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Lecture 4

RELIGST 1B06 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Taoism, Faith Healing

Religious Studies
Course Code
Philippa Carter

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Film - China's Leap of Faith: The Gods Come Home - Jan 19th
Resurgence of ancient religions -Chinese Buddhism, Daoism, Traditional
Religious Revival
"Buddha Boom"
Communist rulers - Atheism
Greediness violates Buddhist teachings
Purifying the heart->peace
Temple: Helping guide the spirits of the deceased to heaven
Built in 1924
Closed from 1965-1994
1970s - 30-40 temple
After 2000 - More than 80
Temples were destroyed, worship was banned
Being rebuilt after communist neglect
How do Buddhists avoid getting corrupt when they are making so much
money in the temples
Temples run themselves, earn their own money by charging entrance fees,
charging for rites (including funerals), having a restaurant and/or gift shop
Freedom of religious belief deeply rooted in cultural history
Religion is one of the country's 5 priorities
Stresses national unity
Pray for ancestors, burn incense
Folk beliefs are not recognized as religions by the government, but they are
still widely practiced and very popular. Many of these practices are not
encouraged by the government
Faith healing, fortune telling and other rituals in many folk beliefs
Don't see folk religion as religions
Religious freedom can be a problem
Commercializing aspects of Buddhism in gift shops, etc.
The government gives freedom of belief, but they also manage and have
administration about it; makes people feel that they do not have freedom of
People need to release their negative emotion and reduce their stress
Chinese government aims to use religion as a lever to promote nationalism
and Chinese culture
opeople used to believe in communism, now they believe in religion
Chinese government does not want to allow Tibetan Buddhism because the
religious beliefs are tied to politics (i.e. religious leaders- Dalai Lama - run the
A combination of Buddhism, Daoism, Confucianism, and traditional healing
has emerged. The government does not allow them to grow in China. Leader
was exiled.
Only 5 religions are legally allowed to be practiced: Buddhism, Taoism, Islam,
Catholicism, and Protestantism
Spiritual needs are multiplying
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