Huffman Upchurch posted an update 4 months ago
Pai Cow is a small, yellow cow-like cow that lives in the mountains of central China. Her name comes from the Chinese term,"Pai significance low; chi meaning high". She’s said to be the ancestor of the Mongolia Men’s Uul, considered by some historians to be the first herd animal domesticated. The Pai Cow is considered sacred in the culture of Szechwan province in China. A special festival celebrating the olden days of the Pai tribe is celebrated in the spring once the cow is honored with offerings, dances and songs.
One story states that Pai dwelt with a herd of reindeer in the north of Mongolia. 1 day, the reindeer started to go missing and Pai started to look for them. She eventually found one in a deep crevice. Another reindeer came to see her and they ran off together. This was to be their final meeting.
Another version of the origin story claims that Pai cowherds were tending reindeer and they cared for them until one night they lost their way. They came at the edge of a lake where a hippo had washed up. Hearing the cries of the frightened hippo, Pai jumped into the water to save her cows but forgot her knife.
The hippo bit into the Cow’s flesh and pulled it as she cowered nearby. The frightened hippo bit its leg off so it could no longer walk and another reindeer tried to help the wounded hippo up but they also became frightened. Looking to save the cows, Pai paddled towards them fell prey to the hippo’s strong bite. Another reindeer ran away while the Cow stumbled backwards.
No one knows for sure how Pai was. One account says that she was the daughter of the Emperor Kangxi and the mother of the Emperor Mingyao. Some historians feel that Pai was the daughter of Khaeko who married a Kung Lung and afterwards came to be called Kema. Still others say that Pai was the daughter of an honoured Buddha and the name is taken from the Brahma temple in which Buddha attained Nirvana.
Pai had two brothers, Siau and Rhea. Siau became the first wife of Kema while Rhea was married to Tsoo who was the son of Nanda. The family lived in the Southern area of Manchuria, where there were many lakes and rivers. There are lots of monuments in the region which give some idea concerning the lifestyle they practiced.
When I was researching my book The Gods of Amethyst, I found Pai’s tomb in the temple near the Xingjian Pass. The tomb dates back to around 200 BC and included the bones of Pai’s two-year old son. It is believed that the child was adopted or died of asphyxiation. No toys or articles were found in the tomb. It is possible that this was the first Chinese Buddhist temple.
Legend has it that Pai had ten children but none survived to adulthood. She took her last child with her on a trip to the celestial abode but before she left him, she spread a white silk flower before her son begging him to eat it. This was the origin of this legend concerning the white silk blossom. I’ve discovered that Pai cow is associated with the moon goddess because the moon reflects feminine power in Chinese belief.
Click to find out more Pai Cow coins are extremely popular today. They are very pleasing to the eye given their distinctive round shape. Some have been made with an oblong shaped oblong coin in the center and then encircling it’s smaller circular motifs of animals, plants or geometric figures. These coins are usually easy to comprehend given their distinctive look.
They are usually encrusted with diamonds given its association with the moon goddess. A popular variety is the"Three Treasures" given to the child on his first birthday. The motifs surrounding the cow would be the ears of a ram, a rainbow, a pot and a lampshade. The cow itself is adorned with little stars encircling its forehead.
Today the Pai Cow is still widely used by Chinese people especially during festive occasions like New Year’s Day and Holidays. The intriguing history of this cow may be transferred from generation to generation. They’re also used by some Chinatown restaurants. They’re considered somewhat of a status symbol for the educated members of Chinese society.