A Study on the Meanings of the Lyrics about Gongshim, the Ancestry God of Female Shamans, in Shamanic Music
Some of the shamanic music saseols grab attention by starting every gut with "Queen Awang, Gongshim, takes a bow. Mt. Nam is the origin" in the southwestern region of the Korean Peninsula. Queen Awang is named Gongshim, who is the ancestry god of female shamans. Gongshim is called out at the beginning of a gut or every geori, which indicates that people placed importance on Gongshim as the ancestry god of female shamans in the regions where she was sung. In shamanism, however, the ancestry god of female shamans usually refers to Princess Bari from inland regions or Three Brothers of Chogongbonpuri from Jeju Island. Compared to them, Gongshim has been relatively less highlighted. Thus this study set out to analyze the lyrics calling out Gongshim and examine the meanings of the lyrics, the symbolism of Gongshim, and the effects of calling her out.
Chapter 2 marked the scope of Gongshim's influence as the ancestry god of female shamans on a map and arranged the stories of shamanic songs for Gongshim in a table. According to the Gongshim tale recorded in Chungnam, Jeonbuk, Jeonnam, and Gyeongnam, Gongshim, a Goryeo princess, develops a mental disease and is moved to Mt. Nam, where she learns prayers, songs and dances required for the shamanist practice. After leaving the mountain, she spreads what she has fulfilled and becomes the ancestry god of female shamans. In some villages, she would be worshiped as the village deity. Thus female shamans started to sing ""Queen Awang, Gongshim, takes a bow. Mt. Nam is the origin."In Chapter 3, the investigator interpreted "Queen Awang, Gongshim, takes a bow. Mt. Nam is the origin" as "Our ancestry god, Gongshim was born in a Buddhist temple, and Mt. Nam is her origin place" based on the Gongshim shamanic song of each area within her influential scope and the Gongshim tales of some regions. The lyrics about Gongshim demonstrate the history of shamanism and grant legitimacy to it. They should be understood to contain more meanings rather than as common phrases or opening words.