Memories of my Gifted Grandmother-Father’s Side of the Family

At the beginning of this Chinese and Jewish journey, I introduced everyone to my maternal heritage. That’s just half of the ancestry puzzle. What about my paternal lineage?  

The above beautiful woman is my paternal grandmother during her youth. She is originally from Sichuan province, the Chinese province famous for its spicy hot pot cuisine and pretty girls. I have limited memories of her; mainly she used to pick me up from school and walk me back home. She was in her 70s when I knew of her closely. She was a very patient and caring woman. During the Cultural Revolution, my grandfather could not find work for a long period of time, it drove my grandmother insane and much more after his death. I like to equate the Chinese Cultural Revolution to the Jewish Holocaust–so many innocent lives lost in a few years. It was the greatest traumatic event in both cultures’ history. 

My grandmother was a gifted musician, she attended the Shanghai Conservatory of Music and lived composing new tunes. Wish there was iPhones during her lifetime so we could enjoy some of her classics. 💃☺️ My father’s side is a large family of 5 brothers and sisters. Most of the aunts and uncles live in Shanghai with one living in Xi’an. Grandfather came from Shangdong province, known for noodles and tall handsome men. He passed away when my mom was pregnant with me so I never had a chance to meet him in person. 

Our surname is very unique and rare in China and the Chinese language; it is 矯 pronounced Jiao (third tone) in Mandarin Chinese. It has a special meaning of rectify and fix or ‘tikkun’ in Hebrew. What a match! 😜 The Creator is so smart!

Until next time



The Chinese Dream: Myth or Reality? Why does it matter?

Market positioning is a concept in business defined by the Business Dictionary as “an effort to influence consumer perception of a brand or product relative to perception of competing brands or products. Its objective is to occupy a clear, unique and advantageous position in the consumers’ mind.”

This concept is fluid and moves beyond the business space into politics. Nations, institutions, and NGOs also perform this activity to stay competitive in the world space, China is also in that bucket. For those that have been keeping up with News about China, you probably have heard of Xi Jinping’s ‘Chinese Dream.’ If you do not keep up with China news, the Chinese dream is realizing the great renewal of the Chinese nation in modern history. Similar to the continuous Jewish civilization, the Chinese have 5000 years of pride in their heritage and they want to capitalize that in the modern times. I don’t blame them, I would too.

Now you may ask why does this relate to allofasuddenpartJew? What is the connection?

It overlaps is my answer.

Realizing the Chinese dream, first comes overcoming many internal challenges that I outlined in my last blog post. Getting back into market positioning earlier – this is how I will position myself and efforts. Align with the goals of the Chinese dream to get buy-in and people behind me. That’s the connection. Make sense? Now the government and I share the same mission and goals, to see a China as a better country, setting the way for the world. Here is a quote from Xi Jinping’s Speech about the Chinese Dream.

Our responsibility is to unite and lead people of the entire party and of all ethnic groups around the country while accepting the baton of history and continuing to work for realising the great revival of the Chinese nation in order to let the Chinese nation stand more firmly and powerfully among all nations around the world and make a greater contribution to mankind.”

Xi Jinping and my ideals match perfectly. We will make great partners in the future. You will soon see that it is reality; not a myth.

🙂 until next time.

Limmud was awesome and so was Mr. Clive Lawton.

Tonight was my first official Limmud.  For those who don’t know, Limmud is a British-Jewish Charity organization whose mission is “Wherever you find yourself, Limmud will take you one step further along your Jewish journey.” Founded in the United Kingdom by the amazing Mr. Clive Lawton (awesome live speaker BTW), Limmud was a mode or method of learning for Jews in the UK.  Now some thirty years later, Limmud has grown into an international organization organizing Jewish learning events around the globe.  As a matter of fact, Limmud will have a Shanghai event in early April. (I will be going for sure!)

How Limmud relates to my own story? Well, we should be a big happy family! I’m still in the beginnings of my Jewish journey, I look to Limmud to provide additional resources and assistance in moving along in this journey.  In all my touch points with Jewish culture, there is much to learn and not a Pope in sight (explain the Pope thing later).  Mr. Clive Lawton, one of the original founders of Limmud gave two interesting talks at the Hong Kong event.  One is “Weird Tales from the Talmud” and the other “Are there prophets anymore”.  Afterwards, I hurriedly grabbed Clive to chat about his organization Limmud.  He is such a jovial, fun, and an engaging speaker and totally in the know about every aspect of Jewish people and its history.  He gave me some history of the organization and the reasons behind its humble beginnings.  Clive mentioned in the “Weird Tales from the Talmud” talk that Jews, unlike Christians, do not like the idea of having a Pope-like figure.  That’s why I made my earlier comment about not a Pope in sight.

I wish I can write more but it’s almost midnight and I have group project meeting tomorrow morning for my Social Policy Research class.  I will blog more about Limmud next week as I prepare for my Limmud number 2 in Shanghai.

Hope everyone is well!