View Full Version : The Roots of the Wang Lang Story
07-23-2009, 08:54 PM
Mantis 108 said,
"the Wang Lang story is based on the myth of "White Ape Steal the Peach" as far as I am concern. The White Ape myth is widely known throughout China; therefore is not surprising to find version(s) of it referenced in older works."
Is this story here in this book( a link you once provided to me)?
I have trouble reading these simplified characters.
Is there somewhere here that mentions Wang Lang?
Or does it mention a story called White Ape Steals the Peach?
On another note,
I found a copy of Fei Long Quan Zhuan and I noticed Zhao Kuang Yin and Han Tong all over the place.
Do you know the original date of this book?
I think it is mid Qing, but haing evolved from Yuan dynasty book called Fei Long Ji.
Original Quote of Mantis108(above) from this thread
07-23-2009, 09:03 PM
The fourth from last paragraph mentios 'white ape changes to a man..." as an example of some magic, but I don't see the white ape steals the peach.
孙庞斗志演义》中又充满了神仙道化的内容，穿插了不少神仙灵怪的描写，荒诞无稽。如鬼谷子的欲神欲仙，能掐 会算；孙膑的指寻六甲、五行道法，把他写成会五遁、缩地之术、外观天象，内看阴阳，无所不知、无事不晓的神 人。又如庞涓的魇镇法术、天象之学，
虽然给小说增添几许神奇迷离色彩，却由于脱离人物性格，违背故事发展逻辑，宣扬了道教的迷信，有损于“斗智 ”的主题，削弱了小说的社会意义，影响了人物塑造。孙膑斗败庞涓，不是靠什么天书、法术，除去复杂的客观条 件之外，主要是靠才能，靠智慧。这部小说以上的局限性在阅读时应注意分析批判。
But, mostly it looks like Sun Bin and the story of his amputation
07-23-2009, 09:21 PM
This is chapter 39 of Fei Long Zhuan from the Qing Dynasty.
A rough translation...
Kuang yin shoots the dragon and saves the water
Zhen En asks about the road and gets bullied
Kuang Yin is the first of the 18 masters of Mantis and Zhen En is the third
Taizu's Longfist is the beginning
Zhen En's wrapping and sealing is mysterious
I would like to see a well written English translation of this book.
07-24-2009, 12:44 PM
The White Ape story is set during the Warring States period. It is based on some historic true and some fictional events and characters. Basically it is about the struggle between 2 fellow disciples of one famous Daoist master .... drum rolls ....
Gui Gu Zi 鬼谷子 (Ghost Valley Sage) whose name is in fact .... drum rolls ....
Wang Xu 王禪 with an extended name 诩 or rather Wang Yi 王蟬 with an extended name 翊
Personally, I believe that the second set - Wang Yi 王 (surname) 蟬 (cicada)with a extended name 翊 (to assist as if lending a pair of wings) fits the Gui Gu Zi mythical profile a lot better. Please bare in mind that traditional burial would have jade cicada cravings covering all the holes of the corpse in order to help the spirit and the body stay in tact to retain the chance of immortality albeit this is meant symbolically rather than literally.
So you can see the possible association between Wang Lang (a person whose Surname is Wang) and even the inspiration of the mantis catches cicada story.
Now the 2 disciples are 孫臏 (Sun Bin) representing the Qi state in Shandong Province and 龐涓 (Pang Juan) representing the Wei State in Henan Province. So their rivalry also applied symbolic of the struggle between the Manchurian (Northeastern based) and the Han people (Mid- Southern based). This is why the Wang Lang story being set during the late Ming and early Qing dynasty. However, Shandong also have deep roots of Zhou dynasty culture which is considered the zenith of Chinese culture. So the triumph of the Qi state, which is one of the most significant feudal states of the Zhou dynasty, is no doubt an aspiration of the Chinese people to eventually overcome the Manchurian rule perhaps appealing to cultural supremacy.
The central theme or rather the lesson is the 7 martial virtues of all time especially 孝 (filial piety). BTW, Imperial martial exams held during the Song and Ming dynasties requires the candidate to read the Classic of Filial Piety. This is also why filial piety is the most important martial virtue and it is main premise of the White Ape store. This is important especially for the armed escort trade which also where the rebellion elements including all kinds of secret societies and cults could be found.
There is a remarkable similarity between the story of Wang Lang and Sun Bin.
1) they both went to Henan Province From Shandong Province.
2) they both learn from famous institution. Wang learn in the Shaolin Abbot. Sun learn form the Gui Gu Zi.
3) both have a Sixiong who overcome them in the beginning.
4) both eventually triumph over the Sixiong "miraculously".
Anyway, just going through both stories, I am sure you will find more "coincidences".
As for 鄭恩, he is indeed a character in the Fei Long Quan Zhuan novel. His is actually kind of a comic relief version of General Zhang Fei who has a black face and a sworn brother of the protagonist. 鄭恩 's character is supposed to be the incarnation of the God of martial fortune, who's "ride" is ... drum rolls .... Black Tiger! He is also the sworn brother of Tai Zu in the novel.
So at least one third of the 18 family are fictional (Wang Lang included).
That's my take on the matter for now. :D
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