Saturday, October 19, 2019

 China Expat – Chinese Language, Culture and China Travel for Expatriates in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing and other China Cities.


Chinese Martial Arts (武术)

 Chinese Martial Arts
Chinese Martial Arts ( 武术)

Chinese martial arts, also known as wushu (武术) or gongfu (功夫) (kung fu), were part of the traditional Chinese culture and had been developed mainly for self-defence, hunting and military training.

Chinese Porcelain (陶瓷)

 Chinese Porcelain
Chinese Porcelain ( 陶瓷)

Porcelain (陶瓷) was one of the most famous Chinese arts of all time, indeed porcelain objects were often referred to as ‘china’ in some parts of the world. The Chinese porcelain was made from clay containing kaolin, a form of clay material found in China. When heated to sufficient temperatures of above 1,200 degree centigrade, kaolin changed its physical composition and became translucent and impervious to water.

Chinese Tea (中国茶)

 Chinese Tea
Chinese Tea (中国茶)

The consumption of tea in China began as a medicine but gradually grew into a form of beverage. Shen Nong (神农), a legendary traditional Chinese medicine practitioner 2,700 BC ago, utilized tea as an antidote when he was poisoned while trying out various herbs.

Tang Poem – Qing Ming by Du Mu

 Qing Ming Festival
Qing Ming Festival ( 清明节 )
唐诗《清明》- 杜牧







Traditional Chinese Festivals – Qing Ming Festival ( 清明节 )

 Qing Ming Festival
Qing Ming Festival ( 清明节 )

Qing Ming Festival ( 清明节 ), or Clear Brightness Day, was a traditional Chinese festival that fell on April 5 this year. Qing Ming originated from being one of the 24 solar terms ( 二十四节气 ) used in the ancient Chinese’s lunisolar calendar more than 2,500 years ago. The ancient calendar divided the year evenly into 24 significant seasons, each separated by about 15 degree along the ecliptic path of the Sun across the sky. The purpose of the solar terms was to help synchronised farming decisions with the changing season.

The Year of The Earthly Ox

 Chinese Year of the Ox

Chinese worldwide celebrated the Lunar Year of the Ox on Monday, 26th January 2009. The Spring Festival as it is sometimes called, could last for up to fifteen days until the full moon on 9th February 2009.

China First Space Walk

 Wan Hu sitting on what was the first space craft.
Wan Hu - China first space explorer

Chinese Taikonaut Zhai Zhigang has very recently completed his first spacewalk for China, making China the third country to do so, after the former Soviet Union and the United States. Space exploration has always been a fascination for ancient civilizations and the ancient Chinese was no different.


Fertility Tips for Child Birth

 A Hundred Children
Painting of A Hundred Children

Ancestral worship is the underlying principle of Chinese ethics. Therefore, the birth of a child, in particular a son that will carry on the family’s name, is regarded as an extremely fortunate event. As such, there are many customs and rituals to encourage child birth especially among couples who are yet childless, unable to conceive or who have no luck with male infants.


Chinese Calendar - The Chinese Almanac

A Typical Chinese Almanac Cover
A typical Chinese Almanac
 Inside the Chinese Almanac

All ancient civilisations have their own slant of calendar record and almanacs in particular have been in existence since antiquity across the globe. The Chinese Almanac or “通胜”, is a book, or table, containing forecasts and outlook for the year.

Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival - Zhong Yuan Jie (中元节)

 Chinese Opera for the Hungry Ghost Festival
Chinese opera for the Hungry Ghost Festival

By now you should probably be aware of the 2008 Summer Olympics to be held in Beijing, China, this coming August. However, there is at least another event going on in (and beneath) China during August. Every year, during the seventh month of the Chinese Calendar, it is believed that the Gates of Hell will be opened and all Hell beings (well, not nearly all, only those well-behaved ones) will be set to roam freely on Earth for a month. 

Romance of the Three Kingdoms (三国演义) - Classical Chinese Novels

Battle of Red Cliff - Romance of the Three Kingdoms
A 1000 year old engraving marked the site
of the Battle of Red Cliff in today's Hubei, China.

Written by Luo Guanzhong ( 罗贯中) in the late Yuan and early Ming period (the exact period is not known ), the Romance of the Three Kingdoms, continue to be the most popular classical novels in Chinese Literature all these years.

The period of the Three Kingdoms, from late Eastern Han to the Western Jin Dynasty (169-265 AD) lasted about ninety years, and was an extremely chaotic period in which heroes rose to compete against one another and legends were made.

The Book of Poems

The Ancient Chinese Book of Poems
The Chinese Book of Poems 

Shi Jing ( 诗经 ) or The Book of Poems is one of the most significant headstreams of Chinese Literature. Complied over a period of almost 500 years from the Zhou Dynasty to the mid-Spring and Autumn Period, it contains 305 poems and was part of the Confucius’s curriculum in his time.

Pregnancy Gender Selection - A Chinese Birth Conception Chart

 Handcopied of original medical work on child birth care for females.

With a one-child policy in effect for two generations, the Chinese have it tough when it comes to raising a family. Gender selection at conception and pregnancy stages has always been an important consideration to the Chinese family as it is only the Son, and not the daughter, that will eventually carries the family name.

TCM - Famous Ancient Chinese Physicians

Li Shizhen, a well known medical practitioner during the Ming Dynasty.
Li Shizhen 

The field of Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM, is an ever evolving and adaptive discipline that has gained increased popularity in recent times. The early beginnings of the Traditional Chinese Medicine were recorded in three major classic works; namely The Yellow Emperor’s Internal Medicine (黄帝内径), The Treatise on Febrile Diseases (伤寒染病论), and The Pharmacopeia (本草纲目) or otherwise known as The Indices of Drugs.

Traditional Chinese Festivals - Duan Wu ( 端午)

Dragon Boat Racing During Duan Wu Festival

The Duan Wu ( 端午 ) Festivals falls on the fifth day of the fifth Chinese Lunar Month. This year, it will be on the 8th of June. There are actually many origins to this Festival, the most commonly excepted version is that the day is used to commemorate the death of Qu Yuan ( 屈原 ), an official and poet in the State of Chu ( ) state during the Warring States period.

Basis of Chinese Culture

The Yellow Emperor
How The Yellow Emperor May Have Looked Like.

Bronze Device From Xia Dynasty
A Bronze Drinking Device From the Age of Xia Dynasty

In the Chinese world, there was no defined universe in the beginning. There was simply a nothingness of formless chaos. The Chinese Culture was unique in not having a legend of myth about a Creator of the universe. This thinking was probably the most authentic line of reasoning, but it was not easy to be understood by commoners, nor was it easy to be employed by rulers.

An Ancient China's Seismograph

Back in AD 132, in the ancient capital of Jing Shi ( present day Luoyang in Henan Province) of Eastern Han Dynasty, news broke out that an official by the name of Zhang Heng ( 张衡 ) invented a mechanical machine that was capable of predicting the time and location of earthquakes. Many people did not believe him at that time.

Tang Poem - Farewell My Friend

-- 李白

The Yin and Yang of Chinese Names

The Chinese considered 3 stages of a man’s life ( birth, marriage and death ) as most important, as such there are numerous practices pertaining to each stage. At birth, a name will be bestowed to a child who will bear it for the rest of his life. As such, many details are taken into consideration when choosing a name. It is hoped that an auspicious name will smoothen the life path of the child by enhancing his hidden attributes and bring about good fortune.

TCM - Dealing with the Common Cold

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) concentrates more on natural remedies such as herbs and nutrition and less so on artificial drugs. These remedies are not meant to simply cure a symptom but to bring about a balance in the fundamentals of the body mechanism.

Feng Shui - Office Stress Busters

Lighting is the primary source of stress at work. Insufficient illumination makes it difficult to see things properly and induces a feeling of lethargic and inadequacy. On the other hand, overly strong glaring lights emit heat and sap energy, and are equally detrimental. Make sure you have a moderately lighted environment, which means you do not sit directly under the lights.

Schools of Feng Shui

Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese way that involves the study of both the natural and artificial environments so as to achieve a balance of the energy. There are many different forms of Feng Shui being practiced, each influenced by the cultural and environmental background of the practioner. Listed in this article are some common schools of Feng Shui.

Ancient China

Ancient China

Chinese Festivals

Chinese Festivals

Chinese Folk Culture

Chinese Folk Culture

Chinese Literature

Chinese Literature

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Chinese Medicine 

Feng Shui

Feng Shui 

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