Superstition of the week--hand clapping


#1

Chinese are soooo retarded! They actually think clapping their hands again and again is healthy or something! Now how did that get started?

When you see somebody doing that, walk behind them and sing a little song to the rhythm of their hand-clapping–that’ll show 'em!

“Hare Krishna [clap] Hare Krishna [clap]…”


#2

Vincent: Maybe you don’t know, but the people who do that have diabetes and were told by their doctors that it is good for their circulation and health. That’s all it is. Why does it bother you so much?


#3

I mean, I never heard of this in the West, so I just assumed it was some kind of Chinese superstitition. (That is how the scientific method works, right?) I figured it was some kind of chi gong.

All these people have diabetes? And what good does clapping their hands do?


#4

Vincent, it’s okay to be uninformed about something but to slander people and call them retarded over something in which you’re purely assuming is rude and- no offense- stupid on your own part. Often when amongst others not of our own culture and upbringing we see things that strike us as odd, but being different does not make one retarded or less worthy of respect. Maybe you should pick your choice of wording better and try not to openly offend others. Words are words, but they often hurt.

Yes, I’m a Westerner and I’ve heard this as well. I grew up around medicine so maybe that’s why, but nonetheless this is a very regular practice used in many parts of the civilized world for those with these sorts of diseases and ailments. By doing this action it’s stimulating the heart and therefore increasing blood circulation throughout the body.


#5

imagine the sound of one hand clapping.


#6

What is the sound of one hand clapping? 8)


#7

Funny you should ask, Mianbao. It just so happens that I can clap with one hand. In fact, both my hands can clap independently of each other. It left my Buddhism101 professor speechless when he brought up that old cliche in class. Ask me to show you at the next Segue happy hour… 8)


#8

Maoman, I didn’t say I had never experienced the answer to this question. I, too, sat at the end of this surprising dilemna at one time and am thankful for my keen reflexes to have missed the 2nd demonstration performed on me. I’ll be sure to not ask this question in person should the chance ever present itself, but thanks for the offer. :wink:


#9

I do agree that the clapping of the hands is not as stupid as Vincent might think and we should respect other people’s ‘habits’.
But on the other hand, I just found out that the cute little puppie I found at the Ta-An Park was abandoned because it had white paws! Now how about THAT for Superstition of the week? And her paws weren’t even really all white, just the tips. And nobody wanted to adopt her because they say this is very unlucky! (yeah, for the dog!)


#10

I’ve heard that (white paws are unlucky) and it really gets my goat as a person who loves animals. How can anyone abandon a living thing because of the colour of its feet? Coruja, you’re absolutely right. That’s the first thing people notice about my dog; she has white fur atop one paw so they have to ask if the bottoms are black. When I reply that they are, they breathe an audible sigh of relief. This has happened three times, so it’s certainly not isolated. It’s fine to hold the belief unless others (in this case, white-footed dogs) are the brunt of it, at least in my humble opinion.

As for the hand clapping thing, does it hurt anyone? No. (unless you somehow get between the person’s hands between claps). Does it help anyone? Yes. And that somehow raises it above the rank of superstition, doesn’t it? In any event, to refer to any group of people as “retarded” because they clap their hands perhaps places you in that category. Or perhaps “Culturally rigid” is a more appropriate term. I certainly speak my mind (and so do many others on this forum) when it comes to pet peeves and the like, but name-calling isn’t necessary, is it?


#11

Surely the superstition of the week must be:

Mid Autumn Festival and the lady that floated to the Moon.

[quote][b]Mid-Autumn Festival
the 15th day of the 8th lunar month
Mooncakes are to Mid-Autumn Festival what mince pies are to Christmas. The seasonal round cakes traditionally have a sweet filling of lotus seed paste or red bean paste and often have one or more salted duck eggs in the center to represent the moon. And the moon is what this celebration is all about. Mid-Autumn Festival falls on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month, it is the time when the moon is said to be at its brightest and fullest.

There are two legends which claim to explain the tradition of eating mooncakes. One Tang Dynasty myth holds that the Earth once had 10 suns circling it. One day all 10 suns appeared at once, scorching the planet with their heat. It was thanks to a skillful archer named Hou Yi that the Earth was saved. He shot down all but one of the suns. As his reward, the Heavenly Queen Mother gave Hou Yi the Elixir of Immortality, but she warned him that he must use it wisely. Hou Yi ignored her advice and, corrupted by fame and fortune, became a tyrannical leader. Chang-Er, his beautiful wife, could no longer stand by and watch him abuse his power so she stole his Elixir and fled to the moon to escape his angry wrath. And thus began the legend of the beautiful woman in the moon, the Moon Fairy.
The second legend has it that during the Yuan Dynasty, an underground group led by Zhu Yuan Zang was determined to rid the country of Mongolian dominance. The moon cake was created to carry a secret message. When the cake was opened and the message read, an uprising was unleashed which successfully routed the Mongolians. It happened at the time of the full moon, which, some say, explains why mooncakes are eaten at this time.

Mooncakes are usually stamped with Chinese characters indicating the name of the bakery and the type of filling used. Some bakeries will even stamp them with your family name so that you can give personalised ones to friends and family. They are usually presented in boxes of four which indicate the four phases of the moon. Traditional mooncakes are made with melted lard, but today vegetable oil is more often used in the interests of health.

Mooncakes are not for the diet-conscious as they are loaded with calories. The best way to wash down one of these sticky cakes is with a cup of Chinese tea, especially Jasmine or Chrysanthemum tea, which aids the digestion.
[/b][/quote]

One of the nicest things about Taiwan must be the beautifully illustrated (Chinese) books that you can’t get from the Mainland until very recently. Mainland tend to publish books which are essentially just black and white text. Even then you have to learn to read the simplified Chinese characters which are a bit irritating. I am talking about books on Chinese medicine or acupuncture or “xue dao” in particular here.

I am also kind of curious what “clapping” has to do with diabetes or whether there is any basis in Chinese acupuncture point theory to suggest any curative effects.

For those who are new to pressure points I will briefly explain the “theory”. Our human body is suppose to be lined or covered with tiny almost nerve endings like points where the body’s energy or Qi is suppose to flow through. By stimulating these pressure points , it is apparently possible to shift the various energy levels or “reservoirs” in the body to their appropriate levels. Since sickness results from imbalances of various reservioirs of energies, and there are suppose to be six reservoirs and 3 main forms of energies, it is according to theory possible to energise or defeat disease through pressure point stimulation …blah blah blah.
Anyway the main areas of control or stimulations is on one’s head (and neck), feet and hands. Also on the back and even odd places like underneath the tongue. Nowadays all pressure points are tested scientifically (or catalogue) just as you would with a new drug in western medicine. The tongue treatment that I mentioned is currently being documented at the Chinese University of Hong Kong for treating children with a certain muscle disorder.

Coming back to the hand, and lookng at my acupresure textbook which I got from taiwan ; there is actually no presure point or spot for diabetes in the hand,( there is one in the feet) ; but the plumb part of one’s hand if you hold out your hand with the palm facing your face as if you are going to read your own palm, just along the ‘life’ line next to the plumbiest part of your hand is a spot or a range of spots which should be extremely valueble to the ladies. Yes if you press along this life line, as if circling the root of the thumb, it is suppose to control weight, as in fat absorption and fat retention. But clapping action could not really stimulate this area so I am still somewhat baffled.

Finally although we cannot design any instrument yet to measure/detect Qi, the “foundation” of accupuncture theory, I personally have no doubt that the “clinical side” of the pressure points theory really work. It is almost like we know the apple will fall but can’t define gravity. Also anyone who has read physics esp post newtonian or Einstein physics would probably agree with me that just because you cannot define (detect) it, does not mean it does not exists! :smiley:


#12

Lighten up about the hand clapping thing. It may or may not improve your circulation, but if it makes u feel good ,why not?
Besides, where else in the world can u walk about clapping without looking like an idiot? No one (except foreingers) thinks anything of it. I even tried it myself once while walking through a park - enjoyed every minute of it!

What about the slow body shaking thing? What’s that about? I once saw a guy (in a park - again) who looked like he was having some kind of fit. Turns out he was trying to induce some sort of trance state. If that was in the UK, the men in white coats would have whisked him away pronto. I don’t think I’m going to try that one. I go to Vibe if I want to shake my body.


#13

Qi is a kind of pervasive power, running thorugh everything. You can cultivate it by doing breathing exercises (Qigong. I would imagine that it explains body shaking and clapping the hands as well.


#14

Qi - ah yes, that “special” force that runs through the universe that kung fu masters can tap into.
Qi defiintely counts as a superstition.


#15

i prefer to think of Qi as “the Force” because not only can kungfu masters tap into it, so can the jedi. cool.
also, this helps me think of Qi/the Force as not being limited to the world, but rather universal.


#16

What about people getting up at six am every morning and running 5 miles, that’s so weird.

What about people cycling in all that dangerous traffic and heat when you could simply use a scooter.

What about people walking to walk when they could take a bus and be there faster.

What about people going to the beach or sunbathing on their rooftops half naked in the blazing sun, so weird.

What about people going for a walk at lunchtime instead of resting and sleeping on their desks.

That hand clapping stuff is still hilarious though. I like to do it on the street to embarrass my gf sometimes.

About the Force, where do you think George Lucas got that idea from, it’s such a rip off of Chinese thinking and Dune.


#17

There are not many foreigners who do not find the Chinese habit of nosepicking and spitting in public utterly repulsive.
However, what about the Western habit of emptying the contents of one’s nose into a handkerchief and then putting it back in your pocket for another blow later? Now THAT, my Chinese friends tell me (and I tend to agree), is just as disgusting.


#18

That’s a superstition? :?


#19

No, just a digression. It follows on from HeadHoncho’s weirdisms in the previous post.


#20

Believing that burning tons of joss will keep you out of traffic accidents - when you drive like an average Taiwanese :laughing: