Mazu Legend

Your Position: Home > Mazu Legend > Overview

Mazu, whose family name is Lin and given name is Mo with the nickname of Mo Niang, was born in the noble "Jomoo Lin" family, in Putian, Fujian. 
Her great-great-grandfather Lin Yu was a prefectural governor in the five dynasties. He resigned in 866 AD and moved the whole family from Xitianwei, Putian to Meizhou bay. Great-grandfather Lin Baoji, acted as a military director in the first year (954 AD) of Xiande period, and then resigned because of old age. Her Grandfather Lin Fu, had been an officer of director in Fujian at the beginning of the song Dynasty. Her Father was Lin Weique and her mother’s family name was Wang. They "emigrated to Meizhou island”. The highest officer her father undertook was an inspection officer in the song Dynasty, namely the sea patrol officer. 

At the forties of Lin Weique, he had got a son and five daughters already. By then, marine perils happened often, so Lin Weique worried that it was possibly hard to extend offspring with only one son. Lin Weique and his wife went to the lane of Goddess of Mercy frequently to pray that they can have another son. On a night of mid-June, the couple had a dream where the Goddess of Mercy told them, "Your family are all generous and honest, today I give you a pill, and you will have good sign after taking the pill."


On the evening of March 23 at the next year, namely the first year (960 AD) of JianSong period in song Dynasty. The sky was covered by seven star platform on which the seven lights are laid there. During 17:00 pm and 19:00 pm, a skyglow ripped into the Lins’ house from the northwest, making the chamber full of extraordinary fragrance. The sky was full of lucky cloud and signs. The surrounding mountains collapsed. Land became purple. Then Mazu was born. But Lin Weique was so disappointed to see that the born one was a girl again. However, seeing all these strange phenomena of nature, he seemed to realize that the child would have a miraculous and extraordinary life, so he devoted more love to her. 

Mazu rarely cried and screamed from her birth to the period of full moon, so her parents named her "Lin Mo". Influenced by the edification on "family tradition of loyalty and filial piety", Lin Mo showed her intelligence at an early ages and treated her parent very well. At the age of five, she could recite "Guanyin" lection. At the age of eight, she studied from the tutor of an old-type private school, and she was always able to recite the contents after only one sight on the book and also could get a general idea about them. Infected by the fact that her mother’s religion was Chinese Buddhism, Lin Mo old often sit in one room to pray to Buddha when she was no more than ten years. At the age of 13, there was a Taoist called Xuantong who saw Lin Mo being generous and intelligent, so he gave her some of his medical texts. Lin Mo acquired the quintessence of these books and could even predict the fortunes. At the age of 15, she was able to treat diseases for villagers, help the poor and do good things, which showed a spirit of philanthropism.

At her 16, Lin Mo began to carefully study the knowledge of astronomy and geography. She grasped the most exquisite part of them and could predict the weather on the sea. Every time the storm came, she would forecast it to folks to avoid many marine perils in advance. She also got across the sea to Meizhou Island often, and lived in the apartment built by her father on the island, only to validate her judgment on the weather change. 

When Lin Mo was 17 years old, her brother Lin Hongyi was killed in marine peril. The loss and grief of loved ones let Lin Mo realize more profoundly about the hardship and danger for the life at sea. From then on, Lin Mo made her wishes and ambitions to take saving the marine perils as her own duty, so her legendary career of rescuing fishermen began. She often rescued the endangered fisherman by driving a little boat crossing the islands. Every time when boatman and fisherman encountered strong wind, risk waves, boat sinking or life and death moment, they always saw Lin Mo stand out to save the day. She predicted the change of the weather, taught people the methods of preventing disasters, help villagers, treat patients and bring a lot of help to the helpless people. At her twenty-one years old, Putian City had a great drought, with mountains and rivers all dry, so she prayed for rain for the people; At the age of 25, all the relatives have repeatedly urged Lin Mo to get married, but she had devoted all her the heart to common people and taken saving others as big responsibility of hers, which was a huge favor for those people who spent most of their lifetime on the sea and hung their lives between storms and natural disasters. 


For the short life of Lin Mo, she devoted the days of her youth selflessly to the suffering people. Her lofty spirit and lofty character was widely passed on by the mouth of the general public. On September 9th the fourth year of emperor Taizong Yongxi period in song Dynasty In 987 AD, namely the double ninth festival, Lin Mo said farewell to her loved ones and climbed to top of the mountain in Meizhou Island after crossing the sea. People see the sky was shrouded around by lucky clouds, and the skyglow was all over the sky. Lin Mo slowly flew up to heaven and left the world. People believed that she had gained perfect virtue and ascent to heaven, so they built a temple on Meizhou Mountain in memory of her, hoping that she could stay forever to bless peace on the sea. 

Mazu is a person integrated with "Truth, Kindness and Beauty”. In spite of her ascending, she still made apparition frequently. By repeatedly saving people, protecting envoy and spreading extensive charity, she finally become the goddess of great love and kindness, and also received the world respect and worship for one thousand years. As a reminder of Lin Mo feat, the later people gradually used a most simple and most friendly way to call the kind great goddess—Mazu.