Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Discussions on the Hokkien (Minnan) language.
SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Fri Jun 07, 2013 4:40 pm

Hi Everyone,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goji_berry

These things are apparently called "goji berries" in English. I never knew what they were called (in English) until recently. They've come to the attention of the Western world because there are claims being made about their medicinal properties. Anyway, I'm not that concerned about the claims or counter-claims. I knew them because they end up in a number of herbal-type soups in Chinese cuisine.

Now, I know them as "kí-chí" or "kì-chí" - both my tone-2 and my tone-3 sandhi to tone-1, and I only know this syllable in this combination (with tone-1), so I don't know what the citation tone is.

Does anyone know the Hokkien character (and tone) for it? I tried looking in Douglas, but can't find any reference to it. The corresponding Chinese-Wikipedia page tells me that they are called 枸杞 in Mandarin. I suppose the second character meets the (for me, intuitive) criteria to be the character for "kí/kì", but it would be nice if someone who knows could actually comment on this.

niuc
Posts: 734
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 3:23 pm
Location: Singapore

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby niuc » Sun Jun 09, 2013 7:14 am

Hi Sim

It is "kó˙-kí (kór-kí)" 枸杞 in my variant, and apparently also in Taiwan (cf. http://ip194097.ntcu.edu.tw/q/THq.asp).

If "ch" in "kí-chí" is "ts" and not "tsh", probably it is 杞子.

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Mon Jun 10, 2013 9:05 am

niuc wrote:Hi Sim

It is "kó˙-kí (kór-kí)" 枸杞 in my variant, and apparently also in Taiwan (cf. http://ip194097.ntcu.edu.tw/q/THq.asp).

If "ch" in "kí-chí" is "ts" and not "tsh", probably it is 杞子.

Hi Niuc,

Thanks for this. Yes, indeed, I meant the unaspirated initial consonant in the second syllable.

After years of using "c-/ch-" instead of "ch-/chh-" - because I felt that "cch-" looks ugly - I have given up the battle.

There are a number of reasons for my giving up:

1. When writing any particular word (without context, like above) it is unclear to another reader which convention I'm using (this was precisely the problem in our current exchange). If I had decided on "z-/zh-" (or "ts-/tsh-") as my replacement for "ch-/chh-", then there would have been no ambiguity, but with "c-/ch-", one can never tell, when one sees a "ch-", whether I'm using my own convention or the POJ one, unless there is another word present in the same text (written by me) with either "c-" or "chh-". For this reason, I began to think that this particular version of my "reform of POJ" wasn't a good idea.

2. I started to accept Ah-bin's argument that POJ is an existing convention, quite clear in its rules, with an unbroken, 150-year history, so why not use it. De Gijzel - in his small Penang Hokkien Dictionary - used it. So, even if I think it's got some disadvantages - A. I don't like "oa", I prefer "ua". B. I absolutely hate the "chh-" - I've decided to just give in and use (more-or-less) POJ. [I have to say "more-or-less" because: 1. Strict POJ uses superscript for the "h" in "ph-/th-/kh-", but I'm not going to because it simply is too much trouble. 2. Strict POJ has a difference between "ch-" and "ts-", which I am unable / unwilling to maintain. But aside from these two small compromises, I'm going to use "more-or-less POJ" from now onwards.]

I suppose I should have suspected 杞 as being the character for "ki-", but I was made a bit unsure by the fact that the Mandarin initial consonant is aspirated, and the Hokkien one isn't. Now this is absolutely not a strict rule - for example 平 is unaspirated in Hokkien and aspirated in Mandarin (and there are hundreds of other examples). But still, there remains a general pattern that they will match in aspiration, so if they don't, then I'm just a a bit more cautious.

Finally, the tone you give for 杞 - i.e. "kí" – sandhies perfectly to how I say it in front of the 子/籽, so I'm pretty sure that it is indeed 杞.

Actually, I started this topic because I was intending to ask about "tong-kui" 當歸 next. But in the weekend I managed to find out what I needed about it, so there is no next question about Chinese herbs at the moment. Hopefully, I'll think of some in the coming days.

niuc
Posts: 734
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 3:23 pm
Location: Singapore

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby niuc » Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:05 pm

Hi Sim

Thank you for explaining about ch/chh, POJ etc. POJ is indeed better than some other romanization systems, so I agree that it's better to have it as a kind of de facto standard than having none. However, I am still puzzled why ch/chh are used in POJ instead of c/ch or ts/tsh. The explanation given that ch sounds like ch in "church" doesn't make sense to me, because ch in "church" is aspirated.

I prefer to allow diversification as to spell a variant more accurately, e.g. 明 as bêng for Ciangciu, Penang/Medan, Tailam and as bîng (or even bîerng) for Cuanciu, Emng/Amoy, Tang'uaⁿ, Taipak; 嬰 eⁿ for the former and iⁿ for the latter; etc. I still don't understand why Amoy POJ spells bêng/sêng instead of bîng/sîng (the actual pronunciation). This actually is misleading, imho.

Personally I will still use "modified" spelling, not because I reject POJ (in fact I use POJ to explain my spelling if necessary), but because POJ convention is not always accurate in describing how a word is pronounced in my variant. :mrgreen:

FutureSpy
Posts: 167
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:23 pm

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby FutureSpy » Mon Jun 10, 2013 5:43 pm

niuc wrote:I prefer to allow diversification as to spell a variant more accurately, e.g. 明 as bêng for Ciangciu, Penang/Medan, Tailam and as bîng (or even bîerng) for Cuanciu, Emng/Amoy, Tang'uaⁿ, Taipak; 嬰 eⁿ for the former and iⁿ for the latter; etc. I still don't understand why Amoy POJ spells bêng/sêng instead of bîng/sîng (the actual pronunciation). This actually is misleading, imho.


You bring up an interesting point. Actually, I think that's the reason why TLPA (Taiwanese Language Phonetic Alphabet) used by MOE write it as bîng and sîng. My tutor from Cebu pronounces these as bêng and sêng (perhaps Chôan-chiu pronunciation?), but even when I want to represent these the way the Taiwanese speakers I know speak, I usually use -e- as well, perhaps because I got used to it (most of my books use POJ, even if in the recordings it's clearly either i or ie). However, as for the consonants, I've been marking them whenever I realize there are pronunciation differences. Most Taiwanese I know say kin-a-gi̍t 今仔日 or gī-tián 字典, so whenever I'm representing their specific pronunciations, I've been using g- instead of j- or l- in my notes for the words they pronounce that way; same goes to my Cebuano teacher, who pronounces most of the l- as d- (e.g.: 汝 dí, 偌濟 dōa-tsōe, 蘇聯 So͘-diân, 仁 dîn, 冷 dêng, 啉/ dim etc.) except in cases like 叼落 tó-lo̍h, 南部 lâm-pō͘, 來 lâi, 人 lâng, 老父 lāu-pē, etc. Then, these days, it simply came to my mind I should stop writing down these sounds as they're pronounced because I thought these changes were systematic. But then, while I was reverting them back in my notes, I noticed they aren't, or at least, I couldn't find any rule that would work 100%. So yeah, I changed my mind again. Sometimes, even the same speaker can pronounce the same character in different ways depending on the word, so to me it's really unpredictable :P

While I don't represent Taiwanese chit-ê 這个 as chit-lê (I know I'm not very coherent, but these turn out to be automatic to me), I do write it as chit-gê for my Cebuano teacher's speech. I also write 幾落 kúi-lo̍h as kú-lo̍h and 再 chài as chà whenever she omits the -i there. I also don't mark nasalization as her speech doesn't have it in most cases (except for 有影 ū-iáⁿ, 張 tiuⁿ and 楊 iûⁿ). I think if one's goal is to represent how the speaker pronounces some specific sounds, I don't see any problem in diverging from POJ. While IPA would work much better for these cases, I guess adapting POJ to fit it is more practical (but less accurate tho)... Otherwise, using POJ as-is is perhaps more reasonable IMHO. But since I kinda like diversity, y'all know which one I'd stick with... :mrgreen:

SimL wrote:A. I don't like "oa", I prefer "ua".

So do I :mrgreen: It's funny that you have an o in oa and oe, but an u in ui. Not sure if there's a reason for that, so please forgive my ignorance... :roll:

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:00 pm

Hi Niuc and FutureSpy :-).

Lovely to see your thoughts on this subject :P.

Niuc:

I'll add one small additional point, which I read few years ago, and which made a deep impact on me. The author tried to explain an idea which could be summarized as "The purposes of an orthographic system are distinct from those of a transcription system".

He tried to explain it by saying that (I'm making up the word, but the point remains the same):

"House" would be pronounced with very different vowels by an American, a Scotsman, an Englishman, a South African, and an Australian. But it's written "house", and that is extremely useful for the whole world, because however many different pronunciations for that vowel in that word, the American, Scotsman, Englishman, South African, and Australian (and everybody else using the English language) can all just search for it (nowadays on the internet, but when he wrote it, he probably meant in a dictionary) using the letters "h-o-u-s-e".

So, the point he wanted to make was that an orthographic system should try and standardize over all the different forms; callously and brutally - if you want to call it that - ignoring all the acknowledged differences in pronunciation. On the other hand, to complement this, and to address some of the deficiencies which arise because of this - a transcription system can then be used to accurately record and convey the differences in the pronunciation.

I think I agree with this idea. So, in that sense I have less objection to the "-eng" in POJ not reflecting the actual pronunciation in Amoy. As long as it's standardized to something, then each area can read it out the way they normally pronounce it.

Now, I know one can take the argument too far (or alternatively: "how far does one take the argument?"). Using this reasoning, one could write 生 as "s!nn" and say to the Hokkiens: "Well, this is a special letter "!", and if you're from Penang, you pronounce it [ Ɛ ] and if you're from Amoy, you pronounce it [ i ]. Or even more extreme, one could write 飯 as "pñ" and say to the Hokkiens: "Well, this is a special letter "ñ", and if you're from Penang, you pronounce it [ uinn ] and if you're from Amoy, you pronounce it [ ng ]!

So, both of those would be probably too extreme - i.e. an orthography can't be expected to even out extreme differences in sounds.

I don't mean by the above explanation to contradict your point at all niuc, just to point out a slightly different perspective. And of course you're right that if the Douglas was meant to be a dictionary of Amoy, and the Amoy pronunciation is "-ing", then it's foolish to write it "-eng".

But my basic point is that standardization is extremely useful - it allows people to find things: in dictionaries, on the internet, etc, instead of having to try all sorts of variants themselves, and then consolidate the results. That's why I'm forcing myself to write the totally abominable "chh-" of POJ! [I totally agree with you that the reason for this convention is extremely unclear.]

FutureSpy:

I find the whole "-oa/-ua/-ao/-au" thing very sad.

I really don't mind what they pick, but I wish they had picked "consistently". What I mean is that it sort of saddens me that Pinyin went for "-ao" and "-ua", whereas POJ went for exactly the opposite decision, namely "-au" and "-oa" :roll:! Basically, I feel that it should be "-au/-ua" or "-ao/-oa". I really don't mind which one, though I have a very mild preference for "-au/-ua" (which Malay and Indonesian went for!). But not this half of one and half of the other, made even worse by the fact that Pinyin and POJ made exactly the opposite decisions!

>> you have an o in oa and oe, but an u in ui. Not sure if there's a reason for that, so please forgive my ignorance...

Yeah, I don't see the reason either. "ua", "ue", "ui" would seem to be a "cleaner" choice. Don't know how I would feel about "oa", "oe", "oi" though... The last of the second set of 3 seems too far from the actual sound I hear and use. [And in saying that, I contradict myself and the whole point I was trying to make here, of "it doesn't matter what you pick, just pick something! But since when have human beings been consistent? :P]

FutureSpy
Posts: 167
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:23 pm

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby FutureSpy » Mon Jun 10, 2013 8:10 pm

SimL wrote:I think I agree with this idea. So, in that sense I have less objection to the "-eng" in POJ not reflecting the actual pronunciation in Amoy. As long as it's standardized to something, then each area can read it out the way they normally pronounce it.

I know what you mean here. In Romance languages, they usually call that an encompassing orthography (I don't know the English term to refer to it, so I'm literally translating it into English). One phoneme can have multiples realizations, so everyone write it the same way, but can pronounce it differently. It doesn't necessarily have to be a etymological orthography (but usually they pursue a balance between being encompassing and etymological) if the main goal is to maintain and promote the unity of the language, while making intercomprehension between variants easier, at least at written level. Basically, it's how most minority languages are being coded: an unified orthography, but more freedom regarding all other aspects of the language (unlike the way they were coded in the past). I find it's a good thing, but I think it's not enough to use these languages in official documents where, for an instance, objectivity is a must and any misinterpretation could have serious consequences. I think at least a minimal lexical standardization is needed.

SimL wrote:Now, I know one can take the argument too far (or alternatively: "how far does one take the argument?"). Using this reasoning, one could write 生 as "s!nn" and say to the Hokkiens: "Well, this is a special letter "!", and if you're from Penang, you pronounce it [ Ɛ ] and if you're from Amoy, you pronounce it [ i ]. Or even more extreme, one could write 飯 as "pñ" and say to the Hokkiens: "Well, this is a special letter "ñ", and if you're from Penang, you pronounce it [ uinn ] and if you're from Amoy, you pronounce it [ ng ]!

To be honest, I used to devote a lot of time into useless things such as looking for a kind of encompassing orthography for some very fragmented Romance languages (often grouped as a diasystem), sometimes due to political reasons, sometimes due to natural isolation. I also fell in the trap of inventing so many extra phonemes to encompass as many different sounds (say A write two words using x, y and y, and B writes them using w, w and z, so I'd use wy for that word A uses y and B uses w, and so on! haha) that it turned out to be an overcomplicated orthography for EVERY speaker of the language. So it has to be economical, yet unambiguous (a few exceptions here and there are okay tho), and if possible, etymological so not to severe ties with its roots.

SimL wrote:I really don't mind what they pick, but I wish they had picked "consistently".

And since someone has already done the job, why not? As I said before, in the past I lost too much time worrying about how to write languages that now, if there's something already standardized, I'd like to try to follow it as closely as possible and focus on more important things. But personal orthographies are really tempting! :mrgreen: IMHO, 漢字 is what can encompass all Hokkien dialects. Too bad most speakers seem to have it so deeply associated to Mandarin that it's hard for them to accept that the correspondence between both isn't 1:1.

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:55 pm

Hi FutureSpy,

I'll keep this one short.

FutureSpy wrote:[...] I know what you mean here. In Romance languages, they usually call that an encompassing orthography [...] I used to devote a lot of time into useless things such as looking for a kind of encompassing orthography for some very fragmented Romance languages [...]

(And the rest of your reply!).

It was only when I was in my late-20's early-30's that I even began to have the degree of linguistic sophistication and awareness which you already have. I just wanted to say that - with your talent for languages, your interest in "smaller" languages, your knowledge of linguistics, and your understanding of the complexity in issues of identity - I think you must be quite a remarkable young man!

FutureSpy
Posts: 167
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:23 pm

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby FutureSpy » Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:53 pm

SimL wrote:It was only when I was in my late-20's early-30's that I even began to have the degree of linguistic sophistication and awareness which you already have. I just wanted to say that - with your talent for languages, your interest in "smaller" languages, your knowledge of linguistics, and your understanding of the complexity in issues of identity - I think you must be quite a remarkable young man!

Nah, I usually only learn languages in the same shallow type of learning most non-linguists learn them: speaking, writing and a few spots of the local culture. I really regret nowadays that I'd always overseen phonetics. After so many years seeing those IPA symbols, I know how to read them, but not the differences in articulation point. I also used to have many linguistic prejudices. Never too late to learn tho :roll:

The most eye-opening linguistic experience in my life, however, wasn't finding out my grandparents' dialect really was spoken somewhere outside home. I remember back in Jr. High, when I used to collect Dragon Ball songs in different languages, I came across Galician. My first reaction was to think it was just a Portuñol (mix of Portuguese and Spanish... that does exists, and many people in Brazil and Portugal speak it. I think it has to do with Portuguese-speaking people being more prone to switch to Spanish [or at least attempt to adjust to the speaker] than the other way around). I had this Galician friend I used to chat with, and he'd always ask me to write in Portuguese and he'd write me Galician. I wasn't interested at all in Galician back then, to be honest. But then, years later, during a literature class in High School (I never really paid much attention at it 'cos they used to be -REALLY- boring) I saw on my textbook some archaic Portuguese stuff which had many features that resembled those from nowadays' Galician, but it was Portuguese (from a period we could no longer talk about Galician-Portuguese or Medieval Galician/Old Portuguese). :mrgreen: The more I learned about Galician, the more fascinated I was about it, and the more convinced I was they're the same language, even if not all linguists acknowledge Portuguese and Galician as still being a single language (you can find lots of reasons to consider them a single one or separated, including political reasons). And you know, when it comes to your own mother tongue, one tends to be more reluctant to acknowledge it and another language are the same :mrgreen: But the lesson learned here was that linguistic unity is all about faith in something, as you'll never really be able to prove two (or more things) are really the same or not if they're very closely related :P

My first minority language (even if in this case, minorized would be more appropriated since it's still spoken by most people there) was Catalan, and even to this day it's still my favorite language. This love, however, was very disproportionate in the past, and at some point, I started to go towards purist positions and reject Spanish influence or loans. I'd use words other pedantic purists use! Interference is a problem in minority languages, but purism isn't good in linguistics either, as it can be very contradicting and misleading. Otherwise, if I were to be extremely purist, I'd just end up returning to Latin!

SimL wrote:2. Strict POJ has a difference between "ch-" and "ts-",

Really? I realize sometimes, some of my teacher's cha do sound as cha and not tsa. It also happened to me with some Taiwanese. It'd be interesting to distinguish them, but they didn't seem to be systematic, and at least for Taiwanese, where some speakers clearly pronounce it as ch, others do it as ts, and vice versa.

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Fri Jun 14, 2013 9:52 am

Hi FutureSpy,

Thanks for sharing. In fact, I was vaguely aware of the existence of Galician but didn't know much about it. I thought of it as "Portuguese-influenced dialect of Spanish" (which is perhaps how most outsiders might think of it). But, thanks to your posting (and further reading in Wikipedia) I now have a better understanding of the situation.

One major revelation (and niuc will probably laugh at me here), is that I had always thought that Paul wrote his letter to them!!! In fact, when I first went to Wikipedia to look up more information on Galician, I just started typing into the search-box: "Pauls letter to ..." (instead of just directly doing a search for Galician, I don't know why). The auto-completion function of Wikipedia then showed "Galatians", and I went "HUH?!?". And that's when I found out that Galatians and Galicians were totally different people's/regions!

[Up to 10 minutes ago all I knew (or thought I knew) about Galician/the Galicians was that "it was a Portuguese-like dialect of Spanish", and that the Apostle Paul had written a letter to them. (Not that I was even very clear who the Apostle Paul was - if pushed, I might have been able to mumble something about Saul-Paul and some sort of dramatic conversion on the road to Damascus.) So, thanks to your posting, I've managed to fill a number of major gaps in my knowledge of the world!]

I was lucky that I enrolled in Linguistics A01 at university, and about 3 lectures (? it's a long time ago!) were devoted to the IPA. We covered the speech organs (throat, larynx, tongue, mouth, lips and nasal cavity), the types of sounds (vowels, semi-vowels, fricatives, affricates, stops, laterals) and the IPA chart, and how these three matched up. So, formally, I've been introduced to ejectives, clicks, pharyngeal stops, voiceless nasals etc.

I started to go towards purist positions and reject Spanish influence or loans. I'd use words other pedantic purists use! Interference is a problem in minority languages, but purism isn't good in linguistics either, as it can be very contradicting and misleading.

I think this is a very complex issue, with no black-and-white answer. For all that I claim to be a descriptive linguist, I too have my personal preferences. And for all that I claim to defend Penang Hokkien borrowings (particularly the Malay ones from way back), I think a tiny little part of me still has some image of borrowings as being "contaminations", and that there is some idealized, original, "pure" form of a language. Perhaps it's just a very deeply ingrained human reaction...

FutureSpy wrote:
SimL wrote:2. Strict POJ has a difference between "ch-" and "ts-",

Really? I realize sometimes, some of my teacher's cha do sound as cha and not tsa. It also happened to me with some Taiwanese. It'd be interesting to distinguish them, but they didn't seem to be systematic, and at least for Taiwanese, where some speakers clearly pronounce it as ch, others do it as ts, and vice versa.

Even if they are distinguished phonetically, I believe that they are not a phonemic distinction. (But now - as I write this - I realise that I have no basis for this belief other than that there is no such contrast in Penang Hokkien!)

niuc
Posts: 734
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 3:23 pm
Location: Singapore

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby niuc » Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:53 am

Hi Sim & FutureSpy

Thank you for sharing all the interesting points. I like linguistics but my knowledge is very minimum. I still don't know the actual sounds of many IPA symbols. In fact I only came to know the difference between f and v around ten years ago. Both are pronounced as f in Indonesian, do not exist in Hokkien (only f in Mandarin), and I was not sensitive enough to catch the difference in English native speaker’s pronunciation. :oops:

You both are right about orthography and transcription. Apparently I regard Hokkien Romanization systems including POJ more of transcription (like IPA) rather than orthography. Like FutureSpy, I prefer 唐人字 as the orthography for Hokkien, yet am open to accept Romanization as one of the systems.

Sim wrote: One major revelation (and niuc will probably laugh at me here), is that I had always thought that Paul wrote his letter to them!!! In fact, when I first went to Wikipedia to look up more information on Galician, I just started typing into the search-box: "Pauls letter to ..." (instead of just directly doing a search for Galician, I don't know why). The auto-completion function of Wikipedia then showed "Galatians", and I went "HUH?!?". And that's when I found out that Galatians and Galicians were totally different people's/regions!

Sim, I laugh but not at you. It’s funny (yet naturally) how often we mistaken one word/name for another because they sound similar. :mrgreen: I have seen so many people wrote Armenian (a country name) when they actually mean Arminian (from Dutch theologian Jakob Hermanszoon, Latinized as Jacobus Arminius) in theological debates about free will versus Calvinistic (mis)interpretation of predestination.

(Not that I was even very clear who the Apostle Paul was - if pushed, I might have been able to mumble something about Saul-Paul and some sort of dramatic conversion on the road to Damascus.)

按呢着真厲害了, 真濟信徒都呣知影个. 汝是呣是捌讀教會个學堂?

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:39 pm

niuc wrote:... Like FutureSpy, I prefer 唐人字 as the orthography for Hokkien, yet am open to accept Romanization as one of the systems.

I agree, even though (intellectually) I believe that character-based systems are very hard to master, and place a huge burden on the young of that particular culture (and an almost impossible burden on idiots like me who want to master them later in life, from outside the culture).

But (I believe like a lot of other regular readers of this Forum), I find that 唐人字 carry and convey meaning much better for Sinitic languages, than roman letters do. A page of POJ looks like a sort of porridge of indistinct and indistinguishable letters, not really "carrying the meaning" anywhere as efficiently as 唐人字.

niuc wrote:按呢着真厲害了, 真濟信徒都呣知影个. 汝是呣是捌讀教會个學堂?

Thanks! Well, having spoken of my support for 唐人字, it still had to work quite hard to read this sentence (but I'm very glad you wrote it this way :P).

No, not really. Well, my parents sent me to Sunday school class when I was very young, but that was from the age of 3-5. I remember being dropped off there, and I remember being picked up again, and I sort of remember playing with other kids while there, but I think we were too young to actually have any instruction in biblical history.

No, any knowledge I have of Judeo-Christian history is purely based on my reading as a young man, continued into the present. I was fortunate to have had exposure to Chinese Folk Religion through my Penang Hokkien Baba paternal side, and to Christianity (specifically, Methodism) from my Amoyish Sin-kheh maternal side. My father took me to temple on the birthdays of various Chinese gods, and my mother accompanied my father to do Cheng Beng every year (as well as in home-sacrifices, on my grandfather's deathday). And I went to Sunday school (and my father followed my mother to Church), and we celebrated Christmas. I find this a very rich background, because I got so much out of both traditions. I love all the incense and paper money and beautiful carvings and figures in temples, and I also love hymns, and the real "community spirit" of the Christian side of my background.

But as a teenager, I gave up both these aspects of spirituality and developed what I consider to be a basically "mechanistic" vision of the universe (atoms spinning around, accidentally combining to make more complex structures). In as much as I have any spiritual feelings as an adult, they have tended to lean in the direction of animism, Chinese Folk Religion, and (in the last 10 years) Native American Shamanism.

amhoanna
Posts: 912
Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:43 pm

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby amhoanna » Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:56 pm

[Up to 10 minutes ago all I knew (or thought I knew) about Galician/the Galicians was that "it was a Portuguese-like dialect of Spanish", and that the Apostle Paul had written a letter to them.

:lol: :P :lol:

SimL
Posts: 1407
Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:33 am
Location: Amsterdam

Re: Chinese (and other Asian) medicinal herbs

Postby SimL » Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:06 am

amhoanna wrote:
[Up to 10 minutes ago all I knew (or thought I knew) about Galician/the Galicians was that "it was a Portuguese-like dialect of Spanish", and that the Apostle Paul had written a letter to them.

:lol: :P :lol:

Yes, I think it's rather funny too. Never too old to learn! According to the Wikipedia article, it's not even certain nowadays who the Galatians were...


Return to “Hokkien (Minnan) language”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 20 guests