The Eastern Dragon or Lung Dragon is one of the five sacred animals and intervenes in the correct balance of the world.
In Japan and Southeast Asia (as well as China), lung dragons carry abundance, good fortune, wisdom and prosperity. They are also considered to be creatures of great power, possessors of much knowledge, controllers of waters (rivers, lakes and rains), winds and bearers of health, prosperity and good luck. The eastern dragon is a friendly being, willing to help but terrible when angry. They are entities that watch over the day-to-day lives of people and bearers of blessings.
Lung (for Lung Dragon) is the term used by the Chinese to name the great variety of dragons they possess. There are nine types of Imperial Chinese Lung dragons (nine because it is the lucky number): the horned dragon Qiu Lung, the celestial dragon Tian Lung, the spiritual dragon Sheng Lung which controls wind rains and floods, the earthly dragon Ti-Lung, the hidden treasure dragon Fucan Lung, the aquatic dragon Wang-Lung, the dragon that winds Pan Lung, the yellow dragon Huang Lung, and the dragon king Ying Lung.
Imperial estern dragons have five claws while Koreans have four and Japanese have three. According to legend, the dragons originated in China and the further they traveled the more claws they lost to the point of not being able to continue the journey.
From gold to blue-green, from dark to almost white there are three subspecies: Japanese, Chinese and Indonesian, the difference between the races being the number of toes on their legs, three, five and four respectively.
In Asia in general and in China in particular, the Lung Dragon or Eastern Dragon was always considered a beneficial being and in Japan they were believed to be wise and kind beings. In China they were regarded as the lords of time, the owners of lightning and storm, the guardians of the seas, rivers and springs, and were believed to sleep at the bottom of lakes during the winter to awaken in spring in the form of rain clouds, thus bringing water to earth. They were therefore considered as life-giving beings that united heaven and earth and also symbolized the change between the seasons.
Colors of Lung Dragons
- Blue or Green: represents Spring, healing, rest and harmony. The dragon that symbolizes the East Sea (East China Sea) is of these colors.
- Black: represents Winter, storms and revenge. The North China Sea (Lake Baikal) is symbolized by a dragon of this color.
- White: represents Autumn, purity, mourning and mortality. The Dragon symbolizing the West Sea (Indian Ocean) is white.
- Red: represents Summer, luck, fire, passion and happiness. The dragon symbolizing the South China Sea is red.
- Ring or Golden: we are talking about the Imperial Dragon, formerly representing the Emperor and his family and today is associated with the upper class, is a symbol of wealth and compassion.