Lü Dong Bin is so bad-ass, he has similar legends about him all across the dynasties. I shit you not. But they’re all so convoluted, so I’ll type out my favourite one here. Oh yeah. He was a poet, too, and if you leaf through some Tang poems in your library, you’ll come across one of his poems. He really existed. How cool is that?
So anyway, when Lü was born, a crane entered the room. And cranes are like, symbols of longevity and some people even believe they represent human souls, so people were all like, aww yeah this baby is real special, and he was. I mean, he was really clever, and he could memorise and read Confucian classics. He also met this really kick-ass Fire Dragon immortal, who taught him how to use a sword.
But he failed the Imperial Examinarions. Twice.
I wonder if I’ve mentioned this before, but back then, if you wanted a better life, you used your cultural capital to pass the Imperial Examinations and became an official in the Imperial Court. Anyways, he was really disappointed that he didn’t make it at 42 years of age, and so he went incognito and wandered ‘round for a bit before he met guess who?
Zhongli Quan. Told you he was important.
So anyway, Zhongli Quan met Dongbin in a restaurant for drinks, and he dreamt that he passed the examinations, gained the family of the Emperor, and had no worries or cares and shit. But then, he offended the Emperor and was exiled in that dream, so it turned into a nightmare. Anyway, he woke up and Zhongli was all, “Dude, you like, totally finished your dream before the millet is cooked.” That was when Lü Dong Bin knew he was an immortal, and was all, “Dude, teach me how to be immortal, please,” but Zhongli was all, “Well, you gotta pass some tests first.”
So one day, Lü Dong Bin’s family died. He didn’t cry and only made funeral arrangements.
He passed that test, so his family woke from the dead.
Then, at the marketplace, a merchant went back on his word, but Lü Dong Bin didn’t give him shit and juts gave him the money for the goods.
He also gave money to a grumpy and ungrateful beggar, shielded innocent lambs from tigers, put back the coins he accidentally dug up in the field, ate “sure-to-die” pills, did not panic when crossing a violent river, refuse to have the sexytimes with a pretty lady, and returned a gold vase to the shopowner since he bought it for the price of a bronze one.
The last test was Lü Dong Bin encountering a huge gang of ghosts, and one of the ghosts said, “Oei, you owe me a blood debt, and it’s gotta be repaid” so Lü Dong Bin was all, “K, I shall kill myself now,” but Zhongli Quan was all, “Chill, man. You passed all my tests.”
And that was how Lü Dong Bin got to learn the Tao and be immortal.
Did I also mention that he kills demons and evil spirits with his demon-killing sword, and also the King of Healers. Somehow or rather, this extended to the barbershops [Don’t ask me why] and he became the equivalent of a patron saint of barbers. It doesn’t make him any less cool.
Hey. Even barbers gotta have patron saints, you know.
2 years ago · 7 notes