Archive for February 2010
Posted on Sunday, February 21, 2010 at 7:02 AM by Sifu TW Smith the site author">Sifu TW Smith
Kwan Kung is the Warrior of Peace and Diety of War.
Kwan Gong (Guan Yu) is poised in practically every kung fu Kwoon (school). Whether as a picture or statue, his presence to oversee activity and training is inspiring.
Kwan Kung was born 162 A.D. near the end of the Han Dynasty. He grew up selling vegetables and became the Greatest General of all time. His strength, courage, and fluid field tactics were unparrelled. Yet it was this combined with his loyalty, dedicaton, wisdom and leadership that put him in the realm of immortality.
In practically every image Kwan Kung is holding his weapon known as Kwan Dao. A strong staff with a large blade. This weapon requires strength and skill to master. It is said that his blade weighed 82 jin, around 20 lbs.
Guan Yu (Kwan Kung) served under Liu Bei during the late Han Dynasty and an era referred to as the Three Kingdoms Period. It was Guan Yu that led the removal of the Han Dynasty to install the First Emporer, Liu Bei, the Kingdom of Shu around 220 A.D.
As all legends go, the stories get embellished as they go, yet there is no doubt that Guan Yu (Kwan Gung) was embraced centuries ago as the representative of loyalty, courage, and willing to stand for peace of the Chinese people.
It is said that not only was he an excellent General that was able to avoid confrontations when advantageous, but that over time he was offered land, money, and women by the Emporers enemies. These enemies knew that if they had to face Guan Yu on the battlefield, that would most likely loose, so they took a softer approach to get themselves in.
Guan Yu never sold out, and along side with his son, Guan Ping, they were later executed by Sun Qua.
Posted in Cultural
Posted on Tuesday, February 16, 2010 at 4:09 AM by Sifu TW Smith the site author">Sifu TW Smith
In Chinese History, The Three Kingdoms era (220-265 A.D.) is the time of Civil Wars, Buddhism spreading into China, and several historical figures lived including Kwan Gong and Hua Tuo.
Buddhism was introduced in 1 A.D., but did not spread until the Han Dynasty collapsed. Wei Kingdom was the strongest of the three and captured the Shu territory in 263 A.D.
The Three Kingdoms period was one of the bloodiest in Chinese history.Throughout the Three Kingdoms Period, battles between the three countries were countless. Among those, battles between Shu and Wu fighting for Jingzhou, Shu and Wei fighting for Hanzhong as well as Wei defeating Shu were all illustrious ones in Chinese history.
Finally, the end of the Three Kingdoms Period started from the Sima Yan (son of Sima Yi and chancellor of Wei)'s usurpation of Wei and the establishment of the Jin Dynasty (265 - 420). In 282 when the Jin army conquered the last kingdom - Wu's capital, the Three Kingdoms Period was ended.
"The middle reaches of the River Yangzi, bordering all three kingdoms, were the inevitable focus of many battles. Before introducing the most famous battle with which the river is associated, it behooves us to first present the three kingdoms and their leaders.
To give some notion of the centrality of the Yangzi River to this historical fiction, it is enough merely to quote the prologue. This is in the form of a poem:
'On and on the Great River rolls, racing east.
Of proud and gallant heroes its white-tops leave no trace,
As right and wrong, pride and fall turn all at once unreal.
Yet ever the green hills stay
To blaze in the west-waning day."
Posted in Cultural
Posted on Friday, February 12, 2010 at 12:41 PM by Sifu TW Smith the site author">Sifu TW Smith
The Chinese New Year starts on the first new moon of the year, and the celebration ends on the first full moon following, 15 days later. The 15th day is the "Lantern Festival" and this is when the incredible cultural display of lanterns and children walking with lanterns.
The Chinese New Year has many facets, including cleansing, renewing, spirit, reunion. One of my favorite traditions is the "Weilu". On the New Years Eve it is important to remember our ancestors. Those who gave of themselves, whose blood flows in our veins, for generations past. Weilu is the tradition of preparing a bountiful plate of food, and placing it on the table, prepared with seat, utensils. This is symbolize the reunion of the past with the present.
The 15 day celebration includes:
Chinese New Years Eve: Weilu - Symbolic rememberence of ancestors. Make a full sitting at dinner table.
Day 1: Welcome the Protectors and Dieties. No negative words or sour faces.
Day 2: More meditation and prayer to ancestors and important figures. Feed your dogs well, the second day is known as the birthday of all dogs.
Day 3 & 4: Family gathering times, paying respect to family members
Day 5: Day of wealth. This is the day that the diety of Wealth and money is honored. This day is called Poo Woo.
Day 6-10: Family Activities and Re-union
Day 7: Birthday for Humans
Day 9: Respect offered to Jade Emperor. Very important day.
Day 13: Cleanse - Cleanse the body of all the rich foods from these reunions. Traditionaly a fast or rice & greens.
Day 14: Prepare for Lantern Day
Day 15: Lantern Festival
Also for New Years tradition:
1. Clean the house to be ready New Year
2. Replace the rice in incense pots
3. Replace / Clean fountains of water
4. Dust / Clean alter or meditation space
5. Giving red envelopes with few dollars to children
6. Going to temple to pay respects
7. Lion dancing.
So enjoy the Chinese New Year.Edited on: Thursday, July 03, 2014 1:41 PM
Posted in Cultural