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Silver Wind
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PostSubject: Tengu   Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:37 pm

The tengu are a class of high-flying demons, most likely of Chinese origin, who inhabit cedar or pine trees in the mountains of Japan.

There are two main tyeps of tengu. The higher tengu have a human form, and wears the red robes of a bishop and a small crown. It has white hair and a red face and is often seen holding a fan made of feathers. Each higher tengu reside on its own mountain peak.

The inferior tengu have small wings and sharp claws on the ends of thier fingers and toes. Sometimes they are seen wearing small black hats and clothes made of leaves. They all have large shinning, mischievous eyes and usually travel in a flock.

All tengu both higher and inferior have elongated beacklike noses. The tengu share several traits with the Chinese T'ienkou who is sometimes described as a shooting star and sometimes as a mountain demon in the shape of a dog that came from the sky in fire and thunder.

In either version the demon has two wings and kidnaps and eats small childern and it can readily shap-shift. Another close cousin is the Hindu spritiaul bird Gariuda.

Tengu are genreally beleived to be the spirits of arrogent and vengeful dead and are well known for thier malecious delight in practical jokes. They like to prey on Buddhist monks and often innterupt thier pious work by strapping them to the tops of trees or by offering them delicious food that turns out excrement. They can also appear as Buddhist monks and lead other monks astray. They also appear to travelers whom get lost in the woods.

The tengu enjoy stealing human childern and hiding them from thier parents. When and if the childern are found they have usually been reduced to a confused state and never full regain thier senses. At other times inferiror tengu carry out nasty deeds from the higher tengu.

Because all tengu can endow followers with supernatural powers, the demons have attracted a group of worshipers known as mountain priests or Yamabushi, who calim to be able to cure disease and exorcise demons.

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