Chinese Culture

Culture Scout Real Estate

Religion

The Chinese culture is one of the oldest in the world and includes varied traditions such as martial arts, literature, cuisine and music. We can talk about 56 distinct recognized ethnic groups in the Chinese territory. Most social values derived from Taoism and Confucianism.

Confucianism is a philosophical and Chinese ethical system developed from the teachings of the Chinese philosopher Confucius. They believe in humanism, saying that human beings are teachable trying to reach self-cultivation and creation. There should be an obligation of altruism and humaneness for other individuals within a community, focusing on the cultivation of virtue and trying to maintain ethic.

Taoism is a religious tradition that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao which means your way and principles. The Tao denotes a force that is driving behind everything that exists in the world. Taoism draws its cosmological foundations from the School of Yin-Yang. The Yin-Yang concept exists to explain how opposite forces work and means “light and dark”. Taoism tends to emphasize various themes of the Daodejing and Zhuangzi, such as naturalness, spontaneity, simplicity, detachment from desires. The most important of all, is the wu wei which means an intentional action. They explain that the universe works with harmony according to his ways.

Religion in China was oriented during the Xia and Shang dynasties to praise the supreme good Shang Di. They used oracle bones and had a religious structure with the noble lineage acting as the clergy. Some recognized holy figures such as Guan Yin, Jade Emperor and Buddha are part of the Chinese believes without forgetting the belief in evil. Many of the stories have evolved into traditional Chinese holidays and other symbols of mythology such as Door god and the Imperial guardian lions.

Music is also an important activity in the Chinese culture. Some of the oldest written music dates refer to Confucius’s time but the first well-documented flowering of Chinese music was for during the Tang Dynasty for a zither, called “qin”. Other famous instruments are the “Xiao”, a vertical flute made of dark brown bamboo and the “erhu” more specifically a spike fiddle similar to the violin.

Chinese Horoscope 生肖graphic of chinese zodiac

 

Close to Chinese philosophy we have the Chinese astrology which is based on the Yin-Yang concepts and the five nature elements.

The Chinese zodiac also used in Vietnam, Korea and Japan explains the characteristics of each sign related on the year of born according to a 12 year mathematic cycle. I we compare this zodiac with the western ones we can appreciate some similarities: both have cycles divided into 12 parts, animals as signs and a personal and cultural association with the person’s relationships. In China each animal represents a different personality and behavior. Depending on the year of born, each person has their own signs and a methodology they can follow in life in order to be successful with several aspects such as fortune, love and health.

Traditionally the zodiac begins with the sign of Rat and ends with the Pig, embracing the other ten animals:

Buffalo, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Ram, Monkey, Rooster and Dog.

By the way, every animal has his own natural feature depending exactly on the year of born: Metal, Fire, Wood, Water and Earth. These features help to analyze deeper some aspects of the horoscope so as the association of the zodiac animals with the Yin-Yang.

 

Cuisine Scout Real Estate

Dumplings with soy sauce

Cuisine

The Chinese cuisine has a varied number of different styles and tastes but the most known types are: Cantonese cuisine, Shandong cuisine, Jiangsu cuisine and Sichuan style.

One style can use more garlic and shallots over lots of chilli and spices, while another may favour preparing seafood or other meats like chicken, veal or duck with vegetables and a high variety of sauces.

We can find a lot of different dishes around the Chinese regions that vary in textures, taste and way of preparation. Traditional cuisine relies on basic methods of preservation such as salting, pickling, or drying. Rice is part of the main course in all dishes such as pork, chicken, veal or lamb with potatoes, eggplant, onion, bamboo, tomato and pepper. Other famous ingredients are eggs and tofu.

You will be also able to find a splendid variety of spicy and non-spicy soups, generally with noodles, egg, tomatoes and chicken. Do not miss the chance to try a type of Chinese pasta called “Dumpling” made of beef, leek, onion and mint. One of the national Chinese dishes is the “Peking Duck”, a roasted duck meat served after having been hanged and dried and traditionally carved in front of the diners and served in three stages.

Chinese desserts are mostly very sweet dishes, served with green or black tea but it is not very common to eat dessert after lunch or dinner in a Chinese restaurant. Mooncake and Suncakes are backed but Chinese people only eat them during the Autumn-festival which takes place in October. Candies and other sweets are made with cane sugar, honey, nuts and fruit. Some famous desserts in China are the mantou’s and the panfried chesnutt cake. Mantou’s are deep-fried and served with sweetened condensed milk and the Water Chesnutt has a soft texture and cut into square-shaped slices and pan-fried before serving.

Houses in China

The People’s Republic of China integrate a high contrast between new buildings and older ones, including the traditional Hutongs placed in most any district area, especially in Beijing. Old Chinese architecture is famous for the Great Wall but the temples are also very extravagant. Recently construction has an American-style inspiration. You will be able to find among all cities a New York-style with hundreds of towers and skyscrapers. Most of the Chinese population living in cities only affords old and small apartments. We can say, construction is not too old but done with a minimum quality. Having a bathroom and a spacious livingroom is living in the lap of luxury.

Traditionalcourtyard residences called Hutongs, form neighborhoods joining one hutong with another. The number of Hutongs has dropped a lot since 1950 to build new street and modernize Chinese cities. The term appeared during the Yuan Dynasty and was supposed to mean “water wells” in Mongolian. Nowadays, people in China are still living in those small houses.

CULTURE 2

Traditional Imperial construction

Renting in China is quiet expensive if we compared accommodation with the general cost of living in the Chinese Republic. You can find well situated luxury compounds in the centre or outside the cities in residential areas. Some long stay appartments include in their compound a sport centre with gym, tennis court and swimming pool. For foreign people we recommend to rent an appartment located in western areas in order to have the comforts of modern life.

China is a safe country but some life-style aspects of the Chinese population may not fit with life in western countries. If you would like to rent outside the city, you will find bigger houses with garden which perfectly fix with a family life-style. It is the perfect choice if you have children or big pets. You can also find quality appartments in main city areas near important streets, shops, restaurants and shopping center’s with enough comfort for a less price.

By the way, if you prefer to get mixed up with the Chinese world, rent a flat in a Chinese district. For a long stay, we recommend you to live in main Chinese districts in order to assure health comfort.

 

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