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The Thunder of Silence
- A circle Is to Complete (1)

8 April 2012

The tomb sweeping custom has a long history in China, which can be traced back to the Spring and Autumn Era. A large volume of literature attributing to the annual event during the heyday of Chinese civilisation, in particularly the Tang, Song and Ming dynasties, bears testimony to its wide appeal and great popularity among generations of Chinese. However, no tomb sweeping event in history is more memorable than the one taking place in 1976, a Fire Dragon year 36 years ago.

Just 8 days entering that year, Zhou Enlai, the most loved premier China ever had and may ever have, passed away. It came as a terrible shock to most people when they learned the news from the radio at 7am next day.

It was the 10th year of the Cultural Revolution initiated by a noble and courageous intention which is to break away from the dead loop that sees any social reform end up in a similar situation: a new group of oppressive and exploitative elite minority replaced the old. But the whole movement didn't execute well. Although the turmoil only lasted for two or three years, the spirit of anti-Chinese tradition enforced by an army of political cadets, such as Wen Jiabao (the current premier), still dictated the society which isn't something that most Chinese relish. By the time an Anti-Confucius Campaign (批林批孔) mounted, that covertly targeted Zhou who tried to save as much Chinese heritage as possible, the resentment towards the fundamental Marxism, that dismissed the highly sophisticated indigenous Chinese civilisation as "feudal rubbish" (封建残余), had reached an explosive point.

The catalyst came shortly after Zhou's death. The central government controlled by the arrogant anti-tradition extremists (声称天变不足畏祖宗不足法的狂妄小人) ordered to scale down the mourning standard, with the national flag lowered to half-mast for only one hour.


On 19 March, a wreath was found before the Monument to the People's Heroes in the Tiananmen Square, which was laid by a group of primary school students from Chaoyang District. This sent off like a signal shot that provoked a mass public display of outpouring of grief.

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Your reputation is in the hands of others.

- by Wayne Dyer

A kind deed executed in hoping to be noticed possesses no real kindness. An evil act exerted while wishing others will not see is a true evil.

- 朱子

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