Eagle and Tiger Gods

The East Yue Temple's eerie statues, a daring thief, and a divine encounter with the Eagle and Tiger Gods.

The East Yue Temple in the county town, located in the southern suburbs, has statues on both sides of the main gate, each over ten feet tall, commonly referred to as “Eagle and Tiger Gods,” with fearsome appearances that terrify people. In the temple, there was a Taoist priest named Ren, who would wake up and offer incense to chant scriptures every day at the crowing of the rooster. There was a thief who had hidden in the temple corridor in advance, waiting for the Taoist priest to wake up so he could secretly enter the room and search for money. Unfortunately, there was nothing valuable in the room, but the thief found three hundred wen under a straw mat, so he put the money in his waist pouch. He opened the door and ran out, preparing to go to Mount Qianfo. The thief fled south for quite a while and finally reached the foot of the mountain. At this moment, he saw a particularly tall and burly man coming down from the mountain, with a falcon perched on his left arm, coincidentally meeting the thief head-on. When he got closer, he saw that this man’s face was bronze-colored, resembling the deity often seen at the temple gate. The thief was extremely frightened, crouching on the ground and trembling all over. The deity scolded him, saying, “You stole money, where are you trying to escape to?” The thief became even more terrified, repeatedly kowtowing. The deity grabbed the thief and made him return to the temple. After returning to the temple, the thief was forced to confess and hand over all the stolen money, kneeling on the ground. When the Taoist priest finished chanting the scriptures and turned around, he was greatly surprised. The thief honestly narrated the whole incident. The Taoist priest took back the money and let the thief go.

《鹰虎神》

郡城东岳庙,在南郭,大门左右神高丈馀,俗名“鹰虎神”,狰狞可畏。庙中道士任姓,每鸡鸣,辄起焚诵。有偷儿预匿廊间,伺道士起,潜入寝室,搜括财物。奈室无长物,惟于荐底得钱三百,纳腰中。拔关而出,将登千佛山。南窜许时,方至山下。见一巨丈夫,自山上来,左臂苍鹰,适与相遇。近视之,面铜青色,依稀似庙门中所习见者。大恐,蹲伏而战。神诧曰:“盗钱安往!”偷儿益惧,叩不已。神揪令还入庙,使倾所盗钱,跪守之。道士课毕,回顾骇愕。盗历历自述。道士收其钱而遣之。

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