(as used in expressions)
Ho shen
Shen hsi
Shen yang
Shen Yanbing
Shen Dehong

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▪ Chinese religion

      (Chinese: “spirit”), in indigenous Chinese religion, a beneficent spirit of the dead; the term is also applied to deified mortals and gods. Shen are associated with the yang (bright, active) aspect of the cosmos, and with the higher, spiritual component of the human soul. After a person's death, the soul becomes either of two spirits: the shen, which ascends to the spirit world, or the kuei (q.v.), a dark, passive yin spirit, which remains within the grave. The successful ascent of the shen depends on adequate ritual offerings from the surviving family, without which it becomes dissatisfied and eventually seeks revenge on the human world in the form of the malevolent kuei, or ghost.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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