Here at the frontier, the leaves fall like rain. Although my neighbors are all barbarians, and you, you are a thousand miles away, there are still two cups at my table.

Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn, a cool breeze in summer, snow in winter. If your mind isn't clouded by unnecessary things, this is the best season of your life.

~ Wu-men ~

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Four Arts of a Chinese Scholar

A friend sent me a link to an article regarding the four arts in which one should be accomplished to be regarded a scholar. An excerpt is below. The full article may be read here.

Throughout Chinese history, every scholar learns and strives to excel in four art forms: music, board game, calligraphy and painting. Fine points of these arts are taught as part of one's formal education; and skills in these arts are diligently honed and improved upon all one's life. We often see these arts illustrated and mentioned in paintings and poems.


Erik the Strange said...

I am a believer in these paths to understanding. I myself practice both English and Chinese calligraphy and play board games. I will tell you they all require deep searching.

Rick Matz said...

One of the things I had hoped to do when I got laid off was to revive my chess game. The contract has kept me pretty busy, and I haven't gotten around to it.

I'd also like to learn to play go, but I want to revive my chess game first. I'd have no business playing go unless I could play a decent game of chess again.

Compass360 Consulting Group said...

Depending on what essays you read, the fifth art is "the sword." ... Then there is another essay that talks about the six skills of the gentlemen. So much to digest and so little time.

What you learn in chess, you cannot apply in weiqi (Go). To the amateurs, playing a world-class chess game is considered to be an marathon. When the professionals play an apex-class weiqi game, it is a ultra-marathon. An average chess game last between 35-50 moves. A completed weiqi game takes a total of 361 moves. Most people do not have the patience nor the stamina to play a long game

Rick Matz said...

My desire to have my chess game at a certain level is about reestablishing the mental discipline for tackling tackling demanding strategy games. If I can't do it with a game as familiar to me as chess, then taking on something like go would be hopeless.