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I saw this comment online the other day:

我只能说大陆的法律能接点地气吗?如果在台湾,这属于通奸罪。


I'm a bit confused about the [接+地气] part. 地气 has some funny definitions in the following two dictionaries:

ABC:

·climate

·subtle essence that supposedly animates the earth

Oxford:

·ground vapour

·temperature

but really 接+地气=?

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地气 means folk customs or the customs/practices/thoughts (气) among the lower social class (地). 接地气 means that to adopt such customs, not setting oneself up. –  user58955 Jun 6 at 11:27
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5 Answers 5

接地气 basically means being banal/up-to-date/practical. Another meaning is to get the essence of earth, as in some cases for patients long in bed.

出门接接地气吧,爱光脚的人寿命长。A usage of 接地气.

In the first case, however, 地气=泥土气=土气。土气 is a word we describe sth. to be very banal and village-like.

**例:土气。 《美丽的大脚》剧照**

例:土气。 《美丽的大脚》剧照

We use the verb 接 here partly because it is dialectal. But it has a picture-like sense. As we put something on ground, it will 接 (get) the 气 (essence) of 地 (earth).

Thus

我只能说大陆的法律能接点地气吗?如果在台湾,这属于通奸罪。

I can only say: Can laws in mainland be more practical? If in Taiwan, this would be convicted as aduldery!

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From Baidu encyclopedia: http://baike.baidu.com/view/859205.htm

simple translate: 接地气 is a popular phrase in China since 2012. It means to connect with the low level of society, be near the real daily life.

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I'd say it's similar to the English phrase "down to Earth", which is pretty much the literal translation of 接地气

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Additional meanings to all the above sayings:

“接地气” is a newly-created fixed phrase in China used to describe some official members should be more pratical and communicate with the common people in their daily work instead of acting in an arbitrary fashion in an office by commanding others to do …… You can use this to describe someone who is doing much more than speaking, someone who is more a practical man than a "meaningless" theorist.

example: 作为一个干部,他真**接地气**,能够和群众打成一片。

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It's a very stupid phrase used by people without much education and believing using such popular words is some kind of fashion.

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Care to elaborate a little? –  user3306356 Jun 15 at 8:33
    
You don't seem to understand this meaning –  CA55CE37 Jun 16 at 2:43
    
This words is used by peasant before. It will be really weird if you heard it from TV, newspaper, or your colleague, just because nobody uses it, although its meaning can be deduced. It suddenly became popular recently, and is used by everyone, in every situation, just as 给力. Such word can be used everywhere indeed, and still grammatically correct and make sense. For example, 我妈/我们学校/我们公司/中央电视台/奥巴马 真不接地气. But it does not convey any meaningful information. –  Joe Li Jun 16 at 4:16
    
Such words are used by irresponsive people who don't bother to come up with other more accurate words. Personally I think the popularity of such words is due to the lack of vocabulary. There are people feeling sick when saw such words as 给力/接地气/正能量. –  Joe Li Jun 16 at 4:21
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