Friday, June 7, 2013

THYME Magazine

Citizen Journalism with a Better Flavor

Volume V, Issue XXVI

China Through G-d's Eyes

 Anyone who watched the opening ceremonies of the 2008 Olympics would have to have been impressed by the sheer scale of the production. A cast of thousands participated in an eerily choreographed precision drill who's scale seemed to come out of the Star Wars movies. China stood huge, like the fictional city of Coruscant, which occupies an entire planet. Coruscant, in fact, may be good metaphor for how China sees herself in the modern world.

The 'other' weekly news magazine this week looks at The World According to China [click to read]. There do not seem to be any major surprises here. China looks to be a major player on the world stage, having created Gigantic Metropolises [click to read] to announce this to the world. These megacities, who's creation was largely driven by political considerations, stand largely empty. Real Chinese investment, however, fuels the runaway costs of American government.

But 1989 is not all that long ago. Tiananmen Square in Beijing was the site of a student-led protest of the strict control of the people by the hardline government. On June 4th, tanks rolled into the square and literally crushed the peaceful demonstration. Today Tiananmen Square is devoid of any remembrance of the protesters. A man who lost his leg in the incident tells his grandchildren simply that he lost it: "in an accident."

If China's aspirations have been huge, so have her problems. The Cultural Revolution of the late 'Sixties saw Mao Zedong's Red Guard push the society into chaos. Zhou Enlai was the leader who urged a return to normalcy and set the stage for China's future stability [1.] China's controversial One Child Policy, enacted to control population growth, often results in forced abortions. Girls are usually the losers. Ironically, it was Mao's own Great Leap Forward, a program to transform China from an agricultural economy to an industrial one, that actually caused a decrease in the population. In the early sixties, Mao banned private ownership and collectivized the farms. It is estimated that 18 to 33 million people died in the famines that ensued [2.]

In 2001 Randy Alcorn wrote a novel called Safely Home [click to read]. Though it is a work of fiction, it accurately portrays the struggle of Chinese people of faith today. The novel paints a vivid contrast by bringing an American executive together with his old college classmate, now a member of the Underground Church. Accurately portraying the cost of discipleship, the book also gives insight into G-d's heart for this great nation.

Women in traditional costume marching in Seattle.

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