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Zhanqing Yang

East Wind | Spirituality

0 · 665 views · located in Kazetani London Office

a character in “The Weight of Soul”, as played by bethelit

Description

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Z H A N Q I N GxxY A N Gxxxx#b22e20xx
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        26 (AUGUST 11, 1917)xxxMxxxEAST WIND / TAIWAN

        HT / 178 CM x WT / 65 KGx WILLOWY
        HAIR / BLACKx SKIN / IVORYx EYES / DARK BROWN



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XXXXXKNOWLEDGE |x ◆◆◆◆◆xxxxRank-A:xxx1 YEAR
XUNDERSTANDING |x ◆◆◆◆◆
XXXXXXXXXCHARM |x ◆◆◆◆xxxxArtifact 1:xxTAKUMI KOIZUMI (S)
XXXXXXXXCOMBAT |x ◆◆◆◆xxxx
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i. S A N I W Axxxxxxii. A R T I F A C Txxxxxxiii. F A C T I O NxxW O R K Sxxxxxxiv. R E L A T I O N S H I P S



MISSIONS COMPLETED: 8 / MISSION SUCCESS RATE: 90%



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i. Religion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ancestral Worship, East Asian Buddhism.
ii. Birthplace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tan-sui, Taiwan.
iii. Occupation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Artist, Busshi.
iv. Morality Alignment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lawful Good.

Identifying Trait: Has badly calloused hands and cuticles.





I. SANIWA

PASSION GALVANIZES EFFORT.



xxxZhangqing Yang (陽湛慶) chases two suns.

xxxAs a Han Chinese man in Taiwan, Zhanqing Yang is a child of two empires, the Japanese and the Chinese. Since birth, his upbringing consisted of strong Japanese and Chinese intellectual influences, whether by personal choice or colonial impact. Nevertheless, he remains true to his heritage, and takes pride in his Han Chinese appearance. Like the rest of his family, Zhanqing Yang is an unremarkable-looking person with a kind of hidden intensity. He was raised believing that the universe had a plan for him, and that everything happened for a reason. When he was eight, he survived a deadly bite from a water krait. Since then, he was convinced he was destined for greater things.

xxxZhanqing is a very aloof man whose seemingly simpleminded nature belies his strong emotional intuition. Although usually quiet, he's an astonishingly good orator, speaking with warmth and passion, if he is proud of what he's talking about. His emotional aptitude stems from a routinous, well-observed life. Twice a day, he ponders the world around him; he takes time to process his goals and values upon waking up, and once more before bedtime. His habitual rigidity provides balance to the more whimsical nature of his dreams. He’s a straightforward person that clings deeply to childhood goals and aspires to make them real during his lifetime. Once Zhanqing sets his mind to something, his Popo says that his resolve is “so massive it could dam the Tan-sui River.”

xxxDuring his youth, his family attributed his confidence to a lack of worldliness. Therefore, his father engaged him in meaningful dialogues from a very young age, and encouraged him to listen to the hearts of others. Zhanqing grew up understanding that other people, too, are a wealth of knowledge and experiences. Through careful listening and observation, he developed a knack for reading people and situations. Naturally, even as a young person, he was deeply troubled by the effects of Japanese colonization--starting with his identity, and by extension, his name.

xxxUnlike his siblings, he showed little interest towards tin-pipe planes and other toys neighboring children had. Instead, he was curious about the Chinese origins behind his kanji name. Japanese kaiseimei encouraged his family to override their Chinese names with new Japanese ones. For socioeconomic survival, Zhanqing’s father changed their family’s name to Japanese, but Chinese was still spoken in the household. For example, as a professional doctor, Zhanqing’s father communicated with his patients in Mandarin and Hokkien, even though written prescriptions and legal documents had to be in Japanese. Likewise, “Zhanqing Yang“ was required to assumed the identity of “Tankei Kaiyou.”

xxxFrom his father, Zhanqing learned that the Japanese, while stern, were not infallible. Once, after a Japanese patient left, his father noted, “Kan! Look. They bleed the same color as us.” Zhanqing never forgot his father’s words, and understood that the Japanese were people just like him. They could be tricked, they could do harmful things, and they could build infrastructure for his country, too. At school, Zhanqing was taught all the good things Japan had done for Taiwan: building schools, airfields, and rail lines stretching north to Keelung and south all the way to Kaohsiung. His father explained to him the price of such facilities, and of the thousands of Chinese violated under Japanese rule. Instead of teaching Zhanqing to resent the Japanese, his father encouraged him to hold firm to his culture.

xxxLiterature nurtured Zhanqing’s growing interest in his roots. The Chinese literary pantheon validated his Han Chinese identity, and kept him thinking about his culture. Classics like The Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Water Margin were Zhanqing’s favorite books to read. He held literary heroes Liu Bei and Guan Yu close to his heart, and endeavored to live with as much self-knowledge as they did. One day, out of youthful temerity, he decided to bring his favorite books to school with him. Along the journey, he had a fated encounter with a rich man’s monkey. The monkey, an exotic symbol of the man’s wealth, seized his own chance to plunder the goods of others by stealing Zhanqing’s backpack. More than being afraid of losing his expensive texts, Zhanqing felt that this “Wukong” was testing him. In a fight of destiny, he battled the monkey and won back his tomes. Having survived the brawl, young Zhanqing saw himself a living god. He went home and declared himself as a part of the Chinese pantheon-- “Zhanqing Yang, god of culture and protector of heritage.” He relayed his story to his parents, but they chastised him nonetheless. Although they expressed their relief of his safety--he declared they need not worry for China would not let him die. Although he was ten years old then, his deep-rooted admiration for his ancestors' motherland took hold and fueled his quest for knowledge. For that reason, he attended elite schooling in Taihoku, despite the long walking distance from Tan-sui. He would be defined by this same grit and dedication for the rest of his life.

xxxBeing the eldest son, Zhanqing set a good example for his siblings, and worked hard in school, hoping to earn an overseas scholarship. While he was filing his kanji into little boxes, he was also organizing his ultimate quest. Like all dreamers, he could not, however, choose his inspiration. His art classes stirred something within him, something he knew he was fated to love. In a vehement pursuit of ethnic identity, Zhanqing polished his academics, and caught the attention of Japanese through his painting,“Children of the Sun.” “Children of the Sun” was a depiction of Taiwanese aboriginal boys and girls, running down the Taiwanese countryside. Through “Children of the Sun,” he succeeded in showing Japan Taiwan’s rural beauty, and a delightful aspect of its inhabitants. His piece earned him a rare passage to Japan in 1936.

xxxFor all his hard work, his experiences in Japan were mixed. In Japan he took drawing lessons and finally gained entry to the Tokyo School of Fine Arts after failing the entrance examination twice. Unlike his classmates that made use of academic styles such as Post Impressionism, Fauvism, and Expressionism, Zhanqing retreated into the past. He explored Japanese calligraphy and painting styles, and practiced classical Chinese art in secret. In view of the wartime atmosphere, Zhanqing, like many of his contemporaries, found it necessary to give his works war-related titles regardless of their subject matter. Within the nationalist climate, he had to be weary of how his work was perceived. Art, for him, became a frustrating game of smoke and mirrors as he explored Chinese subject matter, hiding them beneath Japanese compositional styles.

xxxSurprisingly, his closest encounter with death was not due to his clandestine art, but rather, a careless act on his part. During a summer examination, out of indomitable thirst, he downed the entire cup of his calligraphy ink. He had not slept or ate well before the test, having been too excited for it. In his preparation time, he wholeheartedly threw himself into studying, snacking on senbei for “sustenance.” The moment reality came knocking was not after he swallowed the poisonous content, rather, he had no more ink to paint with. His friends laughed him off, but having survived only strengthened his god complex. Although it was a hairbrained idea, his failed examination inspired him to be more fearless in his artworks, and he felt less inhibited by Japanese artistic guidelines.

xxxAt a Kyoto exhibition, he felt assured that he had caught the eye of Chén Shou (who went by ‘Hideo Hisashi’), an obscure but well-respected tōyōga artist and Buddhist statue sculptor. On his walk back from the exhibition, Zhanqing stopped by Buddhist temple Kōryū-ji, entranced by the Buddhist statues there. At the temple, he was met by a vengeful ghost that the local Spiritualists failed to exorcise. He was rescued by a group of Combat Saniwa, with Hideo leading in command. While Zhanqing still believes that Hideo was attracted to him through his work, Hideo was committed to one thing only that day: protecting a young man from the wrath of a spirit.

xxxAfter the event, Hideo quickly assumed the role of Zhanqing’s Saniwa mentor. As far as Zhanqing was concerned--Hideo was a living, cultural miracle. He was a man of many talents, and descendant of Unkei, a busshi, a Buddhist statue sculptor. Originally an artist in the traditional Chinese manner, Hideo began pursuing the Japanese tōyōga style in Taiwan. As a cautious recluse, he refused to teach Zhanqing his craft, and the latter had to learn his mentor’s artistic profession through sly observation. Zhanqing realized that only through intensifying his Saniwa education could he earn Hideo’s trust and potential artistic mentorship. Determined as ever--accepting membership into the House was a no-brainer for Zhanqing. His religious studies that awaited him, however, proved difficult.

xxxBeing raised in the Chinese way of ancestral worship complicated his new, Buddhist understanding, and Zhanqing landed in a place of religious confusion. The Japanese tend to combine different kinds of Buddhist practice, including Zen and non-Zen forms. Both were cultural departures from ancestral worship, which featured a set of vastly different practices and founding ideals. Only through strong self-awareness and self-knowledge was Zhanqing able to integrate both theologies. As a genius of hard work, Zhanqing helped his mentor’s local Buddhist organization gain power and influence. They became religious representatives to the East Asian Buddhist Conference in Tokyo, encouraging international dialogue and promotion of new ideas. As Zhanqing became more involved in House duties, he came to appreciate the myriad of religions taking refuge among conglomeration of the House. Through genuine willingness to understand and learn, Hideo finally acknowledged Zhanqing, and simultaneously taught him Buddhist sculpting and tōyōga art.

xxxBecoming a busshi deepened Zhanqing’s appreciation for religion, and allowed him to combine his artistic interests with his spiritual devotion. Zhanqing declared his Spiritualist career upon completing his most famous “work,” his Artifact, Takumi Koizumi. Since then, Takumi boosted Zhanqing’s art career as his literal muse and creative partner.

xxxZhanqing deemed the period after his Artifact’s birth as his “Plum Blossom Period.” Currently, his paintings focus on the scenery and daily life of Taiwanese inhabitants. Some say that his art “looks like him,” straightforward, thought-provoking, and calm. His art’s simplistic appearance, however, belies larger ambitions. With a heart full of stars, childish wonder, and genuine goodness, Zhanqing hopes to inspire common understanding among all people, including Saniwa. Like how the goddess Xihe chariots the sun, Zhanqing aspires to guide Taiwan and the whole world into a new age of modernity.


Skills:x Kei school Buddhist sculpting (3 years), European painting style (8 years), Chinese guohua painting style (7 years), Japanese tōyōga painting style (3 years), Japanese ink brush style (8 years), Japanese calligraphy (8 years), seal-carving, meditation, stone skipping.

Known Languages:x Mandarin Chinese (fluent), Japanese (fluent), Hokkien (fluent), English (very limited).

Likes/Interests:x Travel, religion, history, art, people, animals, learning, good sleep, street food, long walks, the smell of incense.
Dislikes:x Bad sleep, ignorance, running out of art supplies, splinters.



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Faceclaim: Tankei (Busshi no Busshin).
Image Sources: Busshi no Busshin, Kamatani Yuhki.





i. S A N I W Axxxxxxii. A R T I F A C Txxxxxxiii. F A C T I O NxxW O R K Sxxxxxxiv. R E L A T I O N S H I P S


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ImageImageImageHT / 173 CM
WT / 59 KG
TYPE / SUPPORT
AGE / 1 YEAR OLD

#0b687c /

AWAKENED SKILL / "SHODAIGYO"
Awakened Skill replication. Takumi may temporarily gain the Awakened Skill of another Artifact given the requisite spirit and mental focus. His Saniwa must be intimately acquainted with the Artifact he is replicating, and the amount of spirit required is slightly higher than the original.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxSURVIVAL [HP] x◆◆◆◆◆XXLEADERSHIP [DEF]x ◆◆◆◆◆XXIMPULSE [ATTK]x◆◆◆◆◆XXMOBILITY [SPD]x◆◆◆◆◆XXSPIRIT x ◆◆◆◆


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II. ARTIFACT (S)

TAKUMI KOIZUMI, THE HEAVENLY BEING.



xxxZhanqing obtained a piece of a crumbling Buddhist statue as part of his first busshi repair. In a careless movement, a chunk of wood came falling off the piece he was repairing. He hadn’t even noticed his mistake then, being too fixated in awe. He was drawn to the statue when Hideo mentioned that it was a new-style statue, with “heaven-and-earth eyes.” Zhanqing saw the relic as a true inspiration; there was something sentimental behind a weathered Buddha image. To be able to stand the test of time, its creator must have chosen the best kind of wood, and made best use of their technique. Moved, Zhanqing said softly then: “Like all worn things, this Buddha is simply the beginnings of a new idea.”

xxxHe wept that night, for all statues that were built with love, dedication, and respect. Despite his educational background, he could still detect leagues of spiritual understanding between himself and the busshi of old. Even as a self-aware person, he could never be self-aware enough, and the Buddha statues made this clear to him. He had not been fair towards the people he represented in his pictures, nor the religions he learned. Even the painting that opened his door to fame--”Children of the Sun”--was culturally appropriative, he used the imagery of the Hakka without the necessary experiences. Likewise, the Buddha sculpture’s eyes held a level of spiritual enlightenment that he was lacking.

xxxThere is a Japanese belief that people can get closer to Buddha’s world by creating stupas and Buddhist statues and gazing into the eyes of Buddha-nature within. To Zhanqing, this philosophy was not only fascinating, but necessary as a part of artistic and religious career. To this day, he claims that becoming a busshi helped him strengthen his worldview. As part of his Spiritualist training, he traveled around Japan with Hideo to visit all of Unkei’s sculptures, and upon seeing the weathered ones--he felt greater religious understanding.

xxxAs part of his Spiritualist Ceremony, Zhanqing Yang incarnated his own muse, Takumi Koizumi, from his “first beginning of a new idea”--a small, worn piece of Buddha statue that he’d secretly pocketed. Though Zhanqing was unsure how disrespectful his gesture was, he intended to become less ignorant of Buddhism and other religions through genuine pursuit of enlightenment.

xxxTakumi Koizumi is, in every sense, Zhanqing’s inspiration for his aspirations, and a living reminder of Zhanqing’s early hubris. To say Takumi humbles Zhanqing is a radical understatement. As light-footed as Takumi is, he is, perhaps, Zhanqing’s greatest burden. To Zhanqing, it was important to incarnate an Artifact that would represent the vast unknown and the wideness of the universe. Takumi, however, sees himself less as a heavenly being and that of his master’s earthly aide (and unofficial caretaker).

xxxAs Zhanqing’s assistant, he ensures that his master gets his basic life needs met, namely, eating and sleeping. Takumi describes Zhanqing as “A dreamer, an artist, a thinker...and quite frankly, an idiot. If he’s on to something great, he may as well neglect his needs.” The Artifact represents Zhanqing’s analytical mind and caretaker personality. He shows an inherent kindness towards all people, including strangers, and speaks with a soothing, straightforward manner. He is a calm and composed individual, though he has been known to get flustered easily. Being a reflection of Zhanqing's soul, Takumi too shares an interest in ancient history, religion, and art. The pair frequently engage in frivolous, esoteric discussions and debates that exasperate those around them. Undoubtedly, Takumi is the yin to Zhanqing’s yang, and complements his reckless master well. Whereas Zhanqing is an average-looking bumpkin, Takumi has the literal, androgynous physiognomy of a god. Slender fingers, elegant limbs, and all-seeing eyes characteristic to Japanese Buddha images are accounted for in Takumi’s appearance.

xxxIf one asked Zhanqing what Buddhist statue Takumi came from--he could not tell them. He was an ignorant man then, and he did not make an effort to remember. Upon incarnating Takumi, he promised him that he would travel the world, speaking to historians, artists, and other busshi until he recovers Takumi’s true name. For now, Takumi uses the name of Zhanqing’s best friend from university whom could not escape conscription. Although Takumi’s namesake died as a Special Attack Unit pilot, Takumi the Artifact would travel the skies towards a greater understanding and appreciation for life.



__________

Faceclaim: Myojo (Busshi no Busshin).
Image Sources: Busshi no Busshin, Kamatani Yuhki.











i. S A N I W Axxxxxxii. A R T I F A C Txxxxxxiii. F A C T I O NxxW O R K Sxxxxxxiv. R E L A T I O N S H I P S



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IV. RELATIONSHIPS


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Statusxxxxxxxxx.Zhanqing Yang.
●●●●●●xxRESPECT
●●●●●●xxFONDNESS
●●●●●●xxRIVALRY
●●●●●●xxDISLIKE
●●●●●●xxROMANCE

TWoS

"Opinion dialogue." | Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.


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Statusxxxxxxxxx.Miyoshi Kazetani.
●●●●●xxRESPECT
●●●●●●xxFONDNESS
●●●●●●xxRIVALRY
●●●●●●xxDISLIKE
●●●●●●xxROMANCE

TWoS

"Opinion dialogue." | Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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© BETHELIT / © CODE & TWoS BETHELIT & STAFF/魂の重み・THE WEIGHT OF SOUL PROJECT

So begins...

Zhanqing Yang's Story