scottthong.wordpress.com/2007/09/21/the-hakka-famous… – Cached
A Theory of Millenarism:
The Taiping Revolutionary Movement, 1850-1865
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|Title||A Theory of Millenarism: The Taiping Revolutionary Movement, 1850-1865|
|Author||Wee Hing Thong|
|Publisher||Victoria University of Wellington, 1980|
Wee Hing Thong · 0 Reviewshttp://books.google.com/books/about/A_Theory_of_Millenarism.html?id=FFHgMAAACAAJ. Victoria University of Wellington, 1980 …
Taiping Rebellion prisoners. The British along with the French and US helped massacre 20+ million.
中國報訊：太平天國運動期間，在其統治區域，人們的葬禮、婚俗、慶壽活動，以至日常交往方式，相較於同時代的清王朝，有著翻天覆地的變化。這是太平天國政 權和傳統勢力在人生禮俗上的一次較量。太平天國在婚喪禮儀方面，明確表示出要革除清朝“妖禮”的意圖，而其中一項新禮俗，就是提出“一夫一妻”制，並專設 婚娶官專門負責婚姻登記及頒發“合揮”，也就是中國史上最早的結婚證書。（中國《光明網》／香港《蘋果日報》）
HAKKA TAIPING CHRISTIANITY
The Taipings were Hakka, though joined later by other dialect groups. The first convert to Christianity was Hung Hsiu-chuan, a Guangxi Hakka. He had read Good Words to Admonish the Age, written by Liang A-fa, a Cantonese convert to Protestant Christianity. Later, he came to see himself as the Younger Brother of Jesus Christ.
These are the basic tenets of Hakka Taiping Christianity
1 God is the only true Spirit, having existed before heaven and earth. He is the only true God, the creator of heaven and earth, land and sea, and everything else in existence. This he accomplished in 6 days. It is he who sustains the whole of creation. All the stellar bodies revolve day and night but only with the support of God. God is the first existence in the universe, the greatest and most powerful, creator of all things, and ruler of all intelligences.
2 God is omnipotent; his power is infinite and eternal and extends everywhere. While he is able to accomplish everything, man is unable to do anything. He is omnipresent, being in every place. He is also omniscient; he knows all so that the devices of man, clever though they may be, cannot succeed. He recognizes man’s plots and conspiracies before they are put into effect.
So far, so correct…
3 God is the Father of mankind. He created all men, and is, therefore, their Heavenly Father as well as their God. God not only created man but also sustains him. He is eternally concerned with the affairs of all mankind.
This continuing caring concern for mankind influenced the Taipings to think of their mission as trying to bring all men back to the recognition of God as their Heavenly Father, and to worship him alone.
4 God is a moral god. His concern with upholding right and punishing wrong is an extension of his moral nature. As Creator and Father of all mankind, it is his right to be worshipped, and man’s responsibility is to worship him. Not to worship God is, thus, wrong, and to be disobedient to God and to risk his punishment.
The Taipings saw their mission as bringing China back to the worship of God.
The next tenet is where Hakka Taiping Christianity began to deviate from what we hold as orthodox Christianity.
5 God has a family life which parallels family life on earth. God has a wife, the Heavenly Mother, from whom he had begotten Jesus (the Heavenly Eldest Brother), Hung Hsiu-chuan (the Second Heavenly Elder Brother, the Tien Wang), and Yang Hsiu-ching (the Eastern King, the Tung Wang).
This makes Hung Hsiu-chuan and Yang Hsiu-ching special. They are directly from the womb of the Heavenly Mother while all others are children of God in a different sense. This special relationship was later extended to other key leaders
6 Hung Hsiu-chuan, as the Tien Wang, has been sent to establish God’s reign on earth. This new kingdom would be known as the Taiping Tien-kuo, the Heavenly Kingdom of Great Peace. This kingdom will put an end to all the suffering, injustice, wickedness, idolatry, slavery and other sins found in the Ching dynasty. In its wake, justice, peace, righteousness and worship of the true God will be established. The Ching dynasty will be destroyed, swept away, to be replaced by a true Chinese dynasty under the Tien Wang, Hung Hsiu-chuan.
The Taiping Tien-kuo was visualized as the result of a direct, divine intervention in human history through Hung Hsiu-chuan, the Younger Brother of Jesus Christ.
HAKKA TAIPING CHRISTIANITY WAS A SYNCRETISM
The Taipings owed much to the Chinese world view of the time. They acknowledged this. Similarly, they recognized their debt to Western Christianity for their understanding of God and their mission.
Yet, they did not see themselves as either renewers or revivers of the old traditions; or as simply converts to Western Christianity. Yes, they saw themselves as the true inheritors of antiquity, and they saw themselves as true Christians. Nevertheless, they saw themselves as neither.
They were something old, something new. The result was a new product, a syncretism (a new way of perceiving the world that arises from the dynamic fusion of ideas from diverse sources).
They saw themselves as the true inheritors of the oldest beliefs of Tien (Heaven). They believed that the Chinese had corrupted the true concept of Tien and its true worship. God as Tien had been worshipped by the people of ancient China. However, the demons had begun to corrupt men and men now worshipped the demons. This departure from God was aided by Buddhism and Taoism, whose perverse disciples had introduced idolatrous rites, licentious temples and fantastic stories about the devil. Confucianism was also not innocent and was, thus, castigated. Now, in the reign of the Manchus (the Ching dynasty), evil had become the greatest. The Ching rulers, invaders of China, were bringers of all the worst evils. However, the Taiping Tien-kuo would sweep everything away and return the Chinese to the worship of the true God, their Heavenly Father.
Western Christianity was true to God’s ways, and was appreciated for bringing God’s message to the Taipings. Yet they now had their own leaders, Hung Hsiu-chuan and Yang Hsiu-ching, begotten sons of the Heavenly Father through the Heavenly Mother. They had brought Taiping doctrine, which effectively replaced the Western Christian tradition. Thus, there was no simple acceptance of Western Christian teachings. Instead, the Taipings had their own world view, incorporating the old and the new into something qualitatively different.
The Taiping Tien-kuo was also a distinctively new product, a syncretism of old and new. The words Taiping Tien-kuo are an amalgam of two terms, Taiping and Tien-kuo.
Taiping has had a long history in China, beginning from ancient China, and appeared in the millennialist expectations of popular Taoism, which asserted that the period of Great Peace of the legendary rulers, Yao and Shun, would recur when Lao Tzu, the legendary founder of Taoism, returned. It also featured in the aspirations of millennialist Buddhist sects which were based on an expectation of the imminent return of the Buddha Maitreya to inaugurate a paradise on earth. The presence of such a tradition for the meaning of Taiping should, nevertheless, not be taken to mean that the Taipings merely borrowed it from tradition. In fact, they consciously rejected all past notions of God as distorted and inadequate, and restated their conception of Taiping in new terms.
The combination of Taiping with Tien-kuo, a term clearly derived from Christianity, shows the departure from Chinese tradition. Tien-kuo, Heavenly Kingdom, is a Christian concept, though in the English it is more commonly encountered as the Kingdom of Heaven. Hung Hsiu-chuan identified himself with Melchizedek, King of Peace.
He saw himself as having come to inaugurate the Heavenly Kingdom of Great Peace, which would culminate in the imminent and total destruction of all that was evil. History, particularly Chinese history (and they had no interest in the world outside China), had gone wrong. The Taipings would establish the Kingdom of Great Peace, which would be governed by the Chinese (read Taipings) themselves. Before this could happen, they had to destroy the Ching dynasty militarily and politically. In this Kingdom, Jesus Christ would not feature at all, a truly radical departure from traditional Christian orthodoxy or millenarism.
Hakka Taiping Christianity was millennialist, looking for the imminent end of the Chinese world. It owed much of its theology to Christianity and yet, it was a far cry from what Christian orthodoxy could accept. Hakka Taiping Christianity was Chinese and yet, it rejected Chinese society. Instead, the Taipings attempted to transform China according to its view of what China should be.
The Taiping Movement challenged the Ching dynasty for supremacy in 1850-1865, but failed. By the time the bodies had been buried and the dust had settled, 20-30 million of China’s population had perished.
HUNG HSIU-CHUAN, FOUNDER OF THE TAIPING TIEN-KUO
The Taiping Rebellion
|The Taiping rebellion broke out in 1850. The rebellion was led by Hung Hsiu-ch’uan . He believed he was Gods’ second son. His believed in Christianity, and his ideology called for communal land ownership and equality between men and women. The revolt against the Manchus lasted for ten years and ended in failure. The revolt cost the lives of 20 million Chinese peasants.|
A depiction of a Qing attack on Nanjing, with Qing troops marching cattle in front of them to set off and traps laid in the ground
Towards an anarchist history of the Chinese revolution
Tue, 01/05/2010 – 14:56 — AndrewNFloo
The modern revolutionary tradition can be said to start in China with the Taiping rebellion of 1850. Over the course of 14 years hundreds of thousands of peasant insurrectionaries conquered much of south and central China in a civil war that cost some 20 million lives.
Although those who led the rebellion installed themselves as absolute monarchs the rebellion had a number of features which became typical of the republican and left rebellions and revolutions of the next 100 years. There were
1. It was the first rebellion not to use the traditional Confucian argument that the current Emperor had lost the ‘Mandate of Heaven’ and should be replaced. It opposed Confucianism, which had been the ideological foundation of the Chinese state for hundreds of years.
2. It proclaimed the equality of women, mobilized women in its army and banned foot binding.
3. It abolished private ownership, all land being held and distributed by the state.
4. Imperialism intervened in support of the ruling regime and against the rebellion.
By the time of the rebellion the power of the Chinese state was in a period of rapid decline under pressure from western imperialism. The first Opium war of 1839-42 had ended not only with China being forced to allow the importation of opium from British occupied India but also with Britain getting control of five Chinese ports including Hong Kong. During the later years of the Taiping rebellion the Ch’ing (Manchu) regime lost a second ‘Opium War’ with the west. As the ideology of the Chinese court had placed China at the centre of civilization for thousands of years these defeats and the ongoing encroachment of imperialism caused a major ideological crisis in the elite.
Hakka women in the Taiping Rebellion
It is said that when the Taipings wanted to take Nanking city, they sent Hakka women-warriors who climbed the walls, killed the astounded men-sentries and opened the city gates. They were small and short but highly skilled in kungfu (martial arts).
It is said that short, small Hakka women are very fierce. I used to know one like that at varsity but I married a tall, well-built Hakka woman, and while she’s not fierce, she’s strong physically, mentally and spiritually. Don’t mess with her! We Hakkas are survivors, maybe more than other Chinese dialect-groups.
Christian Influence on the Taiping Rebellion (Taiping Tienkuo)
I wrote an article in English, which was published in a magazine in NZ. Someone in Taiwan translated it into Chinese and published it there.
Mao, who had studied closely the Taiping’s military doctrines and techniques, their order of battle, and their mass experiments in establishing a new and disciplined cultural and spiritual order, was able, in the course of two decades (1930s-1949), to overcome his foes and successfully establish the People’s Republic.
bystander.homestead.com/hakka.html – Cached
On a tip from Scott Thong Yu Yuen. Thanks!
Although virtually unknown in the West, the Taiping Rebellion took place at around the same time as the American Civil War and remains one of the largest, most devastating wars in human history. More than 20 million people died — 20 times as many as the American Civil War — and it may have involved more soldiers than the Napoleonic Wars and it was started by one charismatic crazy guy who convinced millions of people he was related to Jesus. Yet it still doesn’t get as much respect as the Battle of Hoth.
Which, it should be noted, happened years before the Taiping Rebellion.
It all started when a rejected civil servant in China decided what his country really needed was a clean break from Buddhism, Confucianism and sanity. So in 1844, Hong Xiuquan invented his own sect of Christianity by declaring himself the little brother of Jesus Christ. This gained him the loyalty of 30 million followers, who took on a dynasty that was over 250 years old.
His hat would have had to be at least twice that height for there to be any hope of victory.
The only equivalent we can imagine would be if those Hale-Bopp guys convinced the entire state of California to join the club and they stormed Washington, D.C. The cult army lost, of course, which is why we aren’t discussing U.S./Heavenly Kingdom trade relations today. But the rebellion took the Qing Dynasty 34 years to completely defeat, and directly led to the version of China currently limbering up to kick the West’s ass in the 21st Century.
Depending on who you ask, Hong looked like either a total dweeb or a character from Dynasty Warriors.
The problem was that the Qing Dynasty were so far over their heads with the rebels (not to mention several copycat rebellions) that they had to appeal to Britain and France for help, which they were thrilled to provide because it was the 1800s and the West was all up on that imperialism shit. While helping the Qing defeat the rebels, the British Empire and France also helped themselves to whatever they liked along the way by launching the Second Opium War against the Chinese.
By the time the 20th century rolled into town, the previously stable Qing Dynasty was overthrown for good, China was as divvied up as a nerd’s candy the day after Halloween and a second civil war between the nationalists and the communists was brewing. Guess who won that one?
“But it’ll be smooth sailing for China from now on, guys. Trust me on this.”
The army was the rebellion’s key strength. It was marked by a high level of discipline and fanaticism. They typically wore a uniform of red jackets with blue trousers, and grew their hair long so in China they were nicknamed “Longhairs”. The large numbers of women serving in the Taiping Heavenly Army also distinguished it from other 19th-century armies.
Combat was always bloody and extremely brutal, with little artillery but huge forces equipped with small arms. The Taiping Army’s main strategy of conquest was to take major cities, consolidate their hold on the cities, then march out into the surrounding countryside to recruit local farmers and battle government forces. Estimates of the overall size of the Taiping Heavenly Army varied from 1,000,000 to 3,000,000.
The organization of a Taiping army corps was thus:
- 1 general
- 5 colonels
- 25 captains
- 125 lieutenants
- 500 sergeants
- 2,500 corporals
- 20,000 infantry
These corps were placed into armies of varying sizes. In addition to the main Taiping forces organized along the above lines, there were also thousands of pro-Taiping groups fielding their own forces of irregulars.
]] Ethnically, the Taiping Heavenly Army was formed at the outset largely from these groups: the Hakka, a Han Chinese subgroup, the Cantonese, local residents of Guangdong province and the Zhuang (a non-Han ethnic group), which were minority groups as compared to the Han Chinese subgroups that form dominant regional majorities across south China. It is no coincidence that Hong Xiuquan and the other Taiping royals were Hakka.
As a Han sub-group, the Hakka were frequently marginalized economically and politically, having migrated to the regions they inhabit only after other Han groups were already established there. For example, when the Hakka settled in Guangdong and parts of Guangxi, speakers of Yue Chinese (Cantonese) were already the dominant regional Han group there and had been for some time, just as speakers of various dialects of Min are locally dominant in Fujian province. The Hakka settled throughout southern China and beyond, but as latecomers they generally had to establish their communities on rugged, less fertile land scattered on the fringe of the local majority group’s settlements. As their name (“guest households”) suggests, the Hakka were generally treated as migrant newcomers, often subject to hostility and derision from local majority Han populations. Consequently, the Hakka, to a greater extent than other Han Chinese, have been historically associated with popular unrest and rebellion. by Qing troops]] The other significant ethnic group in the Taiping army were the Zhuang, an indigenous people of Tai origin and China’s largest non-Han ethnic minority group. Over the centuries Zhuang communities had been adopting Han Chinese culture. This was possible because Han culture in the region accommodates a great deal of linguistic diversity, so the Zhuang could be absorbed as if the Zhuang language were just another Han Chinese dialect (which it is not). As Zhuang communities were integrating with the Han at different rates, a certain amount of friction between Han and Zhuang was inevitable, with Zhuang unrest on occasion leading to armed uprisings. The second tier of the Taiping army was an ethnic mix that included many Zhuang. Prominent at this level was Shi Dakai, who was half-Hakka, half-Zhuang and spoke both languages fluently, making him quite a rare asset to the Taiping leadership.
In the later stages of the Taiping Rebellion, the number of Han Chinese in the army from Han groups other than the Hakka increased substantially. However, the Hakka and the Zhuang (who constituted as much as 25% of the Taiping Army), as well as other non-Han ethnic minority groups (many of them of Tai origin related to the Zhuang), continued to feature prominently in the rebellion throughout its duration, with virtually no leaders emerging from any Han Chinese group other than the Hakka.
Socially and economically, the Taiping rebels came almost exclusively from the lowest classes. Many of the southern Taiping troops were former miners, especially those coming from the Zhuang. Very few Taipings, even in the leadership caste, came from the imperial bureaucracy. Almost none were landlords and in occupied territories landlords were often executed.
In fact, the military ability of the generals of the Taiping Rebellion was higher than that of the Qing government’s generals, for example:
www.aadet.com/article/Taiping_Rebellion – Cached
Taiping Rebellion, 1850–64, revolt against the Ch’ing (Manchu) dynasty of China. Perhaps the most important event in 19th-century China, it was led by Hung Hsiu-ch’üan, a visionary from Guangdong who evolved a political creed influenced by elements of Christianity. His object was to found a new dynasty, the Taiping [great peace]. Strong discontent with the Chinese government brought him many adherents, especially among the poorer classes, and the movement spread with great violence through the eastern valley of the Chang River. The rebels captured Nanjing in 1853 and made it their capital. The Western powers, who at first sympathized with the movement, soon realized that the Ch’ing dynasty might collapse and with it foreign trade. They offered military help and led the Ever-Victorious Army, which protected Shanghai from the Taipings. The Taipings, weakened by strategic blunders and internal dissension, were finally defeated by new provincial armies led by Tseng Kuo-fan and Li Hung-chang.
See J. M. Callery and M. Yvan, History of the Insurrection in China (tr. 1853, repr. 1969); W. J. Hail, Tseng Kuo-fan and the Taiping Rebellion (1927, repr. 1964); E. P. Boardman, Christian Influence upon the Ideology of the Taiping Rebellion, 1851–1864 (1952); F. H. Michael, The Taiping Rebellion (3 vol., 1966–71).
Taiping Rebellion, 1850–64, revolt against the Ch’ing (Manchu) dynasty of China. Perhaps the most important event in 19th-century China, it was led by Hung …