The Destructive Power of Sinocentrism
Cultures are just like DNAs. Decrease in diversity of DNAs can be harmful. When everyone thinks minimizing the diversity is good, it is the road to extinction.
Unfortunately, I cannot see the value of the ideology of unification. Why we have to sacrifice for this ideology at the expense of cultural development and human lives? What is it good for?
For those who say he loves China, I guess what they love is the China which can protect his language, culture and property, right? If that China comes to kill you, you are still willing to die with smile or to hand out everything to it, that’s simply not China. That’s just something else who called itself China.
Chinese (the advocates of unification) never try to understand localism is the prerequisite of democracy. It is always the local which comes first. The essence of democracy is that one is to become his own master. Who would like to be ruled by a ruler from thousand miles away? Not to say a ruler with different language and customs.
The New Sinocentrism
Many religions advocate equality amongst their believers. What I’m saying is, religion is a necessary evil, and Sinocentrism is one of them.
The current Sinocentrism will only lead to disasters. To solve its inherent weakness, we must find and promote a new Sinocentrism: to re-define the essence of “China”, who are the “Chinese people”, so that we can be free from the curses of the “Angry Youth” and Boxers.
Maybe we are now in such crossroads in history.
If Sinocentrism is a religion, it is a monotheism which believes in “Tianxia” (天下, roughly means the world under the heaven), as compared to the Catholic religion at the times of Reformation. If there was a Martin Luther in the Orient, he would sense the conflicts and anachronism of such belief. A new Sinocentrism which could adjust to current world should be invented. That would be a Sinocentrism which concerned more about culture than politics.
A new Sinocentrism should remove the elements like authoritative decisions, unconditional obligations, hegemony and totalitarianism. The new Sinocentrism should focus on the choices of the individuals.
In that case, someone born outside mainland China can be a Chinese, while someone born in mainland China can be an outsider.
Using religions as metaphors, mainland China can be compared to the Catholic. They think Sinocentrism is just another version of the divine rights of kings, where the court has the divine rights to rule over all its subjects, and to unite them in politics, culture, language and institution. Hong Kongers can be compared to the Protestants, though they share the Chinese cultural heritage, they regard “Chinese” is a group of nations who share commonness in culture, and the emphasis on voluntary cooperation instead of the legitimacy to rule over the others.
Why I use Hong Kong is because its language and cultural system is more complete. It possesses healthy and robust Cantonese culture with in-depth media coverage. The homogeneity of Cantonese culture is strong. So Hong Kongers are more willing to accept pluralism of Chinese culture, instead of the singularism where “Chinese language = Han Chinese = Putonghua = China = a united empire”. This is already an advantage.
Read the famous quote from Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), former president of the Republic of China (or Taiwan):
“The most ideal situation is let mainland China to get free from the bondage of Sinocentrism and let its culturally and economically divergent regions to enjoy autonomy. An ideal scenario is to divide the land into around seven regions, such as Taiwan, Tibet, Xinjiang, Mongolia and Manchuria, etc, for competitions and development. This may make bring peace to Asia as a safer continent to live.”