Thursday, April 5, 2018

Music and the Moral Psyche in Early Chinese Thought



Saturday, March 31, 2018 at Bard College 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, I attended the Conference - Harmony And Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

The First talk in the morning section was presented by Prof. Erica Brindley Penn State (Asian Studies, History, Philosophy)
Comments: Susan Blake, Bard College (Philosophy)

Her talk was:
Beautifying the Emotions: Music and the Moral Psyche in Early Chinese Thought

Prof. Brindly thinks that 儒 Confucius is a kind of like Rabbi. (Rabbi: a Jewish scholar or teacher, especially one who studies or teaches Jewish law.)... And Confucius believed that music was the best tool for becoming the idealized type of person, Junzi, the noble person. Junzi cultivate themselves with music... Confucius has set the path for intellectual culture today.

What music offers human beings? a moral education program for individual...



Prof. Brindly translates the word 知音(Zhi Yin, knowing sound) as "bosom buddy" -- Music was a way to bond deeply with or achieve communion with another being who would become a friend...

Please listen Prof. Brindley's talk with Prof. Susan Blake's comments and one question from Prof. François Picard towards the end at 49'47". (This recording is for personal study use only, please do not share. Thanks)







1993年郭店楚墓發現的竹簡裡有一篇[性自命出] 原文如下:

凡人雖有性,心亡奠志,待物而後作,待悅而後行,待習而後奠。喜怒哀悲之氣,性也。及其見於外,則物取之也。性自命出,命自天降。道始於情,情生於性。始者近情,終者近義。(Human nature comes from Heaven's command - Human nature emerges from Heavenly Decree; Heavenly Decree is sent down from Heaven... Dao is the path we should following...we have to learn to be in touch with the Dao, what was the right thing to do... Dao beginning with Raw Emotions and raw emotion is coming from human nature. He who is beginning on this dao is near to the raw emotion, and he who is starting his ending on this dao is near Yi -correctness... Music is the tool to train the emotions...  25'30" in the video ) 知情者能出之,知義者能內(入)之。
  好惡,性也。所好所惡,物也。善不善性也,所善所不善,勢也。凡性為主,物取之也。金石之有聲,弗扣 不鳴,人之雖有性,心弗取不出。凡心有志也,無與不可, 性不可獨行,猶口之不可獨言也。
  牛生而長,雁生而伸,其性使然, 人而學或使之也。凡物無不異也者,剛之柱也,剛取之也。柔之約[也],柔取之也。四海之內,其性一也。其用心各異,教使然也。
  凡性,或動之,或逆之,或交之,或厲之,或出之,或養之,或長之。凡動性者,物也;逆性者,悅也;交性者,故也;厲性者,義也;出性者,勢也;養性者,習也;長性者,道也。
  凡見者之謂物,快於己者之謂悅,物之勢者之謂勢,有為也之謂故。義也者,群善之蕝也。習也者,有以習其性也。
  道者,群物之道。凡道,心術為主。道四術,唯人道為可道也。其三術者,道之而已。
  《詩》、《書》、《禮》、《樂》,其始出皆生於人。 《詩》,有為為之也;《書》,有為言之也;《禮》、《樂》,有為舉之也。
  聖人比其類而論會之,觀其先後,而逆訓之,體其義而節度之,理其情而出入之,然後復以教。教,所以生德於中者也。
  禮作於情,或興之也,當事因方而製之。其先後之舍(序)則義道也。或舍(序)為之節則也。
  致容貌,所以度節也。君子美其情, 貴其義,善其節,好其容,樂其道,悅其教,是以敬焉。拜,所以為?與,其諛度也。幣帛,所以為信與證也,其詞義道也。
  笑,禮之淺澤也。樂,禮之深澤也。凡聲,其出於情也信,然後其入撥人之心也厚。聞笑聲,則鮮如也斯喜。聞歌謠,則陶如也斯奮。聽琴瑟之聲,則悸如也斯嘆觀《賚》、《武》,則齊如也斯作。觀《韶》、《夏》,則勉如也斯儉。詠思而動心,==如也,其居次也舊(久),其反善復始也慎(32'30" in the video) 其出入也順,司(始)其德也。鄭衛之樂,則非其聽而從之也。凡古樂龍(動)心,益(淫)樂龍(動)指(嗜),皆教其人者也。 《賚》、《武》樂取,《韶》、《夏》樂情。
  凡至樂必悲,哭亦悲,皆至其情也。哀、樂,其性情相近也,是故其心不遠。哭之動心也,浸殺,其央戀戀如也,戚然以終。樂之動心也,濬深鬰陶,其央則流如也悲,悠然以思。
  凡憂,思而後悲;凡樂,思而後忻。凡思之用,心為甚。嘆,思之方也,其聲變則 其心變,其心變則其聲亦然。吟遊(流)哀也,噪遊(流)樂也,啾遊(流)聲[也],嘔遊(流)心也。
  喜斯陶,陶斯奮,奮斯詠,詠斯猶,猶斯作。作,喜之終也。慍斯憂,憂斯戚,戚斯嘆,嘆斯闢,闢斯通。通,慍之終也。
  凡學者隸[求]其心為難。從其所為,近得之矣,不如以樂之速也。唯[雖]能其事,不能其心,不貴。求其心有為也,弗得之矣。人之不能以為(偽)也,可知也。其過十舉,其心必在焉,察其見者,情安失哉?察,義之方也。義,敬之方也。敬,物之節也。篤,仁之方也。仁,性之方也。性或生之。忠,信之方也。信,情之方也。情出於性。
  愛類七,唯性愛為近仁。智類五,唯義道為近忠。惡類三,唯惡不仁為近義。所為道者四,唯人道為可道也。凡用心之躁者,思為甚。用智之疾者,患為甚。用情之至者,哀樂為甚。用身之弁者,悅為甚。用力之盡者,利為甚。目之好色,耳之樂聲,鬰陶之氣也,人不難為之死。
  有其為人之節節如也,不有夫柬柬之心則採。有其為人之柬柬如也,不有夫恆怡之志則縵。人之巧言利詞者,不有夫詘詘之心則流。人之悅然可與和安者,不有夫奮作之情則侮。有其為人之快如也,弗牧不可。有其為人之淵如也,弗輔不足。凡人偽為可惡也。偽斯吝矣,吝斯慮矣,慮斯莫與之結矣。慎,仁之方也。然而其過不惡。速,謀之方也,有過則咎。人不慎斯有過,信矣。
  凡人情為可悅也。苟以其情,唯(雖)過不惡;不以其情,唯(雖)難不貴。苟有其情,唯(雖)未之為,斯人信之矣。
  未言而信,有美情者也。未教而民恆,性善者也。未賞而民勸,含福者也。未型(刑)而民畏,有心畏者也。賤而民貴之,有德者也。貧而民聚焉,有道者也。
  獨處而樂,有內(入)禮者也。惡之而不可非者,達於義者也。非之而不可惡者,篤於仁者也。
  行之不過,知道者也。聞道反上,上交者也。聞道反下,下交者也。聞道反己,修身者也。上交近事君,下交得眾近從政,修身近至仁。
  同方而交,以道者也。不同方而 交, 以 ?者[也]。同悅而交,以德者也。不同悅而交,以猷者也。門內之治,欲其逸也。門外之治,欲其製也。
  凡悅人勿吝也,身必從之,言及則明舉之而毋偽。凡交毋央,必使有末。凡於徵毋畏,毋獨言。獨處則習父兄之所樂。苟毋大害,少枉內(入)之可也,已則勿複言也。

  凡憂患之事欲任,樂事欲後。身欲靜而毋==,慮欲淵而毋拔,行欲勇而必至,貌欲壯而毋拔,[心]欲柔齊而泊,喜欲智而亡末,樂欲懌而有志,憂欲儉而毋惛(悶),怒欲盈而毋希,進欲遜而毋巧,退欲循而毋輕,欲皆度而毋偽。君子執志必有夫光光之心,出言必有夫柬柬之信,賓客之禮必有夫齊齊之容,祭祀之禮必有夫齊齊之敬,居喪必有夫戀戀之哀。君子身以為主心。

Starting at 49'47" Prof. François Picard asked two questions. The first one is about the relationship between music and words, but this part Prof. Brindley did not answer. The 2nd question is about Li 禮, that Li is not about harmony but to distinguish heaven and living being.  My understanding is that Prof. Brindley thinks that Li is to distinguish everything and Yue 樂 (music) is to harmonize everything as Xunzi 荀子 say: 故樂者審一以定和者也,比物以飾節者也,合奏以成文者也;足以率一道,足以治萬變。...樂合同,禮別異,禮樂之統,管乎人心矣。 

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Bell Chimes from the Chinese Bronze Age



Saturday, March 31, 2018 at Bard College 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, I attended the Conference - Harmony And Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

The Second talk in the morning section was presented by Prof. Lothar Von Falkenhausen from University of California, Los Angeles (Art History, Archeology)
Comments: Patricia Karetzky, Bard College (Art History)

His talk was:
Music to the Ears of Confucius: Bell Chimes from the Chinese Bronze Age

I did not take many photos of his slides, therefore I used some information I found on-line to help my study. 

編鐘 Bian Zhong (A set of bronze bells. Zhong means bells)

Three major bell types:

甬鐘 Yong Zhong 各部位名稱 (names of each parts on the Yong Zhong) (棒狀掛頭, 橋型鐘口)

紐鐘 Niu Zhong (環狀掛頭, 橋型鐘口)

鎛鐘 Bo Bell (平口)

鐘的形式有「鐘」、「鎛」之分。鐘又可分為「甬鐘」及「鈕鐘」二型,是以其懸掛部位有甬、鈕之異來區分。鎛的形制與鐘相近,但不像鐘口呈弧狀,而是作平口,鈕部多附有蟠曲堆垛的獸形紋飾,鎛一般為特懸,即單懸,且體形大於鐘


The difference between Yong bell and Niu bell is in the hanging mechanism. The Niu bell has a vertical suspension device while Yong bell has a cylindrical suspension device. The Bo bell is usually used as a single bell with a flat bottom opening, not like Yong and Niu bells which have a curved bottom opening. The Bo bell is much larger than the Yong bell and Niu bell. (Picture : the one in the middle on the ground)

Each bell can create two tones, according to Prof. Falkenhausen, they were design specifically to create two tones. The caster knew ahead of time which two tones they would make, before they made them. This formula for knowing which specific size and shape to cast a bell to achieve two specific tones has been lost. 

For Prof. Falkenhausen's talk, please listen from this video. (This sound recording is for private study use only, please do not share. Thank you.)




I recommend a fantastic catalog about the set of bronze bells at tomb of Marquis Yi of Zheng: 
Music in the Age of Confucius, 
published by the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. in the year 2000.

About Rhapsody, Fu 賦


Layout of Prof Yang Ye's talk. 
Saturday, March 31, 2018 at Bard College 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, I attended the Conference - Harmony And Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

The last talk in the morning section was presented by Prof. Ye Yang from University of California, Riverside (Comparative Literature)

His talk was:
From Musical Instruments to Human Voice:
The Representation of Music in the Rhapsody
Comments by Ying Li-Hua, from Bard College (Art History)


Prof. Yang believes that Fu originally started in the south, not in the Yellow River valley, and was from the land of 屈原 Qu yuan. He also assumes that Fu has a lot to do with shamanism in the beginning.

Prof. Yang finished his talk by using a quote from a conversation between Huan Wen and Meng Jia : 絲不如竹, 竹不如肉  Silk (string instrument) is not as good as bamboo (wind instrument); Bamboo is not as good as human flesh (human voice) -- gradually get closer to nature.

Prof. Ying Li-hua commented that "Fu" (Rhapsody) is meant to celebrate and glorify, exaggerated and over the top, but has the core of a poem.

She questioned the English translation of the word "Xiao 嘯", Whistling. According to Prof. Yang, Xiao was not actually whistling, it is a kind of Daoist practice. She hopes Prof. Yang can show us what the Xiao sounds like. But Prof Yang did not try to do what "Xiao" sounds like.

Prof. Yang answered one audience question about whether Rhapsody is similar to todays Rap music. He says that it is impossible today to write Rhapsody... please listen from the video at the 48-minute.


Sound recording of Prof. Yang's talk: (please do not share, as this video is for personal use only.)



鋪采摛文
出於南北朝劉勰《文心雕龍·詮賦》:“《詩》有六義,其二曰賦。賦者,鋪也。鋪采摛文,體物寫志也。”體物寫志,指賦的內容,寫賦要有所依托,不能無病呻吟,要體現作者自身的思想感情志向,鋪采擒文,指賦的形貌,鋪陳文采。運用大量華麗的語句,張揚文采,從不同的方面描寫事物,不厭其詳,不厭其細。

因為聽了此場演講, 本來就對賦並不孰悉, 如今更想弄個清楚

網上查到
臺靜農先生 的[中國文學史]中說到"賦":
賦 誦也 這種文體是誦讀而不是歌唱
漢書 藝文志: 不歌 而誦謂之賦
聲音拉長為歌 (書: 歌永言)
聲音有頓挫為賦 (周禮 大司樂: 以聲節之曰誦)
誦其言謂之詩, 詠其言謂之歌 (漢書藝文志)
賦的文體是朗誦的 內容則是鋪陳政教善惡的
漢 楊雄認為: 詩人之賦麗以則 辭人之賦麗以淫 (則有criterion的意思, 淫有over the top 的意思)
楊雄認為賦並沒有勸戒的功能, 而是類似排優 (藝伎 skillful actor)

I recommend a good book worth to read:
R.H. Van Gulik 高羅佩 wrote:

Hsi K'ang and his Poetical Essay on the Lute (嵇康 琴賦)

with English translation 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

A little note about Prof. François Picard's talk

Saturday, March 31, 2018 at Bard College 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, I attended the Conference - Harmony And Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

The first talk in the afternoon was presented by Prof. François Picard, from Paris-Sorbonne University (Ethnomusicology)

His talk was:
The Role of Guqin as a Link between Ancient and Contemporary China.

Here is a short clip of his talk. (please do not share, this is only for self study)



Prof. François played several music recordings that are modern composed music which used Guqin as one of the instruments. His point is that modern Chinese composers are all influenced by western music and he thinks that the guqin is not being used to its essential quality, but as other Chinese musical instrument just to create some decorative sounds. And the guqin music have lost its antiquity and the antiquity is declining.

Monday, April 2, 2018

A Ming Dynasty Qin player - Yang Jijing 楊季靜



Saturday, March 31, 2018 at Bard College 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, I attended the Conference - Harmony And Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

The last talk was presented by a qin friend, Mr. Yang Yuanzheng, from University of Hong Kong (Music).

His talk was:
An Artist and His Patrons:
Qin Player Yang Jijing and the Cultural Elite in Early 16th-Century Suzhou

I almost recorded all the talk with my sound recorder, unfortunately the chip was full before the last two talks. Therefore, I can only use some photos I took and something I found on-line to help me to recall the talk about the artist Yang Jijing 
(ca. 1477–after 1530).

Different from other talks, Yang Yuanzheng chose one specific qin player's case to study. This qin player is Yang Jijing. Yang Jijing was a professional qin player who knew many famous artists, such as Tang Yin, Wen Zhengming, and Zhu Yunming etc. Yang Jijing's life wasn't too smooth through the end. He failed to find a position in a government bureau. His qin life at the beginning seemed doing well, but later it has some money issues. Fortunately he knew many famous people, they appreciated his artistic talent and either painted him or collectively wrote praises, which are now still surviving and are collected in museums. Through those paintings and colophons, one can imagine who Yang Jijing was and what his life might have been like. 

明 祝允明 題楊季靜小像贊 卷 (台北故宮)
〈楊季靜小像〉,文伯仁作於1526年。楊季靜(1504以前-1530),蘇州著名的琴師,與祝允明、文徵明、唐寅等人友善,唐寅亦曾作〈南游圖卷〉與〈琴士圖卷〉圖其貌。祝允明約六十四歲作此贊,原應題〈琴士圖卷〉,後為人移至此。


 明 唐寅 琴士圖 (台北故宮) The Qin Player Scroll (Taipei Palace Museum)

此pdf 論文對琴士圖做了很詳細的繪畫內容, 裡面所呈現的器物等等之解說.



[琴士圖]上的提字可依稀了解楊季靜, 這位窮有一身琴藝, 並與當時許多傑出的文人雅士結交, 卻始終仕途抱負難以伸展的一位琴人.   楊元錚先生做了翻譯:


 translated by Yang Yuanzheng
In the ancient state of Lu, there was once someone by the name of Master Musician Shi Xiang, about whom nothing now could be discovered, were it not for the fact that Confucius himself once learnt to play the qin from him, so his name has resounded through history up to the present day. Casting an eye around the scholarly community of Suzhou, I see from the extent they praise [Yang] Jijing that his name will live on. The grand historian [Sima Qian] states: "Ordinary people of the highways and byways, if they don't attach themselves to the great and the good, how can they hope that memory of them will be preserved for posterity." I firmly believe in this.
Zhu Xing's colophon to The Qin Player Scroll (c.1521) - translated by Yang Yuanzheng


明 唐寅 《南游圖》 卷 (at Freer Sackler Gallary)

Traveling South

Painting: Traveling Toward a Bright Future




Translated by Yang Yuanzheng

Translated by Yang Yuanzheng
Zhiyin 知音 : boon companion 

On the river, springtime breezes blow the tender elms I clasp my zither and see you off trailing long robes If someone you encounter should appreciate your music Cut some reeds where you are and build yourself a hut
Xi Kang long ago performed the Melody of Guangling Quiet for a thousand years its tonalities are lost Today I have traveled to this place to see you off That we may look for its tablature in the handbook. 
- quote from Freer Sackler gallary's website.

Wen Zhengming's colophon to A Picture of The Southern Journey
Translated by Yang Yuanzheng
Wen Zhengming's colophon translation from Freer Sackler gallary's website.
I knew the Old Man Who Guarded His Simplicity
Sincere and true, an upright gentleman of old;
His whole life spent with a seven-foot zither
In clear tones, he sketched the "Flowing Water."
Easy and serene never frivolous in substance
He quite knew the fingering for every sound;
He could have passed this on to several sons
But Ji it was whose heart alone matched well.
To him the ancient melodies were truly passed
His surplus skill expresses their innate mood;
But how shall his art alone be called refined?
He cultivates himself as his father did before.
In the past among those famous for the zither
There was once in Yue a master named Liu Hong;
But the Zither Liu whom we have here in Suzhou
Came in fact from this old father and his son.
With the passing of a scant few sixty years
The whole tradition now belongs to Master Ji;
Sorry that so few here understand his music
He packs his zither and sets off a thousand li.
Moling was a famous capital in ancient times
Go, go, surely you will find reception there;
Sonorously strum forth that unique music
Wash their ears entirely of cittern and guitar.


Qian Tongai's colophon translation
 from Freer Sackler gallary's website (line 1-4):
Jinling in the Third Month and spring is not yet ended
Eager to see the country you mount your figured saddle
Singing girls call for wine at the Willow Blossom Café
Ferry passengers thump the sterns at Peach Leaf Rapids
A noble melody that will not be extirpated on Zhongsan's [i e., Ji Kang's] death
The hui sounding nodes are played for the sake of [Zhong] Ziqi
Qian Tongai's (1475-1549) colophon to A Picture of the Southern Journey. 
-- (line 5-7) translated by Yang Yuanzheng

邀人撫琴
One of Yang Jijing's rich friends wants to hire Yang Jijing to play for him.



Yang Jijing's response.




所託吟賦諸詩,非是風過便無浪也,只因連日齒痛無好情趣,況不可打發,又非限緊不可緩者,故寧緩兩日,有興則書之,豈不美乎?絕無沉沒換污之憂。請少寬之。研石送去,幸為一造,只可作一池(池方圓不拘),於上不要做坡面,下亦不要插手,但用一朴為佳。草草奉報。不怪。十六日。允明拜手。季靜老兄。硯煩速倩人一制,使價來取。(祝允明致楊季靜)https://kknews.cc/culture/e9enbl4.html

Yang Yuanzheng's translation


質庵之號用否?示知。仆初四日欲往鄉間,其事可促成之,只好在明後日了之甚佳,或先交四物亦妙。草草!允明拜手。季靜老兄足下。(祝允明致楊季靜)
Should we use Zhi an's summary name or not? Please indicate. Your humble servant is, on the fourth day of the fifth month, hoping to visit his home in the countryside. So in order to make this business happen, it would be best for it to take place tomorrow or the next day, or first passing across the four objects would, perhaps, be imperative.  Written in extreme haste [Zhu] Yunming sends his worshipful regards. To kind brother [Yang] Jijing -- translated by Yang Yuanzheng


Yang Yuanzheng and Peiyou
photo was taken at the yaji, the evening before the conference.
(my white hairs reflecting pretty well... oh well...last time met Yuanzheng was 12 years ago in NYC at one of NYQS's yaji. And I was wearing the same jacket.)