Hi from Taiwan

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Hi from Taiwan

Postby Su DongPo » Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:39 pm

I am known as "heybai" on other forums. Su Dongpo (1037-1101) was a famous Song Dynasty poet, scholar, and high ranking official. He lived a thousand years ago at a time when China had already long been infiltrated with Buddhist thought, worship and ideology. His real name was Su Shi (family name Su), which is also my legal Chinese surname. I thought I would try on a new moniker for Dharma Wheel.

Here's a funny Hong Kong film clip featuring Dongpo as a pop star singing one of his most famous poems. Even if you don't follow the Chinese, I think you can get the joke --

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xqn8PW05alE

(The Dongpo/pop star character is introduced and appears about 40 seconds into the clip. After he performs he introduces the protagonist, and clueless, but well meaning social reformer who sings his own silly song.)

The song/poem performed by the Dongpo character here actually has many references to Song era Buddhist thought, but the film is, obviously, a romantic comedy...

Anyway, Su Shi is a Chinese cultural icon. I think he ranks equivalently with Shakespeare or Wordsworth in in Chinese literary history, but he was also a major scholar and government official. He died in exile after being banished to the southern island of Hainan.

Here's a Song era portrait of the historical Dongpo --

Image
Last edited by Su DongPo on Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Individual » Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:42 pm

Welcome! :)
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby plwk » Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:01 pm

Pei! Pei! (fart! fart!) :jumping:

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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Su DongPo » Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:23 pm

plwk wrote:Pei! Pei! (fart! fart!) :jumping:

Image


Tee hee. Xie-xie.
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby nirmal » Thu Nov 11, 2010 5:58 pm

Hi Heybai,

Welcome aboard' Great. Nice to see you here



Renunciation is the path of fire

And to tread it

Burn your worldly desire


(Any more visits from the cobras)
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Su DongPo » Thu Nov 11, 2010 7:28 pm

nirmal wrote:Hi Heybai,

Welcome aboard' Great. Nice to see you here



Renunciation is the path of fire

And to tread it

Burn your worldly desire


(Any more visits from the cobras)


Hi nirmal,

Yes, I did hear a cobra this evening. They have a very distinctive hiss, and I am getting to be an expert. This one was outside our house somewhere, probably started (again) by one of out three cats. The cats are both afraid of and aggressive toward the snakes and my primary concern is that one of them is going to get bitten.

Very hard to reason with cats -- they are superior beings, and they know it :smile:

Nice to see you here as well.

heybai
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby fragrant herbs » Thu Nov 11, 2010 10:54 pm

hey, heybai! good to see you here. you remember me as fragrant herbs. you can come tell us your cobra stories, and i can tell you about our cougars, mosquitoes, chiggers, and ticks. can't say which is worse. i guess those cobra stories really stuck in my mind. they were your stories, right?
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Su DongPo » Thu Nov 11, 2010 11:27 pm

Urgyen Chodron wrote:hey, heybai! good to see you here. you remember me as fragrant herbs. you can come tell us your cobra stories, and i can tell you about our cougars, mosquitoes, chiggers, and ticks. can't say which is worse. i guess those cobra stories really stuck in my mind. they were your stories, right?


Hi Urgyen,

Yup, we live with three cats, a dog, and are frequented by serpentine visitors and other native fauna.

Nice to see you. Congratulations on the vows & refuge. I wish you well with your chosen path.

Dongpo/heybai
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Huifeng » Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:56 am

Hi Dongpo!

I used to live for a while at Daming si in Yangzhou, Jiangsu, where right next to (actually, inside) the monastery is the old office and workplace of Dongpo, known as Pingshan Tang 平山堂. It has a verse inside:

遠山來與此堂平

Meaning, back at that time, one could look out from this room, across what is now Yangzhou city, over the Yangzi river, and see the "mountain" of Jinshan monastery in the distance. Now the pollution means one can barely see very far across the city, let alone to the Yangzi.

Huifeng :namaste:
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Blue Garuda » Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:33 pm

Welcome indeed.

Good to see you here, old friend. :)
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Ngawang Drolma » Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:23 pm

Hi heybai! :twothumbsup:
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Ogyen » Sat Nov 13, 2010 7:27 am

Nihao heybai! :group:

:heart:
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Luke » Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:47 pm

Welcome to Dharma Wheel!

:buddha1:
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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Zenshin 善心 » Sat Nov 13, 2010 5:22 pm

hi Su DongPo, thanks for the v. interesting info on your monicker. do you know what would be his most well-known work outside of China? thanks :smile:
All beings since their first aspiration till the attainment of Buddhahood are sheltered under the guardianship of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas who, responding to the requirements of the occasion, transform themselves and assume the actual forms of personality.

Thus for the sake of all beings Buddhas and Bodhisattvas become sometimes their parents, sometimes their wives and children, sometimes their kinsmen, sometimes their servants, sometimes their friends, sometimes their enemies, sometimes reveal themselves as devas or in some other forms.


- Ashvaghosa, The Awakening of Faith

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Re: Hi from Taiwan

Postby Su DongPo » Fri Nov 26, 2010 4:02 pm

Gee, thank you all for the warm greetings -- friends old and new. I am sorry I did not see the responses till now. I "had" to go Kyoto for a week right after my response to Urgyen Chodron. I had a great time! But that's a story for another day.

I used to live for a while at Daming si in Yangzhou, Jiangsu, where right next to (actually, inside) the monastery is the old office and workplace of Dongpo, known as Pingshan Tang 平山堂. It has a verse inside:

遠山來與此堂平


Ven. Huifeng -- that's just great! I mean walking around Dongpo's old digs, not the pollution :crying:

We met at e-sangha, by the way, and you helped me with a question or two. Nice to see you again.

hi Su DongPo, thanks for the v. interesting info on your monicker. do you know what would be his most well-known work outside of China?


Hi dumbbombu -- Anyone with a solid education in adjacent East Asian nations/regions, including Japan, Vietnam, Korea, and Taiwan (the "other China" LOL), would know of Su Dongpo, and most school children would know some of his poetry by rote. He is an enormously important figure, both as an official and as an artist. But I believe he is little known outside of the Far East.

Unlike the famous Tang Dynasty poets (7th, 8th centuries CE) -- Li Bai (Bo), Du Fu, or Wang Wei (also a major court minister), who are known for their short, pithy, epigrammatic lyrics, Song Dynasty poetry is generally longer, more likely to allude to references beyond the images within the text, and is therefore much less likely to be anthologized in translation.

That's my understanding, anyway. I have only worked my way through some of his shorter works. His collected writings (and calligraphy and much else) are massive. I don't claim to be a scholar of Su Dongpo, only a smitten admirer.

I hope this finds everyone well and happy.

Dongpo/heybai
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