Discuss conspiracies, mysteries and paranormal phenomena.
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Hong men hui is an ancient Chinese "secret society" that was formed in the 1700's to overthrow the Manchu dynasty and restore Ming. Since the society is anti-government, they had to stay hidden or get beheaded. The mythical origins of the group points to the destruction of Shao Lin temple, and the 5 survivors who went into hiding to teach anti-Manchu Ming royalists how to fight. One of their martial arts style is called Hung Ga Kuen:
In the 1800's, the group spread abroad, and many of China's revolutionaries, such as Sun Yat-Sen were members. After the Qing dynasty was over-thrown, the group lost its purpose and split into 2 factions, the "China" faction got into politics and gang activities, and the "oversea" faction that stole symbols from the Freemasons to dodge anti-gang laws in early 20th century. The real Freemasons sued the "Chinese free mansons" to stop them from using their symbols and lost. Some oversea Chinese free manson groups evolved into benevolent societies, while others remained triad gangs:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 183RTK.DTL
The Chinese faction that remaind in China, was further split by the Chinese civil war. The ones that relocated to Taiwan became the head to the 300,000 strong Hongmenhui, and those who remained in China became a registered minor political party "Zhi Gong", as one of the 8 non-communist parties in China:
The TW Hongmenhui struggled to find purpose and move away from triad gangster activities. Today the organization is a lot more "open" with its membership and initiations. They also run a few web sites:
As you can see from the main page, the group reveres Guan Gong (Guan Yu). You can see some photos of their initiation rituals here:
The 36 vows Hong Men (Chinese), all violations result in death (!):
Wow, are you a member of any of these secret societies Momopi?
The Freemasonic insignia sure does look like the Star Trek one. Look:
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No, and I don't recommend joining the Tongs or Societies. A lot of them have criminal backgrounds and stand on the seedier side of things, plus many have defected in 1990s to fly the PRC flag instead of ROC flag. One of the minor Hong Men groups in Taiwan openly recruited members from the Bamboo Union and Four Seas Gang.
Here's some background information on the Bing Kong Tong in California:
I think most people here are familiar with the prohibition era (1920s-1930s) gang war in the US, with characters like Al Capone, Bugsy Moran, and so on. Lesser known is the Chinese gangs that were active in the same era, fighting for turf and profits. Bing Kong Tong got into a gang war with several other Chinese Tongs and, under pressure from law enforcement, they borrowed the Freemason name and symbols and started calling themselves the Chinese Free Masons. They went as far as putting up the Freemanson signs on buildings and banners to doge anti-organized crime laws. The real Freemasons were pretty pissed at the time, but it's not like you can trademark every combination of "free mason" plus any other word.
Here's a PC and non-PC write-up on the Tong's history:
http://www.californiahistorian.com/arti ... ation.html (politically correct)
http://sharlot.org/archives/history/day ... 4_03.shtml (not politically correct)
I find it outrageous that someone could write "Gambling was a social outlet and, as with opium, the Chinese indulgence was moderateâ€”few ever became addicts." with a straight face.
Back in 1990s there was a popular noodle shop in LA Chinatown. The owner opened for lunch and stayed open in the afternoon until he is sold out for the day, usually by late afternoon to early evening. From time to time the heads of the local Tong's would dine there, and you'd see tables full of old Chinese guys that give off the "gang boss" vibe. That restaurant was never robbed, and whenever the old men gathered to dine there, all other diners clear out and new customers would order takeout. After a while the owner got fed up and closed the restaurant, which is really too bad because they served good Teo Chow style noodles.
Last edited by momopi on Thu Oct 14, 2010 7:37 am, edited 3 times in total.
"They went as far as putting up the Freemanson signs on buildings and banners to doge anti-organized crime laws. "
So they were not a secret society at all but just co-opted the name to hide their activities.
Since this was known about in the 1930's, how is this a secret?
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