Notes from Qinghai, China

Image by Africasiaeuro via Flickr

Notes from Qinghai, China.




From notes from Qinghai :







Today, the People’s Republic of China is divided into 23 provinces, five autonomous regions and three municipalities directly under the Central Government.

Tibet, one of the five autonomous regions, is inhabited primarily by people of Tibetan ethnicity ”

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Yellow River
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Tibetan scenery

Tibet Shoton Festival 2011

I attended the Shoton festival on two occasions. Shoton is the transliteration of two Tibetan words which mean ‘Yoghurt Banquet’. The festival originated at Drepung Monastery, as a celebration to mark the end of the monks’ Yarné, their hundred day summer retreat. It begins on the new moon marking the end of the sixth Tibetan month. It includes performances of the musical dance dramas known as Ache Lhamo (Tibetan Opera).

Families from all over Tibet gather in the valleys to celebrate this most important event. Wealthy families erect tents that resemble a spacious living area. I had the pleasure of being invited into many tents as a guest.

Food will be served to the visitor, Tibetan Tea with salt. Against all wrong impressions, I must say that I saw Tibetan families with noticable wealth. Many Tibetan folks ride down from high mountain dwellings to attend the Shoton.

Shoton Festival

Shoton Festival

In other parts of Tibet the dances are part of the harvest festival, and yoghurt would be served at the feast which followed. The Ache Lhamo dances are attributed to Thangtong Gyalpo, also known as Chaksampa, a lama of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, also famous for building iron chain bridges in many parts of Tibet.

Tibet - Shoton Festival

Tibet - Shoton Festival

The popularity of this festival was such that the government decreed it an annual event of a further five days, established at the Norbulingka. There are performances by all the established companies from throughout Tibet, some of which can perform the whole Lhamo repertoire, and some who specialize in one particular drama.

Some of the stories are derived from Indian Buddhist legends, while others relate incidents in Tibetan history.   Shoton Festival: Ache Lhamo performance at the Norbulingka

During the festival all the residents of Lhasa go out and gather in the Norbulingka Park. They set up beautiful tents and hang curtains there. They bring cakes, sweets, dairy products, yak-butter tea and have wonderful picnics. Professional and amateur Tibetan opera troupes gather in the Norbulingka Park and perform various Tibetan operas.

Tibetan photography on

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Tibetan horseman

Tibetan horseman

Hongjintian – miracle herb

Six common medicinal herbs in Tibet according ...

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In our relentless efforts to find Tibetan herbs, we were introduced to one magnificent herb known to Tibetan practitioners.

africasiaeuro detox

The Chinese term is (translated) “Red view of heaven”.

Mr. Chen is senior biologist specializing on Tibetan herbal medicines.

My visits to China are incomplete without a visit to his lab.

One of his secrets revealed to me is Hongjintian

Red view of Heaven, Hongjintian:

The dry rhizome of the department perennial herb Rhokiola rosea L. of red-spotted stonecrop, the perennial stem is extended on the ground, can reach 50cm , thick about 1-1.5cm; Leaf intergrowth, wrap the needle shape linear and long and round or linear. The rachis was born in the top of the perennial stem , could reach 20cm long, the petal was red. six – eight of florescence.

Physical properties:
fragrant and sweet , flavor bitterness Brown or reddish brown meticulous powder

Specification:5% 20%

Test method : HPLC


Immunity enhancer, improves general health, improves human body‘s hematopoietic function,  slows aging process, anti tumor characteristic, resisting fatigue , lower blood glucose, antiviral, resist and radiate , used effectively in altitude sickness.

Kaifeng, Chinese city of art

④ Zhuxianzhen Board Pictures
Chinese woodblock New Year pictures, from Kaifeng, was formed about two years under construction in the Tang Dynasty (781 years) re-build Bianzhou city.

After the Northern Song Dynasty, Bianjing business withered away. Early as the provisional capital of the Ming Dynasty Kaifeng, Henan Province, after the capital of the manor Zhou Wang, revived it once again.

Zhuxianzhen Yin Gulu River flow renewed prosperity, the two pictures industry is once again prosper. A writer of Ming Dynasty Kaifeng’s “dream record” record, both within and outside the city of Kaifeng, “paper horses shop” can be seen everywhere throughout the city.

From ancient times, woodblock ‘s New Year pictures in close proximity (only 22 kilometers), have been traveling between Kaifeng and Zhuxianzhen in exchange. Before the 1938 Japanese invasion of Zhuxianzhen, most New Year workshops moved to Kaifeng. Kaifeng pictures were more than 60 workshops, prior to 1949, annual sales of the big city there are more than 20 shops, numerous small workshops. Kaifeng, the old shop, when Zhuxian moved to the shop, and later were used “Zhuxianzhen woodblock New Year,” the name.

Mr. Lu commented: “The board pictures of Zhuxianzhen ‘s good health feature strong coarse lines of engraving, printing and other different places,but  not the delicate carving. The wood is very simple, not coated with powder, the characters do not display obsequiousness, its color is thick, with local flavor, with the unique characteristics of the North board pictures. “Since the reign of Emperor Qianlong of Qing Dynasty, Wood Drawings of Zhuxianzhen spread abroad.

China – impressions on photoshelter

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Heinz Rainer About temples, China, Taoism, photography



Tibet – Images by Heinz Rainer


Lao Tzu, traditionally the author of the Tao T...

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Shaolin Masters

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