Stories from History: The Emperor Cries for his Mistakes

Once when Emperor Yu*, the founding Emperor of the Xia Dynasty, went out to inspect his kingdom, he saw a criminal being escorted to be punished. He ordered his carriage to stop and asked, “What crime did he commit?” The guards said, “He stole wheat and rice from other people and got caught. We are

Stories from History: Zhang Zhibai’s Simple Life

Zhang Zhibai lived an uncorrupted and simple life. When he was the prime minister for Emperor Song Ren Zhong, he lived just like an ordinary person. He was very happy and content. Many advised him to change his lifestyle and follow the trend so he would not be criticized as a hypocrite. People around him

Acupuncture and Science Intertwined

Acupuncture is thousands of years old and is one of the five pillars of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). Needles are inserted in points on the human body to alleviate illnesses and pain. Philosophical and theoretical bases of acupuncture were formulated 2,000 years ago within the framework of TCM. Central to these is the image of

Story From Ancient China: A Righteous Woman Stops An Invading Army

The Chinese character for “righteousness,” 義 (yì), contains a wide range of meaning associated with morality, including loyalty, justice, and trustworthiness. It is one of the core concepts of traditional Chinese culture. Among the many legends of Chinese historical figures who exemplify righteousness, there is a story about a righteous woman who prevented an invading

Story From Ancient China: Father of Chinese Painting, ‘Leader of Tigers’

Renowned painter Gu Kaizhi (顧愷之) of the Eastern Jin Dynasty (A.D. 317–420), who is esteemed as the father of traditional Chinese painting, had the nickname “Hu tou” (虎頭), or “tiger head.” The reason he was known as “tiger head,” meaning the “leader of tigers,” has to do with one of Gu’s most famous paintings, “Luo

Story From Ancient China: Honouring the ‘one-word teacher’

The Chinese saying 一字之師 (yī zì zhī shī), also expressed as 一字師 (yī zì shī), literally means a “teacher of one word,” or “teacher of one [Chinese] character.” It describes a person of skill whose masterstroke completely transformed a piece of writing just by improving or correcting a single word. The saying originates from a

Respecting Teachers and Cherishing Virtue

Respecting teachers and cherishing virtues are part of the traditional ethics practiced by the Chinese people. Teachers, who impart morality, knowledge, and values, teach people the proper ways to interact with each other and with society at large. They exemplify virtue. The Classic of Rites was one of the Chinese Five Classics of the Confucian canon.

Chinese Medicine: Steps to Avoid That Burned-Out Feeling

At my acupuncture clinic, I see a number of patients who work too hard. I see a busy lawyer who sometimes works 70 and 80 hours a week. I work with a woman who is in school and holding down a job at the same time. I also see a number of women who are trying

Acupuncture Eases Alcohol Cravings

Acupuncture reduces alcohol cravings in alcoholics. Researchers note that acupuncture is both safe and effective for reducing cravings in alcohol dependent patients. They add that acupuncture is an inexpensive modality of care for the treatment of alcoholism and “produces significant results.” This study breaks from other research on this topic. Prior research focused on National

What Chinese Medicine Says About Alcohol

I have had a number of memorable drinks in my life: a vodka gimlet sipped while gazing at the waters of Crater Lake in Oregon, or some pinot noirs enjoyed at a small vineyard tucked into the Willamette Valley countryside. While alcohol is certainly part of my good memories, the core of these experiences was

Traditional Chinese Medicine has Answers for Toothache

This is a story told by Dr Hu Naiwen, a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) doctor. When he was learning acupuncture about 40 years ago, a classmate suddenly said to him one day, “You know, I just learnt a few acupoints, and my toothache is gone!” The “sanjian” acupoint (Sun Mingguo/The Epoch Times) The classmate chanced

Stories from History: Cao Cong Rescued Officials

Cao Cong, son of Cao Cao, who was the emperor of the Wei during the Three Kingdoms Period, was a kind and caring person. At that time, there were many events going on in Wei that Cao Cao had to utilize very severe punishments to deal with. One day, officials found out that mice had

Stories from History: How Zhang Qixian Divided the Assets

During the time of Emperor Zhenzong (968-1022 A.D.) of the Song Dynasty, two of the Emperor’s relatives did not agree with the amount of each other’s endowment, argued about it, and had complained about each other at the Censorate’s office. Emperor Zhenzong had the case reviewed more than ten times and couldn’t get it settled.

Stories from History: The Honorable Tang Wenzheng was an Honest and Upright Official

Tang Bin (1627-1687 A.D.) was from Sui County of Henan Province in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911 A.D.). He passed the Imperial Civil Service Examination in the ninth year of the reign of Emperor Shunzhi and became a Jinshi (metropolitan graduate). He assumed many official posts including Shanxi Tongguan Dao (district magistrate), Jiangxi Lingbei Dao, the

Stories from History: Jiang Balang Paid His Debt

In the Song Dynasty (960-1279A.D), there was a wealthy man named Jiang Balang (the eighth son) in Pingjiang. Later on, the Jiang family went into decline and crowds of creditors would wait outside his house everyday. Balang had no choice but to divorce his wife. He told her, “Please go back to your parents. I

Stories from History – A Blue Phoenix Paid a Debt of Gratitude

Yang Bangyi was from the Song Dynasty (960-1279). One day, when he was reading in Tianwang Temple after he passed the candidacy examination in the provincial imperial examinations, he saw the wings of a blue phoenix, which sat straddling on the body of a Buddha statue, fall off from the rain dripping on them over

270-Million-Year-Old Stone Bears Words: ‘Chinese Communist Party Perishes’

In June 2002, a 270 million-year-old “hidden words stone” was discovered in Guizhou, China. A crack that formed 500 years ago in a large stone revealed six clearly discernible Chinese characters; the characters clearly spell “The Chinese Communist Party perishes [Zhōngguó gòngchǎndǎng wáng 中國共產党亡].” The character “perish” [wáng 亡] is especially large. The official media in Mainland

Stories from History: Kindness Is Rewarded

In the Song Dynasty, some criminals were released from prison and sent into exile on Shanmen Island. A regulation of that dynasty set an upper limit of people on the island to 300 people. The government provided enough food for 300 criminals only. In addition, the island was very small and couldn’t hold more people

Stories from History: Fu Shuo’s Conversation with Wu Ding

In the Shang Dynasty in ancient China, there was a king called Wu Ding. After Wu Ding’s father died, he stayed out of government affairs for three whole years to mourn his father. After the three years of mourning were over, Wu Ding still did not attend government affairs. As the government officials were all



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