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A song from a poor honest scholar

Posted July. 02, 2021 07:35,   

Updated July. 02, 2021 07:35


The song speaks about the peace of mind from a classical scholar content with his given surroundings. No matter how humble it might be, your home will always be the sole destination for comfort, and the drizzles of a stream can also be enough to go through hunger when one learns to appreciate the flow of water. While the sages from the old times considered the urge for food and sex as rudimentary desire of human beings, the pursuit must have been far from luxurious.

This draws a sharp contrast with the reality where the most coveted food is often the yellowtail and the carp from the Yellow River, and the most coveted bride is the daughters of the royal families from the Song dynasty. The song appears to have been inspired by Laozi’s philosophy of letting nature as is and Confucius preaching on the virtue of being content with humble fare. There is no knowing who made this song; perhaps by some scholars touched by the philosophies of the two great minds.

The Qin Wind is a folk song from the Qin dynasty, but its lyrics are quite exotic compared to other folk songs. It is doubtful if any layperson who must have led a tough life from the primitive times enjoyed the luxury of writing such an outspoken song about the meaning of life. Perhaps, it must have been the work of a scholar agonizing over worldly desires and romance who tried to put himself together or a satiric song aimed at the snobbish peer scholars pursuing mundane success.