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Shuilian Cave (simplified Chinese: 水帘洞; traditional Chinese: 水簾洞; pinyin: Shuǐlián Dòng; Wade–Giles: Shui3lien2tung4), literally meaning Water Curtain Cave, is an area featured within the novel Journey to the West written in the Ming Dynasty. Shuilian Cave had been featured since the first chapter of this novel. Very early on, Sun Wukong would become the king of this cave and it would generally be used for all the monkeys to train within and generally rest. Before such an event, Wukong, with his bravery, nominated himself to be the monkey that would rush through the Mount Huaguo's great waterfall in order to see what was behind it. He discovered
- Emerald moss piled up in heaps of blue,
- White clouds like drifting jade,
- While the light flickered among wisps of coloured mist.
- A quiet house with peaceful windows,
- Flowers growing on the smooth bench;
- Dragon pearls hanging in niches,
- Exotic blooms all around.
- Traces of fire beside the stove,
- Scraps of food in the vessels by the table.
- Adorable stone chairs and beds,
- Even better stone plates and bowls.
- One or two tall bamboos,
- Three or four sprigs of plum blossom,
- A few pines that always attract rain,
- All just like a real home.
Following this, Wukong
- took a good, long look and then scampered to the middle of the bridge, from where he noticed a stone tablet. On the tablet had been carved in big square letters: HAPPY LAND OF THE MOUNTAIN OF FLOWERS AND FRUIT, CAVE HEAVEN OF THE WATER CURTAIN (Chinese: 花果山福地、水帘洞洞天). The stone monkey was beside himself with glee. He rushed away, shut his eyes, crouched, and leapt back through the waterfall.
After many points following this, Sun Wukong would return to the Water Curtain Cave for miscellaneous reasons either while returning from his celestial master, or from an issue with his enlightened master, Sanzang.
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