Ah Gin, I went to that link but still couldn't figure out what I was.........then I remembered that my brother and I did our DNA tests (that I posted under DNA) and finally discovered that I was Han!
This is what the test-analyst said about his Y-Chromosome results:
"My brother did the Y-Chromosome test with Ancestry.com and the results said his Paternal Haplogroup was '03', "The Inventors"..... "Haplogroup 03 can be found at very high rates among the Han Chinese and originated about 30,000 years ago in south-eastern Asia and quickly migrated to central China. It is still associated with central China, but many present-day embers of Manchurian, Korean and Vietnamese populations are part of the "Inventors". Some Filipinos and Japanese are also in this group."
Wow this is serious research -- DNA tests. Acording to our Gin Clan Zupu, our clan originated from the "Great Plains of China / Asia" and our ancestor transmigrated from the Great Plain to the Pearl River Data region / Siyi Region. So I assume I am also a Han. That said, who knows unless I have a test as well.
Back to the lecture by Martin Jacques. I find it interesting as well. We have a small collection of books on Chinese modern history, studies on the cultural side etc. of the Chinese etc. In particular, "Sources of Chinese Tradition" compiled by Theodore de Bary et al, published in 1963, Columbia College, is an excellent collection, which amongst other things, provide an insight to the behaviour, expectations, etc. of the Chinese people. The sort of discussions we all have had re how we should behave / relate to our relatives (such as your recent reunion with your relatives) is, in my view, a micro picture of how the Chinese "Old 100 Surnames" -- read the People (with a capital "P") survived through the years, and collectively, transformed China from one dynasty to another. The Chinese people (and indeed many older civilisation) sees the Family as the most important thing. And Family extends to the nation. The emerging success of China and indeed the Chinese people all over the world has a lot to do with our culture, just as a number of other older cultures.
Imerse yourself in as many books, reputable Internet sites such as Wiki to educate yourself on things Chinese. I have only viewed one from the TED series. Whilst I find Jacques' lecture interesting, I view that as a person's point of view. Sure, he may be a well known, well qualified person. There are some superficial points he made about the Chinese -- that's not to say the facts are incorrect, just that it's like eating a Chinese meal -- not enough, because it tastes so good. Nothing beats reading a book.
Good luck with sourcing your Clan Zupu. Also do take a trip back to your ancestral home. You got to experience it to really understand the feeling of connection with your ancestors.
I truly appreciate your wise words Ah Gin. At 62, I feel like a 2 year old just learning to walk and talk........so much to catch up on in this new world. My monochrome vision suddenly turned technicolor....... a little overwhelming.
Little sister (and that is a salutation of respect. I am a few more years senior), thanks for your generous remarks. I myself don't really know enough about Chinese culture, modern history).
By the way, I recall you raised the matter of "Bone Picking". In my collection I have a couple of books with chapters dealing with "Bone Picking", ie sending bones back to China, to be with ones ancesters. One interesting book is "Chinese American Death Rituals" edited by Sue Fawn Chung and Priscilla Wegars. Another is "Vermilion and Gold", by Lionel Welsh (published in Australia), there is a chapter on "The Bone Gatherer". I can summarise these chapters if you are still interested in the old Chinese culture.
Ah Gin, I am honored to have you call me' Little Sister'.....I appreciate your guidance into this strange new culture that I can now call mine.
I did read a few discussions online about the ritual of 'Bone Cleaning' and also have books about "Chinatown New York" by Ann Volkwein, "Tea That Burns" by Bruce Hall, and "Manhattans Chinatown". I also just ordered "You Are Royalty" by Al Chinn.
Actually, I was very 'grossed-out' after reading the except by the cemetery attendant/historian at my dad's cemetery (Evergreens' in Brooklyn). The very thought of someone touching my dad's bones, no matter how well-intentioned, appalls me now. Who knew that anything in this world could ever gross me out at this stage of my life.
Thanks again for your generous and humble remarks. I guess as we get older, read beyond 60s, and in our Golden Years, we begin to talk more about death and dying -- certainly with my classmates in Malaya who are well into their late 60s. I know "picking bones" sound confronting, but that's part of the Overseas Chinese (read sojourners) practice, if one can afford it (or more to the point, friends or relatives who can find the resources to complete this "home coming" ritual). In our research of Chinese Pioneers who came to Australia (and indeed elsewhere where the Chinese went in search of a living), the desire to make it rich and returned home to China was with almost everyone. Regretably it was an unattainable dream, as many died before they could make more than a few pennies to feed themselves. So the next best thing is to go home in a bag, but at least home.
Ah Gin and Fay chee, I am joining in the conversation from HKG. I am using a terminal from my cousin's office during office hours. No free terminals at my hostel, and I am not keen on internet bars. I am too slow.
If you remember from my past travel posts; I did mention one of my travel companions and a village brother is a bone picker. The fellow jumped ship in mid-life, from a peasant farmer to a free agent of sort.
The practice is still alive in China, and Hong Kong for different reasons. It is a cultural thing perhaps pertains to the Cantonese only.
I am extending my stay in HKG by at least one day, so many eating engagements that I am neglecting the tourism sites, museums, and long walks. Most importantly, I am to join in the belated autumn grave sweeping occasion on Sunday 11th., organised by my extended family here.
That is the flexibility I enjoy without a fixed itinerary.
Last Edit: Nov 9, 2012 2:51:57 GMT -5 by douglaslam
Douglas! Great to hear your voice and updates on all the fun you are having. When we took our grand nephew to dad's grave in October, we did a sort of Autumn grave sweeping, actually, we did a mini-Ching Ming.
I had been wondering if the practice of 'Bone Picking' was still going on today. I must have missed your post about your Village brother changing from farming to bone picker. It doesn't seem that overseas Chinese are currently doing this or are they??? Do you know of anyone in Australia who has done this? I'm going to ask at dad's cemetery if anyone has done this recently.
I took a look at your hostel on the internet and was amazed at the description and pictures of it....also sounded a little scary. What was the name of the hostel on Arygle St that you wanted to stay at initially?
msen: Hi Sis, and welcome to the forum. As you know, I recently returned on a long journey from Florida to see one of our American cousins, sadly, in hospice. Her wish was to reconnect our family and visit with as many as could make the trip to her bedside.
Jun 15, 2013 12:27:50 GMT -5
msen: Oops, I guess i will continue in shoutbox, but merely wanted to reply to you! Long story short, her wish came true and now we have, thanks to forum friends, our village and some names in our father's family. Shout out to Laohuaqiao, FayChee and forum.
Jun 15, 2013 12:32:35 GMT -5