2022 Hehe Culture Global Forum opens

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: Nov 29, 2022

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A block named after Hehe culture, an iconic cultural element in Taizhou, East China's Zhejiang province. [Photo/WeChat account: tzfb001]

The 2022 Hehe Culture Global Forum commenced in Tiantai county, Taizhou, East China's Zhejiang province, on Nov 29, local media reported.

This year, two sub-venues were also established in Spain and Japan to promote Hehe culture globally.

Tiantai is believed to be the birthplace of Hehe culture, which is considered one of three major cultures in Zhejiang, along with Yangming culture in Ningbo and Southern Confucianism in Quzhou.

The county was designated the permanent host venue for the Hehe Culture Global Forum in 2021.

According to local folklore, two monks named Hanshan and Shide once lived a secluded life on Tiantai Mountain in the Tang Dynasty (618-907). They were usually depicted in paintings holding a box and a lotus stem.

Hanshan was bestowed the title of He God during the rule of Emperor Yongzheng in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and Shide was conferred the title of Ho God.

Because He and Ho are auspicious figures in Chinese culture, the two gods became a symbol of unity and harmony for hundreds of years.

Today, Hehe culture is an iconic cultural element in Taizhou, and the city is well-versed in spreading it to the rest of the world.

In the past two decades, Tiantai county has carried out more than 60 inter-governmental cultural exchange activities themed on Hehe culture with countries including South Korea, the United States, Japan and Canada.

Taizhou has also set up cultural stations in cities overseas including Dubai, Tokyo, and Manila to promote the concept of harmony.