it alone if he can't gain support. He succeeds because he refuses to accept failure.
WATER DRAGON: The Water Dragon is less selfish and opinionated than the other Dragons. He is more inhibited and less power-hungry. He can accept defeat without recriminations. He makes a good negotiator as he knows when, where, and how to apply pressure. He has a tendency to be over-optimistic and needs to learn how to relinquish what is unfeasible so that he can concentrate his energies on the most rewarding endeavors.
The Dragon Personality Traits
The Dragon person is self confident and impulsive and consequently does not
always listen to the advice of others. He is also a perfectionist and he sets high standards for
Although strong and decisive the Dragon is not manipulative or sly. He refuses to deceive or compromise and fails to spot subversive intent. He enjoys being in command and like an emperor holding court he eliminates obstacles until success is his.
There are nine major types of Chinese dragons These include the horned dragon, the winged dragon, the celestial dragon (which supports and protects the mansions of the gods), the spiritual dragon which generates wind and rain for the benefit of mankind), the dragon of hidden treasures (which keeps guard over concealed wealth), the coiling dragon (which lives in water), and the yellow dragon (which once emerged from water and presented the legendary Emperor Fu Shi with the elements of writing)
The last of the nine is the dragon king, which actually consists of four separate dragons, each of which rules over one of the four seas, those of the east, south, west, and north.
The most powerful generalized type of Chinese dragon is the horned dragon, or lung, which can produce rain and is totally deaf. Additionally, there is a homeless dragon (Ii) that lives in the ocean and another type (chiao) that is scale-covered and usually inhabits marshes but also keeps dens in the mountains.
There are also nine ways the Chinese have traditionally represented these dragons, each one revealing a different dragon characteristic. There are dragons carved on the tops of bells and gongs, because of the beast's habit of calling loudly when attacked. A second type is carved on the screws of fiddles, since most dragons are fond of music. A third is carved on the tops of stone tablets, because of dragons' love of literature. A fourth is found at the bottom of stone monuments, as dragons can support heavy weights. A fifth is placed on the eaves of temples, as dragons are ever alert to danger. A sixth occurs on the beams of bridges, since dragons are fond of water. A seventh is carved on Buddha's throne, as dragons like to rest. An eighth is placed on the hilts of swords, since dragons are known to be capable of slaughter. The ninth is carved on prison gates, as these are dragons that are fond of quarreling and trouble making.
The colors of Chinese dragons are evidently quite variable, but in the case of the chiao type its back is striped with green, its sides are yellow, and it is crimson underneath. The nine major characteristics of a lung type dragon include a head like a camel's, horns like a deer's, eyes like a hare's, ears like a bull's, a neck like an iguana's, a belly like a frog's, scales like a carp's, paws like a tiger's, and claws like an eagle's. It has a pair of large canine teeth in its upper jaw The long, tendril-like whiskers extending from either side of its mouth are probably used for feeling its way along the bottom of muddy ponds. In color it varies from greenish to golden, with a series of alternating short and long spines extending down the back and along the tail, where they become longer. One specimen had wings at its side, and walked on top of the water. Another tossed its mane back and forth making noises that sounded like a flute.
Cow-heads are also common. A ten-footer, found lying on the banks of China's Yangtze River, was different from most because of its long, thick eyebrows. A Yellow River variety, seen on shore in the 1920s by a Chinese teacher, was bright blue, and as big as five cows. Both dragons crawled into the water as soon as it started to rain.
A few dragons begin life as fish. Carp, who successfully jump rapids and leap over waterfalls, change into fish-dragons. A popular saying, "The carp has leaped through the dragon's gate," means success, especially for students who have passed their exams.
Male dragons sometimes mate with other kinds of animals. A dragon fathers an elephant when he mates with a pig, and he sires a racehorse, after mating with a mare.
The 4 Dragons: A Chinese Tale
Once upon a time, there were no rivers and lakes on earth, but only the Eastern Sea, in which lived four dragons: the Long Dragon, the Yellow Dragon, the Black Dragon and the Pearl Dragon.
One day the four dragons flew from the sea into the sky. They soared and dived, playing at hide-and-seek in the clouds.
"Come over here quickly!" the Pearl Dragon cried out suddenly.
"What's up?" asked the other three, looking down in the direction where the Pearl Dragon pointed. On the earth they saw many people putting out fruits and cakes, and burning incense sticks. They were praying! A white-haired woman, kneeling on the ground with a thin boy on her back, murmured:
"Please send rain quickly, God of Heaven, to give our children rice to eat.."
For there had been no rain for a long time. The crops withered, the grass turned yellow and fields cracked under the scorching sun.
"How poor the people are!" said the Yellow Dragon. "And they will die if it doesn't rain soon."
The Long Dragon nodded. Then he suggested, "Let's go and beg the Jade Emperor for rain."
So saying, he leapt into the clouds. The others followed closely and flew towards the Heavenly Palace.
Being in charge of all the affairs in heaven, on earth and in the sea, the Jade Emperor was very powerful. He was not pleased to see the dragons rushing in. "Why do you come here instead of staying in the sea and behaving yourselves?"
The Long Dragon stepped forward and said, "The crops on earth are withering and dying, Your Majesty. I beg you to send rain down quickly!"
"All right. You go back first, I'll send some rain down tomorrow." The Jade Emperor pretended to agree while listening to the songs of the fairies.
"Thanks, Your Majesty!" The four dragons went happily back.
But ten days passed, and not a drop of rain came down.
The people suffered more, some eating bark, some grass roots, some forced to eat white clay when they ran out of bark and grass roots.
Seeing all this, the four dragons felt very sorry, for they knew the Jade Emperor only cared about pleasure, and never took the people to heart. They could only rely on themselves to relieve the people of their miseries. But how to do it?
Seeing the vast sea, the Long Dragon said that he had an idea.
"What is it? Out with it, quickly!" the other three demanded.
"Look, is there not plenty of water in the sea where we live? We should scoop it up and spray it towards the sky. The water will be like rain drops and come down to save the people and their crops."
"Good idea!" The others clapped their hands.
"But," said the Long Dragon after thinking a bit, "we will be blamed if the Jade Emperor learns of this."
"I will do anything to save the people," the Yellow Dragon said resolutely.
"Let's begin. We will never regret it." The Black Dragon and the Pearl Dragon were not to be outdone.
They flew to the sea, scooped up water in their mouths, and then flew back into the sky, where they sprayed the water out over the earth. The four dragons flew back and forth, making the sky dark all around. Before long the sea water became rain pouring down from the sky.
"It's raining! It's raining!"
"The crops will be saved!"
The people cried and leaped with joy. On the ground the wheat stalks raised their heads and the sorghum stalks straightened up.
The god of the sea discovered these events and reported to the Jade Emperor.
"How dare the four dragons bring rain without my permission!" The Jade Emperor was enraged, and ordered the heavenly generals and their troops to arrest the four dragons. Being far outnumbered, the four dragons could not defend themselves, and they were soon arrested and brought back to the heavenly palace.
"Go and get four mountains to lay upon them so that they can never escape!" The Jade Emperor ordered the Mountain God.
The Mountain God used his magic power to make four mountains fly there, whistling in the wind from afar, and pressed them down upon the four dragons.
Imprisoned as they were, they never regretted their actions. Determined to do good for the people forever, they turned themselves into four rivers, which flowed past high mountains and deep valleys, crossing the land from the west to the east and finally emptying into the sea. And so China's four great rivers were formed -- the Heilongjian (Black Dragon) in the far north, the Huanghe (Yellow River) in central China, the Changjiang (Yangtze, or Long River) farther south, and the Zhujiang (Pearl) in the very far south.
There are many ways to organize all of the Chinese dragons. In the oriental tradition of opposites, the dragon is correlated with the masculine yang power while the phoenix, the bird of rebirth, is associated with the feminine yin force.
The Chinese dragon like the Indian Naga's, are often associated with water and rain and lakes and rivers. And so dragons are not as the European model of destruction but are instead life-giving, honored and very powerful.
Most often these dragons are associated with royalty and the emperors are closely aligned with the image of dragon. Before history began, China's first emperor, Fu Hsi was said to have a dragons tail and his successor, Shen Nung, was said to have a dragon as father. The Imperial Dragon or lung has five claws instead of four. The ordinary dragon or mang depicts temporal power instead of spiritual prowess. The lung, or Dragon King issued orders for the Emperor by moving in four directions simultaneously. The fifth direction (in connection with the fifth claw) is the center where he remains.
Even into recent times dragons pervade within the body and movements of the emperor. There is the Dragon Throne, Dragons pace (the Emperors stately stride), Dragon face (his visage), and Dragons Pearl (the Emperors words). When an Emperor died it was said that he had ascended to heaven on the back of a Dragon.
The T'ien Lung, or Celestial Dragon lives in the sky and guards the gods to keep them from falling out of the clouds. The Fu-tsang guards hidden treasure.
Tales of the dragon, unicorn, phoenix & tortoise, regarded as the four 'spirit animals' of ancient China. The dragon ranks fifth among the twelve animal signs, representing the Earthly Branch Chen, and belongs to the third lunar month. Chinese dragon is also symbolic of vitality, energy and hope.
The Dragon's Pearl by Julie Lawson
Description & Definition of Chinese Dragons
In the Far East, the dragon managed to retain its prestige and is known as a beneficent creature. The Chinese dragon, lung, represented yang, the principle of heaven, activity, and maleness in the yin-yang of Chinese cosmology. From ancient times, it was the emblem of the Imperial family, and until the founding of the republic (1911) the dragon adorned the Chinese flag. The dragon came to Japan with much of the rest of Chinese culture, and there, the Japanese dragons (as ryu or tatsu) it became capable of changing its size at will, even to the point of becoming invisible. Both Chinese dragons and Japanese dragons, though regarded as powers of the air, are usually wingless. The Chinese dragons are among the deified forces of nature in Taoism.
The term dragon has no zoological meaning, but dragon has been applied in the Latin generic name Draco to a number of species of small lizards found in the Indo-Malayan region. The name dragon is also popularly applied to the giant monitor dragon, varanus komodoensis, discovered on Komodo, in Indonesia. (Popularly called komodo dragons)
'LUNG' as in LUNG DE CHUAN REN'
The Chinese Pinyin LONG (Chinese: "dragon"), in Chinese mythology, a type of majestic beast that dwells in rivers, lakes, and oceans and roams the skies. Originally a rain divinity, the Chinese dragon, unlike its malevolent European counterpart (see dragon), is associated with heavenly beneficence and fecundity. Rain rituals as early as the 6th century BC involved a dragon image animated by a procession of dancers; similar dances are still practiced in traditional Chinese communities to secure good fortune.
Ancient Chinese cosmogonists defined four types of dragons: the Celestial Dragon (T'ien Lung), who guards the heavenly dwellings of the gods; the Dragon of Hidden Treasure (Fu Tsang Lung); the Earth Dragon (Ti Lung), who controls the waterways; and the Spiritual Dragon (Shen Lung), who controls the rain and winds. In popular belief, only the latter two dragons were significant; they were transformed into the Dragon Kings (Lung Wang), gods who lived in the four oceans, delivered rain, and protected seafarers.
The Chinese dragon, generally depicted as a four-legged animal with a scaled, snakelike body, horns, claws, and large, demonic eyes, the Chinese dragon or 'lung' was considered the king of animals, and the dragon image was appropriated by Chinese emperors as a sacred symbol of imperial power.
Legendary monster usually conceived as a huge, bat-winged, fire-breathing, scaly lizard or snake with a barbed tail. The belief in these creatures apparently arose without the slightest knowledge on the part of the ancients of the gigantic, prehistoric, dragon like reptiles. In Greece the word drakon, from which the English word Dragon was derived, was used originally for any large serpent (see sea serpent), and the dragon of mythology, whatever shape it later assumed, remained essentially a snake.
In general, the dragons in the Middle Eastern world, where snakes are large and deadly, the serpent or dragon was symbolic of the principle of evil. Thus, the Egyptian god Apepi, for example, was the great serpent of the world of darkness. But the Greeks and Romans, though accepting the Middle Eastern idea of the serpent as an evil power, also at times conceived the drakontes as beneficent powers--sharp-eyed dwellers in the inner parts of the Earth. On the whole, however, the evil reputation of dragons was the stronger, and in Europe the dragons outlived the other. Christianity confused the ancient benevolent and malevolent serpent deities in a common condemnation. In Christian art the dragon came to be symbolic of sin and paganism and, as such, was depicted prostrate beneath the heels of saints and martyrs.
The dragon's form varied from the earliest times. The Chaldean dragon Tiamat had four legs, a scaly body, and wings, whereas the biblical dragon of Revelation, "the old serpent," was many-headed like the Greek Hydra. Because the dragons not only possessed both protective and terror-inspiring qualities but also had decorative effigies, dragons were early used as warlike emblems. Thus, in the Iliad, King Agamemnon had on his shield a blue three-headed snake, just as the Norse warriors in later times painted dragons on their shields and carved dragons' heads on the prows of their ships. In England before the Norman Conquest, the dragon was chief among the royal ensigns in war, having been instituted as such by Uther Pendragon, father of King Arthur. In the 20th century the dragon was officially incorporated in the armorial bearings of the prince of Wales.
TALES OF 3-TOED & 4-TOED DRAGON
The legend of a rich and powerful landlord who had two giant dragons perched atop the perimeter wall of his mansion. When this news was brought to the attention of the imperial guards, the court ordered it to be removed, failing which the landlord will have to face the punishment of execution in public.
The feudal lord sought the advise of a brave and witty advisor. His argument that the imperial dragon had five claws wheras the dragon of his master had four claws and as such they were different. The feudal landlord was finally pardoned and allowed to retain his two dragons. Since that day, dragon motifs with three claws or four claws can be use by ordinary folks.
In Chinese Astrology (Asiapac Books) by renowned feng shui master Kwok Man Ho, who is based in Manchester, England, he describes the dragon as an ambitious animal who wanted to replace the tiger as king of the animals. The Jade Emperor had to intervene as judge when the dragon and the tiger both broke into a fight. The dragon heard that he was not impressive as he did not have a horn like the rooster. the centipede coaxed his friend, the rooster, to lend his horn to dragon. On judgment day, the dragon and the tiger both looked ferocious. The Emperor made the dragon the king of the water and the tiger the king of the earth.
After gaining status as a celestial animal, the dragon refused to return the horn to the rooster. Therefore, the rooster went after the centipede who coaxed the rooster to lend the horn to the dragon. The centipede went into hiding. It is believed that the rooster loves to feed on centipede because of this reason.
DETAILS OF CHINESE DRAGONS
In Taoism, the dragon has 117 scales, 81 scales are infused with yang energy and 36 scales with yin energy to reflect a dragon's personality. All Chinese Dragons bear this scale pattern except the great Heavenly Dragon which has all yang energy. Dragons lay an egg at a time and it takes 1,000 years to hatch and another 1,500 years for the dragon to be full-grown.
In the Far East, the dragon managed to retain its prestige and is known as a beneficent creature. The lung, represented yang, the principle of heaven, activity, and maleness in the yin-yang of their cosmology. From ancient times, it was the emblem of the Imperial family, and until the founding of the republic (1911) it adorned the National flag. It came to Japan with much of the rest of Chinese culture, and there (as ryu or tatsu) it became capable of changing its size at will, even to the point of becoming invisible. Both Chinese-dragon and Japanese dragons, though regarded as powers of the air, are usually wingless. They are among the deified forces of nature in Taoism.
In the Latin generic name Draco; a number of species of small lizards found in the Indo-Malayan region. The name is also popularly applied to the giant monitor, Varanus Komodoensis, discovered on Komodo, in Indonesia.
DRAGON MYTHOLOGY OF THE ORIENT
In the mythology of various Oriental countries, notably Japan and China, the dragon is the supreme spiritual power, the most ancient emblem in Oriental mythology and the most ubiquitous dragon motif in Oriental art. Oriental-Dragons represent celestial and terrestrial power, wisdom, and strength. They reside in water and bring wealth and good luck and, belief, rainfall for crops. In traditional Chinese New Year's Day parades is believed to repel evil spirits that would spoil the new year. The five-clawed-dragon became the Chinese-Imperial emblem (the four-clawed being the common dragon). The three-clawed-dragon is the Japanese-dragon. In Hindu mythology, Indra, god of the sky and giver of rain, slays Vitra, Dragon of the Waters, to release rainfall.
Different region has its own dragonology or dragon mythology. (Read more tales of the mythical creature, spread all over the site in no specific order.)
Unlike the fierce fire-breathing dragons of European mythology, Chinese dragons were believed
to be water-gods who ascended to the skies each spring to make rain for the benefit of humans.
In autumn, they would return to their underwater homes in lakes, pools, rivers and seas. Since
good harvests were so essential to the well-being of the people, it is not surprising that the
dragon was worshipped and honored.
From the most ancient times in China, the dragon was considered the emblem of royalty and the
symbol of greatness. A man of great courage was said to be like a dragon. There was no greater
honored than to have the dragon's name associated with one's own.
The Dragon's Pearl by Julie Lawson, Oxford University Press, 1992.
Myths, Theories & Explanations
Throughout the centuries scientists came up with many explanations and theories about the dragon. It's beyond any doubt that it must have been, in its earliest appearances, a reptile, a snake, alligator, or lizard. Reliquees and archeological sites dating from 5,000 to 6,000 years from nowhere shown that lizards, alligators and dragons were adapted in totemestic messes of honor and rituals. By researching the icons on these findings we can trace down the earliest description, evolution and the final appearance of the dragon.
The Chinese Dragon: ' LUNG'
According to ancient texts the dragon was a creature with a pair of antlers like the one of a deer, a camel head, the eyes of a hare, and the neck of a serpent. Its' belly looks like the one of a shen (a mythical water dragon that resembles a crocodile). Its' claws look like the one of an eagle, its' paws like the ones of a tiger, and its' ears like the ones of a buffalo. The dragon was able to morph from one form into another within a few instances, from fat to thin and from tall to short. It could also rise to heaven and descend to the depths of the sea. It seems to be that the dragon is a supernatural creature that can accept any type of form. The Chinese sign for the dragon appears during the Yin and Shang dynasties (from the 16th to the 11th century BC., the period of the earliest Chinese hieroglyphs), between inscriptions on bones and turtles shields. These inscriptions depicted a horned reptile, teeth, scales and sometimes paws as well. Above the sign there's often a symbol that seems to indicate that the dragon is considered to be a violent, evil, misfortune bringing creature. Based on this symbol Chinese scientists concluded that the 'dragon' was in fact an alligator.
Though the first dragons had one single form of appearance, the different peoples from ancient China, that got into contact with each other more and more often, started to image their totems with more fantasy. After a long time, one picture evolved of which its properties mixed with the ones of different dragons or totems.
Therefore the dragon is a product of imagination; a mystical creature that has been worshipped by the Chinese for centuries. Also in modern Chinese art the dragon is depicted in many appearances. Ethnical and cultural minorities depicted it in many forms, from a fish to an alligator or human.
Source: Zhou GuoXin
Chinese dragons are snake-like with four short legs. Chinese dragons have five toes verses the Korean Dragon with four toes and the Japanese with only three. Unlike other dragons of legend they do not have wings. The five toed dragons are a symbol of power. The Chinese dragon is often depicted as either being red or gold, although other colors are found. The Chinese term for the dragon is “Lung”. There are four major categories of Lung.
Tien-Lung, The Celestial Dragon, who protects the palace of Gods.
Shen-Lung, The spiritual Dragon, who controls wind and rain.
Ti-Lung, The Earth Dragon, which controls rivers, and water on the earth.
Fut’s-Lung, The Underworld Dragon, which guards
precious metals and gems.
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much of the above information about Chinese dragons and many of the dragon
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