External Main Hall
The 8th & 9th Generals Ba Ye and Jiu Ye (八爷 九爷)
Some temples have named Ba Ye and Jiu Ye as Qi Ye (七爷) and Ba Ye (八爷) respectively. Both Deities hold significant status in the Temple and are subordinates of Sheng Hong Deity (City God). Qi Ye and Ba Ye are also known as Chang Ye (长爷) and Duan Ye (短爷), describing their height as tall and short. They are commonly known as the Black and White Deities. Both are known as General Xie (谢将军) and General Fan (范将军).
Both Generals are enshrined in Sheng Hong Temple to escort offenders to the Deity to be trialed for their offences and receive punishments. The original name of Qi Ye is Xie Bi An (谢必安). He is tall and with a white face. The original name of Ba Ye is Fan Wu Jiu (范无救) and he is short with a black face. Both are tasked by the Emperor of Hades to identify offenders in the Sheng Hong Temple.
There are differing legends on the lives of Qi Ye and Ba Ye with 2 legends being more well known. Firstly, both are from the Tang Dynasty and were ordered to defend the city when a war broke out. General Xie was killed by the enemy. Blaming himself for the death of General Xie, General Fan hid along the river bank of the city and was unfortunately drowned. The city was subsequently invaded. When Zhang Xun (张巡) and Xu Yuan (许远) were killed in this war, they were bestowed as Sheng Hong Deities. Both General Xie and Fang became the Guardian Generals of Sheng Hong Deity.
The second legend proclaimed that Qi Ye and Ba Ye were very good friends. Both had planned to meet under a bridge. Xie arrived first and waited for Fan under the bridge. A sudden heavy downpour made Fan turned back to his residence to pick up an umbrella for Xie. The rainfall flooded the river. But Xie kept to his promise to wait for Fan and refused to leave the flooded area. He was drowned by the flood. As Fan reached the meeting place, He was very sad that his good friend had died. Overpowered by sadness, He hung himself on a tree. Sheng Hong Deity was touched by the strong relationship between Xie and Fan and He recruited both of them to assist Him in melting out punishments and rewarding accordingly.
Sheng Hong Deity originally had 6 Generals to assist him. With the addition of General Xie as the 7th General and General Fan as the 8th General to assist Sheng Hong Deity, this was how the names Qi Ye and Ba Ye were derived. There is a long history of Ba Ye and Jiu Ye in Sheng Hong Temple. Their faces are blackened by the offerings of opium and cigarettes offered by devotees during their prayers. The smoke from the opium and cigarettes had darkened the faces of Ba Ye and Jiu Ye overtime.
Deity of Filial Piety (Xiao Zi Ye 孝子爷 )
Xiao Zi Ye was also known as Xiao Zi Bo (孝子伯) or Ma Yi Deity ( 麻衣神). He was one of the characters depicted in the Legend of Twenty-Four Filial Piety. His original name was Ding Lan. His father passed away when He was very young. He remained an unfilial son even though His mother had gone through much suffering to raise Him. He often ill-treated His mother. He deeply regretted His behavior when He witnessed how the mother sheep fed its young with milk and how the crow who flown afar in search of food for its young.
One afternoon, He saw His mother from far, limping along the way to deliver lunch to Him. He was touched and ran towards His mother, crying and calling out loudly to her. At that moment, His mother was frightened as she thought that her son wanted to beat her again. In a moment of anxiety, she jumped into the nearby river and ended her life. He was not able to save His mother as she had drowned. Instead, He found a piece of wood instead. Hence, He brought it home to honor His mother. He worn in funeral clothing and mourn for His late mother. He cried till His eyes became bloody and His tongue protruded when He passed away. Since then, He was known as the “Deity of Filial Piety”. In olden time, when someone in the family was unfilial, the elder would bring the person to the temple to pray to Xiao Zi Ye, appealing for blessings of good behavior, respectful and filial piety to the elders. Subsequently, He was also bestowed as a “Deity of Wealth” . He carried a prosperity pouch with hongbaos and money in it. Devotees pray to Him for wealth and prosperity People who are in financial difficulties could borrow money from Him to resolve their financial situations and to return the debts after they have resolved the financial issues.
Bao Bei Yeh （包贝爷）
Legendary, “Bao Bei Yeh – 包贝爷” was the subordinate of “Tong Yue Da Ti – 东岳大帝”. He had 12 surnames including Cai蔡, Hu 胡, Zhou 周, etc. This Deity is worshipped in many temples in Southeast Asia. He was tasked to carry out good deeds and eliminate evils. He is also known to be a Deity to manage finance.
Deity of Prosperity (Jin Qian Bo 金钱伯)
Jin Qian Bo Deity is also known as an official of “Bao Yu Cai Lu”. He was born on the 6th Day of the 3rd Lunar month of the Year 1650 with the original name of Li Shao Yin. He was well versed in both Buddhism and Taoism. He was passionate and often helped the needy. He assumed higher office and was subsequently appointed as an officer in Shaozhou (韶州) in the Year 1670. He assisted the poor to build homes and contributed to the country’s development. He earned the recognition and respect from people. When He was 32 years old, He resigned from His official duty and stayed in a temple to learn from the monks. He also donated generously to the temple.
He left home after resettling the family and retreated to a temple at the age of 36 when He was ordained as a monk in Shaozhou. He passed away at the age of 42. Upon His death, His soul was received by Sheng Hong Deity in the underworld. The Emperor from the Hade’s 10th Chamber presented Him with an auspicious Jade (如意玉) and was bestowed the title of “Prosperity Officer” .