The Popularity of “tongbao” (sibling) undoubtedly has become an important art of “banal nationalism” a defined by Michael Billing in o modern China. However, this phenomenon does not originate from the Chinese intellectual tradition. Neither is it a product of modern Chinese intellectual and cultural development. In my study, I have focused on the following three issues: (1) the original meaning and its implication of Zhang Zai’s famous statement “People are my siblings.” (2) the popularity of the new o modern meaning of “tongbao” as compatriot in Meiji Japan; amd (3) how the new meaning of “tongbao” was introduced into China and became a key component in national discourse and imagination. I will argue that there is no direct connection between Zhang Zai’s statement and the modern en e of “tongbao.” In the past, Zhang’ statement was mostly invoked as a moral instruction for the superiors to show their virtues by treating the people well. In fact, the pioneering use of “tongbao” as compatriot in modern sense took place in Meiji Japan, where the term was widely used in the discourses of civil right movements and nationalism as well. In the end of the 19th century, Liang Qichao introduced this term with the new meaning into the Chinese intellectual and cultural discourses. As a result, the term has since then played an important role in the construction of modern Chinese nationalism. Unfortunately, this important trans-lingual and transcultural development has by far not been critically examined. My study will not only shed new light on this development but also explore its important historical and emotional implications.