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Word Count: 576
One of the most interesting aspects of Chinese mythology is that the myths are often closely intertwined with actual Chinese history The Greek writer Euhemerus defined euhemerization as the process of historical figures becomes accepted as gods over time In Chinese mythology the process is often the opposite The gods and other supernatural beings found in myths become accepted as historical figures over time This process is called reverse euhemerization Close studies of traditional history reveal that many of the prominent figures from the period before the Zhou Dynasty 1122 BC to 256 BC were not actual human beings This leads us to believe that other historical figures in traditional history may not have actually lived at one point in time This concept can be better defined by focusing on a couple of anecdotes in which Confucius attempted to explain to his disciples People often inquired about Huang Tis the Yellow Lords identity Confucius explained that Huang Ti was a man who was well respected by the community The community continued to accept Huang Tis presence after he died and honored him for the next two hundred years It was also pondered by many that Huang Ti had four faces The mistaken four faces were in fact Huang Tis four officials to oversee the four quarters of his empire Another myth that may have caused confusion in relation to the euhemerization process was the well known Music Master Kuei He was seen as a mythological creature with only one foot Kuei was often with the sage ruler Shun Shun enjoyed Kueis talent and rewarded him with the compliment that having one of him is enough People misunderstood this praise and vaguely interpreted it as Kuei owning only one foot These anecdotes are particularly good examples because they offered a solid definition to reverse euhemerization Since Huang Ti brought benefits to the people thus they honored him The people looked upon him as someone higher than
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