Wrong! There is no such martial art as “Kungfu”, it’s a general term covering most of Chinese Martial Art techniques, of which many do kick ass. “Chinese martial arts” is something that historically goes so deep and has spread so wide with different variations that it is impossible to know how many types there are. Bruce Lee was the first one to introduce the art in the west through his famous movies. He mainly practices a style called Wing Chun which he later developed into his own technique. Thus a new style of Kung Fu called Bruce Lee’s Kung Fu was formed, yes that happens too sometimes.
A great place to learn Chinese Martial Arts is Kunyu Mountain which is in shandong province, not far from Beijing. There you can still receive an old school training to learn the real meaning of discipline. Expect to part from your mum for a while. 🙂
The most famous place to see live Chinese Kung Fu is the Red Theatre Beijing where you can see The Legend of Kung Fu Show which is pretty legendary. Incredibly 10% of tourists that visit Beijing go to see the show and there is a reason to it which you can only see by going to see it. Also they do shows in the states and sometimes in other countries too.
Unfortunately because of the movie industry the view on Kung Fu can be rather twisted. Meaning it is not just about kicking ass, in fact that is usually the last thing on a practitioners mind. The objectives mold into your personality to become more kind and fair to people around you. Self defense is one thing, but there are easier ways to learn how to protect yourself if that’s the only thing you are looking for. Kung Fu is a new way of life that increases self-awareness and helps you find inner peace. It’s a path you take that has no end and is different for everyone. So if you just want to enjoy the beauty go an d see the show at Red Theatre. Otherwise you must be prepared to throw away all your prejudices and be ready to accept the new! Good luck 🙂
Have you ever wondered in the wonderful world of eunuchs? Well, in Beijing you have a chance! In case someone doesn’t know, eunuchs are those “depending how you look at it” fortunate or unfortunate people who have had their private parts mainly the “dingily dong” removed at early stages of puberty. This results in a man with a change in the levels of testosterone. Lack of the hormone perhaps created entertaining personalities for the Chinese emperors.
So they served as slaves for the aristocratic families but even though their social status was low it was considered a respected profession. You can get to know all about it when traveling in Beijing and visit the museum for just 8RMB.
This small museum is noted as the best of the eunuch museums in China and it certainly is not the only one. It’s located at the Tian Yi Tomb where lies the remains of a Ming Dynasty eunuch. Unfortunately no live closeups are presented to visitors. However a vast number of pictures and tools used for the removal operation are on display. Just to make sure there are no eunuchs in modern day China, the last one died 1996.
In China it is tradition to burry the whole body and so were the eunuchs. Testicles and the penis were kept until the day of death to accompany the sacred burial. Respect.
The Japanese have mastered winter survival, not by insulating their homes but dwelling inside the protection of a Chinese kotatsu. This ingenious investion not only keeps warm but unites the family under the same table.
Interestingly enough many parts of Japan are very cold during winter even though houses often lack compatibility with such harsh winters. That is because of central heating expenses are high and if you can avoid them, why not.
Kotatsu is a frame that has a table on top, a warmer inside and it’s covered by a thick cover. The blanket is put between the table and the frame, so that it just comes out of the edges of the table covering the inside. Thus creating a warm space where you can put your feet while eating, playing or using your laptop on the table. If feeling really cold, depending on the size you can put the most of your body inside. Just watch out, it’s a very cozy place and easy to fall asleep. However soothing you might wake up with your feet burning!
The only downside of the kotatsu is that if you do have central heating or a warm house then it’s just not the same anymore! So it might not be the perfect fit for a modern apartment. However the kotatsu also functions in the summer time as a normal table.
The Kang Bed is a traditional Chinese bed-stove which can be used in a variety of ways. Forget the privacy of your own bed, this large bed usually covering most of the room space is used for eating, playing chess, meetings and even sleeping=) So if you think that you can own a bed in China, think again and welcome everyone to share the fun.
The best feature of all is that the bed is heated with wood. To balance the fact that the rest of the house is very cold in the winter, the bed will be extremely hot, so do be careful with those bums. If you are the type that hates hot summers, this bed might not be for you. If you love summer but hate the cold, you might not want to leave the bed ever again!
Thus the bed brings its contradictions which are easily solved within a warm social atmosphere of a Chinese family enjoying the bed. Now when could we get these to the western market? Not anytime soon.