THE SHOCKING OLD AGE PROBLEM IN CHINA:
AN COMMENTARY BY DR.ZUIGAN OF BEIJING
Step One. When Tao is lost the Empire was broken. Society will fall into hands of greedy. False scholars will be numerous.
New monks will goes round begging for food, money and free lodgings. Some will take position in courts and offices, to ostensibly teach, regulate and develop their poor provinces into model states like japan ,singapore, Malaysia and south korea. Not only old men in China feel abandoned, but many old awliya, ulama, shuyukh and arifun in backward or modern muslim states, even suffer more ! Tell me now, who recognize Sidi Sulaiman Dede, Abdal Qadir Issa, Shaykh al-Hashemi, Muhammad bel-Kursi, Sidi Fudul Huwari,Yunus Emre, Abdal Kabir Munawwarra, Muhamad Sahrawi, Shah Dehlavi, Nizamudin Awliya, Shahidullah Faridi,Haji Ishak Ma,Imam Wang Daiyue, Master Ma Mingxin, Dogen Kenji, Master Izi Anqaravi, Abdal Aziz Redpath, Chief Redone of Adempiere,Abu Muqdims of Nusantara, Dr.Sachiko Murata, Sir Obeidellah Nasir and other sages only Heaven knows !
Step Two. Why not China shall follow some model capitalist welfare advanced states of new europe and oil rich arabistan, infested with suicide bombers, 200 million of faithful poors and tiny sheikhdoms – blessed with old, pure, sacred islamic landmarks of prophets, sultans, awliya and ulama/imams, minarets and madrasahs of light, ilm, fiqh and renovated international islamic universities and think tanks ? We got great scholars like Ustaz Said Hawwa, Badeezaman Nursi,Yusuf Qardawi, Malek Bennabi, Ali Shariati, Sayid Qutb,Abduh and modern statesmen like Kamal Atatturk, Nasser, Imam Khoeimeni,Iqbal,Maulana Ilyas and Zakaria.
Step Three. In case, the Chinese leaders forget, the arab world also boasted famous sufis :
Never heard of names like Fathullah Gulen, Mufti Kuftaro, Grandshaykh Nizami,Hisham Kibbano, Ahmed Dida of Mevlevi Haqqani Order and unaccounted Turuqs and Zawiyyas and Sufic Self Development Centers which sprang up every months and get registered under States Law of Globalia Republic. Lest this age of tourism (not terrorism la)and travellers get lost and hijacked in the Borderless Keinichi Ohmae masterly piece of Death of Capitalism and Free Market. Still hot from bookshop. Beside it, we saw a red green and beige copy of newly arrived bestseller named : THE TIME OF THE BEDOUIN (Ian Dallas, Budgate Press,London and Weimar and Meknes Inc.October 2006).
Step Four. Maulana Rumi commented in the Mathnawi : ‘ Beware, beware, why we need shouting to you, oh dervish, using a word twice ? Do you read book, many books and get lost in one book ?
The donkeys baying is not the same as the asses barking. The mills of fortune and time goes round. Do you, oh dervish ever get rich by meekly submit to Muslim Millionaires ? By colloborating with smart Kafir Bankers ? By touching hands and rub shoulders with High Politicians. By singing the tunes of Raihan, Rabbani, Hijjaz and M.Nasir or at least honour M.Sarip solo effort and publish a solo Balada Musafir Album entitled:
Dengan Nuzik Hidup Jadi Indah
Dengan Iman Hidup Terarah
Dengan Lagu Aku Bermadah
Masih Adakah Rumi dan Attar ?
Pulau masih Pulau, Begitukah
Mereka Bina Kubur Pencakar Langit
Takut Runtuh Gempa Tsunami
Laut China Laut Jawa Lautan Hindi
Hard Rock Cafe Pondok Sama Saja
Bila Seruling Bertukar Ular !
Step Five. We recapture the spirits of Tao and Zen as below.
a. In some respects, one need not wait for the studies (of Tao) to come in.(before embark on the Journey and Greater War)
b. who are often illiterate (in Sufism), will be strongly disadvantaged.
c. The reality of China today is that the needs of the elderly cannot be taken care of by the social system.(Who take take care of Tao ?)
d. Sons had all built new houses for themselves, but that their mother was living alone in a hut.(Real awliya mistreated by young guns).
e. Some experts on aging in China say suicide is spreading among the
elderly. In one recent case in Jiangxi Province, Li Qiurong, a 70-year-old peasant woman with five sons, killed herself by drinking pesticide. (This a serious case,five useless half dervish and five useless companies and five ranks in sultaniyya cannot help us. Oh Master Red1, we beg your kind permission to ask a question concerning numbers and science :
f. “ what the Sufis mean by half man and half woman ?. Is not half coming from One ? Who cut the Oneness of Tao into myriad old folk tales and rulers trying to corrupt the recluse sages by forcing and sometime by putting provinces and villages under their auhthority ? “
g. “To split One Atomic Nuclei or Particle, you need a megaforce. Where the force come from, how to manufacture it ? How to control this Force ? Power destroy, power make men mad. Madness is another area of discussion. We need more teacups. Power veiled men eyes. Power is nothing when presented to the real zen proponents. We dont want power !
h. “ We want something else beyond your imagination ? We want what you throw away? Can you really throw ? La haula wa la quwwata, except by Allah, the Exalted, the Vast. Oh Seeker, rub your eyes and see the Light of Allah, when everybody see storms, fires and winds raging around the rich and proud Arab States. We see poverty, dusts, bloods, bombs,wrong aqida, subverted ideology, hidden hands, billion of dollars exchanged for pieces of paper. Not even paper because more trees will be cut down. More chemicals release into water and rivers.
i. ‘Oh, where is Life After China, so goes one saying from a Venerable Sage who still using the Bamboo Fan to cool off one evening at Royal Hill facing East to Kuala Lumpur. It was many light years ago, but those who tasted Real Tea never forgets. One Cup refresh the Spirit. Eight years ago, at another blessed Sunday, sat five Zen travellers at Suria KLCC to taste Coffee and Cappuchino at the Starbucks. Throngs of young yuppies and girls with tight jeans and alluring music deaftened our ears. One of them is Sidi Ahamd Iwan Atjie just recently make a two month journey to Germany. He sat, drink, travel and sleep and debated with Abu Bakr Rieger. Really cannot describe and reveal this vast, sharp and refined student of Nomos,Carl Schdmitt,Junger, able exponent of Heideggerian Dasein un Ziet and readers of Heliopolis, Marble Cliffs of Zen,legalist mind of Ibn Rushd, president of Muslim Lawyers of Europe, holding a pen brushing the Globalia of Jean Rufin with sufic strokes.
j. Praising the poor seekers make zen students richer in separation. Furqan. A sword that cuts in a flash, a light from two clashing stoneheads. Who are the four other honorable guests at Suria KLCC. Suria is ancient chinese words derived from three letters : Shu (Book or Take Command/ Drive), Ri/Li (Rite/Path) and Yah (Rubbing or Seeking or Scouping Up). So we have to ask Master Izi to make a discourse on this one word of deep Chinese origin at the summer Dailin Nur Institute, insya’Allah. The Commmand of Allah : KUN, fayakun is just a word- no letter, no sound, no place, no time and at the same token, everywhere, heard, announced, seen, written down, lost, decayed,misunderstood, sold as callighraphy, sold as books and pictures. Misused by crooks and scholars. Put to use by kings and imams and generals who wage wars.
k. This is what Maulana Rumi taught, but how few get this transmission right ? How many being taught and received it with izin and secrets beyond our ears and eyes. Sufism is not in books or from books. Recently we read one dervish scholar wrote this : “ We must balance the Quran (recitation, we guess ?) and the Qasidah. Burda of Shaykh Busyiri got many secrets and we never tiring of reciting it. It got 14 verses/ayat directly related to Quran. So how we are going to evaluate with this dervish teaching ? “. How are we going to do this ‘balancing act’, this ‘act of recitation’, this special reward/opening promised to the unwary seekers ? Do he got izin, do he rightly judges the audience, do he measure the ocean, winds, storms and fires of Allah Taala. How dare a dervish, a wali or any scholars to put the Power and Reality/Meanings of Allah words into just a little book or mushaf to be recited and be balanced by Qasidah/Burda ? We ask Allah forgiveness and His vast mercy to guide us always in His Path, the Path unveiled and trodden by His Rasul sallaLLahu alaihi wa salam. The Path outside books, qasidahs and singing/songs. So asnwer this question : where is Islam, where is Ihsan, where is the Shariat ?. The Zen masters will give 3 blows to his students if the questions are wrongly asked, even right but put at wrong time. Even right time, but at wrong place. Even at right place but at wrong events/flux of existence. Unripe seed can flowers. Ripe flowers got no seeds.
Sidi Iwan of Bandung wispers to our ears. This is from Sidi Shaykh and this another piece of story from Abu Bakr Rieger who understook a journey with him south to the Alpine and Black Forest where Professor Heidegger once walked and retreated. He got one chinese student and several japanese students cum scholars. Next essay, we will unfold the events or the events unfold our folly and failures ? The master story teller transmit this at the Tea Hut of Magician Hill, Village of Karama, Province of Muddy River.
Time and Cost is the essence of Legal Contracts.
Signed and sealed.
Recorded and posted by
A Student of Zuigan
Original Article – The Old Age Problem In China
*And as China's economy has developed, old customs
- like the ironclad obligation to venerate and care for the elderly
with roots in 2,500- year-old Confucian doctrine, are breaking down.*
As Chinese cities boom, old are left behind
Many reject obligation to elderly
By Howard W. French / The New York Times
Published: November 3, 2006
BAODENG, China: If having children is a mark of wealth, Gao Shenmu and
Wang Xiuying, a farming couple in their 70s, surely rank as rich.
They raised six children in this rolling, fertile countryside before
China imposed its single-child policy. What's more, as the cities of
the distant east flourished and boomed, three of their four sons
migrated along with millions of others, landing jobs and joining the
But for just that reason, their very Chinese dream of security in old
age, built on the next generation's obligation to them, has foundered.
The sons moved, but they left their own two young children behind to
be cared for. They rarely visit and collectively send just 240 to 320
yuan, or $30 to $40, home each year. Gao and Wang make do at harvest
time, spending two weeks in backbreaking labor that once took them
less than a week to perform.
The couple's experience is increasingly commonplace. The chief of
their hamlet in Sichuan Province put the predicament this way: "Knock
on 10 doors, and nine of them will be opened by old people."
And across much of the Chinese countryside the situation is the same,
with villages emptied of their working-age populations, leaving behind
small children and grandparents.
China is a rapidly aging society, but in villages like this, the
abrupt shift toward a preponderance of old people is driven by
migration. Since the era of economic reforms got under way a little
more than a quarter-century ago, hundreds of millions of people have
been on the march, most of them peasants looking for better economic
opportunities in the urbanized east.
And as China's economy has developed, old customs - like the ironclad
obligation to venerate and care for the elderly - with roots in 2,500-
year-old Confucian doctrine, are breaking down.
"The reality of China today is that the needs of the elderly cannot be
taken care of by the social system," said Zhai Yuhe, a member of the
Heilongjiang provincial People's Congress. "Most of them must rely on
younger people, but today's young people pay attention to their own
children, and not to their elders."
Zhai, who is also an executive of a private coal company, personally
financed a study of the situation of the elderly in the countryside so
that he could recommend new laws to the government concerning care of
senior citizens. He said he was shocked into action by the death of an
old couple in his own hometown, who had essentially been abandoned and
were not discovered for days.
"In our society, children have become the highest good, and old people
have become nothing," he said.
He Xuefeng, an expert in rural governance at Huazhong University of
Science and Technology, said that although the central government has
begun re-emphasizing development of the countryside since last year,
in a push to reduce the gap between the haves and have-nots, the
situation for the rural elderly is deteriorating.
"New priorities have been set, but all of the emphasis is on economic
development," He said. "The traditional values of our villages have
been devastated. One half of the population is changing very fast, and
the other is clinging to its values. Under the circumstances, life
becomes tougher and tougher for the elderly."
Some who have been abandoned have sued their children for support.
Earlier this year in another part of Sichuan Province, Tian Guifang, a
69- year-old widow, successfully sued her son and daughter for
abandonment. After her husband died in 2003, Tian lived with her son
for a time, but was kicked out. When her daughter refused to take her
in, she went to court, winning a judgment allowing her to live with
her daughter and obliging her son to pay about 95 yuan a month in
Some experts on aging in China say suicide is spreading among the
elderly. In one recent case in Jiangxi Province, Li Qiurong, a
70-year-old peasant woman with five sons, killed herself by drinking
pesticide, after breaking her leg and not being able to care for
herself. Newspaper accounts said the sons had all built new houses for
themselves, but that their mother was living alone in a hut.
Yuan Xing, a demographer at Nankai University, said that at the end of
2005 China had 147 million people over the age of 60, and 80 percent
of them in rural areas. Official estimates put the country's floating
population, or internal migrants, at 147 million, a number that
consists overwhelmingly of adults in their prime who have left the
countryside for the booming economies of the eastern coast.
Most of them are from provinces in east-central China, like Hubei,
Hunan, Anhui and Sichuan. Sichuan, China's most populous province, is
its biggest supplier of migrant labor.
"With the development of the economy, in the future, the floating
population will continue to grow," said Yuan, who conceded that little
academic attention had been focused on the impact on China's villages
of this huge population outflow.
In some respects, one need not wait for the studies to come in.
Experts like Yuan say that children raised by rural grandparents, who
are often illiterate, will be strongly disadvantaged.
And rural incomes are unlikely to rise when heavy farm labor falls to
the elderly. Wang, in her little village in Sichuan, said she and Gao
worked as hard as they could, but it was not enough.
"We can't work as hard as before, because when we do too much, we feel
dizzy," said Wang, who is 74.
One son returned this year to help at harvest time, but then went back
to Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province.
"After all is said, we miss them, particularly when we get sick," Wang
added, her eyes welling with tears. "I broke my arm last year and
could not even lift it. Our son in Yunnan came back to see me and help
out, but the ticket is expensive for him. I know that."
Sidi Zuigan of Imperial Beijing Academy make a summary notes
of the above fine essay as follows:
One spoken word of a wali – kills the unwary readers.
Another unspoken word – bring life to many hearts.
How do you find this old age problems in the new rich China ?
We retold you the saying of Shaykh Muhammad Ibn al-Habib-
“Today many winds are blowing, you are just a wind.
Understand ? You make claims, you in great danger !
Get out and return to your homeland. We dont fight you.
But you fight and oppressed us. Oh my fuqara, hear this-
Dont get caught, dont get jailed and follow the Law.
You had seen me. That is enough. Reflect and wage war !