My thoughts put burden on my mind. From reporting of the prosecution
of Rutger's Chinese Ph.D for 'trespassing' at Newark airport that
produced a HUGE security breach scare, to my disliking of James Lewis
Internet can not remain entirely as a self-organizing entity'
What would you die for? Love, Honor and your country?
And where do you start? rejecting/saving hjclub as part of your effort in
securing your love for advogato?
I like the argument that terrorists are not warriors nor are they lovers
but they are oppressed being fighting their own demons. When they lost
their battle, they lost their mind and their claim to be part of our
humanity. Their battle is our 'Bible' to learn how to love and how to live.
The poet and the monkey
We are so much alike.
Two poisonous snakes
betraying each others’ treasure
No-one can transcend the prison of lies
No-one knows who is a corpse
When the sun explodes
Sleeves are empty
Everywhere is a foreign land
Death gives no refuge.
How to design/restore a civilization so that poets and monkeys will lead
our ways to overcome our fears? I created this group on Linkedn called s
. It started its discussion from Mao Zedong's poem. (
Ten Poems and Lyrics by Mao Tse-tung, translator Wang Hui-Ming is a very
interesting book that included Mao's own calligraphy on each poem), then
collected my own thoughts on religion and language.
none says “世界上本没有宗教，迷信（某一特定迷信）的人多了，（那种）迷信
就成了宗教。” nunia says 神灵与宗教是两码子事。世界是由神灵主宰的，信神
Nunia 神经, Nunia is borrowed from a Mrs nuniabiz on LiveJournal. We
joined badvogato.org together at the same time under crackmonkey's
reign. I liked her 'nuniabiz' 'none
of your business' proclaim. 神经 as a phrase in Chinese, literally means
'nerve/ crazy' etc... first character also means gods. and second
character means god's saying. Isn't that phrase revealing what our
If Western civilization wanted a free China, we must NOT start from
politics but start from intimate relationship between public education
and prejudices and religious convictions within a
family/group/community. In China, strife confronting
Taiwan/Tibet/Shanghai/Beijing/Japan has always been there through out
Chinese history. Communism has swept the globe at the turn of last
century, Chinese are no longer following its doctrine as much as
Japanese or Americans. Chinese civil examination institution was a
total and thorough democratic process. Its cultural history was so much
richer than any other modern nation's parliaments/courts and elections.
Right now, the ruling elite in China are Tsinghua Univ. graduates. They
believe in scientific advancement and Western technology more than Four
books and Five Classics. Their official moral teaching still maintain
materialistic Marxism in regards of religion and arts. I was reading
official English translation of Chairman Mao's speech 'On literature and
art'. That literature and art MUST serve the needs of mass and the
people. If literature and art MUST serve the needs of the people on
their immediate woes, can it foretell the desire of another generation
and many more to come? If power, money and knoweledge MUST serve the
needs of the
people, should it be in the hands of everyone equally for all nations
and all religions? What is the use of God and religion if people do not
need it to name their common origin, their diverse fate and their
diverse/common destiny ?
"A Cultural History of Civil Examinations in Late Emperial China' by
Benjamin A. Elman, University of California Press.
The book is dedicated to Sarah 蔡素娥, with love and affection.
FORMAT OF PROVINCIAL AND METROPOLITAN CIVIL EXAMINATIONS 1384-1756
1. Four Books 四书 three quotations
2. Five Classics 五经 Four quotations each
1. Discourse 论
2. Documents 诏表[ Imperial mandates, admonitions, memorials]
3. Judicial terms 判语 [ reasons for conferring decisions ]
1. Five policy questions. 经史时务策 5 essays
In this multidimensional analysis, Benjamin A. Elman uses more than a
thousand newly available examination records to explore the social,
political, and cultural dimensions of the civil examination system, one
of the most important institutions in Chinese history. For seven hundred
years, all positions wthin the synastic government were filled through
the difficult examiniations, and each year tens of thousands of men from
all levels of society attempted them.
Covering the system from its inception to its demise, Elman revises our
previous understanding of how the system actually worked, including its
political and cultural machinary, its long-term historical legacy, and
the unforseen consequences when it was unceremoniously scrapped by
modernist reformers. He argues that the Ming-Ching civil examinations
from 1370 to 1904 represented a substantial break with Tang-Sun dynasty
literary examininations from 650 to 1250. Late imperial examinations
also made 'Tao Learning' or neo-Confucian learning, the dynastic
othodoxy in offical life and in literati culture. The intersections
between elite social life, populate culture, religion, and the mantic
arts are examined to reveal the full scope of the examination process,
which drew the participation of millions of men and affected all levels
of society in late imperial China.
Thomas, that is a very well put sonnet
. I once was surprised to find out that Thomas means 'twin'. Per
chance, I came across Steven Spender's 'DARKNESS AND LIGHT today.
Darkness and Light
To break out of the chaos of my darkness
Into a lucid day, is all my will.
My words like eyes in night, stare to reach
A centre for their light: and my acts thrown
To distant places by impatient violence
Yet lock together to mould a path
Out of my darkness, into a lucid day.
Yet, equally, to avoid that lucid day
And to preserve my darkness, is all my will.
My words like eyes that flinch from light, refuses
And shut upon obscurity: my acts
Cast to their opposites by impatient violence
Break up the sequent path; they fly
On a circumference to avoid the centre.
To break out of my darkness towards the centre
Illumines my own weakness, when I fail;
The iron arc of the avoiding journey
Curves back upon my weakness at the end;
Whether the faint light spark against my face
Or in the dark my sight hide from my sight,
Centre and circumference are both my weakness.
O Strange identity of my will and weakness!
Terrible wave white with the seething word!
Terrible flight through the revolving darkness!
Dreaded light that hunts my profile!
Dreaded night covering me in fears!
My will behind my weakness silhouettes
My territories of fear, with a great sun.
I grow towards the acceptance of that sun
Which hews the day from night. The light
Runs from the dark, the dark from light
Towards a black and white total emptiness.
The world, my life, binds the dark and light
Together, reconciles and separates
In lucid day the chaos of my darkness.
From 'The Still Centre', 1935
An excerpt from 'Ten Poems and Lyrics by Mao Tse-tung, translator Wang
'Art comes from convention and not invention'
'My sympathy lies with the Chinese convention that there must be
painting in poetry and poetry in painting. In other words, I would like
to see a poem written with a painter's eyes and a painting painted with
a poet's mind.
In Chairman Mao's calligraphy, we can see that he is a man of firm
determination, unpredictable mood, quick in decision and fast in action
- soft yet strong, pliable yet penetrating, sophisticated yet earthy,
and delicate yet robust. In short, he is indeed a "simplicated" and
"complied" man. The upward tilt of the right corner of his chracters
suggests a contempt for conventions. It is reminiscent of the
calligraphy by the eccentric poet, essayist, painter, and seal artist
Cheng Hsien (1683-1765), who called himself fengzi ("the mad man"). Both
men show an unyielding independence in their work, a quality treasured
by all and achieved by few in the history of art.
Most Chinese poetry is written in simple characters, and one does not
need a large vocabulary to appreciate it. After all, there are only
somewhat more than a thousand characters in the great Tao Te Ching, and
most of them are common characters. A student in elementary Chinese can
read Chinese poetry without difficulty if the poetry is presented to him
as a word-picture. In fact, he will enjoy it more and learn faster if he
begins his reading in poetry and writing with a brush instead of
learning Chinese as a tool to learn other things Chinese later, as
commonly practiced today in universities. The very attitude of learning
a language as a tool dulls the sense of wonder and diminishes the
pleasure of learning.
I realize that it is less sinful to write bad poems than to translate
good ones badly. If Mao's poetry comes through my translation, credit
must go to him as a good poet. IF readers find flaws, no one but I am to
-- "Ten Poems and Lyrics by Mao Tse-Tung' Wang Hui-Ming, translator.
In this unusual book, Wang Hui-MIng has translated a cycle of ten poems
by Mao which concern historic incidents in the Chinese Revolution,
especially the Long March into Northwestern China during the 1930s. The
work is distinguished by the inclusion of reproductions of Mao's
Mr. Wang, an "artist who loves poetry" contributes a woodcut
illustration to this volume. He is the author of 'The Land on the Tip of
a Hair: poems in wood, the boat untied and other poems, a folio of
woodengravings, and The Birds and the Animals, a folio of woodcuts based
on the poems of Po Chu-I. He also is the illustrator of Jumping Out of
Bed by Robert Bly. Wang Hui-Ming teaches in the Dept. of Art at the
Univ. of Massachusetts.
I inclined to agree with Wang Hui-Ming's view that 'Art comes from
convention, not invention'. Then Nikolai
Gogol's nose started making face at me. I was distressed. Where lies
the truth apart from false?