H is for Hyeokgeose & Heavenly Horse vs. Three Kingdoms

We are pleased to participate in the A to Z Blog Challenge (http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/). The Story Crossroads theme for this year is Finding Resilience & Strength through Traditional Tales.

Hyeokgeose & Heavenly Horse –

From Korea

While Hyeokgeose was used, the official name would be Pak Hyeokgeose. The story gives a hint to why “Pak” means “egg.” Though, Hyeokgeose means “someone who will rule the world with bright light.”

Gyeongju became later known as Silla. Pak Hyeokgeose unified the Three Kingdoms of which included Silla.

As the Gyeongju put much faith in horse and sun deities, it was appropriate that a heavenly horse connects to the birth of Pak Hyeokgeose.

50-word-or-less summary:

Gyeongju people wished for king to unite six villages. Light near a well. White horse bowed. Rose into sky. Upon ground was an egg. Baby born! Village chiefs named baby Pak Hyeokgeose and honored as king at age 12. United Three Kingdoms. Gyeongju became Silla. Just and kind ruler.

Finding the Story: 

Details about Pak Hyeokgeose – here

Wikipedia on Hyeokgeose of Silla – here

Listing of Several Horse stories including Pak Hyeokgeose – here

Story of the Korean Zodiac (Horse is 7th of 12) – here

Finding Resilience & Strength:

The people themselves had waited a long time for a king. They could have simply decided on a ruler. Yet, it was important to them that someone virtuous be found. Having such divine intervention with a heavenly horse and a baby from an egg is not that different than King Arthur and the sword in the stone.

The king himself, Pak Hyeokgeose, was strong and ever adaptable. When on aged 42, despite uniting the Three Kingdoms, there would always be those who oppose you. When traveling into this less hospitable lands, Pak Hyeokgeose noticed that people left their doors unlocked. He taught his own people that this means they still had morals as they could trust each other. From there, he sought peace. This is only one of many examples.

While the horse was there before Pak Hyeokgeose’s birth, there must be must comfort and learning from that wonderful horse. Did you know about equine therapy? I met someone a couple weeks ago who does this very profession. The horse has been a heavenly figure for more than the Koreans. That love and strength can help us as humans. Kings, Queens, or whatever our station in life.

Here’s an article from WebMD called “What is Equine Therapy and Equine-Assisted Therapy?” to explore mental health and strategies.

Please share thoughts in the comments. While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has year-round offerings. See quick list of programs here.

As for our past A to Z Challenges…

While you enjoy this blog, Story Crossroads has been resilient and strong during these past years and looks forward to the next hybrid summit & festival on May 8-11, 2023. We would be honored for you to join us. Explore the schedule and register here: http://www.storycrossroads.org/Festival

Thanks to funding from National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Western States Arts Federation; Utah Division of Arts and Museums/Utah Legislature; Utah Humanities; City of Murray; Zoo, Arts & Parks (ZAP) of Salt Lake County; Salt Lake City Arts Council; Ashton Family Foundation; and people like you.

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