龍的傳人 long2 de5 chuan2 ren2
Heirs of the Dragon
Music and Lyrics by Hou Dejian
In the Far East there is a river,
its name is the Yangtze River
In the Far East there is a river,
its name is the Yellow River
Although I’ve never seen the beauty of the Yangtze,
in my dreams I miraculously travel the Yangtze’s waters
Although I’ve never heard the strength of the Yellow River,
the rushing and surging waters are in my dreams
In the Ancient East there is a dragon,
her name is China
In the Ancient East there is a people,
they are all the heirs of the dragon
I grew up under the claw of the dragon,
after I grew up I became an heir of the dragon
Black eyes, black hair, yellow skin,
forever and ever an heir of the dragon
One hundred years ago on a tranquil night,
in the deep of the night before enormous changes
Gun and cannon fire destroyed the tranquil night,
surrounded on all sides by the appeasers’ swords
How many years have gone by with the gunshots still ringing out,
how many years followed by how many years
Mighty dragon, mighty dragon open your eyes,
forever and ever open your eyes
Lyrics with pinyin
[sui1][bu4][zeng1, ceng2][kan4][jian4][chang2, zhang3][jiang1][mei3],
[ta1][men5][quan2][dou1, du1][shi4][long2][de5][zhuan4, chuan2][ren2].
[chang2, zhang3][cheng2][yi3][hou4][shi4][long2][de5][zhuan4, chuan2][ren2].
[duo1][shao3, shao4][nian2][you4][shi4][duo1][shao3, shao4][nian2],
The lyrics translation comes from: http://www.onedayinmay.net/Other/Leehom/HeirsDragon.html
The meaning of dragon for Chinese people:
Chinese people use the term “Descendants of the Dragon” (simplified Chinese: 龙的传人; traditional Chinese: 龍的傳人; pinyin: lóng de chuán rén) as a sign of ethnic identity, as part of a trend started in the 1970s when different Asian nationalities were looking for animal symbols for representations. The wolf was used among the Mongols, the monkey among Tibetans.
In Chinese culture today, the dragon is mostly used for decorative purposes. It is a taboo to disfigure a depiction of a dragon; for example, an advertisement campaign commissioned by Nike, which featured the American basketball player LeBron James slaying a dragon (as well as beating up an old Kung Fu master), was immediately banned by the Chinese government after public outcry over disrespect.
This paragraph comes from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_dragon
In Chinese mythology, the Dragon King has nine children: Qiuniu, Yazi, Chaofeng, Pulao, Suanni, Bixi, Bi’an, Fuxi and Pixiu. Dragons are believed to have supernatural power in changing weather and ruling the oceans and that is very naturally that its sons are all powerful. In Chinese people’s minds, dragons are a symbol of power and dignity, and that is also one reason why the Chinese call themselves “descendants of the dragon.”
The above paragraph comes from: http://traditions.cultural-china.com/en/210Traditions6421.html
What does it mean to be Chinese?
Seems like a simple enough question. Actually… while the question of what it means to be Chinese is very simple, it is all of the numerous, equally valid answers that make the issue complicated. We have to accept that there are different answers for different people.
Here is one answer, translated from a post written by an American-raised Chinese on MITBBS (原贴):
I was eating lunch with a good friend (both a colleague and a classmate) a few days ago. He’s a true Englishman, having lived in England from birth through university. Although he’s now attending school with me in the United States, he naturally does so with the identity of an Englishman. Whereas I, as an ethnic Chinese person raised in the United States, have in his eyes been categorized as an “American”. And I will often correct him by saying “I’m Chinese”. This time, when the topic popped up again, he laughed and asked: “From your point of view, what is a Chinese person?”
I believe “Chinese” has three different meanings.
1) From a superficial point of view, it would mean the legal definition. If you are a citizen of the People’s Republic of China, if you use a Chinese passport outside of China’s borders, then this person from a legal point of view is Chinese. Based on China’s constitution, if a Chinese citizen acquires foreign citizenship and a foreign passport, they automatically relinquish their Chinese citizenship. So, with this definition, you can only choose one between the identities “Chinese” and “foreigner”. So, if you acquire American citizenship, you’re no longer Chinese. But I don’t believe the definition of “Chinese” is limited to this.
2) “Chinese” can also be defined on the basis of race and blood. If we talk a little loosely, all of the descendants of Yan and Yellow Emperors, all of the heirs of the dragon are Chinese. Just like the song goes, “always an heir of the dragon“.
If we talk a little more tightly, if your bloodlines are 100% Chinese, then using this definition, you are Chinese, and this will never change. It doesn’t matter what passport you hold, it doesn’t matter what citizenship you hold, even if you grow up or are born in a different country and can’t speak Chinese, you’re still Chinese. But I believe that even this definition isn’t the most important.
3) I believe the most important definition is understanding of China’s language, history, and culture. Understanding of China’s way of life. These people, even if they don’t have Chinese citizenship, even if they don’t have Chinese blood-lines, they can also be called Chinese. For example, let’s talk about Dashan (ed: aka Mark Henry Rowswell). He’s completely fluent in all things “China”; even if he doesn’t have a drop of Chinese blood, when compared to those with Chinese blood but can’t speak Hanyu, he’s more Chinese. And from that point of view, someone can both be Chinese and a foreigner. And I believe that because I grew up in the United States and understand American culture, I am Chinese, and also American.
Continue reading the article and its interesting comments at: http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/07/03/what-does-it-mean-to-be-chinese/