Kwun Yum (Guanyin, Guanshiyin, Guanshi Pusa (Avalokitasvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion), Gaunyin Dashi, Guanzizai) is one of the Four Great Deities of Buddhism. It is said that Kwun Yum can follow the cry of people in distress and rescue them, relieving people from suffering with benevolence. As to the origin of Kwun Yum, the deity is thought to be a divine pony in Brahmanism of ancient India, which was worshipped for rescuing people from distress. The divine beast was later incorporated by Buddhism as Guanshiyin with the head of a horse, before being further personified as a man. After Kwun Yum was introduced to China, the bodhisattva took on the form of a benevolent, child-bestowing goddess, one of the deity’s 33 manifestations in Wonderful Dharma Lotus Sutra – The Universal Door of Avalokitasvara Bodhisattva. In China, the female form of Kwun Yum is prevalent.
According to folk belief, every year on the 26th day of the 1st lunar month, Kwun Yum opens her treasury and lends money to people. This originated in the late Ming and early Qing dynasty, when the people of Guangdong Province began praying to Kwun Yum for wealth, fortune and success in business on her, the 26th day of the 1st lunar month. Until today, large numbers of believers visit temples of Kwun Yum to “borrow” wealth, health, good interpersonal relationships and outstanding academic results on the day Kwun Yum’s treasury is opened.
Kwun Yum Festival (19th day of 2nd lunar month, 19th day of 6th lunar month, 19th day of 9th lunar month, 19th day on 11th lunar month)
Kwun Yum Opens Treasury (25th to 26th day of 1st lunar month)
Litt Shing Kung, Sheung Wan; Kwun Yum Temple, Tsz Wan Shan; Shea Tan, Yaumatei; Fook Tak Tsz, Yaumatei; Shui Yuet Kung, Shan Tung Street;Tin Hau Temple, Yaumatei