丝绸之路语录:莫高窟以及中华民族的自由

“ 所以,莫高窟开窟和造像的历史,是一部贯通东西方文化的历史,也是一部佛教发展和传播的历Screen Shot 2021-01-10 at 6.52.22 PM史,更是一部中华民族谋求自由和强大的历史。敦煌在历史上有着战争的苦难背景,同时也有着宗教信仰的背景。越是在苦难的时候,越需要有信仰,也许这就是敦煌能够在苦难中孕育出如此灿烂文明的历史根源吧。”

(摘自 《我心归处是敦煌》,樊锦诗口述,顾春芳 撰写)

One thought on “丝绸之路语录:莫高窟以及中华民族的自由

  1. It is difficult to comment without having read the book, but one can only wonder by what concitation of propagandistic devils any reasonable person could maintain that the caves represent a history of the Chinese nation (“zhonghua minzu”) seeking freedom and strength.

    Zhonghua Minzu is one of the most abused concepts of modern China. The term was launched by Liang Qichao at the end of the 19th century to refer to the Han Chinese. Only later was it extended to all ethnicities within the borders of China, by magnanimously conceiving them as one part of a greater ‘ethnic group’. A very handy concept for asserting territorial control over people who were not culturally ‘Chinese’ at all.

    It’s difficult enough to see how Kyrgyz, Kazakhs, Koreans, Hmongs, Mongols, Vietnamese, Russians and others who are defined as being part of the ‘zhonghua minzu’ are different from coethnics outside those borders — the only common thread seems to be that they live within the geographical borders of modern China. It’s even harder to see how this strained and contradictory modern concept can seriously be applied to appropriate everything that was done at Dunhuang for this latterly-defined ‘zhonghua minzu’.

    There is no doubt that Dunhuang was a focal point of Buddhism. But saying that it was a focus of attempts to achieve ‘freedom’ or ‘greatness’ for the ‘zhonghua minzu’ sounds almost comical. The use of modern ideological concepts to define an ancient site can only be considered a rank misappropriation of modern nationalist ideas. Given the attempts of the current government of China to smother any ethnicities other than mainstream Han and assimilate them and their culture into a distinctly Han-based concept of Chineseness, the claim that Dunhuang represents the zhonghua minzu’s struggle for freedom is the bitterest of ironies. It is the concept of ‘zhonghua minzu’ that imprisons non-Han within the straitjacket of Chinese control, and eventually leads to the dissolution of any way of being Chinese except that of being Han Chinese, as demonstrated by the policies of the current government. What kind of freedom is this? The freedom to sacrifice your history and culture at the alter of Chinese glory?

    It is regrettable that so much modern Chinese thinking is so caught up with interpreting history in such narrow nationalistic terms.

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