會址:104台北市南京東路三段215號10樓
電話:02-27122836 傳真:02-27174593

《回首頁》
《回台灣之窗》
《吳三連台灣史料基金會》
《Taiwan News》
 ●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●●



台灣媽祖的歷史淵源
The Historical Origins of Matsu in Taiwan

林美容教授/Lin Mei-rong
(中央研究院民族學研究所研究員兼行為組主任及台灣宗教學會會長)
(Researcher, Institute of Ethnology, Academia Sinica, and head of the Taiwan Association for Religious Studies )

2001-04-02


Lao Liu Ma Matsu from Changhua's Nanyao
Temple, on an altar in a private home
(photo provided by the author)

媽祖是台灣人最普遍信仰的神明。無論大
莊或小莊、山村或漁村、鄉鎮或市街、港
口或內山,都可看到媽祖廟。台灣媽祖文
化節已從三月二十五日零時起開鑼。媽祖
文化節活動由台中大甲鎮瀾宮先行展開,
媽祖於國曆三月二十五日零時起駕出發,
展開到新港奉天宮,整個繞境進香的行程
貫穿台中、彰化、雲林、嘉義四縣,來回
約三百七十二公里,於四月一日返回大甲
。適逢節慶之際,本週請中央研究院民族
學研究所研究員,兼行為組主任及台灣宗
教學會會長林美容博士執筆,談談台灣媽
祖的歷史淵源與文化背景。

Matsu is the most widely-worshipped deity in
Taiwan. In towns large and small, mountain
villages and fishing harbors, country towns
and city streets, out by the sea and far
inland, Matsu temples are everywhere. Taiwan's
Matsu culture festival started in the early
hours of March 25. The Matsu culture festival
activities kicked off from Chenlan Temple in
Tachia, Taichung, and kicks off just after
midnight on March 25, extending to Fungtien
Temple in Hsinkang, offering incense along the
whole route of the procession, through the four
counties of Taichung, Changhua, Yunlin and
Chiayi, a total of around 372 km, arriving back
in Tachia on April 1. It so happens that this
week coincides with the festival, and so this
week we have invited Lin Mei-rong, researcher
at Academia Sinica's Institute of Ethnology,
and head of the Taiwan Association for
Religious Studies, to write about the
historical origins and cultural background of
Matsu in Taiwan.

台灣人最普遍信仰的神明

媽祖是台灣人最普遍信仰的神明。無論大
莊或小莊、山村或漁村、鄉鎮或市街、港
口或內山,都可看到媽祖廟。有些媽祖廟
甚且是跨鄉鎮或區域性的信仰中心。有些
地方即使沒有媽祖廟,也會有祭祀媽祖的
活動。有關媽祖的祭祀活動除了「媽祖生
」為媽祖慶賀誕辰之外,進香與迎媽祖的
活動是最普遍的。我們不妨從媽祖的相關
活動來看媽祖信仰的社會、文化與歷史意
義。

The deity most widely worshipped by the Taiwanese

Matsu is the deity most commonly worshipped by
Taiwanese people. In towns large and small,
mountain villages and fishing harbors, country
towns and city streets, out by the sea and far
inland, Matsu temples are everywhere. These Matsu
temples cross town, village and local boundaries
as centers of faith. Some areas will have Matsu
worship and sacrifice activities, even if they
don't have a Matsu temple. Apart from "Matsu Sheng"
which celebrates Matsu's birthday, the most common
Matsu worship activities are offering incense at
temples, and "welcoming Matsu." We might as well
start looking at the meaning of Matsu-worshipping
society, culture and history from Matsu-related
activities.

主神與客神一起參與巡境

神明都會有聖誕,媽祖生日為農曆三月二
十三日,所有的祭祀活動都環繞在其生日
前後舉行。一般會選在生日之前舉行進香
的活動,以便在聖誕之前媽祖可以回到本
地,接受本地信徒為她慶賀生日。生日當
天和一般「神明生」一樣會有巡境的活動
,在媽祖自己的轄境內巡繞,以保佑境內
平安。有時自己的媽祖還不夠,還要到外
地請別的媽祖來當「客神」,因此巡境之
前往往舉行請媽祖或迎媽祖的活動,以便
主神和客神一起參與巡境。特別原本沒有
祭祀媽祖的村莊,也常在「媽祖生」時從
外地請一尊媽祖來迎鬧熱並繞境。

Local Matsus and guest Matsus participate in
the trip together

All gods have birthdays, and Matsu's birthday falls
on the 23rd day of the third month in the lunar
calendar. All the worship and sacrifice activities
are held shortly before and after this date. Most
people choose to go to temples and burn incense in
the days preceding her birthday, so that Matsu can
return to her home before her birthday, and have her
birthday celebrated by her local followers. On the
day of the birthday, as with the birthdays of most
gods, there are "inspection tour" activities, and
the inspection tour is carried out within the area
under Matsu's jurisdiction, in order to bless and
protect the peace with the area. Sometimes, the
local Matsu is not enough, and it's necessary to
invite in Matsus from other areas as "guest
goddesses," and so before the inspection tour,
people often hold "inviting Matsu" or "welcoming
Matsu" activities, in order to get the local Matsu
and guest Matsus to participate in the inspection
tour together. In particular, villages which don't
have their own tradition of worshipping Matsu will
often invite a Matsu from elsewhere to come and
have a lively parade on Matsu's birthday.

「迎媽祖」的巡境活動

所謂的「迎媽祖」,是到外地去迎一尊本
地居民普遍信仰或有淵源的媽祖來參與巡
境的活動。不管自己村裡或是共同舉行迎
媽祖的區域是否已有一尊「在莊媽」或「
在地媽」,都可能會往外地去迎媽祖。通
常是往地域層級高一點的地方去迎媽祖。
例如,台中縣霧峰﹑烏日與大裡地區有一
個「東保十八莊」迎媽祖的活動,已經有
一百多年的歷史,共有十八個村莊參與,
這十八個村莊並沒有共有的廟,但卻有一
尊共有的媽祖稱為「十八莊媽」。每年三
月初一開始把附近的旱溪媽祖、南屯媽祖
、台中媽祖、彰化媽祖通通請來,參與繞
境,隊伍當中,「十八莊媽」在前領路,
各莊依一定的順序,逐日在莊內迎神繞境
並請客。

Inspection tour activities for "Welcoming Matsu"

"Welcoming Matsu" means going somewhere outside
your local district to welcome a Matsu widely
worshipped by local residents, or with some
historical connection with that area to come and
participate in the inspection tour activities. It
doesn't matter whether the village or the area
where the "welcoming Matsu" activities are carried
out has a "Matsu in the village" or a "local Matsu,"
it's possible to go to another place to welcome Matsu.
In general, people go to somewhere higher up on the
social scale to welcome Matsu. For instance, in the
region which includes Wufeng, Wuri and Tali in
Taichung County, there is a "Tung Pao Eighteen
Villages" Matsu-welcoming activity, which has been
held for over a century, in which a total of 18
villages participate. None of these 18 villages
have a temple, but they do have a shared Matsu,
who is known as "Matsu of the Eighteen Villages."
Every year, at the beginning of March, local Matsus,
including the Han Hsi Matsu, the Nan Tun Matsu, the
Taichung Matsu and the Changhua Matsu, are all
invited to participate, and the "Matsu of the
Eighteen Villages" leads the procession. The
procession passes through the villages in an
established order, and each day, Matsu is carried
around to "welcome" her, and people feast.

Changhua County Chief Juan Kang-meng
carries the Matsu palanquin from
Taichung's Chenlan Temple (CNA)

「進香」表達對該神明的敬意

「進香」則是到遠處的、有名的、歷史悠
久的、香火旺盛的寺廟去朝香,表示對該
神明的敬意。與迎媽祖的差別是進香並不
會把對方的媽祖之神像請回來,只是去分
沾她的香火,因此自己的神明是要出去的
,到了進香對象的媽祖廟,神像也要進去
,放在神殿上,有時是用「掬火」的方式
,有時是用交香的方式,沾取對方的香火
。另一個與迎媽祖的差別是進香的地點不
一定與地域層級有關,因此進香的地點遠
一點也是常見的事。

"Offering incense" shows respect to the god

"Offering incense" involves going to distant, famous,
historical temples thick with temple smoke to burn
incense, and it expresses respect to the god or
goddess in question. The difference between "offering
incense" and "welcoming Matsu" is that "offering
incense" doesn't involve asking the statue of the
Matsu from the opposite temple to return, you just
have to go and share her incense, and so you have
to get your own goddess out, and take her to the
opposite Matsu temple, and you also have to take the
statue into the temple, and place it on the altar.
Sometimes the "holding fire" method is used, and
sometimes the "exchanging incense" method, sharing the
benefit of the incense from the other side. Another way
in which it is different from the "welcoming Matsu"
ritual is that the place in which you "offer incense"
doesn't have to be connected with regional level.

希望自己神明的香火也同樣旺盛

媽祖進香雖然是去表示敬意,給對方面子
,但是自己要的是裡子,也就是說儀式的
作用在沾取或分割對方香火到己方來,希
望自己神明的香火也同樣旺盛,因此進香
回來都要舉行繞境的儀式,神明繞過家家
戶戶,把香火正旺的神明的香爐裡的香枝
,與信徒家之香爐的香枝「交換香」,目
的即是為了利益自己境內的信徒。進香雖
然需要的花費龐大,但是生財有道的廟宇
常藉進香賺錢,因為一般人也喜歡參加進
香,左鄰右舍、呼朋引伴同往參加更是樂
趣無窮,既是神聖之旅,也是觀光之旅,
又是社交之旅,一兼二顧三顧,這是台灣
人的行為模式。最重要的是,共同舉辦進
香的地域社群藉著進香的共同行腳,促進
彼此的共同體或社群意識,這是進香最明
顯的社會意涵。因此進香的來去兩造之間
不無名與利、面子與裡子之互惠性交換的
意涵。海峽兩岸媽祖的交流也應如此,我
向你表示敬意,你自當待我以禮。神明間
的行為表現其實亦是人間的交際邏輯。

Hoping that the incense of your own god will
burn as brightly

Although offering incense to Matsu shows respect,
and gives face to the other party, what you want
for yourself is substantial advantage, that is,
ceremonial function when sharing or dividing
the other party's incense back to your own
place, you hope that your own god's incense
will burn equally well. Consequently, when
returning from offering incense, you have hold
processional ceremonies, and carry the goddess
around from house to house, and take the burning
incense sticks from out of the goddess's incense
burner, and exchange them with incense sticks
from the burners in the houses of Matsu's
followers. The aim is to benefit the followers
in your local area. Although "offering incense"
requires spending a lot of money, but temples
which are good at money-making frequently make
a profit out of "offering incense" because most
people enjoy attending the incense offering,
and it's more fun for neighbors go to attend
the ceremonies in big groups. It turns into a
cross between a pilgrimage, a tour, and a social
outing, killing several birds with one stone,
it's a very Taiwanese social behavior. The most
important thing is that the local communities
jointly holds the "incense offering", and by
doing it together, they promote a sense of
community feeling between the two places, and
this is the clearest social content to be found
in the "incense offering." Consequently, this
going backwards and forwards to offer incense
involves a reciprocal exchange between the two
places of fame and gain, and which gives both
"face" and "substantial advantage." Exchange of
Matsu visits between Taiwan and China should
also be carried out with the same ideals in
mind, I show you respect, and you naturally
must treat me politely. The behavior of
exchanging god expresses the logic of social
intercourse.

回思先民蓽路襤褸的歷史意識

我們若觀察進香的路線可發現它正好是移
民路線的反向。先民由唐山過台灣,在台
由南而北拓墾,今人到大陸進香,由北而
南在台灣各地的歷史名廟展開進香,不無
回思先民蓽路襤褸,移墾艱辛的歷史意識
。因此,鄭成功登陸最早地點的鹿耳門之
媽祖廟,中部移民進出的港口如鹿港與笨
港,均有媽祖廟,並由於正統之爭,顯功
與土城之媽祖廟相持不下,北港與新港為
誰是笨港之正統爭執激烈。

Thoughts on the historical significance of
the pioneer life

If we observe the incense offering
itinerary,we find that it is the exact
opposite ofimmigration in Taiwan. Our
ancestors came to Taiwan from China, and
once in Taiwan, spread from the south to
the north of the island,and today people go
to the mainland to offer incense, and the
famous historical temples line the route of
incense offering from north to south in
Taiwan, causing us to reflect on the
historical significance to be found in the
hard life of the pioneers who came to
Taiwan, and worked their fingers to the
bone cultivating the land. That's why there
are controversies over the legitimacy of
the Matsu temple at Lu Er Men, the spot
where Koxinga first set foot on Taiwan, and
the Matsu temples at harbors such as Lukang
and Penkang where the central Taiwan
immigrants set out from, and the Matsu
temples of Hsienkung and Tucheng are locked
in a deadlock over this. Peikang and
Hsinkang disagreed fiercely over which of
them was the real Penkang.

顯示台灣社會深層的二元結構

不僅顯功與土城、北港與新港,台灣很多
地方的媽祖廟都有媽祖的二元之爭,顯示
台灣社會深層的二元結構。例如,新竹城
有內外媽祖之分,內媽祖在天後宮,外媽
祖在長和宮;彰化城也有內外媽祖之分,
城內是天後宮,城外是南瑤宮。二元之分
有時是官廟與民廟之別,有時是城內與城
外之別,有時是漳泉之別。媽祖廟是民氣
匯聚之處,民之所分,自然也就現之於神


Revealing the dual structure of Taiwan society's
deep layers

It's not just Hsienkung and Tucheng, Peikang and
Hsinkang: many Matsu temples in Taiwan have
competing pairs of Matsus, revealing the dual
structure of Taiwan society's deep layers. For
example, the city of Hsinchu makes a distinction
between the inside Matsu and the outside Matsu.
The inner Matsu is at the Tienhou Temple,
whereas the outside Matsu is at the Changho
Temple. The city of Changhua also distinguishes
between an inner and outer Matsu: within the
city is the Tienhou Temple, outside the city is
the Nanyao Temple. Sometimes, the distinction
between two Matsus is due to the existence of
one temple for officials and another for the
common people, other times it's because there's
one temple inside the town and another outside
it. There are cases where the distinction is
the descent from immigrants from Quanzhou. Matsu
temples are places where people come together,
and the divisions that people make between
themselves will naturally be manifested with
their gods.

Worshippers move the Matsu statue from
the Chenlan Temple at Tachia, Taichung,
into a palanquin

媽祖的台灣化——由海神而成雨水之神

台灣的媽祖神像有一些特色,黑面是其一
,雍容富貴是其二,與大陸消瘦的粉面媽
對照強烈。媽祖原是海神,緣起於莆田湄
洲嶼小島上的漁村之女,生前死後都有護
佑海上安全、救助海難的靈驗事蹟。台灣
先民攜之渡海來台,保佑平安,在台拓墾
以來,迭獲庇佑,媽祖已然台灣化,由海
神而成雨水之神,「大道公風,媽祖婆雨
」的傳說更助長迎媽祖常帶來雨水的事蹟
傳播。台中縣大肚與龍井地區,有一個「
西保二十莊迎媽祖」的組織,當地有一則
諺語最能傳神的表達媽祖帶來雨水以及三
月時節氣候陰晴不定的景況:「墩仔頭烏
,營埔雨,林仔爛糊糊,澇婿浪雨滂,王
田燒死人,山仔頂著青驚,社腳去探聽,
講無影,大肚戲相拼」。

The "Taiwanization" of Matsu - from Goddess
of the Sea to Rain Goddess

Taiwan's Matsu goddess has a few special
characteristics, one of which is her black face,
her elegant and poised bearing is another, in
great contrast to the Chinese Matsu's thin,
powdered face. Matsu was originally Goddess of
the Sea. She started out as a girl from a
fishing village on the island of Meizhou, in
Putian (Fujian Province). Before and after her
death, she kept the sea safe, and came to the
aid of those in trouble on the sea. Our
ancestors brought her over with them when they
crossed the sea to Taiwan, to protect themselves,
and when they moved inwards, cultivating the
land of Taiwan, they frequently appealed to her
for blessings and protection, and thus Matsu
became "Taiwanized," and having started out as
Goddess of the Sea became Goddess of Rain. The
Taiwanese saying, "Lord Tatao controls the wind,
and the lady Matsu brings the rain" further
encouraged the belief that the ritual of
"welcoming Matsu" often brought rain. Tatu and
Lungching in Taichung County have an
organization called "Hsipao Twenty villages
welcoming Matsu," and there is a local saying
which perfectly expresses the belief that Matsu
brings the rains, and the unpredictable weather
of the month of March: "At Duonatao, the sky is
black, at Ngyahpo it's raining. At Lima, the
roads are muddy roads, at Lasay the rain has
stopped for a while. But the heat is stifling
at Ongtsan, so people are in shock over at
Swahadien. At Shiaka, people are asking "is it
true?" No, it's not! At Dwado, different plays
are being performed in competition."

衍生出水利神與農業神的性格

雨水太多造成水災時,卻又有「掃溪路」
的靈力,也就是說,巡境或迎媽祖時,神
轎特別繞過插香之處,該年若遇氾濫之水
,必然順此而流,不侵莊社。總之,無論
是止風歇浪、海上救難,或是呼風喚雨,
說停就停,叫流就流,均彰顯媽祖具有控
制水的靈力。台灣湍多水急,遇雨多災的
自然環境自然衍生出媽祖之水利神性格,
以適應農業時期台灣社會的需要。而農耕
最怕稻蟲害,媽祖也有驅蟲的靈力。這使
得媽祖更具有農業神的性格。此外,最誇
張的媽祖靈驗事蹟是二次大戰時,美軍轟
炸台灣,媽祖顯靈在半空中掀裙接住炸彈
,這個故事台灣南北皆有傳說,可以想見
戰時人們的恐懼,求之神明,如望救星。

Derived from her personality as goddess of water
management and agriculture

When an excess of rain causes floods, Matsu also
has a supernatural power which can "sweep the
rivers," that's to say that when people conduct
"inspection tours" or "welcome Matsu," the
palanquin of the goddess makes a special tour
around the place where incense is placed, and
if there have been floods that year, the flood
must flow down to the direction of the
procession, and not encroach on the village.
In short, no matter whether the wind stops and
the waves cease, rescue on the sea, or cause the
wind and rain to blow, if she tells it to stop,
it will stop, if she orders the waters to drain
away, they will drain away, equally it's clear
that Matsu possesses the power to control water.
Taiwan has many dangerous waters, and the natural
environment of typhoons and floods naturally led
to Matsu having the character of a water
management goddess, one who suited the needs of
Taiwanese society in the agricultural age.
Farmers most fear insects ruining their rice
harvests, and Matsu also has the power to repel
insects. This gives Matsu the character of an
agricultural goddess too. Apart from these,
the most exaggerated powers attributed to Matsu
were during the Second World War, when the U.S.
airforce was bombing Taiwan, and Matsu appeared
in the sky and lifted up her skirts to catch the
bombs. This story was told all over Taiwan, in
the south and the north, you can imagine how
terrified people were during the war, and how
they searched for a god or goddess who could be
their "savior."

具有整合人群的作用

媽祖姓林,林姓視之為祖姑婆,崇奉尤濃
。台灣陳林半天下,媽祖香火不興也難。
況且媽祖除了是一莊一社、一鄉一街、一
鎮一堡所祀之外,她亦具有整合人群的作
用,例如,苗栗中港慈裕宮(五十三莊)
、台南後壁下茄苳泰安宮(三十六莊)整
合泉州籍與客家的人群;台中萬和宮南屯
媽整合二十五字姓,彰化南瑤宮南門媽整
合漳州籍與福佬客三百五十個左右的村莊
,彰化社頭枋橋頭天門宮(七十二莊)、
斗南順安宮(五十三莊)亦整合漳州籍與
福佬客人群,北斗奠安宮(五十三莊)整
合泉州籍與漳州籍的住民等等。

A function of drawing society together

Matsu's family name was Lin, and people with the
family name of Lin see Matsu as an ancestor, and
worship her particularly intensely. Chen and Lin
are two of the most common family names in
Taiwan, and so you'll always see incense burning
for Matsu in Taiwan. Moreover, apart the
sacrifices that are made to Matsu in every
village, community, town and street, she also
has the function of drawing society together.
For example, the Tsu Lu Temple in Chung Kang,
Miaoli (53 villages), Tai An Temple in the
village of Hsi Chieh Tung in Houpi, Tainan (36
villages), which both bring together the
descendents of immigrants from Quanzhou (Fujian
Province) and the local Hakka population. The
Nan Tun Matsu of Taichung's Wan Ho Temple brings
together 25 different family names. The Nan Me
Matsu of Changhua's Nanyao Temple brings
together around 350 villages populated by
descendents of immigrants from Zhangzhou (Fujian
Province) and Hokkien-speaking Hakkas. The
Tienmen Temple at Fangchiaotou, in Shetou,
Changhua (72 villages) and the Shunan Temple in
Tounan (53 villages) also bring together
communities of descendents of Zhangzhou
immigrants and Hokkien-speaking Hakkas. Tien'an
Temple in Peitou (53 villages) brings together
the descendants of Quanzhou immigrants, and
there are many more examples.

媽祖的祭典形成聯莊組織

也因此媽祖的祭典會形成十三莊、十八
莊、二十四莊、三十六莊、五十三莊、
或七十二莊這樣的聯莊組織。為了媽祖
祭典的需要,各莊就要準備各式各樣的
熱鬧陣頭,以便在迎神賽會時得以代表
村莊參與別莊的熱鬧活動。媽祖的祭典
因此帶動各項民俗曲藝與武藝的發展,
眾多的曲館與武館之所以在台灣中部特
別盛行,也是因為台灣中部有很多媽祖
的大型區域性祭典組織,允為媽祖聖地
之故。可以這麼說,如果只是為了一莊
一社的祭典所需,民眾大概不會有什麼
興頭去花錢花力組織曲館與武館,並傳
承民俗藝術。感謝台灣媽祖,興我台灣
文化。

Matsu's ceremonies bring villages together
Another result of this is that Matsu's
ceremonies become organizations linking villages
together, be it 13, 18, 24, 36, 53 or 72
villages. In order to meet the needs of Matsu's
ceremonies, each village must prepare all sorts
of lively processions, so as to allow the
villages to represent themselves in the lively
activities of other villages when the time comes
to "welcome Matsu." Matsu's ceremonies
consequently promote all kinds of folk music art
and martial art exhibitions, and numerous local
music schools and martial arts halls flourish in
central Taiwan for the very reason that central
Taiwan has many large-scale regional
organizations for Matsu's ceremonies, and can be
regarded as the sacred land of Matsu. It could
be said that if the ceremonies were only
required for one village and one community, the
general public probably wouldn't be so
enthusiastic in spending money and effort to
organize local music schools and martial arts
halls, and passing down folk customs and art to
the next generation. Thank you, Taiwan Matsu, for
kindling our interest in Taiwan's culture.

Edited by Tina Lee/ translated by Elizabeth Hoile
(李美儀編輯/何麗薩翻譯)
TOP