Since the mid-1950s, the Chinese state has exerted tight ideological and administrative control over the religious activities of its citizens. And yet, as Daniel Overmyer has observed, wherever and whenever local conditions allow it, religious practices come to the surface. Lay Buddhist movements, Confucian revivalists, evangelical Christians, and members of body cultivation movements, among others, have been active outside the officially sanctioned institutions. A politically and ideologically engineered secularization and carefully micro-managed “religious pluralism”—to be understood here merely in the sense that there exist five officially sanctioned religions—create the context in which Chinese practitioners negotiate their existence vis-à-vis the state and each other. In recent years, the state, on its part, has helped promote religious sites, Buddhist ones in particular, as tourist destinations. These facts raise a number of important and as yet little explored questions. In particular, what can a Chinese practitioner or group of practitioners lawfully do? More specifically, what do the terms “religion” (zongjiao 宗 教), “superstition” (mixin 迷信 ) and “freedom of religious belief” (xinjiao ziyou 信教自由) mean in the rapidly evolving context of contemporary China? What is the relationship between religious pluralism, secularization, proselytizing and the Chinese Communist Party’s quest for a “harmonious society” (hexie shehui 和谐社会)?
|Titolo:||Pluralism and its Discontents: Buddhism and Proselytizing in Modern China|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2014|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||3.1 Articolo su libro|
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