Zhang Shaoming (1920――2009), also known as Zhang Dingxi, was born in the ancient town of Guide in Qinghai province. As a teenager, he entered new-style schools and received traditional Confucianism and modern education. When he was young, he served in the 82nd National Army and served as director of the secretary of the Lieutenant Colonel. After victory in the Anti – Japanese War, he was sent to work in the Industrial Company of Huangzhong County, part of contemporary Xining.
After the Communist Liberation, he returned to his hometown of Guide to serve as a doctor. Mr. Zhang Dingxi is the younger brother of the famous Confucian Zhang Yinxi, also from Guide County. Influenced by his brother’ s character, Zhang Dingxi was accomplished in Confucian training, as well as in literature and history, poetry, calligraphy and painting, music and traditional medicine. His nature was kind and sympathetic and he devoted all his efforts to diagnosing and prescribing treatment for the people, including poor patients, for whom he often reduced medical costs.
During the “Cultural Revolution “, Mr. Zhang and his family were sent to work in the remote Dongshan village for more than ten years. During this period, he continued to dispense medicines, so local Tibetan peasants affectionately referred to him as “Aku Manba,” which literally means “the Great Doctor “.
After the implementation of the Cultural Revolution, he became a doctor in Donggou Township Health Center for many years. After he retired at home, a large number of Tibetan, Han Chinese, Hui and other masses still sought him out to diagnose and cure the ailments, and, as always, Zhang subsidized poor patients. Zhang also made great achievements in the field of Chinese culture; his calligraphy was famous for its simplicity and vitality.
In his later years, he was invited to write for the Yellow River Culture Festival, such as his work ”Praise of Name and Place of Guide” and other calligraphy compositions became regarded as masterpieces. His deep poetic skills and abundant literary output works came together in his well-known collection of poetry called ” Spring Stone Sand Collection “.
In literary and historical circles, Mr. Zhang also left documents such as “Witness to the Massacre of the Red West – Road Army by Ma Jia Jun”,” Luojiawan Mutiny “, and so on. He loved Qin Opera and was adept at performing and singing. With his brother Zhang Yinxi, he founded the Guide Qin Opera Society.
Zhang Dingxi was generous and kind, had a good character, and everyone knew his name and reputation. His thrifty and strict family education and his indefatigable style of learning were particularly commendable. Zhang’ s family tradition and moral character were passed down from generation to generation.