China has fascinated me ever since we studied the building of the Great Wall and the history of the Long March at School. So when I got the opportunity to study Chinese History at SOAS I grabbed it.
My name is Adam. I have a degree in Chinese History from SOAS (The London school of Oriental and African Studies), and a Masters in International Politics focused on Chinese Foreign Policy from the same university.
My degree specialized in Chinese Modern history from the Opium Wars to the Cultural Revolution. I wrote my thesis about the causes of the Opium Wars. However, a lot of my research was on the rise of the Chinese Communist Party and how it took power by surrounding the cities from the countryside.
My Master’s degree focused on the modern day workings of the Chinese Communist Party and my thesis was about Cross-straits relations between China and Taiwan.
I began studying Chinese at the Escuela Oficial de Idiomas in Madrid in 1994 with Profesor (esp) Li. At SOAS, I continued with my Chinese languages with the renowned professor Ping-cheng T’ung. In the evenings, I went to evening classes at the University of Westmminster and had extra classes with the wonderful teacher Lillian Chen.
I received a scholarship from Taiwan 台湾 to study one summer at the Political University (政治大学(政大 ) in Taipéi 臺北市 (Táiběi Shì 台北).
Margie and I have travelled to China 16 times. The first time was for 6 months in 1990/1991 and since 2000 we have visited China almost every year for two months (See maps). My travelling companion and collaborator is Margie. Danny is our invaluable help with any technical difficulties with Holachina.com.
As for China, I guess we kind of like the place!
I am Margie, Adam’s wife and travelling Companion. Like Adam, I share his interest in China and share his curiosity to explore all parts of this fascinating country.
12 thoughts on “Adam & Margie the content authors of holachina.com”
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My name is Camilo, from Chile. Since childhood I have been fascinated with Chinese culture and art, but in my country it was hard at that time to find serious expressions of it, so couldn’t learn so much. Only many movies and some books.
The last two years I have been in Asia traveling and learning and practicing philosophy, particularly Budhism, Hinduism (Yoga) and Taoism, taking different courses. Due to my interest for Taoism and Chan Buddhism, I am planning now to go to China so I can learn and practice it from the source. I found your website and, due all your experience, thought that maybe you have some information that could help me?
I am trying to find a monastery/institute/wise-old master-living-in-the-mountains-, where I can stay for long term (maybe one year or eventually more), so I can really get in touch with the teachings, the practice, the culture and learn Chinese. I am interested in Chan Buddhism and in the inner part of Taoism (Tai chi, Qi Gong, Inner Alchemy and the philosophical, spiritual and ritualistic aspects). I love to study and see the similitudes between Budhism, Taoism and Yoga and how you can combine them to develop the mind and your spiritual life. This is what I have been doing the last year.
Do you have information about any institute/monastery or teacher in China where I could stay for long term and learn with this approach? I would love to find a place where learning and practicing both, Chan Buddhism and Taoism, although if that doesn’t exist, just a Taoist place is my second alternative.
It has been really hard to find and it looks like you know a lot about this. I really appreciate any information you can give me!
Thank you for your message. I am more of a Chinese history buff. I have visited many holy mountains and temples in China, both Buddhist and Taoist. However, my interest in China is more historical rather than spiritual so I can’t really give you a clear recommendation. A few years ago I would have recommended Wudang Shan in Hubei Province.
But it has become very touristy and I don’t know what the retreats are like now. Someone posted a place to study at Wudang Shan at the bottom of my article. I think it will be more for gongfu 功夫.
I found this place in Fujian that sounds quite interesting.
I am going to speak to a Spanish friend of mine who lived a long time in China and who is very interested in Chinese religions. If he can give me any further information I will pass it on.
(Update) My friend has mentioned trying some places in Taiwan that might be more spiritual and more to what you are looking for.
Thank you for a wonderful website!!
Hermoso todo lo que muestran de China! Los felicito por tan excelente trabajo!
Dear Margie and Adam,
I’ve come across your website by searching for the singer named Weng Qianyu. I am really amazed by how much enthusiasm you have in this wonderful country. I seldom leave comments about any articles or websites on the Internet, but your website and its content is just extraordinary, so truthful and sincere.
Thank you for the great website with nice photos and detailed documentations about your experiences.
Adam & Margie
Dear Adam and Margie,
I hope you both are fine and healthy after all this month. I bumped into your blog today accidentally and thought of leaving a comment, cause it’s difficult still to meet in one of our beloved places like CCVK or Fogg Bar. But I am confident that we will be able to do it soon.
Un abrazo también de parte de Edu.
… and thanks for this great site! I was looking for the Bamboo Temple and had hoped to find a nice Lohan picture – and that was far exceeded! I was looking for it for an article for a journal on Chinese medicine and specifically, among other things, the latent abilities of humans that are developed in some forms of Qigong. The Lohans are said to have such abilities. – And I really found more than I expected! A photo of one person practicing a qigong exercise to develop the sending out of qi and the other, older, obviously the master, behind his fan with his left hand testing the already achieved abilities of his student. https://holachina.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Two-Arhats-2-768×1005.jpg
This is exactly how our students always look, amazed, a bit astonished and very pleased when they feel the qi and pleased and also happy when you as a teacher feel the qi of your advanced students. … Today as then, only the clothing is no longer the same 🙂
So, may I maybe use this picture for my essay? – Mentioning the monastery and also your wonderful website!
Best regards and hoping that it will soon be possible to go to China again,
Please feel free to use the photo.
The pictures are from the photos we bought at the temple as photography is forbidden inside the Arhat room.
Hi Adam and Margie,
I have just fallen upon your inspiring website and found lots of common ground and nostalgic
photos, especially those of the Grand Canal tributaries in Suzhou.I took the night boat from Hangzhou to Suzhou in 1987 and then on to Changzhou and Wuxi, spending many happy hours on bridges and in the waterside markets. Take a look at my new website http://www.davidpaskett.co.uk.