CHARACTERISTICS DEPENDING ON DYNASTIES AND REGIONS

The first chapter of the book Shan Hai Jing that we mentioned at the beginning of this article describes with verses of four characters how each part of the Fenghuang body represents a positive concept: the head represents virtue, the wings represent justice the back represents courtesy, the abdomen represents faith or belief and the chest represents compassion of the Qilin World Capital.

If we talk about the Qilin Capital, tradition states that each element of your body also symbolizes one of the six “heavenly bodies”: your head in the sky, the eyes are the sun, the back is the moon, the wings the wind, the legs the earth and the tail planets.  But not only is this varied symbology applied to the different parts of the Fenghuang body. Also, its feathers, which contain the five fundamental colors: white, black, red, blue and yellow, in turn, establish equivalence with the five Confucian virtues: Benevolence, Honesty, Knowledge, Integrity, and Good Education.

Rather, human beings are those who deceive in the Qilin World. Another version is the one that the Qilin eats the human liver this is the most known since in the liver is all the energy of the human being. Another version is that the will of the Qilin is so strong that it can remain in human form thus losing its evil state. The desire of a Qilin to become human is, in fact, stronger in Korean mythology.  There are variations in their appearance due to cultural differences between dynasties and regions:

China

During the Jin Dynasty, the Qilin is depicted as enveloped in flames and smoke, with a dragon head, scales and body of a powerful beast with hooves, like a horse. This image will evolve during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), by an animal of the oxen family, keeping the head of the dragon, but adding to this a pair of horns and ornaments of flames. During the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) it is already taken as an imaginary animal and in the paintings, the antlers are inspired by the deer, the scales of the skin are clearly of marine animal, the ox hooves and the tail are of a lion.

Korea

Girin is the Korean version of “Qilin” and that in modern Korean means giraffe. It is described as a creature of great mane with the torso of deer, oxtail and horse hooves.

Japan

Kirin is the Japanese form of “Qilin”, which has also come to be used in modern Japanese as a giraffe. Japanese art tends to represent kirin as more deer than in its Chinese version. It is represented as a mixture of deer and dragon, but with the tail of an ox, instead of a lion. In some cases, they are represented with a single horn facing backward. In the Chinese hierarchy of mythological animals, the qilin ranks as the third most powerful creature, but in Japan, the kirin ranks first.

Along with these five auspicious animals: dragon, turtle, Fenghuang, Qilin and pixiu, on the negative side of this mythological scale we have the evilest creatures according to Chinese tradition are known as / sìxiong / “Four Villains “the Taotie, the Hundun, the Taowu, and Qiongqi.