The Divine Celestial Immortal Hú Xiù Huá「胡秀華仙師」

The divine Celestial Immortal Hú Xiù Huá「胡秀華仙師」is an eminent figure of Taoism. Several Máo Shān sects, including Bái Lián Zhēn Xīn Jiào「白蓮真心教」, Qīng Zhú Jiào「青竹教」and Tiě Tóu Tài Zǐ Jiào「鐵頭太子教」honour him as their Founder. Taiwan’s Tiān Hé Mén「天和門」also honour him as one of their Grand Masters. The Celestial Immortal Hú Xiù Huá Festival「胡秀華仙師寶誕」falls on the 23rd day of the 8th month of the lunar calendar.

The Máo Shān Grand Master, the divine Celestial Immortal Hú Xiù Huá「茅山法主胡秀華仙師」lived in the Ming Dynasty (明朝). Usually adorned in gray-white robes, he was partial to smoking tobacco. He was highly skilled in martial arts and was also an imperial scholar. Especially well versed in medicine and an expert of the divine powers of the Máo Shān arts, he was trained in all of the Five Arts or wǔ shù「五術」, of ancient China.

It is said that Celestial Immortal Hú Xiù Huá「胡秀華仙師」was an orphan. As a child, he led a life of hardship. One fateful day, while walking by the river, a giant carp emerged and said, "The powers of Máo Shān are infinite, make haste and follow me to learn divine powers" -「茅山有法顯不盡,學法快快跟我來」. The Grand Master jumped into the mouth of the giant carp and was brought to a cave where a Taoist priest was waiting. He was brought back to the Máo Mountain「茅山」as a disciple and was trained in the Tao and in the divine powers of Máo Shān「茅山道法」.

Upon completing his training, the Grand Master travelled the lands. In charity, he cured the ill, warded off evil and brought peace and blessings to all in his path. He covered all of China in his travels and had countless disciples and followers. Eventually, he attained the level of Máo Shān Grand Master「茅山法主」.

Legend depicts that the Grand Master had journeyed to South East Asia. It is here that he encountered an evil sorcerer, a Lord of the dark arts of jiàng tóu (降頭), who unleashed his harmful powers upon the people of the land. The Grand Master battled with this evil sorcerer for days. On the forty ninth day, the Grand Master lost grasp of his qián kūn dài「乾坤袋」- a talisman of great divine powers. The evil sorcerer attempted to seize this opportunity to take the upper hand, when a white crane emerged from the sky, picked up the Grand Master’s qián kūn dài「乾坤袋」and returned it. With his magical talisman back at hand, the Grand Master defeated the evil sorcerer.

With this defeat, the dark arts of jiàng tóu (降頭) are confined to South East Asia, eternally restrained, never to cross over the seas and the oceans. In gratitude of the divine assistance bestowed by the carp and the crane, aiding the Grand Master in his moment of need, he in return laid the decree forbidding his disciples and followers to ever harm a carp or a crane.

News of the Grand Master’s victory travelled true and far and his disciples and followers grew evermore in numbers and strength. Thus Bái Lián Zhēn Xīn Jiào「白蓮真心教」or The White Lotus Sect of the True Heart was born.