Shen

Bible Dictionary

Shen definition


a tooth, probably some conspicuous tooth-shaped rock or crag (1 Sam. 7:12), a place between which and Mizpeh Samuel set up his "Ebenezer." In the Hebrew the word has the article prefixed, "the Shen." The site is unknown.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

shen

(Chinese: "spirit"), in indigenous Chinese religion, a beneficent spirit of the dead; the term is also applied to deified mortals and gods. Shen are associated with the yang (bright, active) aspect of the cosmos, and with the higher, spiritual component of the human soul. After a person's death, the soul becomes either of two spirits: the shen, which ascends to the spirit world, or the kuei (q.v.), a dark, passive yin spirit, which remains within the grave. The successful ascent of the shen depends on adequate ritual offerings from the surviving family, without which it becomes dissatisfied and eventually seeks revenge on the human world in the form of the malevolent kuei, or ghost.

Learn more about shen with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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