Also Known As Mooncake Festival

Mid-Autumn Festival & The Classics

 中秋佳节,华人有哪些传统习俗呢?我们所熟悉的,大概就是吃月饼、赏月、猜灯谜等等吧?但大家知道吗?这些中秋习俗和规范,严格上来说是唐宋时期过后才开始盛行的!

华人对“中秋”的概念早在战国时期(475 BC – 221 BC)便已经被记载在一些古典文献之中。例如,早在2000多年前,于孔子及其弟子在《礼记》* 中就已经形容了人们对月亮的祭拜。经过将近1000年对月亮及中秋的无限幻想和憧憬,古代文人也孕育出不少文学作品,为中秋节以及圆圆满满的月亮增添了一些更深层的意义,其中最为显著的就是“阖家团圆”。

“Mid-Autumn Festival” is one of the most significant Chinese festivals. According to various historical records, the Chinese already developed the fundamental concept of “Mid-Autumn Festival” as early as 475 BC, during the Warring States Era.

Following the Tang and Song Dynasties (618 AD – 1279 AD), these basic celebrative practices of “Mid-Autumn Festival” evolved into some of the customs we are familiar with today. Some examples include the eating of moon cakes, admiration of the full moon and guessing of “lantern-riddles”. However, a more important progression after 1,000 years, from the Warring States Era to the Song Dynasty, is the birth of numerous valuable literary works. These poetries give deeper metaphorical meaning to the festival. Many symbolisms of the full moon have also since been established within the Chinese literary culture. The most notable of all, is “The Reunion of people” (associating to the fullness of the full moon).

In this light, we will be introducing an iconic literary piece that expresses the theme of Reunion, “The Melody of Water”.

CLICK HERE for a complete English translation/adaptation

《水调歌头》The Melody of Water

今天,我们就要为莘莘学子介绍一篇将“团圆/团聚”这层意义体现得淋漓尽致的宋词《水调歌头》!

丙辰中秋,欢饮达旦,大醉,作此篇。兼怀子由。
明月几时有,把酒问青天。
不知天上宫阙,今夕是何年?
我欲乘风归去,又恐琼楼玉宇,高处不胜寒。
起舞弄清影,何似在人间!
转朱阁,低绮户,照无眠。
不应有恨,何事长向别时圆?

人有悲欢离合,月有阴晴圆缺,此事古难全。
(People experience sorrow and joy, separation and reunion. Akin to the moon’s state of waxing and waning, dimming and illuminating. Such is the imperfection of life that has been going on since the beginning of time.)
但愿人长久,千里共婵娟。
(May our bonds be everlasting and though thousands of miles apart, I take solace in sharing the beauty of that same moon. )

歌曲《但愿人长久》Modern Adaptation (Song)

对文字较为陌生的话,也可以观看以下音乐视频,听听唐子宜 & 周安信如何演唱以苏轼作品为词的歌曲《但愿人长久》,感受团圆的意义。

关于苏轼

这篇宋词的作者是苏轼。

苏轼是谁呢?

熟悉古典文学的朋友们应该知道他是北宋著名的文学家、政治家、艺术家、医学家。有口福的朋友们即使没有听过苏轼,应该有品尝过“东坡肉”吧?苏轼的其中一个外号就叫“东坡居士”或“苏东坡”。而“东坡肉”这个美味佳肴就是由他大约于1080 AD时创制的。对于苏轼以及东坡肉的历史背景若读者们有兴趣我们会在未来的帖子中为大家更详尽地介绍哦!

苏轼虽然才华横溢,但因某些原因他的人生道路是相当坎坷的。其中最令人心疼的是他一生中曾多次因为当官/工作以及被人陷害,导致与家人聚少离多。

Su Shi (苏轼) is the author of this enchanting piece of literature. While he is a talented writer, politician, artist and researcher in the Song Dynasty, foodies should know him better by his nickname, Su DongPo (苏东坡), as the creator of a famous delicacy, DongPo meat (东坡肉) in around 1080 AD!

Despite Su Shi’s talents, life had been hard for him. As a politician, he was constantly being deployed to distant cities for work. Eventually, Su Shi was even framed for crimes that he did not commit. As a result, he was separated from his family and love ones for the most part of his life.

苏轼(苏东坡)

Image credit to Baidu. (More information on Su Shi can be found via the link below)
https://baike.baidu.com/item/%E8%8B%8F%E8%BD%BC/53906

苏轼一生最挂念的其中一人就是他的弟弟苏辙(字:子由)。他们是从小一起读书、一同长大的知己挚友,兄弟之间深情厚谊。苏轼因为在各地当官,已经有7年没有见到弟弟子由,因此在1076 AD的中秋夜写下了这首名篇《水调歌头》:“人有悲欢离合,月有阴晴圆缺,此事古难全。但愿人长久,千里共婵娟”,以抒发对子由的思念,以及内心的无奈及感伤。

One of the most important people in Su Shi’s life is his brother, Zi You (子由). They shared an unbreakable bond from young and were close mates through their formative years. In 1076 AD after being separated from his brother for 7 years, Su Shi wrote his renowned piece “The Melody of Water”, with the prominent lines that convey his sorrow and love for Zi You:

People experience sorrow and joy, separation and reunion. Akin to the moon’s state of waxing and waning, dimming and illuminating. Such is the imperfection of life that has been going on since the beginning of time. May our bonds be everlasting and though thousands of miles apart, I take solace in sharing the beauty of that same moon.

议论文写作 Application in Argumentative

同学们在议论文中如果需要表达出和珍惜亲情、家人关系、亲友关系有关的论点,能够参考以上的段落以及以下的例子,相信能让你的文章得到画龙点睛的效果哦!

The above context and the extracts are extremely useful as supporting evidence when conveying content related to treasuring kinship and friendship in your argumentative essays. With some creative modification and also some thinking framework taught by our tuition centre, you could adapt the above context and quote to fit in different essay questions effortlessly!

题目:有人认为我国年轻人越来越不重视亲情。试谈谈你的看法。

Point (论点) + Elaboration

首先,我认为有些年轻人的确不懂得珍惜亲情,在日常生活中常常忽略了家人。现如今,我国大多数的青年都不曾经历过离乡背井的痛楚。渐渐地,他们便把家人的陪伴当作是理所当然的。

Evidence (论据)

反观宋代文人苏轼因为工作,七年无法与弟弟子由相见。他难耐心中对子由的思念,在一首《水调歌头》中写道:但愿人长久,千里共婵娟,深刻地表达了他对亲情的想往以及渴望。

Link

从苏轼的例子,我们能体会到与家人分隔两地的无奈及感伤。新加坡的年轻人应该珍惜每一刻与家人团聚的时光,不该身在福中不知福。

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