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Roc spreads it's wings


Years ago, I learned a Qigong called Roc spreads it's wings. So what is a roc? A roc is a like giant eagle in Chinese mythology. But it's origins are not Chinese.


The origins of the roc are from the Middle-East. In Arabic, it is called the rukhkh and in Persian, it is ruhk. If you are familiar with the Arabian Nights, then you would have come across this mythological bird. It is big enough to carry away an elephant. In Chinese, it is diāo (鵰), but that also means eagle. The generally used word for eagle is actually yīng (). I first came across the roc from Louis Cha's Condor Trilogy. When a roc befriends one of the characters. There's a lot of confusion here and not made easier by various translations. Some things in the East, don't translate well into English. Part of the problem is cultural and we should mindful of this. A roc is from Eastern mythology and Santa Claus is Western. In China, Eagles, falcons and hawks are generally all known by the same character. Condors do not exist in Asia, but if they did, the same word would be used. No they are not all the same and they do in fact have names too. If people weren't so pedantic, then they'll accept that eagles and other birds of prey (except owls) share many similarities. Have I confused you enough?

Many ideas and concepts move from one culture and region to another. If it suits, it finds acceptance. Buddhism isn't Chinese, but it flourished there and then it spread to Korea and Japan. Other faiths who came to China include the Christian Church of the East, Judaism and Islam. Of the three, only Islam remain with a growing population (don't believe what you read in the news). At one time, Persians traded on the Silk Road and that is probably the concept of the Roc comes from. From China, they learned the art of making silk, paper and scientific knowledge. Persia and the Middle East have contributed much to world civilisation. The media rarely credits the Middle East for anything positive. However, many things we now take for granted, actually came from the Middle East. We assume that in the West, we owed much to the Greeks and then the Romans. But The Greeks learned a lot from both the Egyptians and the Persians. Some spiritual concepts in Christianity were actually from the Middle East. The Church of the West is not the same as their counterparts in the East. We should be open about exploring what we think we know and not accept something because it is how it always was.


When we learn things that are not from our own culture, we should take a more open-minded approach. Let's not get pedantic and force a square peg into a round hole. You'd be surprised how many seemingly intelligent people do this. You'd also be surprised by how many seemingly intelligent people allow themselves to be misinformed by the media. By taking an open mind, we learn and appreciate more.


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