visiting a calligraphy class at a Beijing high school with
US President Obama's wife Friday, Peng Liyuan, Chinese President
Xi Jinping's wife wrote four Chinese characters on a piece
of paper and gave it as souvenir to her guest.
How much is the fine for late debt payment?
Hum, you wouldn't want to know.
First Lady: Gosh, she's brutal!
The four characters form an idem "厚德载物", meaning "great
spiritual virtue promotes abundant material wealth",
which was part of the opening lines of I Ching, China's No.1
classics and the critical foundation of Chinese culture and
very basis of Daoism, with its significance to Chinese civilisation
over thousands of years and to Chinese people's daily life
today far, far, far and far more important than Confucius.
Why did she write this particular idem?
Peng is not an academically
oriented intellectual (not in the conventional Western sense),
nor can she be considered as a "Talented Woman" (not
from the typical Chinese view point), although she knows
well what she sings and can execute art of calligraphy
First Granny: What sort of new WMD this PLA
general is holding?
The First Lady: Don't
panic mama, I'm copycating this piece of
to spy on my military equipment, hie,
where is your Apple camera phone?
Then what prompted a mobile camera fanatic to pick up words
from the metaphysically charged ancient text? Given she
so far has shown little sign as a person politically alert
over international wrestling and mentally sharp in internal
social reality, or she wouldn't show off her Apple phone
overseas and keep wearing attire at home that not only is
visually repunsive (make her look fat and short like a rich & vulgar
madam) but reminds the
public of the most humiliating era in Chinese history under
an alien rule.
Therefore a bunch of speculations sprout across Chinese
Peng is educating her American visitor about the relationship
between spiritual virtue and material abundence, which is
something American leaders, including her guest's husband,
fail to comprehend, judging by their actions.
Another hypothesis though reckons Peng's message should
be much down to earth: She's just worring about the money
some Chinese traitors lent to America, because, as the theory
goes, the pronunciation of "厚德载物” (virture
promotes wealth) is fairly close to that of "好多债务”(so
many debts). When Michelle hangs Peng's calligraphy art
on a White House wall and recites the Chinese idem daily
with her twisted US tongue, it will serve as a constant reminder
to the US president about how much America has owed China.