An invocation offered before using the Luopan compass.

December 3, 2014

Traditionally, a Luopan invocation is an incantation used to invoke a deity to protect the user and calm his or her spirits before setting out to use the compass to read all types of form and formless Qi, with some being beneficial and some being harmful. In this case, the 九天玄女 Jiutian Xuannu or the Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens is being invoked. This deity is considered to be an ancient Heavenly Spirit who helped Huangdi 黃帝 (the Yellow Emperor) to subdue his archenemy Chiyou 蚩尤.

My rough translation of the incantation:

Jingjing Lingling (calling on the Essence and the Spirits),
Wearing a protective armor on my head,
Occupying the Southern Dipper to my left,
And the Seven Stars to my right (ie the whole of the Ursa Major Constellation),
Those who go against me will perish,
Those who go with me will prosper.
This commend from above I receive.
Urgently, urgently, act as on the divine order of
The Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens.

Slide1

九天玄女 The Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens.

九天玄女
The Mysterious Lady of the Nine Heavens.

2 Responses to “An invocation offered before using the Luopan compass.”

  1. Marina Says:

    Thanks! Very interesting and informative.

  2. howardchoy Says:

    Charles Younger. Hi Howard, thanks and I have some questions. What is the head armor? What is the Southern Dipper? Does standing with one on left and other on right orient the Lou pan East/West? Or do these two references have a symbolic meaning unrelated to their actual positions?

    Howard Choy. Hi Charles, They are good questions, I have translated the first sentense literally, “wearing a protective armor on my head” could also mean I am psycholoogically prepared for the task ahead. The Southern Diper is contrasted with the Northern Dipper according to their relative North/South positions in the night sky, but East and West, or left and right, are also used at the same time to cover the four cardinal directions of the universe, which means all directions are covered by this invocation.


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