Taoist Deity #23: Cai Shen (财神, God of Wealth)

In the Taoist pantheon, a figure shines for his particular symbolism: Cai Shen.

It is he who is celebrated as the deity of wealth and abundance. As God #23 of Taoism, he occupies a central place in rituals and practices aimed at attracting financial prosperity.

Let's deepen our understanding of this fascinating entity...

Contents :

1. Taoist deity: who is Cai Shen?

2. Cai Shen’s attributes and powers

3. Cai Shen’s symbols

4. A legend about Cai Shen

5. The symbolic role of Cai Shen

6. Temples and shrines dedicated to Cai Shen

Taoist deity: who is Cai Shen?

Taoist deity: who is Cai Shen?

Cai Shen, or Caishen, is a sacred figure in Taoism and Chinese culture. It embodies opulence, affluence and material joy. In direct translation from Chinese, its title reads "God of Wealth".

In popular legends, Cai Shen was once a man named Zhao Gongming during the Tang Dynasty (618-907). His altruism and generosity towards others allowed him to amass vast personal wealth. Following his death, he was elevated to divine status to symbolize financial success.

By honoring Cai Shen in their daily practices and annual rituals, devotees seek to attract financial luck and lasting prosperity into their lives. His presence is a constant reminder that kind actions towards those around us can lead to abundant rewards.

The cult of Cai Shen transcends geographical boundaries with his popularity growing outside China as well - proof that everyone yearns for the abundance he represents.

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Cai Shen's attributes and powers

Cai Shen, dressed in sumptuous clothes decorated with gilding, is an emblematic figure. His open scepter in his right hand symbolizes his power over earthly treasures. Occasionally, he holds a golden fisherman in his left hand, a symbol of the universal love he feels for humans.

As the deity of wealth, Cai Shen offers many blessings to those who pay respect to him. He has the gift of granting luck and financial prosperity to people of integrity in business as well as to those who show generosity towards their fellow men.

It is said that Cai Shen rewards business honesty and generosity with fortune and financial success. His benevolence is not only limited to the business world but also extends to all those who show great love for their peers.

Cai Shen's symbols

Cai Shen's symbols

In Chinese culture, Cai Shen is associated with various symbols. One of the most recognized is the gold bar, an emblem of wealth and abundance. It is widely believed that owning this precious item attracts good luck and promotes the amplification of heritage.

At the same time, Cai Shen frequently sees himself linked to a specific image: a bag overflowing with sparkling pieces. This symbol evokes flawless financial prosperity. During Chinese New Year festivities, this attribute takes on its full meaning to invite the positive vibrations associated with crowds.

These two major elements are deeply rooted in popular belief and play a determining role in ritual practices aimed at attracting fortune and abundance during major traditional occasions.

A legend about Cai Shen

A legend about Cai Shen

Zhao Gongming's story is imbued with unfailing generosity. In the times in which he lived, his reputation as a philanthropist was well known. He had an admirable habit: helping the less fortunate with significant financial support.

A notable episode occurred when he was confronted by greedy bandits. Hiding a considerable amount of money in his clothes to help someone, he was attacked by these voracious thieves.

However, every attempt to steal the hidden treasure ended in dismal failure. To their surprise, their hands seemed to burn as soon as they touched Zhao Gongming's clothes. This inexplicable phenomenon terrified them deeply.

In their fear and confusion, they begged Zhao Gongming for forgiveness. They even made a solemn promise to abandon their past criminal lives.

This story perfectly illustrates why Cai Shen is so respected: as a patron deity who values ​​generosity and protects honestly acquired wealth.

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The symbolic role of Cai Shen

Cai Shen, an emblematic figure of Chinese culture, is recognized for his ability to attract abundance and financial prosperity. He is revered not only for his economic attributes but also as the protector of fair business transactions.

Business professionals and entrepreneurs regularly seek its help in their activities. They thus seek to benefit from its positive influence on their professional success.

Furthermore, Cai Shen also promotes essential moral values ​​such as sharing, integrity and self-disinterest.

Indeed, it symbolizes the fundamental idea of ​​redistributing wealth while encouraging everyone to adopt virtuous behavior guided by these principles.

It therefore represents a moral as well as an economic ideal in the hearts of the Chinese: a rich life is not only defined by material possessions but also by a virtuous existence based on these noble values.

Temples and shrines dedicated to Cai Shen

Temples and shrines dedicated to Cai Shen

China is full of temples and shrines dedicated to Cai Shen. These sacred spaces are embellished by illustrations of the god of abundance, surrounded by various offerings. Fresh fruit, bright flowers or gold paper imitating currency adorn these places.

The faithful flock in numbers to benefit from the financial graces of this divinity. Their fervor is particularly palpable during the annual Chinese New Year celebrations. During this festive event, it is not uncommon for families to burn imitation gold bars as an offering.

Cai Shen occupies a prominent place in the Taoist pantheon thanks to his legendary ability to bring wealth and material prosperity. It also plays a symbolic role as a protector of fair trade and a moral guide advocating honesty and generosity.

In Chinese culture, Cai Shen is therefore much more than a simple deity: it is a powerful symbol that inspires the faithful throughout the year - with particular intensity during the Chinese New Year.

author picture(Cyril Gendarme)

Discover the author: Cyril Gendarme

Cyril Gendarme is a writer whose website "The Lucky Door" ("La Porte Du Bonheur" in French, his native language) has become a reference in the field of esotericism. Born in Belgium, Cyril has been attracted to the mysteries of the world since he was a child. When his interest in occultism was awakened, a particular subject caught his attention: lucky charms.

After years of study and in-depth research on esoteric traditions from around the world, Cyril decided to share his knowledge with the public through the internet. In 2019, he launched "The Lucky Door," a website dedicated to exploring lucky charms, magical symbols, and esoteric arts.

The Lucky Door is much more than just a showcase for those curious about magic, divination, or tradition. It is the result of Cyril's passion for researching and understanding the mysteries of the universe. Every piece of information available on the site testifies to his dedication to sharing his knowledge of the most hidden symbols and their unique powers.

In addition to his online work, Cyril regularly organizes workshops and conferences in different countries. His presence on social media is also highly appreciated, where he offers personalized advice and happily answers questions from his community.