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Temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the echoes of ancient times

General Thieu Hoa is one of Hai Ba Trung’s good generals. According to the legend, Thieu Hoa was born in Lang Suong cave, Thanh Chau district, Hung Hoa country ie Thanh Thuy district, Phu Tho province today. When she was 16 years old, her parents died, she left Lang Suong cave to find a scene where Buddha became a nun. I passed many places, but when I reached my village, I stopped to practice at the village temple.

Telling a village story: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the ancient echoes - Photo 1.

Temple of female general Thieu Hoa in Hien Quan commune, Tam Nong district, Phu Tho province. Photo: Le Minh Hai

In the fight against the invading Han invaders, she was appointed as a The righteous vanguard and together with the heroic generals and soldiers made many victories, making the Northern invaders fearless. When the war was won and the country was at peace, Hai Ba Trung proclaimed Vuong and appointed the female general Thieu Hoa as Princess East Palacebut she did not care about wealth, asked to retire to the poor hometown of Song Quan (ie, Hien Quan commune, Tam Nong district, Phu Tho province today) to live with the people and practice at the village temple named Phuc Khanh On one’s own.

According to the legend, Mrs. Thieu Hoa died on July 21, Tan Ox year (ie 41). One day, in the middle of the clear sky, Thieu Hoa was walking around the village field, suddenly a thunderstorm came suddenly, the sky and earth darkened, thunder rumbled and rain poured down like a waterfall. When the rain stopped, the villagers went to look for her and found her dead. After her death, Trung Vuong posthumously named her Princess Father and commanded the villagers to build a temple. The people of Song Quan page at that time were very sad and mournful and worshiped her as His Holiness the First Great King, built temples, built tombs and worshiped very respectfully.

Telling the story of the village: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the ancient echo - Photo 2.

Tomb of female general Thieu Hoa. Photo: Le Minh Hai

In the Tran Dynasty, before going to fight the Nguyen Mong invaders, King Tran Thai Tong went to the temple and burned incense at the tomb of female general Thieu Hoa to pray for her to have a sound and write a poem as follows:

“Heavenly Birth Goddess of the Gods

Wan Gu Cuong is often at trial

Giang Thuong Tho team to collect moon pictures

In the future, people write the queen section.”

Translated as:

God gave birth to a saint to be a god

Ever since then, the diamond is often heavy on the body

A mushroom by the river, the moon shines

It is the grave of the female general.

During the year, in addition to the occasions of worshiping and small sacrifices, the most crowded is the village festival. My village festival is held on January 12-13 (lunar calendar), a festival to remember, honor and appreciate the merits of female general Thieu Hoa.

Telling the story of the village: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the ancient echo - Photo 3.

The author tells children about the heroic female general. Photo: Le Minh Hai

People who go to work or live far away from home often miss the village festival very much, maybe on New Year’s day they don’t go back to their hometown but spend time going back to their hometown on the festival. On festival days, all over the village roads are crowded with people with all colors of clothes, colorful flags and flowers, laughter, bustling voices making spring more warm. The village festival is an opportunity for people to meet each other, brothers from all over the world have an excuse to gather, they invite friends and colleagues to attend as pride in the land where they were born.

The first is the procession of the palanquin from the communal house to the temple. Going ahead is a flag-bearer group consisting of young men and women wearing ancient costumes, followed by a team with swords and weapons, an incense-carrying group and a palanquin, healthy young men, elders, and a large number of villagers. casting steps to follow. Seen from afar, the procession of palanquins stands out in the middle of the village fields, flags flutter in the spring sunshine, the procession looks like a colorful drawing on the green background of rice.

Telling the story of the village: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the echoes of the past - Photo 4.

The celebrant is performing a ceremony in front of the incense.

The sacrifices in front of the temple were conducted very solemnly and respectfully by the village elders. In front of the fragrant incense, the celebrant stood carefully to perform the ceremony, the other elderly people performed the rituals according to traditional customs. The people of my village and tourists from all over the world stood around, surrounded by the inner circle, everyone attentively craned their necks to watch.

There was an old man watching the sacrifice while stroking his white beard, his eyes half-closed as if he was calculating the past festive seasons. There was an old lady who chewed betel nut with her mouth and smiled happily, as if recalling her youthful days on a festival when she caught the eyes of a boy next door who was looking at her passionately. Babies with strange black eyes looked around, not seeming to understand anything, but smiling mouths seemed very interested. The boys and girls are exposed to their youth, the joy is really exciting, they go to the festival because they watch the festival, but most of it is to date and exchange smiles, eyes, and words of love. Just like that, in harmony with the music of the festival, the bustling drums are the hearts of people with their own feelings, creating a meaningful spring day!

Telling the story of the village: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the ancient echo - Photo 5.

The procession scene in the village festival. Photo: Le Minh Hai

The pull and throw is probably the most eagerly awaited part. After the sacrifice was completed, the two armies were led by two sturdy elders, holding flags and tails cheering loudly like two old generals leading the army with flags and weapons to run three times in opposite directions around the temple. The cheers were very happy, the response of the villagers also resounded, causing an uproar in a section of the river. According to the old people in the village, the part of pulling troops and throwing them is a form of simulating the military training of female general Thieu Hoa in the past. When the celebrant took the red bacon and brought it to the oven to spread it in the large area in front of the temple, everyone turned towards that direction. The celebrant was covered by a golden parasol and protected by a group of village boys who clasped their hands in a circle around them until the spread was dropped by the celebrant into the Phet oven.

The spread is simply a red-painted wooden circular object with a diameter of about 10 cm, but it is said that whoever gets it will have good luck and good health all year round. That’s why the boys are all excited to use their health to win over themselves. During the two days of the festival, a total of 6 Phet fruits and 3 Chui fruits (similar to spreads but smaller in size) were given out for the boys to try. What makes the festival so attractive is that everyone has the right to win the lottery, regardless of village boys or people from elsewhere, young and old can participate as long as they are healthy.

Telling the story of the village: The temple of female general Thieu Hoa echoes the echoes of the past - Photo 6.

The author tells children about the heroic female general. Photo: Le Minh Hai

Each time the results were released, the crowd fought fiercely under the riverbank, but on the crowded village dyke, they cheered loudly. Standing and watching, people were as nervous as if they were greedy to get a spread, their hearts also fluttered with each movement of that red spot. When a guy got a spread, everyone cheered, admired and praised, smiles melted into the spring sun. Also on the village dike, in the crowd, someone suddenly recognized each other, they cheered and patted each other’s shoulders and necks, the love of the countryside permeated each sentence, contributing to the village festival a dear aftertaste.

The village festival is only held once a year, so the ancient temple is only once a year with such a crowd. The association has dissolved, but the echoes remain in people’s hearts with many warm and passionate emotions. One afternoon, I took my son to visit the temple and told him about the female general worshiped by the villagers. I don’t know if the children understood anything, but they looked at me with clear eyes full of attention, just like when I was a child when I was told village stories by adults, about female general Thieu Hoa to bring pride back to my homeland. .

The temple is still there, bearing the ancient serenity that makes up a part of the village’s soul. Visiting the temple, in the whisper of the wind, I heard the sound of the army shouting, the heroic voice echoing from the past!

Dan Viet online newspaper opens a column “Telling a village story” from March 4, 2020. The category is for all professional and amateur authors who have a love for the countryside and want to share their true stories with readers.

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