Ancient Cultivation Story: God Wang Cizhong Gives the Chinese Characters to Human Beings

Adapted by Xin Qin

Wang Cizhong was one of the Gods in ancient China. He was living in the time called the Warring States Period in Chinese history, which is more than 2200 years ago. At that time China was divided into lots of small kingdoms and every kingdom was battling against each other. Some small, weak kingdoms formed coalitions to attack the big, strong kingdoms, while other small, weak kingdoms followed the big, strong kingdoms to attack other small kingdoms. At that time God Wang Cizhong was living in Great Xia Mountain and Small Xia Mountain.

Wang Cizhong felt that the system of Chinese characters “Zhuan fond” used by people at that time was very troublesome to write and therefore could not have a wide usage. He also noticed that it was too difficult for people to be able to write and read the “Zhuan fond” characters in a short time. He thought, “It is such a chaotic time now and things are so complicated. There are battles and wars everywhere. How wonderful it would be if everyone could read and write characters.” The more he thought about it the more important he felt it was. Consequently, Wang Cizhong transformed the “Zhuan fond” characters, which are both difficult to read and hard to write, to “Li fond” characters. Since “Li fond” characters are easy to read and write, people in each kingdom learnt how to read and write.

There was a kingdom called Qin in the Warring States Period, which also fought with other kingdoms. The king of Qin, Yin Zhen, defeated all of the other kingdoms at that time and reunited them into one country. This is the Middle Kingdom (China, also called the Qin Empire). Yin Zhen called himself Emperor Qin Shi Huang.

Emperor Qin Shi Huang deemed that it was beneficial to others that Wang Cizhong had transformed the “Zhuan Fond” characters to the “Li Fond” characters and therefore asked Wang Cizhong to take a high official position in his Empire. However, Wang Cizhong refused to do so. Emperor Qin Shi Huang was outraged and sent a diplomat to ask Wang Cizhong what his reasons for the refusal were. Emperor Qin Shi Huang told the diplomat, “I’ve defeated all the kingdoms and reunited China! Who dare not obey me? Wang Cizhong is just a minor small student and he dare not follow my order! What a nuisance! You go and ask Wang Cizhong to come here and if he refuses to come kill him and bring his head to me. I will let all the people know that nobody can go against my orders!”

Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s diplomat arrived on the mountains and met Wang Cizhong. He told Wang about the Emperor’s order. Wang did not get angry, nor did he even say anything. He turned into a huge beautiful bird, extended his wings and flew into the blue sky. The diplomat was both surprised and frightened and he knelt down on the ground and began to kowtow towards the huge bird saying, “Wang Cizhong , you changed into a huge bird and flew away. How can I reply to Emperor Qin Shi Huang! Emperor Qin is bound to kill me. Now I know that you are a God. Oh God, please show mercy to me!” The huge bird was circling in the sky for a while and dropped three feathers deliberately. The diplomat could only take the three feathers back to Emperor Qin Shi Huang.

The diplomat told Emperor Qin Shi Huang how Wang Cizhong had changed into a huge bird and flew away in great detail. Qin Shi Huang, like all the people in ancient China, knew that through cultivation and being a good person, an ordinary person can turn into a God. After he heard the diplomat’s words, Qin Shi Huang immediately understood clearly that Wang Cizhong was a God and that is why he did not want to be an official in Qin Kingdom. Qin Shi Huang was very regretful about his wrong deeds.

The place where Wang Cizhong turned into a huge bird is called Mount Luo Ge in Hebei Province, China. Up to this day, people still remember Wang Cizhong and parents often tell his story to their children. Some people regard being officials and becoming rich as very important, while others don’t. They only regard doing good deeds and being a good person as very important issues. People in ancient China all knew that cultivation and being a good person can turn one into a God. Not only are Chinese traditions such as customs, myths, traditional Chinese arts and Chinese characters passed on to humans by Gods, but moral standards are also passed on from Gods to humans.

Translated from Chinese Clear Harmony at

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