Goddess Ho Hsien Ku  

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HO HSIEN-KU (pronounced HO SHEE-en KOO) is the Chinese Goddess of immortality, virgins, kindness, and mountains. She is one of the Pa Hsien, the Eight Immortals, and the only woman of the group. When Ho Hsien-ku was a teenager, a spirit appeared to her and told her to grind up some mother of pearl and eat the powder. The powder gave her immortality and her body became weightless. Ho Hsien-ku also decided to remain a virgin at this point. She spent her time floating through the mountains gathering fruit for her mother, although she herself had no need to eat. She was summoned to appear before the empress, but disappeared on her way to the court, joining the other immortals in heaven. In pictures she is shown as a beautiful woman, even though legend says that she was born with only six hairs on her head. She is usually shown holding a lotus flower to symbolize her open heart and the fruit that she gathered for her mother. Her name, which means "immortal woman Ho," is also seen as H'e QI'oNG, HE XIANGU, or HE HSIEN-KU.

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