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Old traditions
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SleepingDragon
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 10:02 pm    Post subject: Old traditions Reply with quote

Just curious how many still do the practice of whenever stepping into a home, business, or temple, you step over the threshold with your left feet first? When exiting, you step out with your right feet first? if you stopped, how come? Or if you were never taught this?

No judgements just wondering.

Aloha Gang!

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sl8
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was taught to jump over the threshold - hop over; never to walk on it.
As for backing out, I usually hop over it too- but not too high of a jump; more of a shuffle hop.
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hasayfu
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Back from Asia...

I was never taught which foot first. Taught not to step on the actual threshold and always test before going through.

One exception: Lead lion can do the test an the others can just observe.

I notice a lot of teams don't test the entry. By testing, I'm thinking along the lines of Lion enters the cave. Not as elaborate but 3 tests before entering/crossing.
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vtml
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our troupe tries to follow it.
Left = Green Dragon
Right = White Tiger

When our lions exit a restaurant / house / business, we always exit with the tail out first. I have seen other troupes doing it the other way around.

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lionscave1
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

visited this topic briefly back here: http://www.liondancing.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=528&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

We don't step on the threshhold (didn't learn which foot enters/exits first though).

Before going through we don't test, but we do lick/bite the doorframe. First lion through sticks his head in first and looks around before stepping in.
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SleepingDragon
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lionscave1 wrote:
visited this topic briefly back here: http://www.liondancing.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=528&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

We don't step on the threshhold (didn't learn which foot enters/exits first though).

Before going through we don't test, but we do lick/bite the doorframe. First lion through sticks his head in first and looks around before stepping in.
Very Happy Thats where it was, I remembered the part of the raised threshold. Also must correct myself on that, as people from different cultures said it is bad luck to step on the threshold, yet no one can explain the principle. Maybe it has to do with the DEVO song- Lol You know- "step on a crack break your mama's back." Hmmm-maybe shouldn't have said that, someone might get offended.

Peeping in the doorway (twice) and biting the door (not to confused with turning the door/cleaning the door, is the test/check for us.

Also to expound on that thread where I mentioned about reading the signs. When I was in Japan for work this year went to Yokohama Chinatown during CNY-saw something that I liked what they did for the sign reading. Where as we would sit in our si ping ma (or whatever your school calls that stance), look up and read the sign over the door, they would stack (headsit) and go up to the sign and read it from about 1-2 feet away, makes it very obvious to the lay crowd what the lion is doing. They then went about the other business that the lion does.

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SleepingDragon
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vtml wrote:
Our troupe tries to follow it.
Left = Green Dragon
Right = White Tiger

When our lions exit a restaurant / house / business, we always exit with the tail out first. I have seen other troupes doing it the other way around.
To expound on this for others-green dragon is also related to spring (season) and white tiger to autumn/fall. Spring is a sign of birth and growth. Thus it is seen as auspicious so when the lion steps in with the left foot, it represents bringing in good fortune and auspiciousness.

I think it is safe to say almost everyone leaves tail first, but the tail player would step out with his right foot first, this is symbolic of removing or taking out anything inauspicious.

The other reason is that the lion has heavens blessing and authority to do what it does. So left reprsents authority (which I believe I mention why in the link LC1 gave). While right represents humility.

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Aus_Lion
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2008 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic info, guys!

We've always bitten the door before entering and reversing out when done, but it's really important to carry on the smaller traditions like not stepping over the threshold and leading with the right foot first (which I never knew).

Thanks and keep them coming!

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hasayfu
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 1:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

lionscave, I think your bite is symbolic of the test. In fact a common test (not the only one) is what SD does. Two peeps plus the bite then enter. That makes the three tests. We would do the peeps left then right. My sifu would always insist on 3 tests. I notice these days, many just do one even for the chang. Speeds up the show.

I agree with the left right center so we would naturally use left first just because we always start on the left. We do not switch order depending on where the guest of honor is.
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lionscave1
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HSF, interesting thought--I always considered it more of a cleansing motion than a test. We do left post, right post (both bottom to top), then straight across the top (left to right). That makes the magic number 3. Is this the turning/cleansing the door SD refers to?

As far as L-R-C for bows and other things we use stage directions, not audience directions.
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SleepingDragon
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lionscave1 wrote:
HSF, interesting thought--I always considered it more of a cleansing motion than a test. We do left post, right post (both bottom to top), then straight across the top (left to right). That makes the magic number 3. Is this the turning/cleansing the door SD refers to?

As far as L-R-C for bows and other things we use stage directions, not audience directions.


Actually what I was talking about is more elaborate for when entering business, homes, or temples. There are times when you do an outdoor wedding/birthday gig which has a big pitch tent. No real door. Some things are cut out.

But to elaborate very quickly... first read the door sign at the top if there is one. Then bite the door on the right, if there is a sign board, crossover to read, then jump back. Do the same for the left door, bite then read.
Then come down center peep twice, left then right side back up, clean the entrance (I believe someone said theysweep the floor with the beard, I have viewed as lion clean cleaning the entrance, so the beard does grace the floor. Instructors I think tell some students make it so the beard sweeps the floor so that the student gets low enough. This is because in any physical activity people will tend to shorten up and fully extend, don't if you ynderstand what I am trying to say?

Anyway then we do the cleaning/turning the door, starting at the bottom of the left post as Chris says, then going up across and then down the right post of the door. I was taught this is for sunrise to sunset, green dragon in the east is where sun rises and white tiger in the west is where sun sets, so as Chris said, stage left stage right perspective. Or the owners right is the east and left is the west. Cause when you look at the map east is actually on your right, however you are doing the owners or stage right. Are we confused yet-haha.

Then the lion goes foward with left foot in over the threshhold first. Biting the door-best analogy would be how in the animal kingdom the lion checks out objects to see what has marked the territory.

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SleepingDragon
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hasayfu wrote:
lionscave, I think your bite is symbolic of the test. In fact a common test (not the only one) is what SD does. Two peeps plus the bite then enter. That makes the three tests. We would do the peeps left then right. My sifu would always insist on 3 tests. I notice these days, many just do one even for the chang. Speeds up the show.

I agree with the left right center so we would naturally use left first just because we always start on the left. We do not switch order depending on where the guest of honor is.


Another thing I see lions not doing nowadays is reading the sign for a business and temples.

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nnnGUY
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i know the kei lun has something similar to the lion biting the door.

A senior explained to me that rather than biting the door, the kei lun's version is to lean against the door frame from the left and nudge it before jumping back and doing it again on the right. This was to symbolise the building that the kei lun is about to enter is built on strong foundations and that nothing can topple it/the building/the business over.

Not sure if that idea is widespread among many kei lun dancers as i do see a lot of the groups bite the door similar to how a lion does it.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 5:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for the ideas. It's always great to learn from these discussions. I was not taught with so much depth to the reasons why we follow these methods as we enter... particularly with the reading of signs and such. However, few of the buildings that we've entered have much more than basic doorway signage, which is turned out of the way when the front door is opened. I'll be sure to think about this as I prepare for shows in the future.

My sigung taught me to "anoint" the door prior to entering. Something like licking up the left side, across the top, and then down the right side. We then enter using the left foot, like the others here have mentioned before.

The biting as a test sounds good. It makes me think of how people used to bite old coins to test them... to see if they were real gold or silver. Maybe that's just the movies.
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lionscave1
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nnnGUY wrote:
...lean against the door frame from the left and nudge it before jumping back and doing it again on the right. This was to symbolise the building that the kei lun is about to enter is built on strong foundations and that nothing can topple it/the building/the business over.


Wonder if this is similar reasoning to a ove some groups used to do before mounting the jongs. The lion would lean toward the jongs and shake the head three times. Any insight?
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