Hong Xiuquan, (Chinese: 洪秀全), otherwise known as Grand Ayatollah of the Kingdom of Heavenly Peace, was the younger brother of Jesus who rebellioned against the Qing dynasty under the name of establishing a Christian theocracy in China. Scholars have debated why God would have placed his second son in such an unfortunate location, some believe that God is actually an Asian man while others believe he, like all Jews, like Chinese food. Whatever the reason, his life is the most hilarious episode in Chinese history in which 200 million died in the farcical course of events which resulted in the military disasters that resulted from Hong's plans.
How did this happen?
At the beginning of time, God had two sons, Jesus and Hong Xiuquan. He sent his first son down to the Roman province of Judea, while he did not tell anyone about his second son, but 1800 years later without any announcement sent him down to a Hakka village in China no one has heard of, Fuyuanshui in the province of Guangdong. Knowing that their son is one of the sons of God, Hong Xiuquan's parents believes that he has a future in the Chinese government and sent him studying for the Chinese Civil Service Examinations. Like most good Asian parents, they used
physical punishment some very persuasive means to make him study, and this placed a lot of pressure on the young Hong. He often became so nervous that his minds often blanked out during the examination which made him fail, not only once, twice, but thrice. After his third time failing the examination he had a complete mental breakdown religious vision in which he saw God revealing himself as his father and his older brother Jesus standing beside him. Then God took a sword and performed on him what must have been the world's first organ transplant on him, then left the room. When he regained consciousness from his vision he dismissed it as just a bout of Asian bird flu, and went back to studying. However, after he failed the 4th time at the Chinese Civil Service Exam he decided that trying to pass the examinations was too difficult, and instead took on the full-time occupation of being Jesus' younger brother.
At this point a Mormon named Issachar Jacox Roberts knocked on Hong Xiuquan's door asking him if he accepted Joseph Smith as the last prophet of God. He was confused when Hong Xiuquan claimed that he is way better than Joseph Smith in that he's actually the second son of God. Hong and Roberts than got into an intense theological argument about who was right. At a crucial point Roberts took out the Bible to show Hong that Jesus is God's only son, but when shown this Hong simply crossed out the word "only" and wrote his name in its place. When asked later about the incident Hong simply responded, "There was an obvious typo in that version of the Bible he was carrying." He then went to a local tavern to announce his discovery that he's the younger brother of the messiah, at which point he was laughed at and the patrons made similar claims that they were the "Sons of Heaven" also. The laugher died down when he pulled the liver out of one man, held it up to show it for all to see, then shoved it back in. The crowd thought that the trick was cool, and he immediately began gaining followers. Christian missionaries who were initially unwilling to support Hong eventually did, and tried teaching him the words of God was revealed in the Bible. However they became very alarmed when Hong started writing his own version of the Bible, inserting himself into the stories of the New Testament where he was baptized alongside Jesus in the Jordan River. The charismatic Hong created his own sect of Christianity with his newly gathered followers called the "God Worshippers," and not only did the younger brother of Jesus have a wish to be venerated as a God, but also had pretentions to become the Lady of the Lake. As was described to him in his favorite western story tale King Arthur.
The Kingdom of Heavenly Peace
As Hong gained numerous followers the Chinese government became worried of the potential threat this new religious sect could pose for them, and they were right. As Hong became more and more entrenched in his
total insanity religious vision he became convinced that God had sent him down as a heavenly ruler of all China, Western missionaries who have been teaching Hong Xiuquan Christianity became wary of him. On January 11, 1851 declared himself to be the Grand Ayatollah of the Kingdom of Heavenly Peace (Chinese: 太平天国), the official leader of a Chinese theocracy, some missionaries who have been backing him withdrew all their support. However, Hong Xiuquan had all the support he needs from his followers who believed that he was the son of God. In quick order he recruited men to his personal army, and as quickly as it became feasible attacked the Green Standing Army stationed by the government. The Chinese, who had already suffered a devastating defeat by the Manchus 200 years before could not face the dishonor of another defeat by their own people in a civil war, so they retaliated. The Chinese government failed miserably, and face defeat after humiliating defeat at the hands of the troops of Hong Xiuquan. On the verge of committing seppuku to avoid the dishonor of losing China to a measly band of religious fanatics, the Emperor of China received a reprieve when he received a message from the English and French that they were willing to help him to defeat Hong Xiuquan for the exchange of the privilege of selling opium to the Chinese. Knowing the full dangers of opium the emperor nonetheless considering less painful than seppuku, he reluctantly agreed to cooperate with the Foreign Devils in order to maintain his empire. So in exchange for the reputation of the Chinese being opium addicts for the next century, the emperor of China saved whatever left of his empire which Hong hadn't already destroyed. The foreign weapons were no match against the yells of "Allahu Akbar!" by the troops of Hong, and Hong's troops sacrificed themselves in waves and waves of suicide attack against canon fire. It was reported that Hong fought to the very last battle, and right before he was killed by a 10-pound iron ball blasting away his head, his last words were reported to be, "I wish I tried passing the Chinese Civil Service Exam one more time before I went on this whacky mission."
His influences on Chinese culture
In Marxist interpretations of Hong Xiuquan, he was actually a pre-modern proto-communist who used the language of religious struggle to rally the proletariat in a Marxist revolution against the bourgeoisie. Most Chinese people thought he was just insane. Despite his ambiguous reputation in China, many people have proclaimed to be the the reincarnation of Hong Xiuquan. Amongst these are Sun Yat-sen, Mao Zedong, and Li Hongzhi. Recently Osama bin Laden have declared that he the reincarnation of Hong Xiuquan, proclaiming himself the Grand Ayatollah of the Heavenly Empire of China. Most, however, believe bin Laden is aching for attention from George W. Bush...Wait...Jesus was chinese?