Chinese mythology (simplified Chinese: 中国神话; traditional Chinese: 中國神話; pinyin: Zhōngguó shénhuà) is mythology that has been passed down in oral form or recorded in literature in the geographic area now known as "China". Chinese mythology includes many varied myths from regional and cultural traditions. Chinese mythology is far from monolithic, not being an integrated system, even among just Han people. Chinese mythology is encountered in the traditions of various classes of people, geographic regions, historical periods including the present, and from various ethnic groups. China is the home of many mythological traditions, including that of Han Chinese and their Huaxia predecessors, as well as Tibetan mythology, Turkic mythology, Korean mythology, Japanese mythology and many others. However, the study of Chinese mythology tends to focus upon material in Chinese language.
Much of the mythology involves exciting stories full of fantastic people and beings, the use of magical powers, often taking place in an exotic mythological place or time. Like many mythologies, Chinese mythology has in the past been believed to be, at least in part, a factual recording of history. Along with Chinese folklore, Chinese mythology forms an important part of Chinese folk religion (Yang, An & Turner 2005, p. 4). Many stories regarding characters and events of the distant past have a double tradition: ones which present a more historicized or euhemerized version and ones which presents a more mythological version (Main philosophical traditions:
Salvation churches and sects:
Confucian churches and sects: