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Discuss culture, living, traveling, relocating, dating or anything related to the Asian countries - China, The Philippines, Thailand, etc.
15 posts • Page 1 of 1
Having lived here for 5 months I have noticed one thing:
That absent societal control a group of Chinese kids will revert to really bad, anti-social behaviour. Put a Chinese authority figure in the room and they behave and don't act out. Put just me in the room and the worst kids revert to terrible behaviour. I see similar behaviour while driving. There is no right of way, everyone is in the right. If you see an accident, it is always a case of each attempting to justify themselves. There is no abstract sense of right and wrong.
Consider Confucianism by Master Kong Tse. Why would someone create a philosophy that emphasised kindness and loyalty to ones parents, unless the current society lacked those values?
I believe, but have no proof, that the reason for that philosophy and the others of ancient China is that the Chinese people began to behave so abhorrantly that some controlling meme was needed to further civilisation. There is a undercurrent of really shady, violent uncivilised behaviour that runs deeply through this culture. How else to explain a normal businessman spiking kids milk with melamine, or cutting corners to the point that his product kills it buyers, or putting antifreeze into toothpaste or lead into toys? These guys are not monsters they are your average Chinese businessman who without constraints will engage in the least common denominator behaviour.
This country needs such philosophies to keep the people in line or else they will revert.
You are most likely quite right...the cultural revolution is something the Chinese did to themselves...horrific...on a scale Americans will never contemplate....
This is one reason why I think liberal/cultural marxist attempts to destroy all those "repressive conservative values" tend to backfire. People point to small forager/hunter tribes and say "look, they aren't repressive, we can be that way too". However, getting to that point isnt really something you can design, it has to grow organically from the ground up with people choosing kindness. Unless people are already extremely psychologically balanced, removing the social barriers which obstruct bad behavior can be disastrous.
Confucian philisophy is merely one of many that developed in China's history. About 2,500 years ago during the "Spring and Autumn period", it was said that 100 different schools of philosophers and their students competed for influence. A brief:
Prior to this, during China's early Shang dynasty period (1600 BC), the society could be compared to classical Mesoamerican civilizations. It was well developed enough to have urban cities, and the warriors would go to war with neighboring tribes to capture slaves, which in turn are sacrificed in human sacrifice rituals. Here's a brief:
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news ... -tomb.html
Let's say if you're a wealthy person during the Shang Dynasty period, and you had a new house built. To celebrate the construction of your new home, you'd purchase some slaves and have them killed and buried at the corner of your new house. They could be beheaded, burned alive, drowned, etc. These human sacrifices continued to Zhou dynasty (1045 BC), and gradually fell out of fashion from the end of Spring & Autumn period (770 BC to 476 BC.). By Qin Dynasty (221 BC) the pratice of human sacrifices were made illegal (except for the Emperor himself).
Quoting from the article:
"The Chinese premodern state was built upon sacrifice," said Plutschow, "and no theory of Chinese statehood could ever be proposed without reference to sacrifice and sacrificial ideology."
Then came Confucius and his peers, who spoke against the practice of human sacrifice. He wasn't necessarily successful during his life time, but the impact of his teachings and that of his peers continued to denounce human sacrifice and made it unpopular over the follow 300 years, until it was banned by the State of Qin.
It's not politically correct to compare early Chinese civilization to the Aztecs, but history is what it is. If human sacrifice is used as a yard stick for civilization's development, the Chinese passed that point over 2,000 years ago.
Oh and westerners have been visiting and moving to China and hooking up with local women from over 1,400 years ago:
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news ... a-dna.html
To truly appreciate what the Chinese look like you have to come here and travel around. For being basically one phenotype -'The Han' and 'Mongols' - they sure have a great deal of diversity. I have seen everything from people who look just like Native Americans like Apaches, to women that could pass for Mexican, to people that resemble some blacks back in the states. In Mexico the upper class girls look almost Asian - super slight and slim in appearance, strong Asian facial features, light skin.
There is one thing in most of the world that the USA has that others do not.
If you get in trouble people in other countries will studiously avoid helping you out in fear of their lives. No one will jump in if you are in a fight, mugged, robbed, hit and run, auto accident, you name it.
China is no different than Mexico in that regard.
I can understand what you mean about the removal of authority. I met a girl from Hunan who seems to be away from parental control for the first time, for school, and she seems to be leaning towards the wld side. She even specifically said she is different without her mother constantly looking over he shoulder.
What part of the US did you live in that has Samaritanism? In LA you coul dget shot or stabbed in the street and people would keep walking by like it never happened. You might be lucky and someone will cal 911 while quickly avoiding you.
I've seen far more samaratanism in other countries, at least locals for locals. Maybe they won't jump in and help a foreigner, but I've seen people give the shirt off their back to help others of their own.
“b***y is so strong that there are dudes willing to blow themselves up for the highly unlikely possibility of b***y in another dimension." -- Joe Rogan
Have you by chance heard of Kitty Genovese? There are several high profile researched incidents where Americans don't give a crap. Samaritanism definitely isn't a typical U.S. trait. I also might add that if you're the "wrong" race it's even less likely that people will help you at all.
Quoting Monty Python, and now for something completely different:
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6kJnduB ... re=related[/youtube]
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzzD6SAc ... re=related[/youtube]
I'm dialed in on a phone conference with China factory and bored out of my mind. ;p
Thank Bacchus for the mute button!
I use to be cynical about all societal controls because of the massive abuses perpetrated by organized religion. But as I get older, I realize that the reality is that most people need rules imposed on them because they donâ€™t have a sufficiently developed internal conscience to act decently without them, so we are probably better off with religion then without it. One of the most brilliant minds that ever walked the earth â€“ Thomas Jefferson â€“ expressed in private letters that he didnâ€™t believe in the core beliefs of Christianity (e.g., that Jesus is God), but publically he donated money to churches spreading those same beliefs because he believed a moral education was necessary to have a healthy society. That is how at least one intelligent man handled the situation.
Quoting one of a literal handful of famous outlier examples to disprove a general society wide trend is not sufficient. I am rapidly growing weary of the lack of intellectualism on the internet. My ability to suffer fools is rapidly diminishing to zero. Samaritanism is indeed a typical US trait, even in places like NYC or L.A. Is it practiced by everyone, on every occasion, 100% of the time? No - don't be a brick.
In the USA if you get in an accident people will race into the intersection to help, generally speaking.
In most other countries, you f***ed up and they watch you suffer, generally speaking. No one wants to get involved, ever. You need to call for help, you need to handle it, and you better have the money to deal with it.
Don't be a rude jackass just because someone's opinion differs from you. From my experiences and others I know people in major metropolitan areas in the U.S. avoid getting involved whenever possible. If there's a bad car accident they'll call the cops but in most cases they'll rubber neck as they go by. Also, there was a situation just recently in NY where a guy was stabbed and lay bleeding to death in the street. There was even a street camera that showed different people walking by seeing the blood but continuing on their way afterwards anyways.
The fact that you cite NYC or large metropolitan areas as the main examples of non-Samaritan does not refute the fact that for most Americans, in most of America, Samaritanism is a long-held quality.
I have seen this myself on a highway in AZ when some woman was on her cell and rolled her suv and I and 20 others righted it and helped until paramedics called.
New York is 469 square miles, and both of the incidents you cite occurred within 1 mile of each other (Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax and Kitty Genovese's murders both occurred within one mile of each other in Queens - not exactly representative of the entire nation) and was never representative of what America is about.
Your own examples are literally blocks apart from each other.
Even in L.A. I see people stop to help after bad traffic accidents.
Human sacrifice is satanic worship. Any religion that has human sacrifice is really a form of satanism. They may not call it that, of course, but that's what it is.
A foreign observer might theorize that the United States has developed such a detailed and relatively predictable legal system (compared to many countries) is because many people in the US might hurt each other and misbehave otherwise. Historically, that might not be an oversimplification. Certain laws and philosophies do restrain some social ills, without changing the hearts of the people who follow them.
As a Chinese Christian, I am not a fan of Confucianism. Confucianism was created by someone who had elitist aspirations. Confucius came from a noble lineage that had fallen out of favor with the ruling class, and wanted that lost prestige to be restored, but applied to the whole of society. A lot of what 'prestige' meant to him was the practice (revival) of very rigid social norms and rituals / ceremonies. These things spell doom to an INFP personality like me. This is not to say that the teachings of Confucius have not been distorted throughout the ages, as they certainly have been. When he was alive, pretty much nobody took him seriously because rival states were competing for supremacy over the land. However, during the Western Han Dynasty, the imperial court realized Confucianism could become a force to control the masses, as Confucian ideology emphasized things such as submission to the ruler. Being rulers, they deliberately chose to ignore the second half of that particular teaching: AS LONG AS THE RULER IS JUST. In Confucianism, if someone in a position of authority is being a dick, his subordinates can kick him from his seat.
I think Confucianism, once adopted by the ruling class, can be best described as the exterior mask disguising a legalistic and totalitarian core. I don't think that Confucius, as flawed as he was in many ways, intended for his beliefs to be shoved down people's throats. From my understanding, he viewed the application of his teachings as an awakening from no other than one's own consciousness, and on a larger level, the consciousness of a society. However, once it reached the emperors and their advisers, it became a tool used to perpetrate fear and unquestioning obedience. I'd say the role of Confucianism, intertwined with state politics, has been no different than the role of a theistic religion like Christianity, Catholicism, or Islam. Just like how members of a family are expected to submit to the strict and dominating patriarch, the extension of it would be submission to the ruler, who's essentially the grand daddy of the people.
Many beliefs of Confucius, even when independent of any association with and use by those in power, are incompatible with my own world view. Like I've said above, his overwhelming focus on rituals and making superficial impressions runs opposite to my belief in getting straight to the depths of someone or something. I'm more inclined towards Daoism, because Daoism values the free and the natural. I'm an anarchist at heart, while Confucius was an 'archist.'
When it comes to the lack of refinement in the ways of many modern Chinese from the mainland, my sympathies lie with you, to an extent. The ones who display obnoxious behavior are often from the nouveau riche, the new wealthy class that made their fortune in the 1980s and 1990s when Deng initiated reforms. Others that behave this way are just purely mean and entitled for one reason or another, regardless of their background. Overall, they are in the minority, because I've met and befriended many ordinary mainland Chinese people who don't behave in these ways. They just go about and live their lives without really causing trouble or confrontation. Mainland Chinese tend to be more straightforward than other groups of Chinese, as well as Japanese and Koreans. If we're feeling something, we're more likely to wear it rather than hide it. When you really get to know mainland Chinese, you'll likely find that mainlanders are more down-to-earth than Taiwanese, Singaporeans, Hong Kongnese, Japanese etc.
It's the superficial and artificial politeness of many 'developed' Asian countries that bothers me. For example, many Westerners marvel at the politeness of Japanese and Taiwanese. Beneath this, however, is often a robotic lack of soul. Furthermore, the politeness and courtesy of people from places such as Taiwan and Japan may very well be a facade that they show to outsiders. Once you really get to know them, you'll realize how many rednecks there are, and how horribly they can treat each other or talk about you behind your back. The more straightforward and confrontational ways of mainland Chinese, though outsiders may perceive them to be rudeness and impoliteness, often results in an easier way of solving interpersonal disputes, as we're not afraid to call each other out on bullshit. Of course, many Westerners never progress beyond a superficial infatuation with Japan / Taiwan / Korea. One blogger sums it up excellently: 'They are so charmed by the beautiful wrapping that they don't even bother tearing it and seeing what's really inside.'
I've seen many spoiled kids in China, just as I have in other places. I think it all comes down to parenting. A sad reality in China, that applies to many parents, is how they think satisfying a child's materialistic needs is what cultivates happiness, rather than values such as kindness, loyalty, and simplicity. The parents themselves are often lacking in knowledge of how to properly bring up children, due to the neglect in these areas demonstrated by their own parents. Nor do they think about learning from their parent's mistakes and improving, because, well, humanity as a species isn't very insightful and perceptive on average.