Butterflies are a common symbol in many cultures around the world. In China, the butterfly has a special place in mythology and symbolism, representing transformation, love, and joy. For centuries, Chinese artists, poets, and writers have incorporated butterfly imagery in their works, making it an integral part of Chinese culture.
what are butterfly
The order Lepidoptera includes not only butterflies but also moths. Their colourful, overlapping scaled wings are one of their most recognisable features. The unique patterns and colours seen in each species are the result of the scales’ ability to reflect light in various ways.
Throughout their lives, butterflies go through some incredible changes. Little eggs that eventually develop into caterpillars. Caterpillars are the butterfly’s larval stage, and they devour everything in their path. The majority of their time is devoted to consuming food and expanding their bodies through a series of skin moults.
When the caterpillar has grown to its full size, it begins the process of metamorphosis. A cocoon is spun by the caterpillar as it begins its metamorphosis into a pupa. The caterpillar’s body disassembles and rebuilds itself inside the cocoon so that it can emerge as a butterfly.
After completion of metamorphosis, the adult butterfly emerges from the cocoon, its wings still damp and crumpled. The butterfly’s wings dry and swell over the course of a few hours, allowing it to take flight.
Butterflies can be found in a wide variety of environments, from tropical forests to deserts and even cities. In the process of pollination, they aid in the fertilisation of flowers and other plants. Some species are used as barometers of ecosystem vitality because they are particularly sensitive to alterations in their natural environment.
what kinds butterfly live in china
China is home to a diverse range of butterfly species, with over 1,500 different species recorded within its borders. Here are a few examples of the butterflies found in China:
Chinese Peacock (Papilio bianor): This is one of the largest butterfly species found in China, with a wingspan of up to 15cm. It is known for its striking blue and green coloration and is found in forests and other wooded habitats throughout China.
Common Jezebel (Delias eucharis): This is a common butterfly species found in many parts of China, including mountainous regions and forests. It has distinctive black and white markings on its wings, with hints of yellow and orange.
Blue Pansy (Junonia orithya): This is a small butterfly species found in a variety of habitats throughout China, including gardens and parks. It has distinctive blue and black markings on its wings, with a series of small eyespots.
Chinese Windmill (Byasa impediens): This is a large and striking butterfly species found in forested areas in southern China. It has black and white markings on its wings, with a distinctive circular pattern resembling a windmill.
Chinese Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio xuthus): This is a large and beautiful butterfly species found in many parts of China, including forests, mountains, and urban areas. It has yellow and black markings on its wings, with a series of blue and orange spots.
These are just a few examples of the many butterfly species found in China. Many of these species are considered to be important indicators of environmental health and are being studied by scientists and conservationists to better understand their ecology and conservation needs.
what does butterfly mean in Chinese culture
Butterflies have a rich and complex symbolism in Chinese culture, representing different things depending on the context and the historical period.
There has been a legend of “Liang Zhu turning into butterflies” since ancient times, and butterflies have long been used to symbolize beautiful and genuine love stories of life and death.
“Colorful butterflies flying in pairs” is often used as a decoration for weddings, expressing the wish for the bride and groom to grow old together.
The character for “butterfly” (蝴) has the same pronunciation as the character for “luck” (福), and is also believed to symbolize good fortune and auspiciousness.
The emergence of butterflies from their cocoons, transforming from ugliness to beauty, is a symbol of freedom and a representation of success. These are some of the most common meanings and symbols associated with butterflies.
In traditional Chinese culture, butterflies were often associated with love, romance, and joy. They were seen as symbols of transformation, as the metamorphosis of the caterpillar into a butterfly was viewed as a metaphor for personal growth and spiritual transformation.
In some Chinese traditions, butterflies were also believed to carry the souls of the dead, serving as messengers between the earthly realm and the afterlife. This belief gave rise to the custom of releasing butterflies at funerals, as a way of helping the departed soul on its journey.
In recent years, the symbolism of butterflies in Chinese culture has taken on new meanings, as the insect has become a popular symbol of social and political change. The famous “Butterfly Lovers” story, a Chinese folktale about two star-crossed lovers who are transformed into butterflies, has been reinterpreted as a metaphor for the struggle for individual freedom and the pursuit of social justice.
In summary, the symbolism of butterflies in Chinese culture is complex and multifaceted, encompassing themes of love, transformation, and the transience of life. The insect continues to inspire artists, writers, and thinkers in China and around the world, serving as a powerful symbol of hope, change, and renewal.
are butterflies lucky in china?
Yes, butterflies are generally considered lucky in Chinese culture, particularly when they appear in unexpected or unusual situations.
One reason for this belief is that butterflies are seen as symbols of transformation and personal growth. The metamorphosis from a caterpillar to a butterfly is viewed as a miraculous and transformative process, and the appearance of a butterfly is often seen as a sign of positive change and personal growth.
In addition, butterflies are associated with love and romance, and are often seen as auspicious symbols for couples and newlyweds. In Chinese folklore, the butterfly is often depicted as a symbol of conjugal bliss and marital harmony.
However, it’s important to note that the cultural significance of butterflies can vary depending on the context and the individual beliefs of the people involved. Some may view butterflies as mere insects with no special meaning, while others may attach a great deal of significance to their appearance. Ultimately, the symbolism of butterflies in China, as in any culture, is shaped by a wide range of factors, including history, tradition, and personal belief.
butterfly in yin and yang
According to classical Chinese thought, the universe and all of life are governed by yin and yang, two opposing but interdependent forces. Energy is either yang (masculine, active, and positive) or yin (feminine, passive, and negative).
Because of its dramatic metamorphosis from a clumsy caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly, the butterfly has been interpreted as a symbol of the complementary forces of yin and yang. A butterfly represents yang energy, the active and fully realised expression of our latent potential, while a caterpillar represents yin energy, the passive and hidden potential within us.
As its delicate wings and graceful movements represent the harmonious flow of yin and yang, the butterfly is also seen as a symbol of balance between the two. In this way, the butterfly can be seen as a metaphor for the importance of cultivating inner harmony by balancing our yin and yang energies.
The butterfly is a symbol of unity and balance in Chinese art, often appearing alongside other yin and yang symbols like the dragon and phoenix. Light and dark, yin and yang, must coexist in order to achieve true harmony and balance in life, and the butterfly’s delicate beauty and transformative power are potent reminders of this universal truth.
butterfly in embroidery
The butterfly embroidery art form has deep historical and cultural roots in China. It’s a significant classical art form that has been around since the Ming dynasty (1368-1644). Silk threads are used to create detailed, multicoloured butterfly designs that are then embroidered onto fabrics like silk, satin, and cotton.
As a symbol of grace, rebirth, and change, the butterfly is frequently used in Chinese embroidery. Embroidering a butterfly is a delicate and time-consuming process due to the complexity of the realistic details required, such as the veins on the wings and the texture of the body.
Butterfly embroidery holds profound symbolic meaning in Chinese culture in addition to its aesthetic value. The butterfly’s metamorphosis from a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly is symbolic of change and development. Thus, the butterfly can be seen as a symbol of the importance of accepting change and the regenerative power of nature.
Traditional Chinese garments like the cheongsam and qipao, as well as household items like tablecloths and wall hangings, are frequently embroidered with butterflies. It’s also a common decorative element at events like weddings and festivals.
Butterfly embroidery is still highly regarded in modern China, where it is admired for its aesthetic value, skillful execution, and symbolic significance. Its classic beauty and enduring appeal never fail to amaze and enthral viewers from all walks of life.
Butterfly in Chinese painting
Butterflies have been a popular subject in Chinese painting for centuries, and they are often used to represent beauty, grace, and transformation. In traditional Chinese art, butterflies are painted in a variety of styles and mediums, including ink, watercolor, and silk embroidery.
In Chinese painting, butterflies are often depicted in naturalistic settings, such as gardens, forests, and mountains. They are also often painted in pairs, symbolizing the idea of love and companionship.
Butterflies in Chinese painting also have deep symbolic meaning. They are associated with the Daoist concept of transformation and the Buddhist idea of reincarnation, as they undergo a metamorphosis from a lowly caterpillar to a beautiful butterfly. In this way, the butterfly serves as a reminder of the impermanence of life and the transformative power of nature.
Butterfly painting is also closely associated with the art of calligraphy in China, as many artists incorporate calligraphic elements into their butterfly paintings, such as inscriptions or poems. This adds an extra layer of meaning to the painting, and emphasizes the connection between nature and human expression.
Overall, butterfly painting is an important and beloved part of Chinese art and culture. It continues to inspire and captivate people around the world with its beauty, elegance, and deep symbolism.
Butterfly in cutting paper
“Paper cutting is like the soul of a window, injecting beautiful elements into the lonely and single window, making it a bright color in life. Butterfly paper cutting in traditional Chinese culture often symbolizes good luck and blessings, so people love to use butterfly patterns in paper cutting creations.
In Chinese culture, butterflies are a symbol of having many children and a long life. This is mainly because the Chinese character for “butterfly” sounds the same as the character for “longevity” and “descendants prosper”. Therefore, paper cutting with butterfly designs is a suitable gift for elderly people.
Creating a butterfly by cutting paper is a common art and craft activity. Here are some general steps to follow:
Get a sheet of paper: Start with a square piece of paper. You can use any type of paper, but thin, lightweight paper is easier to cut.
Fold the paper: Fold the paper in half diagonally, making a triangle. Crease the fold well, and then unfold the paper.
Fold the paper again: Fold the paper in half diagonally the other way, making a smaller triangle. Crease the fold well, and then unfold the paper again.
Fold the paper once more: Fold the paper in half vertically, making a rectangle. Crease the fold well, and then unfold the paper once more.
Cut along the folds: Cut along the creases that you have made. Start cutting from the folded edge and stop about an inch or two away from the open edge.
Cut a curve: Cut a curve along the top of the rectangle shape, this will be the butterfly’s body.
Unfold the paper: Carefully unfold the paper, revealing your butterfly shape.
Add details: If desired, you can add details such as antennae, eyes or color to your butterfly by drawing or painting them onto the paper.
And that’s it! You should now have a beautiful paper butterfly.
butterfly in Chinese porcelain
Butterfly motifs are a popular subject in Chinese porcelain art, and they have been used for centuries to create beautiful and intricate designs. The butterfly is often seen as a symbol of beauty, elegance, and transformation, and it is a common theme in Chinese art and culture.
In Chinese porcelain, butterfly motifs are often depicted in a realistic and detailed manner, with careful attention given to the shape, color, and texture of the butterfly’s wings. The porcelain may also be decorated with other elements such as flowers, leaves, and insects to create a harmonious and balanced composition.
Butterfly designs may be found on a variety of porcelain objects, such as plates, bowls, vases, and figurines. They may be painted in a variety of colors, including blue, green, pink, and yellow, and may be highlighted with gold or silver accents.
Some examples of famous Chinese porcelain with butterfly motifs include the “Famille Rose” and “Famille Verte” porcelain styles, which were popular during the Qing Dynasty. These styles feature vibrant colors and intricate designs, with butterflies often depicted in flight or perched on a flower or leaf.
Overall, butterfly motifs in Chinese porcelain are a beautiful and meaningful way to incorporate a symbol of transformation, beauty, and joy into decorative art.
butterfly in Chinese clothing
Butterflies are a common design element in Chinese clothing, often serving to highlight the wearer’s femininity and refinement. The butterfly is a popular motif in traditional Chinese art and fashion because of its association with grace, beauty, and metamorphosis.
Dresses, blouses, and scarves are just some of the many Chinese garments that feature butterfly patterns. They can be embroidered or printed, and they can be used alone or in combination with other motifs, such as flowers or birds.
The qipao and cheongsam, traditional Chinese dresses with high collars and slit skirts, often feature butterfly motifs. The qipao is typically made of silk or satin and decorated with elaborate embroidery or beading; common embellishments include fluttering butterflies.
Casual and streetwear from contemporary China often feature butterfly patterns. A small butterfly print or patch, for instance, can elevate even the most basic t-shirt to a new level of beauty and whimsy.
The butterfly is a common and meaningful motif in both traditional and contemporary Chinese clothing, representing grace, beauty, and transformation and lending a touch of elegance and beauty to the designs.
butterfly in Chinese paper kite
Chinese paper kites often feature butterflies as a decorative element. Because of the butterfly’s graceful flight and beautiful patterns, it is frequently depicted in Chinese artwork and culture.
In Chinese culture, the butterfly is a symbol of transformation and new beginnings, as well as good fortune. Including butterfly motifs in paper kites is thought to imbue the kite with these positive attributes, turning it into a lucky charm and a thing of beauty.
Depending on the design and function of the kite, butterflies featured on Chinese paper kites can come in a wide range of sizes, shapes, and colours. Kites can range from those with a single large butterfly design to those with dozens of smaller butterflies dotted all over the kite. Painting, printing, and applique are just some of the methods that can be used to make the patterns.
Butterfly paper kites are beautiful, but they also serve a functional purpose. Kites can be flown for fun at events like kite festivals or used as decorations at other types of celebrations. In some religions, kites are used as an offering or prayer, with the kite representing the emancipation of the spirit.
As a whole, the incorporation of butterfly motifs into Chinese paper kites is a way to further elevate these graceful insects to the status of cultural icons in China, where they rightfully belong.
butterfly in Chinese medicine
In TCM, butterflies are credited with multiple healing abilities and can be used to treat a wide range of illnesses.
The medicinal value of butterflies is one of their primary applications in traditional Chinese medicine. Certain butterfly species, especially those that feed on certain medicinal herbs, are held in high regard by the Chinese for their potential as a source of curative compounds.
Asthma, bronchitis, and coughs are just some of the conditions that may benefit from the use of medicinal insects like the Chinese medicinal butterfly. It is possible to create a medicinal formula by drying and powdering butterfly wings and combining them with other herbs.
Butterflies are used in acupuncture and other forms of traditional Chinese medicine in addition to their use in herbal remedies. Body points used in acupuncture are often given butterfly names as a metaphor for the soft and non-invasive nature of the practise.
The Chinese have long believed in the restorative power of nature and the innate unity of all living things, and the use of butterflies in traditional medicine is a manifestation of this philosophy. Despite the lack of scientific evidence for their efficacy, butterflies continue to play a significant cultural and medicinal role in China.
what do butterflies symbolize in feng shui
In feng shui, butterflies represent change, development, and elegance. The butterfly’s metamorphosis from caterpillar to beautiful winged creature is a potent symbol of change and evolution.
The butterfly is a symbol of transformation and growth in feng shui, and is often used to bring about favourable shifts in one’s professional and personal lives. The metamorphosis of a butterfly is symbolic of the process of developing one’s full potential.
In feng shui, the butterfly is also associated with the air element, which stands for openness, flow, and transformation. Having butterfly photos or paintings around the house or office can make people feel more energetic and upbeat.
In addition, the sight of a butterfly is said to induce feelings of calm and serenity by soothing the mind and heart. That’s why it’s so fitting for the bedroom or the meditation room, or any other space where peace and quiet are sought after.
As a powerful symbol of growth, transformation, and positive change, the butterfly is widely used in feng shui. Bringing the butterfly’s ethereal beauty and soothing energy into your home or office can do wonders for your mood and outlook.
brown butterfly meaning feng shui
Brown is linked to the earth element in feng shui, which is associated with stability, grounding, and nurturing. The colour brown is also connected to feelings of safety, security, and dependability. A brown butterfly’s feng shui meaning and symbolism may vary depending on the surrounding circumstances.
In feng shui, butterflies represent the potential for change, development, and aesthetic appeal. They are thought to bring good fortune and symbolise opportunities for advancement in one’s professional and personal lives.
Brown butterflies, in feng shui, can represent natural beauty and steadfastness. It may also be a call for attention to one’s own needs, whether physical or emotional, and a reminder to practise self-care.
In feng shui, the autumn season is associated with harvest and abundance, and brown butterflies may represent this time of year. This could mean that good things are happening and that growth is occurring, or that good times are here.
Brown butterflies have a positive connotation in feng shui, representing natural beauty, stability, and growth depending on the situation in which they are spotted.
black butterfly meaning feng shui
In feng shui, the color black is associated with the water element, which represents flow, depth, and mystery. Black can also symbolize protection, strength, and transformation. When it comes to butterflies, the specific meaning and symbolism of a black butterfly in feng shui can depend on the context in which it appears.
Generally speaking, butterflies in feng shui are seen as symbols of transformation, growth, and beauty. They are believed to bring positive energy and represent positive changes in life, particularly in the areas of career, relationships, and personal growth.
A black butterfly in feng shui may be seen as a symbol of deep transformation, rebirth, and renewal. It may also represent a need for protection and strength during times of change or transition. In some cultures, black butterflies are believed to be messengers from the spirit world or symbols of good luck and fortune.
However, in some feng shui traditions, the color black is also associated with negativity or danger. In this context, a black butterfly may represent a warning or a need to be cautious and protect oneself from negative influences or situations.
Overall, the meaning of a black butterfly in feng shui may vary depending on the specific context in which it appears, but it can generally be seen as a powerful symbol of transformation, protection, and renewal.
butterfly meaning in buddhism
In Buddhism, the butterfly is a symbol of transformation and metamorphosis, just as a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly. The butterfly’s life cycle is often used as a metaphor for the spiritual journey, with the stages of the caterpillar, chrysalis, and butterfly representing different phases of personal growth and enlightenment.
In some Buddhist traditions, the butterfly is also seen as a symbol of impermanence and the transient nature of existence. The butterfly’s short life span reminds us that all things are fleeting and subject to change, and encourages us to appreciate and make the most of every moment.
Additionally, in some cultures influenced by Buddhism, such as in Thailand and Cambodia, the image of the butterfly is often used in religious art and architecture, representing spiritual transformation and transcendence.
Overall, in Buddhism, the butterfly represents the potential for personal growth, transformation, and enlightenment, as well as the reminder of the impermanent nature of all things.
butterfly in confucianism meaning
In Confucianism, the butterfly is seen as a symbol of transformation and metamorphosis, just as a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly. This transformation represents personal growth and the pursuit of moral perfection through self-cultivation and education.
Confucianism emphasizes the importance of self-improvement and the cultivation of moral character through education, self-reflection, and practice. The butterfly’s transformation from a crawling caterpillar to a flying butterfly represents the potential for personal growth and transformation through learning and self-cultivation.
Furthermore, the butterfly is often associated with the concept of “li” in Confucianism, which refers to proper behavior and etiquette. Just as a butterfly delicately and gracefully moves from flower to flower, adhering to certain patterns and behaviors, Confucianism emphasizes the importance of proper behavior and social etiquette in daily life.
Overall, in Confucianism, the butterfly represents the potential for personal growth and transformation through education and self-cultivation, as well as the importance of proper behavior and etiquette in daily life.
butterfly in Taoism
In Taoism, the butterfly represents change and rebirth, just as its caterpillar predecessor does. This metamorphosis stands as a symbol for the cyclical nature of the universe and the cycle of life and death.
Living in accordance with the Tao, or the natural order of things, is highly valued in Taoism. The butterfly’s effortless dance with the wind and its environment is a metaphor for the Taoist ideal of “wu-wei,” or non-action, in which one acts without exerting effort or fighting against the universe’s natural flow.
The butterfly also represents immortality and the afterlife in some Taoist traditions. The metamorphosis of a butterfly from a crawling caterpillar to a free-flying butterfly symbolises the possibility of spiritual immortality and the idea of transformation and transcendence.
In sum, the butterfly in Taoism symbolises the recurrence of birth and death, the value of a naturalistic lifestyle, and the possibility of reaching a higher spiritual plane.
butterfly love flower
The phrase “butterfly love flower” refers to the natural relationship between butterflies and flowers. Butterflies are attracted to flowers for their nectar, which is a rich source of food and energy for them. In turn, butterflies play an important role in pollinating flowers, helping them to reproduce and continue to grow.
In Chinese culture, the phrase “butterfly love flower” is often used to describe a romantic relationship, with the butterfly representing the lover and the flower representing the beloved. This metaphor emphasizes the mutual attraction and interdependence between two individuals in a loving relationship, just as butterflies and flowers rely on each other for survival.
The phrase can also be interpreted more broadly as a symbol of the beauty and harmony of nature, with the butterfly and flower representing the interconnectedness of all living things and the importance of maintaining balance and respect for the natural world.
“Die Lian Hua” is a famous Chinese poetic genre, originally a Tang Dynasty court song, and later adapted as a poetic form. It was originally called “Que Ta Zhi,” and also known as “Golden Thread,” “Rolling Pearl Screen,” “Phoenix Perching on a Wutong Tree,” “Moon Rising over Southern Shore,” “Fine Rain Blowing Over Ponds,” “Basket of Gold,” “Fish and Water Celebrating Together,” “Transformed to Die Lian Hua,” etc.
The definitive form of “Die Lian Hua” is based on the work “Six Qu Luogan Wei Bi Shu” by Feng Yansi of the Southern Tang Dynasty (also known as a poem by Yan Shu), which is a double-sixty character poem with five lines of four oblique tones in each half, with a different rhyme for each of the ten lines. There are also two variants.
Representative works include “Yao Ye Ting Gao Xian Xin Bu” by Li Yu, “Zhu Yi Wei Lou Feng Xi Xi” by Liu Yong, and “Chun Jing” by Su Shi.
butterflies in Chinese mythology
Butterflies hold a significant place in Chinese mythology and culture, representing transformation, love, and beauty. Here are a few examples:
Butterfly Lovers: The story of Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai, also known as the Butterfly Lovers, is a popular folktale in Chinese culture. The two lovers are said to have turned into butterflies upon their tragic deaths, which is often seen as a symbol of their eternal love.
Immortal Butterflies: In Chinese mythology, butterflies are also associated with immortality. The Taoist immortals are often depicted with butterfly wings, and it is believed that butterflies carry the souls of the dead to the afterlife.
Transformation: Butterflies in Chinese mythology represent transformation and metamorphosis. In the story of Zhuang Zhou’s dream of the butterfly, the butterfly is a symbol of the ever-changing nature of reality and the illusory nature of existence.
Love and Beauty: Butterflies are also associated with love and beauty in Chinese culture. They are often used as symbols of love in poetry and literature, and they are a common motif in Chinese art and design.
Zhuang Zhou’s dream of butterfly
Zhuang Zhou’s Dream of the Butterfly is a well-known story from Chinese philosophy and literature, attributed to the philosopher Zhuang Zhou (also known as Zhuangzi) who lived during the Warring States period (475-221 BCE).
The story goes that one night, Zhuang Zhou dreamed that he was a butterfly, happily flitting about and enjoying its freedom. But upon waking up, he was unsure whether he was really Zhuang Zhou who had just dreamed of being a butterfly, or whether he was actually a butterfly who was now dreaming of being Zhuang Zhou. The story is often interpreted as a commentary on the nature of reality and the illusory nature of our perceptions and experiences.
The story of “Zhuang Zhou’s Dream of Butterfly” comes from the book “Zhuangzi’s Qi Wu Lun” and goes as follows: During the Warring States period, the representative figure of Taoism was Zhuang Zhou (also known as Zhuangzi). One day at noon, Zhuang Zhou had a strange dream while taking a nap. In the dream, he turned into a colorful butterfly, flying around among the flowers, feeling extremely happy. As a butterfly, Zhuang Zhou flew unconsciously among a group of colorful butterflies, unable to tell which one was male or female. Suddenly, a strong gust of wind blew, and the beautiful dream came to an abrupt end.
Zhuang Zhou woke up from the dream, realizing that he was still lying in bed and was not a butterfly, but himself. However, after a while, he began to doubt this conclusion and wondered whether he was actually a butterfly dreaming of being Zhuang Zhou. He continued to question his reality, wondering whether he was Zhuang Zhou dreaming of being a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming of being Zhuang Zhou. In the end, he was unable to determine which was the truth, leaving him confused about his true identity.
In Taoist philosophy, the story is often seen as an example of the “uncarved block” (Pu), which refers to the concept of a state of pure potentiality and simplicity, unspoiled by social conditioning and conceptual thinking. The butterfly represents this uncarved block, a state of pure freedom and spontaneity. Through the story, Zhuang Zhou invites us to question our own sense of identity and the way we perceive the world around us, encouraging us to seek a deeper understanding of reality beyond our limited, ego-driven perspectives.
Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai
During the Eastern Jin dynasty, there was a girl named Zhu Yingtai in Shangyu County of Kuaiji Commandery (now Shangyu District, Shaoxing City, Zhejiang Province, China), who loved reading and was eager to study. However, women were not allowed to pursue education in public, so she disguised herself as a man and went to Kuaiji Commandery to study. On the way, she met a scholar named Liang Shanbo from Moxie County (now Haishu District, Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province, China), and the two became close friends. Liang Shanbo never suspected that Zhu Yingtai was a woman. After three years of studying together, Zhu Yingtai returned home to Shangyu and Liang Shanbo visited her, only to discover that his good friend was actually a woman. Liang wanted to propose to Zhu Yingtai, but she was already betrothed to Ma Wencai, the son of the magistrate of Moxie County. Later, Liang Shanbo became the county magistrate of Moxie, but he fell ill with sorrow and died. Before his death, he requested to be buried at the Jiu Long Xu of Moxie County. On the day of Zhu Yingtai’s wedding, a sudden strong wind prevented the wedding procession from proceeding. Zhu Yingtai got out of the carriage and went to pay her respects to Liang Shanbo’s tomb. Suddenly, the tomb split open, and she threw herself inside. Two butterflies flew out of the tomb and circled above before disappearing into the distance.
butterfly vs phoenix
The butterfly and the phoenix are both significant symbols in Chinese mythology, though they stand for different things.
As we mentioned before, the butterfly is a common symbol of metamorphosis and renewal. Butterflies are messengers between the living and the dead, and many cultures believe they represent the soul or spirit of the departed. The butterfly is a common motif in Chinese art and literature, where it represents love and beauty.
The phoenix, on the other hand, is a mythical bird that also represents renewal and rebirth. It is widely held that the phoenix can be reborn from its own ashes, making it a symbol of immortality and rebirth. The phoenix represents the Empress and all that is strong, graceful, and beautiful in Chinese mythology.
The butterfly and the phoenix both undergo metamorphosis and are reborn, but these concepts are represented in different ways by the two creatures. The phoenix symbolises the renewal and rebirth of society and the world at large, while the butterfly represents the transformation and rebirth of the individual. Both are significant symbols steeped in mythology and history in China.
Overall, the butterfly holds a special place in Chinese culture, representing transformation, love, and beauty. Its presence in mythology, art, and fashion has made it an enduring symbol of Chinese identity and creativity.