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Birth of Monkey and His Quest for Immortality

Image of Birth of Monkey and His Quest for Immortality
In a mythical time, on the Mountain of Flower and Fruit, there is a great stone. One day, the stone explodes, expelling an egg. The egg hatches, and Monkey comes into the world. He bows to the four corners of the universe, and then exuberantly runs about, jumping and laughing, and leaps into a waterfall in a bamboo forest. He is obsessed with seeking immortality and magical power, and travels over five continents to find a teacher. Deep in the Mountain of Heart and Mind he finds Subodhi, a Taoist master, from whom he learns how to somersault on a magical cloud that can carry him 180,000 miles, and the art of transforming himself into anything he wants. Subodhi gives him the name Sun Wu Kong: the Monkey with the Realization of Emptiness.

Crystal Palace of the Eastern Sea and the Iron Rod

Image of Crystal Palace of the Eastern Sea and the Iron Rod
Monkey dives into the Eastern Sea, where magnificent sea creatures amuse him. He comes upon the Crystal Palace, home to the Old Dragon King. Monkey boasts of his prowess and requests a weapon great enough to equal his fighting ability. The Old Dragon King offers him a magic iron rod so powerful that it holds down the ocean floor and so magical that it is capable of changing from the size of a needle to the size of a mountain. The Old Dragon King is cowed into also handing over his own golden helmet, armor and shoes in the hope that the Monkey King will not destroy his Crystal Palace.

Heavenly Peach Banquet

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Monkey travels to Heaven to demand recognition of his astounding power. There, seven fairy maidens are busily preparing a birthday party for the Queen Mother of Heaven. Monkey is incensed to find out that he has not been invited along with the gods and sages, and wreaks havoc. He drinks up all the celestial wine and eats all of the heavenly peaches, each of which takes 9,000 years to ripen and bestows an extra thousand years of life. He fights with all the gods and sages, wins every battle, and vociferously proclaims himself a Great Sage Equal to Heaven. Utterly at a loss amidst the mayhem, the Queen Mother of Heaven begs the Great Buddha to step in and get the Monkey King under control.

Buddha?s Great Palm

Image of Buddha?s Great Palm
Buddha presents Monkey with a dare: he must demonstrate his abilities by flying out of the Buddha?s palm. Monkey cockily leaps onto Buddha?s palm and does one of his great cloud somersaults into the sky, landing in front of five huge pillars. He defaces two of the pillars and somersaults back, only to find that Buddha is furious... the ?pillars? are in fact his fingers! Monkey has not even left Buddha's hand at all. Before Monkey has a chance to utter a word, Buddha turns his palm over, creating the Mount of the Five Fingers and imprisoning the Monkey King within until further notice.

The Pilgrims

Image of The Pilgrims
Five hundred years have passed and the Monkey King is still imprisoned. Buddha sends the goddess Guan Yin on a mission to find a true believer to journey to India ? the West ? to bring the Holy Scriptures to China. She chooses Tripitaka, a young, handsome, devoted Buddhist, and then enlists the Monkey King, the Dragon Prince (who is changed into a white horse for the journey), Pigsy and Sandy to protect him, offering in return the chance of redemption for evils committed in their past lives.

The White Skeleton Demon

Image of The White Skeleton Demon
It seems that everyone along the route has heard that they can achieve immortality by eating the flesh of Tripitaka. The White Skeleton Demon adopts a number of disguises in an attempt to trap Tripitaka for this purpose, but Monkey sees through her disguises with his magical vision, and smites the White Skeleton Demon dead. Tripitaka is horrified by his violence and expels Monkey from the group.

The Spider Women

Image of The Spider Women
Without Monkey, the travelers enter the Cave of Spider Women, where the queen is determined to seduce Tripitaka. While she and her little spiders are binding him in their silk, Pigsy is happily distracted by the sexy girls, leaving Tripitaka vulnerable. Sandy rushes to find the Monkey King, who hesitantly comes back to protect Tripitaka, freeing him from the spiders? web. Pigsy must pay for his negligence ? Monkey commands him to pull the White Horse as they resume their pilgrimage West.

Volcano City

Image of Volcano City
The travelers approach a volcano surrounded by a parched land of ash. The only way to cross over is to extinguish the fire of the volcano using a magic fan belonging to the Iron Fan Princess. So fierce is she that she nearly succeeds in resisting Monkey?s power, but with help from the goddess Guan Yin he prevails. He outwits the Princess by transforming himself ? first into a bee, which she swallows, and then into her estranged husband, whom she desires ? and claims the fan. The Princess sends her soldiers after Monkey, but he and Pigsy and Sandy fend them off, extinguish the fire, and the pilgrims go safely on their way.

Paradise

Image of Paradise
Tripitaka and his disciples finally arrive in Paradise where they are given the Holy Buddhist Scriptures. Tripitaka and his disciples are rewarded for their courage and perseverance. Tripitaka becomes Buddha of Purest Merit. Pigsy becomes the Janitor of the Altars, able to fly all over the world eating the offerings left on the altars. Sandy becomes a Golden-Bodied Arhat, the highest grade of noble person. The White Horse is returned to his former life as the Dragon Prince. And the Monkey King becomes Buddha Victorious in Strife.