Presentation on theme: "2014/6/3 Prof. Frederick Hok-ming CHEUNG The Fall of the Chin Dynasty &the Founding of the Han Dynasty."— Presentation transcript:
2014/6/3 Prof. Frederick Hok-ming CHEUNG The Fall of the Chin Dynasty &the Founding of the Han Dynasty
In 209 B.C., only a year after the death of the First Emperor, a revolt broke out in the old Chu area, and rebellions followed in quick succession throughout the empire. When the leading rebel, Hsiang Yu, a descendant of Chu generals, finally wiped out the last of the Chin armies in 206 B.C., he tried to return to Chou Feudalism, & only declared himself as Hegemon King.
Another rebel general, Liu Pang, who challenged Hsiang Yu & destroyed him in 202 B.C., and became the Emperor of Han. Liu Pang (OR [Emperor] Han Kao-Tsu) succeeded, where the First Emperor of Chin had failed, in creating a lasting dynasty. The Western Han Dynasty reigned for more than 2 centuries until A.D. 8, & then, after a brief usurpation, resurrected the dynasty as the Later Han or Eastern Han, Which lasted from A.D. 25 until A.D. 220. Cf. Roman Empire
Even today, the Chinese refer to themselves as men of Han & the Japanese call the Chinese writing system the Han characters.
Han thought: Among the old thought survived were the concepts of the late Chou Naturalists of yin & yang dualism, & the five elements (or agents, or powers). Closely allied with these ideas was the notion that unusual natural phenomena were portents which reflected the character of the ruler or foretold the future.
Tsou Yens Yin-Yang School proclaimed their theories of the yin & yang, the Five Elements, & predicted the rise &fall of fortune according to the dominant cosmic influence of an age (shih-yun). The influence of this school on the thinkers of Chin & Han was especially great. Hsiao, tr. By Mote, pp.61-65.
The sequence of the 5elements in ancient Chinese history: Huang-ti:earthyellow yellow dragon omen
then, the element of earth declined, & was conquered by the element of wood. Thus, Yu of Hsia Dynasty woodgreen trees & grass alive even in fall & winter as omen
Then, the element of wood declined, &was conquered by the element of metal thus, Shang Dynasty. Then, Chou Dynasty of the element of fire. Then, Chin Dynasty of the element of water, black Black dragon omen Thus, in Chin Dynasty, the empires color of formal dresses & flags was black!
Then, Liu Pang was reported to have killed a snake (omen), thus, conquered the declining water element & succeeded by a new element of earth (a cycle).
According to the cosmology of ancient China: Yin-yang was the origin or source of life/universe. In the beginning, there was nothingness: Poleless (then became) Tai ChI (2 poles) Tai ChI (2 poles)
YinYang NightDay EarthSky ColdHot WinterSummer WaterFire MoonSun FemaleMale NegativePositive SoftHard In Chinese medicine, it is important to balance & regulate yin & yang.