Frog in Chinese Culture
Toads and frogs are significant in Chinese culture, they symbolize immortality, money, healing, the moon and frivolity. The Chinese usually do not differentiate the frog or the toad as they are considered the same. Because of its slippery feel, Chinese consider this animal ‘Heavenly dew’ and consider the frog the celestial cock or heavenly chicken. The “toad” (chan) in some dialects can be heard as “qian” (money) and this is how the animal became associated with wealth. Being called as magicians and tricksters in Chinese culture, frogs or toads are the guardians of the secret of immortality. This secret is represented by the fungus on their foreheads.
Three Legged Frog
The three legged frog (called Chan Chu in Chinese) is a popular symbol of prosperity in China. This frog is said to appear every full moon near homes thatt will receive good news of increased wealth or monetary gain. It is believed that this mythical creature (also known as Money Frog) has fierce appearance with its imposing eyes and flared nostrils will drive away evil spirits and protect your wealth. The Money frog is often portrayed sitting on a bed of treasure made up of coins, jewels and gold ingots and bearing a coin in its mouth. The coin in Chan Chu’s mouth is said to call other coins to join them. Money frog can also often be found biting on two strings of lucky coins and with 7 dots on its back as it depicts the Ursa Major (Great North Pole 7 Stars). The three legged frog can often be seen near cash register, manager’s desk, receptions and offices in Oriental countries.
Frog in Feng Shui
According to feng shui, the proper place to display the three legged frog is in the South East of your living room or office (wealth sector). You can place two money frogs, one inside the front door facing inwards (this symbolizes money coming in to your home), and the other facing outward to collect the money. Display your money frog next to your desk or diagonally opposite your front door to your home when you are involved in jobs where there is the opportunity to earn side income or commission. For garden, they can be placed near your fountains or ponds but do not face your main door.
Nine is the best number of Money frog you can have in your garden or living room as they can bring in money from all directions of the compass. Place the frogs randomly and discreetly behind the sofa, under the table, below the coffee table etc. Make sure that each of the frog faces different direction of the compass and one near the front door hopping inward to bring in the money. Three and six are another recommended numbers when nine is not possible. You should not keep the money frog in the bedroom, kitchen and toilets. Do not place the frogs on the floor directly, put them on a low table.
Legend and Myths
The three legged frog is seems to be exist on the moon (sometimes as a large white hare) according to the legend. It seems that the frog is seen swallowing the moon when there is an eclipse. The legend tells that Chang-e, was the wife of Hou Yi, a supernatural archer. She stole the elixir of immortality from Wang Mu, the Queen of the West. She ran to the moon but then was transformed to a frog or toad by the gods.
This frog is also mentioned in an old story about Liu Hai (Liu Yuan Ying), a Chinese alchemist and minister in the 10th century who became great friend with the three legged frog. The three legged frog always accompanied him wherever he goes and became Liu Hai’s pet. If the three legged frog went to a well, Liu Hai knows that the frog likes money and he uses gold coins tied with red string as a bait to lure the frog out from hiding.