2018Jul 7

SPAD in China Series: Chinese History and Culture

Chiarelli profileBy: David Chiarelli

While in China it was evident that their history and culture had very deep roots. Unlike Canada, the source of their culture can be traced back thousands of years. In Canada most of what we do and why we do it can only be traced back 150 years.

In Canada there are many cultures that make up our identity. Some refer to Canada as a tossed salad because of all the different cultures under one roof. We have adopted many cultures to form our own. In China it is different. There is one consistent culture throughout. You can tell that many traditions have been passed down for centuries. Every part of their culture has a deeper meaning or a story behind it. All the volunteers who helped us along the way were always eager to educate us on why certain things meant something, or how something came to be. There always seemed to be a legend or story behind everything, and they always knew it. You could tell right away that they had so much passion and pride for their country’s’ history. Judging by how much our volunteers knew on the culture and history of China I began to think it was the norm.Chiarelli

There was culture and history everywhere we went in China. From the Great Wall to the Forbidden City, to the food we ate. Culture was all around us. We were fortunate to experience a lot of it by doing. We were taught Kungfu and Thai Chi. We learned about ancient Chinese script through a calligraphy lesson. Chinese calligraphy has eight strokes, The eight strokes act like an alphabet. Different combinations of these strokes make up different words. We saw how important tea was to their everyday life and saw how they ground tea leaves in ancient times. We listened to music performed by students who used traditional instruments, and then were able to play them. We Chiarelli 4ate with chop sticks every single day. We experienced extreme heat and found out why people in China use fans and umbrellas so often. We climbed the Great Wall which was built over 600 years ago. We experienced what Chinese soldiers had to endure to protect their country. The cultural experiences were endless, and they all tied in with their rich history.

Every part of Chinese culture and history has a deeper meaning. China’s history dates back centuries, but still to this day Chinese people are practicing traditions that have never died. The Chiarelli 2best way to be a part of their culture is to live it. China has one identity with very deep roots that will continue to grow for generations to come.

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