Six Arts of Ancient China

August 8th, 2010 No comments

In ancient Chinese culture, to promote all-around development, students were required to master six practical disciplines called the Six Arts (liù yì in Chinese): rites, music, archery, chariot racing, calligraphy and mathematics.

The study of rites and music instills in people a sense of dignity and harmony. The rites include those practiced at sacrificial ceremonies, funerals and military activities.

A famous saying of Confucius on music education is: “To educate somebody, you should start from poems, emphasize ceremonies and finish with music.” In other words, one cannot expect to become educated without learning music.

During the Shang Dynasty (circa 16th century – 11 century BC) and Zhou Dynasty (circa11th century – 256 BC), archery was a required skill for all aristocratic men. By practicing archery and related etiquettes, nobles not only gained the proficiency at war skills; more importantly, they also cultivated their minds and learned how to behave as nobles.

To become a charioteer is also an excellent form of training that requires the combined use of intellect and physical strength.

Writing, or calligraphy, tempers a student’s aggressiveness and arrogance, while arithmetic strengthens one’s mental agility.

Men who excelled in these six arts were thought to have reached the state of perfection.

The Six Arts have their roots in Confucian philosophy. The requirement of students to master the Six Arts is the equivalent of the Western concept of the arts and skills of the Renaissance Man.

The elements of moral education, academic study, physical education and social training are present in the Six Arts – all attributes dating back to ancient times that are considered just as valuable in the modern world.

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Horsing around at a grassland festival

August 4th, 2010 1 comment

In the dusty plains of the Gegentala grasslands, three horses run side by side at full gallop while six boys form a pyramid on their backs. The crowd roars with approval as they hoist a flag.

Under the scorching Inner Mongolian sun, the annual Nadaam Festival ran from July 11 to July 13 this year.

A three-hour bus ride from Hohhot on surprisingly good quality roads leads to a collection of temporary traditional yurts dotting the plains. Horses are tethered to stakes while goats and cows roam the plains.

At the festival site there is little choice in accommodation. Traditional yurts, essentially semi-permanent tents with a round base, sleep five to seven people in a tight circle on the floor.

For those who don’t want to rough it, the more fancy air-conditioned yurts contain a double bed, table and chairs.

On the Sunday morning the festival gets underway with an opening ceremony. Agitated sun umbrella wielding viewers jockey for position as they wait for the speeches to finish and the stunts to begin.
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2010 HORFA Global Horse Show & Appraisal

June 18th, 2010 No comments

Large quantities of gallant horses will be assembled to the nationwide horse owners and horse fans on the stage of HORFA, Horse experts will judge the horses in HORFA and give each of them a fair evaluation.

Date: September 24-26, 2010
Place: Shanghai East Asia Exhibition Hall
Application, click here: HORFA 2010 booth contract (496)
Visitor Pre-registration online,click here
Connemara Pony

Warm Blood

Mini-horse

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