The worship of Heaven was inherent in the Jurchen culture even before the formation of the Jin state. The belief in Heaven`s signs and help manifests the primitive religious ideas of the Jurchens about spirits. They prayed to the spirits of the Heaven before military campaigns. Worship, or sacrifice to Heaven in the form of offerings food and sacrificial wine, preceded archery, which initially had the meaning of causing rain and later became a traditional entertainment and a demonstration of military skills. Tribal unions are also closely related to the cult of Heaven and archery. Therefore, during the reign of Tai-zu Aguda the worship of Heaven and archery got a deep political meaning. During the empire period, the cult of Heaven was further developed under the influence of Chinese culture. Since the reign of Tai Zong, archery has disappeared from the political and religious culture of the Jurchens, and the role of the Heaven, on the contrary, has increased. The system of Chinese li ceremonies was gradually introduced into the Heaven worship, reaching its heyday by the middle of the 12th century. This is evidenced by the records of “Jin Shi”.
Keywords: Jurchen, Jin state, cult of Heaven, archery in osier, li ceremonies
About the author
Marina A. Khaymurzina – PhD (Philosophy), Associate Professor at Chinese Study Department of the Amur State University;