A Galaxy of Immortal Women-The Yin Side of Chinese Civilization by Brian Griffith is an informative book on the plethora of immortal women who made contributions to virtually every area of Chinese life over the centuries. Griffith documents goddess figures from pre-historic times, famous heroines of resistance movements, enlightened immortals, spiritual heroins and superwomen of the people.
Griffith presents famous women deity. For example, the greatest deity in China is Kuan Yin who is the goddess of universal compassion. Chen Jinggu lead a band of sworn sisters who were known as the fighting shamanesses. Lo Shen is a mythical spirit of nature. Feng Bo Bo represents the primordial forces of winds and storms. Shin Mu is the holy mother of perfect intelligence.
Confucious spoke of a Golden Age where the land would be green with hillside forests, languid ponds and sparkling fresh beaches. The author explains Confucian legends; whereby, the primordial father-figures exuded virtues like compassion and generosity. The Confucianists presented idealized pictures of their ancestors. Examples of famous Buddhist and Daoist Masters include Mazu, Chen Jinggu, Yeshe Tsogyal, Xie Xiran and Zu Shu.
Ma Tsu is a famous goddess who saved men at sea. She saved people in her dreams and was a boat woman on the coast of Fujian. Later, great temples were erected to Ma Tsu or Mazu. Today, she is worshipped by over a hundred million people on the southern coasts of China and Taiwan.
In popular folklore, the Double Seven Festival is a feast day for women according to Griffith. The celebration commemorates the divine daughter of the stove god who came to the earth out of love for Krishna. Other spiritual heroes discussed by Griffith include Sun Buer, Cao Wenyi, Mulan, Miaoshan, Dagmema, Machiq Lapdron and Chokyidronme.
The author documents numerous goddess figures found in pre-historic villages like mythical creator goddesses. These goddesses included Jun Di, Yao Chi Jinmu, The Jade Maiden of Profound Wonder and others. Classic resistance figures are referred to in the book. These figures include Ti Ying, Qi Gu, Yu Jiang (the hairy lady of the forest) and Yaoji. Famous immortals include Guanyin, Zheng Wei and He Xiangu.
A Galaxy of Immortal Women-The Yin Side of Chinese Civilization by Brian Griffith is a considerable volume on the history of famous Chinese women over the centuries from pre-historic times to more current history. The research effort undertaken in this history was considerable. The author provides an extensive glossary of goddesses and divine personas; such as, Ba who is the goddess of drought. Griffith utilizes well known sources like The Cambridge Companion To Modern Chinese Culture, The Restoration of the Han Dynasty, One Hundred Celebrated Chinese Women, Confucianism and Christianity and many more.