New alternative address, next meeting time

This site now has two addresses:, and, until Sept. 09.

Also, the date of our next meeting is Sunday, November 9, 2008,
from noon to 3PM, in Hart House
(Updated: North Dining Room).

Anyone who is interested are welcome to attend. Members who have not paid their $5 membership fees may do so then as well.

Ming versions of Gaoshan and Liushui – An Experiment

Debut performance of the merged SQMP versions, Oct. 26. Photo by Shin'ichiro Hieida, merged by the author.

Debut performance of the merged SQMP versions, Oct. 26. Photo by Shin'ichiro Hieida, composited by the author.

Personally, the piece Liushui (Flowing water) has been an important work in my repertoire – the Tianwenge version (Qing dynasty) being a level 9 piece recognized by the Central Conservatory, I have studied it 3 times (failing the first two times), and finally mastering it to perform at my debut into the guqin career at the 2005 Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival. While this piece is well-performed, well-played, and well-researched, I have always had the notion of wonder as to the ties with its sibling piece, Gao Shan (Lofty Mountains). This is even more so if one looks at earlier Ming records of the piece – they are almost parallel, save some parts that signify the unique symbolisms of the theme.

So I thought, if the piece was divided around the Song-Yuan period, why not try putting them back together? An experiment has then been planned, and is now underway. More

Teaching kids about Chinese history

This Thursday (Oct. 16, 2008), I have had the honour of being invited to Pape Junior Elementary School to give an hour’s lecture on Chinese history and culture as part of their Gr.4 curriculum on the Middle Ages (700 to 1500). Since their approach was largely on social construct, I gave my lecture in a similar way.

But sadly, I was a fool enough to forget my camera, so no pictures are available. My apologies. More

Revenge of the guqin-guzheng misnomer

Brought to you by the Facebook Guqin International group:

We need a new punchline.

We need a new punchline.

So yes. Ph33r t3h ph|_|ry. And we need a less offensive statement. Got any ideas that would make this work on a T-shirt, pay our respects to our rightful guqin players, while not offending our zheng-playing allies?

And again, when I started this blog, I copied an earlier “statement pic” I made for the group:

A Guqin is not a Guzheng.

A Guqin is not a Guzheng.

And yes, we’re either bitter bastards or sore losers.
Just kidding.

One must arm oneself with knowledge…

In an era where information is THE resource and commodities the manipulated chess pieces, one must obtain the means to MOVE such commodities.

If there’s anything good out of the Cultural Revolution (despite it turning sour), it’s the spirit of trying to educate everyone in the country to the most current issues, to the fullest extent (with full background information). To do so requires an extreme amount of resources material and immaterial, and given the temporal context of China at the time, it was only logical that real (information) Communism exists.

Power is in diverging disciplines. Ritual, music, and religion are here. There is much more to where that came from.

Power is in diverging disciplines. Ritual, music, and religion are here. There is much more to where that came from.

So here I am in Hong Kong, sifting through book malls (yes, not just a store but a MALL of books), and selected these books with my tight wallet (I considered on buying an essay anthology by LGBT people in HK, but since it didn’t cover the T part that well, I took a second thought). This should be useful in proving ideas – books that include the original text in WHOLE.

Rethinking the Hanfu Movement, Oct. ’08 (Pt.1: Temporality)

Ming-standard wedding in Beijing, Oct 4, 2008.

Ming-standard wedding in Beijing, Oct 4, 2008.

Continuing onto some thoughts on conflicts and infighting of some issues in the Hanfu Restoration Movement as part of the Huaxia Renaissance movement, namely onto major ongoing criticisms and unresolved concept standpoints. The purpose of the Hanfu Movement is to ‘restore the impression of Han Chinese clothing (to the Chinese) to the Han Chinese tradition, in response to correcting the mis-impression of tight-formed Qipao and button-up tunics (which we call Tangzhuang today) as representation of all Chinese tradition, which should not be perceived as dead’. It may seem redundant or blindingly obvious to those who are aware , after 3 years of dedicated promotional work. However, the government still does not give any official response to the movement, nor have they responded positively by adopting Hanfu as the representational image of the Han Chinese people, but rather reinforce the Party policy of ethnic diversity, and support ‘traditional’ movements abiding by the Qing standard. While it may sound perfectly fine, the support from the Chinese government to ensure the cultural propriety of the Han Chinese is marginal at best.

I digress.

The year prior to the Olympic Games marked the golden era of actual results in Hanfu awareness promotion. Many shops were getting a significant foothold as sustainable enterprises, and the Hundred Scholars petition made headline news. However, if one look back on the ‘history’ then, as well as today, there are many voices of disagreement within the movement that remain largely unresolved and un-unified. While it will be impossible to list them all, I will try my best to list as many as possible..



Going overseas

Even flying the Arctic route, it's a long way to HK!

I will be taking a brief hiatus of a week from school to attend my sister’s wedding in Hong Kong. Although there will be much relative-visiting, dinners, and shopping, one of the advantages to be away from homework (aside from midterm assignments) is more time to think and write on this blog.

My draft of “Rethinking the Hanfu Movement” for October has already been sitting for a few days, I am still building it up in size. Even so, it may require to be split into two parts (One for more thoughts, one for replying to various questions that has already been proposed). I hope everyone who read my articles leave comments or constructive criticism after, hopefully creating discussion through the replies.

As well, I will be organizing a Hanfu group ordering and Hanfu-making workshop (2 separate things) for all UTCCAS members during this time. Please help out the cause by getting your own set of Hanfu today!

A Brief of Actual Results from Chinese Culture Renaissance Mvt.: Major Events (2001-08)

Wang Letian, the one who Started it all

Wang Letian, the one who "Started it all"

When speaking of the Hanfu movement, the Internet and (then work hand-in-hand. Back in 2002 its few members dedicated to the revival of Han Chinese studies and tradition, some suggested that the then-recent APEC conference (2001) has seriously blundered the Chinese tradition by “putting back on the braids of racial enslavement” in wearing Manchu-inspired clothing. After half a year of discussion, a person by the net name of Zhuangzhi Lingyun (壯志凌雲) decided to do what many only dream of – wear these so-called ancient clothing (古裝) that can only be seen on television dramas, opera stages, and in texts before the Qing. After he got his set of clothes by a tailor in Shanghai, he took it out and wore it for a stroll in his city of Zhengzhou. There was no immediate rave or the world noticing, until Lianhe Zaobao (Singapore) put the picture (left) with caption and a small article that the effect began to spread to Chinese communities throughout the world, gathering people to the site, and eventually beginning gatherings and walks that what we know as the “Hanfu Movement” became an actuality.

Let’s take a look now at a brief chronology of major events in the movement, as well challenges posed along the way. More – revived!

From Guangzhou with Love - Chen Hong's instruments (the one on the right will be mine!)

From Guangzhou with Love - Chen Hong's new Qins: The one on the right will be mine!

 This is the site that started it all: Since I had no human teacher to study off of, this was one of my primary sources of guqin research and materials back in 2003. It’s changed (not to mention degraded) somewhat, and for over 2 years I have not touched this place…but it’s back up, and it’s a lot less laggy (from spyware) than before!


So yay!


(URL: Please check on blogrolls to the right)


October 2008