Chinese Shoe Culture (I) Learning from Nature

It has been deduced that the earliest Chinese footwear was made of a hide called “foot-binding skin” or “hide socks”. Chinese ancestors learned not only to use animal skin to keep their feet warm, but also to use small leather straps and hairy hide to wrap their feet in for protection during their struggles against nature.

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After a long time, the hide socks shaped like “Baozi” (a type of steamed, filled bun or bread-like item in various Chinese cuisines), evolved into leather shoes shaped like “Shao Mai” (a type of traditional Chinese dumpling), and are still popular today.

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In modern times, the wula shoes of Northern China also retain the shape of the original Chinese shoes.

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The present-day fish shoes of the Nanai people from Northern China are also inspired by the original Chinese shoes.

It was a great leap for the original hide shoes when they evolved into more complicated straw shows. China has at least seven thousand years of history using the leaves and stems of plants as raw materials to weave clothing and accessories.

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Straw sandals were popular in every region of ancient China. This is because it was extremely convenient to obtain the raw materials in order to make them, and they felt light and comfortable to wear.

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Children’s Reed Woven Sandals

1 麻线鞋.jpgLinen Shoes

Linen can be made into thread by weaving and by spinning. As social production systems advanced, people found that clothes could be made more delicate, softer, and more resilient with the use of wild linens. The Chinese made a variety of woven shoes and shoe accessories.

 1 东晋编织履.jpg Woven Shoes · The Eastern Jin Dynasty

1 东晋织成履.jpgWoven Shoes · The Eastern Jin Dynasty

1 蒲草鞋 唐.jpgBulrush Shoes· Tang Dynasty

In this chapter, from hide shoes and woven straw shoes, to textile shoes, we see how Chinese people have presented the world with their splendid shoe culture, using only materials from nature.

 

About Interact China


“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide” 

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Kungfu Clothing, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!

If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

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CHINESE LADY LINGERIE IN ANCIENT CHINA (5) – Stories in Totems

Ancient people of China used totems to record many beautiful stories and heroes in their hearts, so as to express their feelings and to make sure future generations remember them.

 

  1. The Eight Immortals

121.pngThe Eight Immortals (Chinese: 八仙; pinyin: Bāxiān; Wade–Giles: Pa¹-hsien¹) are a group of legendary Xian (“immortals”) in Chinese mythology. Each immortal’s power can be transferred to a tool (法器) that can bestow life or destroy evil. Together, these eight tools are called the “Covert Eight Immortals” (暗八仙). Most of them are said to have been born in the Tang or Song dynasty. They are revered by the Taoists and are also a popular element in the secular Chinese culture. They are said to live on a group of five islands in the Bohai Sea (a sea on the coat of north China), which includes the Penglai Mountain-Island.

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  1. The Bridge Breaking Meeting – Legend of the White Snake

104.pngThe Legend of the White Snake, also known as Madame White Snake, is a Chinese legend which existed in spoken tradition long before there was any written compilation. It has since been presented in a number of major Chinese operas, films and television series.

The story is now counted as one of China’s Four Great Folktales, the others being Lady Meng Jiang, Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai, and The Cowherd and the Weaving Maid (Niulang Zhinü).

 

  1. Goddess Meeting – The Cowherd and the Weaving Maid 

602.pngThe Cowherd and the Weaving Maid is a Chinese folk tale. The general tale is a love story between Zhinü (織女; the weaving maid, symbolizing the star Vega) and Niulang (牛郎; the cowherd, symbolizing the star Altair). Their love was not allowed, thus they were banished to opposite sides of the Silver River (symbolizing the Milky Way Galaxy). Once a year, on the 7th day of the 7th lunar month, a flock of magpies would form a bridge to reunite the lovers for one day. There are many variations of the story. The earliest-known reference to this famous myth dates back to over 2600 years ago, which was told in a poem from the Classic of Poetry.

 

  1. Wu Song Slays the Tiger

416.pngWu Song Slays the Tiger is a story in Shi Naian’s “the Water Margin”. The story says that when in Liangshan the hero Wu Song was on the way to back home to visit his brother and when he was passing by the placed called Jingyanggang he drank 18 bowls of wine in the restaurant and he was drunk. He was told that a tiger on the hill would hurt people and was advised not to move on. Wu Song didn’t believe this and sure enough he met a tiger. Wu Song fought with his fists and killed it, removing the pest for the local people. Then, it became a popular tale.

 

  1. Kirin Brings the Child

605.pngThe qilin (Chinese: 麒麟; pinyin: qílín) or kirin is a mythical hooved chimerical creature known of in Chinese and other East Asian cultures, it is said to appear with the imminent arrival or passing of a sageor an illustrious ruler. It is a good omen thought to show the occasions of prosperity or serenity. It is often depicted with what looks like fire all over its body.

 

  1. Liu Hai Plays with a Toad

603.pngLiu Hai Plays with a Toad is an ancient Chinese folk tale, derived from Taoist illusions. When Liu Hai was young he cut firewood in the mountains and rescued an injured toad with only three feet. After, the toad became a beautiful girl and married him with the skill of spitting out money and gold ingots. Therefore,in folk Chinese tales, the toad has the role of acquiring wealth and exorcising evil spirits.

 

  1. Di Qing on the War

604.pngDi Qing was born to a poor family in Xihe, Fenzhou (汾州西河; present-day Fenyang, Shanxi). He sported tattoos on his face and excelled in mounted archery. In 1038, during the reign of Emperor Renzong of Song, Di Qing was appointed as Commander (指揮使) of Yanzhou (延州; covering parts of present-day Shaanxi). He participated in the war between Song and Western Xia. Each time he went to war, he would don a bronze mask and let his hair run wild and disheveled, charging onto the battlefield. Di Qing participated in a total of 25 battles in his lifetime. Of these battles, he was best known for his night raid on the Kunlun Pass on the 15th day of the first lunar month in 1053. He died at age 48.

 

 

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About Interact China


“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide” 

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Kungfu Clothing, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!

If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

CHINESE LADY LINGERIE IN ANCIENT CHINA (2) —Various Shapes on Little Pieces

Unlike the three-dimensional structure of Western lingerie, Chinese ancient lingerie is made up of layers and it implicitly shapes the rich curve of the female body.

From the outline, there are usually square, diamond, rectangle and fan shapes, triangle shapes, petal shapes, T shapes, cross shapes, Ruyi (a curved scepter, used in Chinese Buddhism) shapes and other, more complex shapes.

 

201.pngRectangle Dudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

 

202.pngFan Shaped Dudou: Period – The Republic of China Era

 

 203.pngDiamond Shaped Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

 

204.pngComplexly Shaped Dudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

The pictographic shape shows the imagination of the ancient people of China. It conveys moral implications in a person’s life.

 

 

205.pngTiger Shaped Underwear: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

To banish evil and pray for peace

 

 

 206.pngIngot Shaped Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

Generally used in children’s underwear and used for wishing for a steady stream of future wealth

 

 

 207.pngCalabash Shaped Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

One of the treasures held by Tieguai Li, one of the eight immortal gods, this Dudou prays for god’s blessing

 

 

208.png Ruyi Shaped Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

Used to express one’s wishes for good luck

 

 

209.png Beef Tongue Shaped Underwear: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

Used to embody elegance and depth of knowledge.

 

 

According to the characteristics of different shapes, there are many wearing styles, and each has its own style and discretion for showing the body’s curves.

210.jpgSome examples of methods to wear a Dudou

 

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Chinese underwear from the past pursues the integration of details and the whole piece to complement to each other. The main pieces are connected with other structures to create a new decoration called Nashao meaning to avoid breaking off connections/ severing ties, which is not an auspicious sign.

 

 214.jpgNashao partten

 

Rich and varied shapes highlight the traditional feminine pursuit of beauty and the desire to show themselves.

 

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Find your own pieces on Interactchina and other beautiful things!

 

About Interact China


“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide” 

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Kungfu Clothing, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!

If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

CHINESE LADY LINGERIE IN ANCIENT CHINA (3) – The Connotations of Colour

We can read a lot of from the color of traditional lingerie. There are different colour schemes for different scenes, areas and identity, as well as other aspects of life.

Different colours have different symbolic meanings and have different connotations to different people.

Red: happiness, marriage, elimination of a disaster, passion, indulgence

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Corset: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

Yellow: royalty, value, power, religion (Buddhism) and fantasy

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Dudou: Period – Early Qing Dynasty

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Dudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

Purple: wealth, mystery, power, depression and melancholy

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Dudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

Green: nature, civil, purity, life and youth

302.pngDudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

 

Blue: elegance, purity, civil and modest

308.pngDudou: Period – The Republic of China Era

311.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

Brown: maturity, honesty, modesty and tolerance

315.pngPaddy Field Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

Black: stability, strength, mystery and depth

301.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

White: simple, childish, bright and religion (Muslim)

303.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

Gold and silver: success, luxury, auspiciousness and nobility

317.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

321.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

Traditional Chinese underwear often uses progression of colour gradients.

312.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

 

Like traditional Chinese clothing, traditional lingerie also shows class through use of colour. There is an order of colour that shows one’s class, from nobility to middle class: bright yellow, gold and silver – purple – red – brown – green – blue – black, white and gray.

The colour of lingerie is also related to age. Dark colours such as dark brown, dark blue and black are often used by middle-aged women.

At the same time, the use of colour in ancient Chinese lingerie has a strong geographical connection. Such as:

  • Jiangnan (an area in southern China) woman love light green and light blue.
  • Shaanxi (province in northwest China) people prefer to use a variety of colour combinations  containing gray.

  • The Saibei plateau (a region in northwest China) like to embroider colourful patterns on white cloth.

  • The Minnan (region in southeast China) loves geometric patterns as well as embroidery of birds and flowers on a black and white background

 

The different colours used will bring different visual effects and feelings to people.

319.pngPart Dudou: Period – The Republic of China Era

Using intense colour contrast brings strong emotions.

 

316.pngBody Coat: Period – The Republic of China Era

Low saturation decor with a bright red background displays an elegant style.

 

322.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty

Good use of complementary colours creates a strong visual impact.

 

309.pngPart Dudou: Period – Early Qing Dynasty

The use of similar tones creates a subtle and reserved feeling.

 

318.pngPart Dudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

The combination of small usage of light colours and a small amount of pure block colour makes the piece seem harmonious.

314.pngDudou: Period – Middle Qing Dynasty

The decorative use of the same colour is simple and generous.

 

The rich knowledge and intuition of this traditional lingerie colour shows the exquisite thinking of the ancient people of China.

 

 

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Find your own oriental pieces on Interactchina as well as other beautiful things!

 

About Interact China


“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide” 

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Kungfu Clothing, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!

If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

CHINESE LADY LINGERIE IN ANCIENT CHINA (1) – Aspiration Beyond Body

Throughout the development of Chinese women lingerie, ancient Chinese lingerie has been used to express the yearns for beauty and the performance of feeling and of body in delicate, subtle ways. Almost every piece of lingerie has a theme and story. The Dudou is a bodice that has been used by women since ancient China. The production cycle of each piece lasts from a few months to several years, and there are differences in craft techniques used to produce them. The Chinese women of the past conveyed the voices of their hearts through the sewing, and colourful totems to convey their deep wishes.

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Dudou: Period – The Republic of China; Totem – three wishes

Pomegranate, Bergamot and Peach-Shaped Flowers express the wish for more children longevity and happiness.

 

100.pngCorset: Period – The Republic of China; Totem – fame and wealth

In Chinese, “公(公鸡)鸣” (Gōngmíng) meaning a rooster’s crow sounds like “功名”(Gōngmíng) meaning fame. The peony is a symbol of the rich.

 

111.pngCorset (back): Period – Middle Qing Dynasty; Totem – safe and prosperous

In Chinese, “瓶”(píng) means vase and “平(平安)”(Píng’ān) means safety. This homophone along with the varieties of blooming flowers symbolize a rich and powerful family.

 

131.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – highly incorruptible

 

101.pngCorset (back): Period – Early Qing Dynasty; Totem – fragrant lotus

The lotus is a symbol of incorruptibility, it is rooted in mud and has luxuriant foliage which symbolizes a stable career and prosperous family.

 

121.pngPart Dudou: Period – The Republic of China; Totem – eight treasures of Tai Chi

In Chinese mythology there are eight immortals. Each carry a treasure that has been bestowed with their own power. The treasures embroidered on this Dudou express the deep desire for good luck.

103.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – mandarin duck

Mandarin ducks express the love and happiness between husband and wife.

104.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – to meet on the broken-bridge

The embroidery on this Dudou expresses a deep missing for a lover.

 

150.pngCorset: Period – Early Qing Dynasty; Totem – dragon that plays in the sea

 

153.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – dragon

A dragon on underwear symbolizes bravery, honour, wisdom and unpredictability.

 

119.pngPart Dudou: Period – The Republic of China; Totem – Qilin stepping on clouds

Qilin is regarded as a mascot and blessing of national peace and order, It is also a messenger of happiness and posterity.

 

107.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – tiger

 

161.pngPart Dudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty;·Totem – tiger

 

109.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – tiger driving away the five poisonous pests

The tiger is a symbol of a spirit that drives out demons.

 

160.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – a lion playing with a ball

 

108.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – gold lion

The lion is regarded as a mascot and blessing for driving away evil, praying for good health and is also a symbol of festive events.

 

134.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – butterflies in love with flowers

 

112.pngDudou: Period – Late Qing Dynasty; Totem – butterflies in love with flowers

 

113.pngDudou: Period – The Republic of China; Totem – butterflies in love with flowers

In Chinese, the ” 芙蓉”(Fúróng) meaning Hibiscus and “夫荣”(Fūróng) meaning Husband’s glory is a homophone. Hibiscus flowers with butterflies is a symbol for a woman of low birth may marrying a man of high status and can therefore enjoy a life with the benefits of her husband’s glory however to be a good wife she must dance to her husband’s tune in order to have a harmonious marriage.

 

The extended meaning in the totems expresses people’s life expectations, and also allows for future generations to interpret them.

 

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Find your own oriental pieces on Interactchina as well as other beautiful things!

 

About Interact China


“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide” 

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Kungfu Clothing, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!

If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

Mount Emei: Chinese Culture, Nature, and Kung Fu Hub

Highlight: Mount Emei is one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China, which is reflected by the Leshan Giant Buddha, the largest stone Buddha in the world.

Mount Emei is located in China’s Sichuan province in Leshan City. It is a beautiful and scenic area rich with history and nature, designated as a UNESCO world natural and cultural heritage site. Emei Shan, which is what this popular tourist attraction is called in Mandarin, literally means “monkey mountain,” reflecting its most charismatic animal inhabitants. Indeed, the paths and trees leading up to the top of the mountain are often littered with bags the monkeys had pilfered from unsuspecting tourists, and the animals are credited for inspiring the creation of Emei Kung Fu in ancient times.

 

Spectacular Scenery on the Top of Mount Emei

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At the Golden Summit atop Mount Emei

The path to the top of Mount Emei is long and difficult to climb, and many tourists opt to take a shuttle halfway up the mountain. The top of the mountain features an architectural marvel known as the golden summit- a complex of pagodas and monuments built in the 1st century AD for Buddhist worship. While admiring the man-made structures at the peak, tourists can look over the edge of the mountain and observe a sea of rolling clouds, keeping the forests mostly hidden below. If tourists arrive early enough, they can observe a spectacular sunrise of varying hues of purple and pink through the clouds. Because of the high altitude, over 3,099m above sea level, the peak of Mount Emei experiences a sub-arctic climate, which differs significantly from the temperature at the base- tourists will need a heavy coat at the top, but will have to discard it on the way down, especially in summer.

 

Mount Emei and its meaning for Buddhism

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Leshan Giant Buddha

Mount Emei is one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China, which is reflected by the Leshan Giant Buddha, the largest stone Buddha in the world. Towering over 70m tall, the Leshan Buddha is carved from stone face during the Tang Dynasty between 713 and 803, and sits on a bank of a river, facing Mount Emei. The Leshan Giant Buddha is an enormous achievement in both its scale and artistry, and is a well-known and popular tourist attraction in China.

 

Creation of Emei Kung Fu

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Mount Emei is known for its natural and architectural beauty

Aside from showcasing some of China’s most impressive examples of architecture, nature, and religious life, Mount Emei is also the origin of Emei Kung Fu. This form of kung fu was created during China’s Spring and Autumn Period, approximately between 771 to 476 BC, when many scholars and martial artists lived in seclusion on Mount Emei and experimented with new martial arts forms. Emei Kung Fu takes much of its inspiration from monkeys, imitating how the animals flail their arms. In terms of style, Emei kungfu stands between Shaolin and Wudang. Shaolin kungfu emerged and developed in connection with Buddhism, and is characterized by vigorous leaps and falls and sweeping movements. Wudang kungfu is of Taoist origin, and emphasizes the use of gentle movements as opposed to forceful ones. The Emei kungfu style merged the techniques of the two. It advocates the combination of movement and stillness, and of internal and external forces.

Overall, Mount Emei comes highly recommended as a spot to appreciate a special cross section of Chinese history, culture, and natural environment. The scenic mountain hike, interrupted with regular intervals of ancient architectural marvels, will surely be a highlight of any trip to China.

 

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Mount Emei is known as “Monkey Mountain”

 

 

 

Written by Amber @ InteractChina.com

Posted by Yuqing@ InteractChina.com


About Interact China

“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 12 years of solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we are well positioned to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and directly bring you finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team! 
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

What is Qigong

Highlight: Qi represents the “vital-energy that flows through all things in the universe.” and Gong refers to any kind of physical or mental practice. 

 

What is Qigong?

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According to the National Qigong Association, “Qigong is an ancient Chinese healthcare system that integrates physical postures, breathing techniques and focused intention”.  Qi, which is pronounced as “chee” in mandarin, represents the “vital-energy that flows through all things in the universe.” and Gong refers to any kind of physical or mental practice. From a traditional Chinese medicine point of view, Qigong is a way of healing the human body through self-training and adjustment. As Qigong became mainstream, a lot of medical research was carried out to study its benefits, and it has been proven that practicing Qigong can be beneficial to both mental and physical health.

 

History of Qigong

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Qigong is a type of traditional exercise in China for keeping health and fitness. It was first recognized as “Tu Na” around 3000 years ago in ancient China. Tu Na means breathing and the famous philosopher Zhuang  Zi explained in his book Nan Hua Jing that breathing until it reaches down to your heel is the secret of being immortal. Later, the Six Healing Sounds of Qigong was invented by Taoism, an ancient religious belief in China.  It is a breathing technique that can improve healing and longevity. Another important practice in Qigong is meditation. Meditation was brought to China by Da Mo, the first Buddhist Patriarch Bodhidharma, during the Liang dynasty and it aims to balance the Qi that flows through our body. Meditation can be beneficial to both our minds and bodies. On top of breathing exercises, martial Qigong was created based on the theories and principles of both Taoist and Buddhist. Today, Qigong has developed into a range of exercises that help to heal and energize people and create balance in our body.

 

Types of Qigong and Benefits

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Qigong can be divided into four categories, namely health, medical, spiritual and martial. Health Qigong, which normally involves supine or seated meditation, breathing exercises and gentle movements, can help to ease stress and raise confidence. Medical Qigong refers to the way to treat patients by using energy manipulation, herbal remedies and Chinese massage techniques. It needs to be done by a qualified Qigong practitioner and is proven to strengthen the immune system, nervous system and internal organs. Other benefits of medical Qigong are regulating hormones, reducing pain and relieving stress. Spiritual Qigong is religion-based and combines seated or moving meditation and prayer. The purpose of Spiritual Qigong differs in religions but it is often to achieve harmony and self-awareness. The last type is martial qigong, which is practiced to strengthen skills in martial arts such as speed, power, flexibility, balance and coordination. It can also help to improve performance in other sports like football or swimming.

 

 

Written by Bota @ InteractChina.com

Posted by Yuqing@ InteractChina.com


About Interact China

“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 12 years of solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we are well positioned to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and directly bring you finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 3000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.


P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team! 
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!