The Patriarch smiled and said, "Though you have rather a base sort of body, you look like one of the rhesus monkeys that eat pine seeds, and I ought to give you a surname that fits your appearance and call you Hu ('Macaque'). The elements that make up the character Hu are 'animal,' 'old' and 'moon'. What is old is ancient, and the moon embodies the Negative principle, and what is ancient and Negative cannot be transformed. But I think I would do much better to call you Sun ('Monkey'). Apart from the 'animal' element, the character Sun has one part implying male and one part suggesting a baby, which fits in with my basic theories about children. Your surname will be Sun."
When the Monkey King heard this he kowtowed with delight and said, "Great! Great! Now I have a surname. I am eternally grateful to you for your mercy and compassion, master. I beg you to give me a personal name to go with my new surname, then it will be much easier to address me."
"There are twelve words within my sect," said the Patriarch, "which I give as names. You belong to the tenth generation of my disciples."
"What are these twelve words?" asked the Monkey King.
"Broad, great, wisdom, intelligence, true, likeness, nature, sea, bright, awakened, complete and enlightenment. If we work out the generations of disciples, then you should have a name with Wu ('Awakened') in it. So we can give you the Dharma−name Sun Wukong, which means 'Monkey Awakened to Emptiness'. Will that do?"
"Marvellous, marvellous," said the smiling Monkey King. "From now on my name will be Sun Wukong."
When the Great Vagueness was separated there were no surnames; To smash foolish emptiness he had to be awakened to emptiness.
But Chinese civilization has the overpowering beauty of the wholly other, and only the wholly other can inspire the deepest love and the profoundest desire to learn.
- Proponents feel that simplified characters having fewer strokes makes it easier to learn. Literacy rates have risen steadily in rural and urban areas since the simplification of the Chinese characters, while this trend was hardly seen during 30 years of Kuomintang (KMT) rule and 250 years of Manchurian rule before them, when the traditional writing system was dominant, though this rise in literacy may not necessarily be due to simplification alone.
- Although Taiwan, which uses traditional Chinese characters, has a better literacy rate, proponents point out that with a population 50 times larger and landmass 260 times bigger, the illiteracy in mainland China is much more difficult to eradicate. In 2004, the only provinces of China where the illiteracy rates were lower than Taiwan's wereGuangdong at 3.84%, and Guangxi at 3.79%.
- Many studies have been conducted to prove, contrary to cultural prejudice, that simplified characters are easier to learn than traditional ones.
- The literacy rate in mainland China is higher than that of Taiwan when compared at the same GDP per capita.
Chinese food was a system, too, and the hacker curiosity was applied to that system as assiduously as to a new LISP compiler. Samson had been an aficionado from his first experience on a TMRC outing to Joy Fong’s on Central Square, and by the early sixties he had actually learned enough Chinese characters to read menus and order obscure dishes. Gosper took to the cuisine with even greater vigor; he would prowl Chinatown looking for restaurants open after midnight, and one night he found a tiny little cellar place run by a small family. It was fairly dull food, but he noticed some Chinese people eating fantastic-looking dishes. So he figured he’d take Samson back there.
They went back loaded with Chinese dictionaries, and demanded a Chinese menu. The chef, a Mr. Wong, reluctantly complied, and Gosper, Samson, and the others pored over the menu as if it were an instruction set for a new machine. Samson supplied the translations, which were positively revelatory. What was called “Beef with Tomato” on the English menu had a literal meaning of Barbarian Eggplant Cowpork. “Wonton” had a Chinese equivalent of Cloud Gulp. There were unbelievable things to discover in this system! So after deciding the most interesting things to order (“Hibiscus Wing? Better order that, find out what that’s about”), they called over Mr. Wong, and he jabbered frantically in Chinese disapproval of their selections. It turned out he was reluctant to serve them the food Chinese-style, thinking that Americans couldn’t take it. Mr. Wong had mistaken them for typically timid Americans—but these were explorers! They had been inside the machine, and lived to tell the tale (they would tell it in assembly language). Mr. Wong gave in. Out came the best Chinese meal that any of the hackers had eaten to date.
丶 and 日 = 白