Miao Shan

Chinese - A princess. The original name of Kuan Yin. Daughter of Miao Chuang. Sister of Miao Ch'eng and Miao Yen. She refused to marry and entered a convent where she was helped in her arduous manual work by a demon, a tiger and the birds. When her father set fire to the convent, she put the fire out with a miracle and, when he ordered her execution, the sword broke as it touched her neck. After meditating for nine years on an island, she became a bodhisattva. Her father was made blind for his sins. She told him that he would regain his sight if he were to swallow the eyeballs of one of his children and, when none of his children was prepared to make the necessary sacrifice, she plucked out her own eyes and cut off her hands and sent them to her father. Her own eyes and hands were miraculously restored. Another version says that she made an eye which her father swallowed to restore his sight. Also known as Miao Shan, Kuan Yin, Kuan Yin, Goddess of the Southern Sea, Kuan-shih-yin, Sung-tzu Kuan-yin, Buddhist Avalokiteshvara, Hindu Vishnu, Japanese K(w)annon, Sanskrit Padmapani, Taoist Tou Mu or Tara.

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