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James Ostram Fraser, Christian missionary, linguist, musical genius and engineer

From:J Y S Czhang <czhang23@...>
Date:Thursday, February 19, 2004, 3:43
--- small excerpt from

    "James O. Fraser, of the China Inland Mission, was one of those choice
servants of God who was content to labor in almost total obscurity. This gifted
man was a preacher, linguist, musical genius and engineer. He came to the
Yunnan Province of China in 1910 with a heart longing for the souls of the
forgotten Lisu tribal people. As Fraser gave himself to the work of reaching the
Lisu, he became somewhat forgotten. For years he lived alone, hidden behind the
great mountain ranges of China's far west. Few people really knew James Fraser.
There was an air of mystery about this talented man who had chosen a primitive
pioneers life over the applause of a English concert hall. Some said that it
was absolutely wrong for Fraser to waste and bury his gifts on the mission
field.  Yet, Mr. Fraser was greatly used of God through prayer and loving labor
to turn multitudes of Lisu from their slavery of demon-worship to Jesus Christ.
After mastering the difficult Lisu language, he developed his own "Fraser
Script" and translated the Scriptures into the tribal dialect. By 1916 there was
a real move of the Spirit among the Lisu, resulting in sixty thousand baptisms
within only two years. The Lisu church continued to grow and eventually
became one of the largest tribal Christian bodies in the world."

info on Fraser in Chinese:
    The Lisu are fascinating musicians and practising "tribal communists." No
wonder Fraser had a love for them. But too bad Fraser wrecked havok on the
traditional culture and its belief-system.

    I have met identical twin Lisu brothers thru the Shao Lung Tong. I have
yet to get a tape or CD of Lisu music from them tho'... as there seems to be a
major time-consuming conflict going on in the SLT world all around the Pacific
Rim. The Triads are running outta time - it's the end of the Triads and the
world-wide ascendency of the SLT.

    BTW SLTer John Yin told me about Fraser... coupla years ago... knowing my
interests in language and music... and indigenous peoples... (eerily typical
of Yin to hit so many blinkin' targets all at once with just a droppin' of one
single name...)

--- from the Omniglot website (

Fraser alphabet

    The Fraser alphabet was devised in around 1915 by James Ostram Fraser, a
missionary who lived and worked with the Lisu people in China from 1910 to
1949. During his time in China, Fraser learnt to speak Chinese and Lisu and
produced a Lisu translation of the New Testament using his alphabet. He also
devised a system of muscial notation for the Lisu to use.
    In 1992 the Chinese government recognised the Fraser alphabet as the
official script for the Lisu language and has encouraged its use since then.

Notable features

*   The Fraser alphabet consists of uppercase Latin letters, some of which
are rotated or inverted.

*   Tones are indicated with punctuation marks.

Used to write:
Lisu a Tibeto-Burman language spoken by about 657,000 people in Myanmar,
India, Thailand and in the Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Sichuan.

===> to see the really simple but well-designed Fraser alphabet:

    Hanuman Zhang, heeding the Call(ing) to Divine Chaos & Creation

_NADA BRAHMA_ < Sanskrit >  "sound = Godhead"

"You ride the brilliance, You are light, You are the construct,
You defy dimension tenn0!, You are what you are, eternal, absolute,
You are imperial, sovereign yeah tenn0, tenn0!
You breathe redemption, motive, power, You're elemental, super-collider
yeah tenn0!, You are air and earth, fire and ocean, You are Word, You are
tenn0 tenn0!" - two parts of the song "tenn0" by mortal

_LILA_  < Sanskrit >
    1. the universe is what happens when God wants to play - Divine Play -
the play of the Divine in its Cosmic Dance, whimsy -  like a child playing alone
God the Cosmic Dancer - whose routine is all creatures and all worlds - the
Cosmos flows - a world from the tireless unending resistless stream of God's
energy that _is_ Lila
    2. joyous exercise of spontaneity involved in the art of creation this is
also Lila

    "...divine chaos ...rumors of chaos have been known to enhance the for the godhead manifests no more of its reality than the limited
grammar of each person's imagination and conceptual system can handle. A second
advantage is suggested by...the possibilty of many gods, ... each one of us
experiencing a unique... revelation. An orderly monistic and monotheistic
system... might succumb to a craving for logical coherence, and trim away some of the
mystery, rich indeterminancy, and tragic ambiguity in a complete numinous
experience. For some temperaments, the ambivalent gentleness and savagery of fate
can be imagined effectively in a godhead split into personified attributes,
sometimes at war, sometimes in shifting alliance." - Vernon Ruland, _Eight
Sacred Horizons: The Religious Imagination East and West_