Saam Ching – The Three Pure Ones

A lot of people will search for “The Three Pure Ones”, yet the more accurate translation should be the “Three Clears”. In this article we will talk about the details of these three gods and explain what this is all about. As a Taoist, you should at least be able to know the answer to “What is Saam Ching” when people ask you about the statues on your altar! There is no mystery, no guesses, lets dig into the details!


Saam Ching – Three Clears

The Saam Ching, three clears, is one set of three gods of Taoism. You can see them as like they are human beings, there is nothing wrong about doing so because that’s the right way to build a relationship with gods and understanding how to communicate with them.

The three gods are one “set” because they work like 3 processes that completes a cycle. The reason why they are called Saam Ching (as one set) is because it is about the 3 phases of how preheaven energies are “cleared” from one the preheaven to the postheaven (the world here).

Beside knowing that they are working like 3 phases or process, you should really treat them as three gods as if they are human beings. The fact is that once your Saam Ching statue is fully consecrated, there are actually three gods at your altar, and that’s not just “some energies” anymore. You got to treat them with respect and not just look at them as if they are just some “dolls” or “energies”.

Sheung Ching – Upper Clears

The full name of this god is 上清靈寶天尊 Sheung Ching Ling Bo Tin Juen, its anniversary falls on the lunar June 9th. This god is named upper clear because it clears from the upper above. Its power is to reach upward to where your hands cannot reach, that is why it has a backscratcher in its hand as the magical tool. The backscratcher help you reach places you cannot reach such as your back.  

This god brings in new potentials, reach up to the celestial court, and help you call for help, connect to the higher power that you are not able to reach, and basically is like the modem that connects your computer to the internet; while this is the altar connecting to the celestial court. It empowers your connectivity and channeling power, while giving you more resources from preheaven, like a wealth god who can rain down useful resources whenever you need.

His power is not only about reaching upward, but also having strong vision for seeing the future. If you are in need of advice about making decision, you can ask him for advice, so that he can foresee what’s the best route to take and help you avoid the bumps and obstacles.

Yuk Ching – Jade Clears

The full name of this god is 玉清元始天尊 Yuk Ching Yuen Chi Tin Juen, its anniversary falls on the winter solstice in the lunar mid December. This god is named jade clear because it clears from the ground. Jade are stones, they are inside the ground.

After the upper clears which took the preheaven energies down from above, this god helps to take what is brought down and charge them into things to give them empowerments and life. You can say that the upper clears are like how the electricity goes from the powerplant to your house, and this one is like how your house hold onto the power and distribute it to everything within your house from lights to stoves and heater, so that they all can be powered up.

This god often hold onto the magical fireball as his magical tool, which represents the ball of energy that is one fire, symbolizing the heart power, the golden “pearl”, which is the essence that make things happen or “start”.

In short, he is the energizer god, putting a heart into everything, giving them a life. He is also wise and good at strategizing, management, and making use of wealth that is contained. He is like a financial planner who can help you plan how to get the resources pushed to where they should be. He always helps to empower, energize, or give wealth to things to help them grow, just like a wealth god.

Taai Ching - Ultimate Clears

The full name of this god is 太清道德天尊 Tai Ching Doe Duck Tin Juen, its anniversary falls on the lunar Feb 15th. This god is named ultimate clear because it clears from the postheaven world and let the power go out to shine or be used. His main power or job is to execute the magic, show the power, and burn the energy to execute the task and get things done.

The magical tool he holds are often the whisk, the gourd, and maybe the fan, which are all metaphor of how he uses these to pick out the power inside and deploy them out to the target.

If you are doing magic, exorcism or ANY magic that involves radiating the powers, this is the god who deals with the work and final deployment of the magic. He is often the main god that people worship because most people need him to help “output powers” and fix problems or save lives. Comparing to the electricity metaphor before, he is like the stage of which the appliances are using the powers to “shine” and do what they are supposed to do.

For divinations and such, he is the best one to ask if you are facing emergency situations or have anything you need to deal with quickly. He is also good at executing things the best way, so if you don’t know what to “do” or how to “do”, then you can consult him too.

Saam Ching Statue

The statues of Saam Ching needs to be consecrated to be a legit and working statue at your altar. Once consecrated, they are 3 gods at your altar and not 3 “statues” only.

The arrangement and order of these statues – some like to put it the default order with Sheung Ching on the altar’s left, then center is Yuk Ching, and right side is Taai Ching. (Looking from altar and out). However, it doesn’t matter that much, your gods will still be there for you even you place them in different order. If you have a specific need, you can place that statue in the center as “main”, and that’s another way to focus their powers.

If you need more potentials, opportunity, and vision, you can put the Sheung Ching in the middle. If you need more strategy, more ideas, more motivation, you can put Yuk Ching in the middle. If you need protection, exorcism, cleansing and purifying the most, you can put Taai Ching in the middle. The left and right, you can pick one and put it there, or think about which one you need more now then put that one on the right side. This way you can customize your Saam Ching setup too.

There is a lot more to learn, ordain today and get your hands on some practical Taoist magic learning!