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White Tiger, known as Baekho (백호)

 In Korean mythology, the White Tiger, known as Baekho (백호), is one of the Four Symbols representing the west. The creature is depicted as a majestic and powerful tiger with a white coat, symbolizing purity, strength, and is often associated with the autumn season and the metal element.

Baekho, as a guardian spirit, is entrusted with protecting the western realms. It is complemented by three other guardians: the Black Tortoise (Heukgu) of the north, the Red Phoenix (Bonghwang) of the south, and the Blue Dragon (Cheongryong) of the east. These four creatures are not only guardians of directions but also symbolize virtues and elements that are integral to balance within the universe according to traditional Korean cosmology.
The White Tiger's connection to the west and the element of metal is thought to have implications for martial power and defense. It is often called upon for protection against evil spirits and misfortune. Furthermore, in Korean folklore and mythology, the presence of Baekho can also mean the coming of a powerful and righteous leader or the rise of brave souls.
Throughout Korean history, the White Tiger has been a symbol of courage and a protector against dangers. It is celebrated in various cultural expressions, including martial arts where the powerful and graceful movements of the tiger are emulated, in military insignias, and in regional folklore.
The significance of the White Tiger extends to modern times, where its imagery is commonly found in popular culture, including films, television series, and literature, often evoking the values and attributes that have been associated with it throughout Korean history.


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