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History of Religions of Eastern Origins

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Full-Text Articles in Chinese Studies

An Investigation Of The Relationship Between Prince ShōToku’S ShōMangyō-Gisho And Two Dunhuang Buddhist Manuscripts: A Debate Over Originality And Canonical Value, Mark Dennis Jan 2019

An Investigation Of The Relationship Between Prince ShōToku’S ShōMangyō-Gisho And Two Dunhuang Buddhist Manuscripts: A Debate Over Originality And Canonical Value, Mark Dennis

Manuscript Studies

This article investigates the relationship between two manuscript fragments discovered in Dunhuang, China referred to as Nai 93 and Tama 24, and the Shōmangyō-gisho, a Buddhist text written in classical Chinese attributed to Japan’s Prince Shōtoku (574-622). Shōtoku is remembered in Japanese history as the country’s first patriarch of Buddhism, revered for his patronage of the nascent faith and his great erudition. His studies under a Korean Buddhist monk led, according to early historical texts, to his composing the Shōmangyō-gisho and two other Buddhist commentaries that have been greatly valued throughout Japanese Buddhist history.

But the discovery of ...


Sinolization Of Christianity: Increasing Gospel Relevance Or Distorting The Gospel Message?, L. Asher Pseudonym Jul 2018

Sinolization Of Christianity: Increasing Gospel Relevance Or Distorting The Gospel Message?, L. Asher Pseudonym

Journal of Adventist Mission Studies

"This study aims to address the concept of the Sinolization of Christianity in light of cultural studies, biblical principles, and the Great Controversy perspective. It will then set forth some ideas on how it could affect the communication of the gospel in the Chinese context. It will attempt to see if Sinolization makes the gospel more relevant or further distorts the Christian message through the lens of the Chinese culture. The answers to these questions should help Chinese Christians, and especially Adventists, better understand their mission in China."


The Gendered Image Of Sun Bu’Er In Yuan Hagiographies, Tali D. Hershkovitz May 2018

The Gendered Image Of Sun Bu’Er In Yuan Hagiographies, Tali D. Hershkovitz

Arts & Sciences Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This research examines the gendered image of the Song dynasty (960-1279) Daoist matriarch Sun Bu’er (1119-1182) based on four hagiographies dedicated to her in four different anthologies from the Yuan dynasty (1271-1368). Building on Sun’s representation in these hagiographies, previous scholarship argued that Sun Bu’er’s Daoist identity is more significant than her gender identity. However, a close study of these hagiographic narratives reveals that as the only female disciple among the Seven Perfected Sun Bu’er was chronicled differently than the six male disciples, with emphasis on her gender. This is evident in the Daoist designation ...


How Liberal Korean And Taiwanese Textbooks Portray Their Countries’ “Economic Miracles”, Frances Chan May 2016

How Liberal Korean And Taiwanese Textbooks Portray Their Countries’ “Economic Miracles”, Frances Chan

Student Work

A 2015-2016 William Prize for best essay in East Asian Studies was awarded to Frances Chan (Timothy Dwight College '16) for her essay submitted to the Department of History, “How Liberal Korean and Taiwanese Textbooks Portray their Countries’ “Economic Miracles”.” (Peter C. Perdue, Professor of History, advisor.)

Frances Chan’s essay “How Liberal Korean and Taiwanese Textbooks Portray their Countries’ “Economic Miracles,” is a fascinating exploration of the creation of historical memory as seen in textbooks on the history of postwar economic development in Korea and Taiwan. Drawing on her remarkable linguistic skills in both Korean and Chinese, she compares ...


Religion As A Chinese Cultural Component: Culture In The Chinese Taoist Association And Confucius Institute, John D. Abercrombie Apr 2016

Religion As A Chinese Cultural Component: Culture In The Chinese Taoist Association And Confucius Institute, John D. Abercrombie

Masters Theses & Specialist Projects

This thesis examines the role of the cultural discourse on the indigenous religious traditions of China and their place within an officially sanctioned construction of Chinese culture. It starts by examining the concept of culture as it developed in the modern era, its place within the construction of national identities, and the marginalizing effects this has on certain members of national populations. Next it turns to the development of the cultural discourse within China from the mid-1800s to the Cultural Revolution, highlighting the social and legal transformations as they restricted and reframed the practice and articulation of religious traditions in ...


The Creation Of Daoism, Paul Fischer Jan 2015

The Creation Of Daoism, Paul Fischer

Philosophy & Religion Faculty Publications

This paper examines the creation of Daoism in its earliest, pre-Eastern Han period. After an examination of the critical terms "scholar/master" and "author/ school", I argue that, given the paucity of evidence, Sima Tan and Liu Xin should be credited with creating this tradition. The body of this article considers the definitions of Daoism given by these two scholars and all of the extant texts that Liu Xin classified as "Daoist." Based on these texts, I then suggest an amended definition of Daoism. In the conclusion, I address the recent claim that the daojia /daijiao dichotomy is false, speculating ...


The Religious Imperative Of Confucianism, Samuel Davies Jan 2015

The Religious Imperative Of Confucianism, Samuel Davies

Undergraduate Honors Theses

Confucianism prescribes for society an immensely rich, sophisticated, and utilitarian modality of social relationship. Not only has this served as China's social and political bedrock, but it has actually evolved from, and thus suggests, the deep religious dimensionality of Confucian thought. I aim to, through the medium of Confucianism, unveil the social entity of this religious dimension as an intuitive depth and unifying reciprocity which has since the dawn of civilization been preserved and expressed as the most quintessential aspect of human life.

With an exploratory dive into the farthest metaphysics that underlie the foundational Confucian society, the true ...


Book Review: The Religious Thought Of Chu Hsi, Julia Ching, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Book Review: The Religious Thought Of Chu Hsi, Julia Ching, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

Julia Ching's Religious Thought of Chu Hsi is one of several Western-language works in recent years to address issues of religiosity and spirituality in the Confucian tradition. Somewhat earlier are several full-length books devoted to the thought of one particular thinker, much of which could be considered "religious," although the authors do not necessarily focus on that theme. Zhu Xi's religious beliefs and practices have been the subject of several chapter-length studies in Western languages. And Zhu's studies of ritual have been translated in Patricia Buckley Ebrey's Chu Hsi's Family Rituals. Neither of those works ...


Book Review: Mencius And Early Chinese Thought, Kwong-Loi Shun, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Book Review: Mencius And Early Chinese Thought, Kwong-Loi Shun, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

This is the first of a projected three-volume series on "the nature of Confucian-Mencian ethical thought." This volume, as well as a projected second volume, highlights important passages and concepts from the Mencius for close exegetical analysis, and compares them insightfully with such works as the Analects, the Guanzi, and the Mozi. Comparative philosophical interpretation of these concepts is planned for a projected volume three. By separating textual analysis from modem philosophical interpretation, Shun attempts to consider early Chinese concepts on their own terms, as far as that is possible, without viewing them through the lens of contemporary Western categories ...


Book Review: Transformations Of The Confucian Way, John Berthrong, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Book Review: Transformations Of The Confucian Way, John Berthrong, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

This book is part of Westview's series Explorations: Contemporary Perspectives on Religion. However, Transformations of the Confucian Way focuses not on the religious aspects of the literati tradition, but on "the intellectual development of the Confucian Way in East Asia." Transformations is a concise survey, based primarily on English language sources, of the main figures of literati intellectual history from Confucius to Okada Takehiko.

Berthrong first begins by trying to define what being "a Confucian" is, and places such attempts at definition within a comparative context. He states that being a Confucian means "being dedicated to the canon and ...


Conceptualizations Of Earth And Land In Classical Chinese Texts, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Conceptualizations Of Earth And Land In Classical Chinese Texts, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

Many studies have explored conceptualizations of heaven (tian 天) in early Chinese thought, but few if any have explored understandings of heaven's later cosmological counterpart, earth (di 地). This article examines Chinese understandings of earth and land (tu 土) in pre-Qin 先秦sources. In ancient texts such as the Book of Odes (Shi jing詩經) and Book of Documents (Shang shu尚書), the earth is not yet the paired counterpart to heaven that it will become in later Warring States (fifth-third centuries BCE) texts. Older works often depict earth and land as passive recipients of heaven's forces or human ...


邱濬與明代儒家廢存之議 (Qiu Jun And Iconoclasm In The Ming Dynasty), Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

邱濬與明代儒家廢存之議 (Qiu Jun And Iconoclasm In The Ming Dynasty), Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

This article examines key figures in iconoclastic controversies that developed in the early Ming (1368-1644) era in China. The scholar-official Qiu Jun (1421-1495), the compiler of the massive guide to statecraft and governance titled Supplement to the Extended Meaning of the Great Learning (Daxue yanyi bu 大學衍義補), believed that anthropomorphic images of Confucius in official temples should be destroyed and replaced with spirit tablets inscribed with the name of the deceased. This essay explores the philosophical and religious arguments of Qiu Jun and other early Ming thinkers regarding the use of images in ritual contexts.


早期 '地' 和 '土'之观 (Concepts Of Earth And Land In Early Chinese Texts), Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭) Apr 2014

早期 '地' 和 '土'之观 (Concepts Of Earth And Land In Early Chinese Texts), Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭)

Deborah A. Sommer

Many studies have explored conceptualizations of heaven (tian 天) in early Chinese thought, but few if any have explored understandings of heaven's later cosmological counterpart, earth (di 地). This article examines Chinese understandings of earth and land (tu 土) in pre-Qin 先秦sources. In ancient texts such as the Book of Odes (Shi jing詩經) and Book of Documents (Shang shu尚書), the earth is not yet the paired counterpart to heaven that it will become in later Warring States (fifth-third centuries BCE) texts. Older works often depict earth and land as passive recipients of heaven's forces or human activity. Earth ...


Book Review: Meeting Of Minds: Intellectual And Religious Interaction In East Asian Traditions Of Thought, Irene Bloom, Joshua Fogel, Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭) Apr 2014

Book Review: Meeting Of Minds: Intellectual And Religious Interaction In East Asian Traditions Of Thought, Irene Bloom, Joshua Fogel, Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭)

Deborah A. Sommer

Meeting of Minds: Intellectual and Religious Interaction in East Asian Traditions of Thought, a volume of eleven essays written in honor of Wing-tsit Chan and William Theodore de Bary, proposes to explore how Confucian and Neo-Confucian traditions have responded to and have influenced other traditions (Buddhist, Taoist, folk, Japanese nativist, and so on) in China and Japan. The essays are arranged first geographically (seven articles on China precede four on Japan) and then roughly chronologically. All essays, save one, describe Sung or post-Sung developments. A few sentences per essay must suffice in this review. [excerpt]


Warrants For Women's Religious Authority In Chinese Religious Traditions, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Warrants For Women's Religious Authority In Chinese Religious Traditions, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

No abstract provided.


Boundaries Of The Ti Body, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Boundaries Of The Ti Body, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

As part of his argument that "ideas of Nature, state, and the body were so interdependent that they are best considered a single complex," Nathan Sivin considered the permeable boundaries of the human frame and assayed the body's dynamic resonances with the political, social, and ethical realms of thought in early China. [excerpt]


Chinese Religions In World Religions Textbooks, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Chinese Religions In World Religions Textbooks, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

Religions of China are routinely given short shrift in world religions textbooks. It would be foolish to expect equity in these matters, but when traditions important to a large percentage of the world's populations are accorded only a fraction of the pages devoted to that upstart Mediterranean cult—I am speaking, of course, of Christianity—one naturally begins to ask questions. Such books are thicker in their treatment of “the center of the world,” that fertile spiritual navel from which emerged the so-called Abrahamic traditions, and become thinner and thinner as they move toward the “barren” Pacific Rim, where ...


Destroying Confucius: Iconoclasm In The Confucian Temple, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Destroying Confucius: Iconoclasm In The Confucian Temple, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

No abstract provided.


Taoism And The Arts, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Taoism And The Arts, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

This essay is Chapter 28 of The Oxford Handbook of Religion and the Arts edited by Frank Burch Brown (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014, pages 379-387). Religion and the Arts is one of the newest additions to the Oxford Handbook series, a project that explores reviews of recent academic research across disciplines. This edited volume of essays examines intersections of the visual and spiritual realms as they are expressed in religious traditions around the globe. Sommer's article, which was commissioned for Part III of this volume, "Religious Ways of Being Artistic," is a state-of-the-field review of recent Western-language ...


Confucianism And The Arts, Deborah Sommer Apr 2014

Confucianism And The Arts, Deborah Sommer

Deborah A. Sommer

This essay is Chapter 29 of The Oxford Handbook of Religion and the Arts edited by Frank Burch Brown (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014, pages 388-395). Religion and the Arts is one of the newest additions to the Oxford Handbook series, a project that explores reviews of recent academic research across disciplines. This edited volume of essays examines intersections between the visual and spiritual realms as they are expressed in religious traditions around the globe. Sommer's article was commissioned for Part III of this volume, "Religious Ways of Being Artistic," and it is a state-of-the-field review of recent ...


Book Review: Hsieh Liang-Tso And The Analects Of Confucius: Humane Learning As A Religious Quest, Thomas Selover, Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭) Apr 2014

Book Review: Hsieh Liang-Tso And The Analects Of Confucius: Humane Learning As A Religious Quest, Thomas Selover, Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭)

Deborah A. Sommer

Hsieh Liang-tso is the first volume to explore Chinese traditions in the Academy Series sponsored by Oxford and the American Academy of Religion. Most previous titles in the series focus on Christianity, which perhaps explains Selover’s attention to the perspectives of comparative religions and comparative theology in his introduction. There he briefly traces the history of the issues concerning the religious dimensions of the Chinese literati tradition and outlines a comparative framework for approaching eleventh-century Chinese thought. Inspired by Robert Neville’s Beyond the Masks of God, Selover focuses in the introduction on four themes—scripture, tradition, reason, and ...


Introduction To Against Harmony: Radical Buddhism In Thought And Practice, James Shields Mar 2014

Introduction To Against Harmony: Radical Buddhism In Thought And Practice, James Shields

Faculty Journal Articles

No abstract provided.


Ecological Issues: A Daoist Confucian Perspective, Pamela Herron Feb 2014

Ecological Issues: A Daoist Confucian Perspective, Pamela Herron

Pamela Herron

Abstract: The Dao De Jing is the foundation of Daoism while the Lun Yu, or the Analects of Confucius, is the central text for Confucianism. The Dao De Jing in particular has long been a popular text within the new age spiritual movement in Western culture. Both classic Chinese texts emphasize working toward a harmony with nature without the assumption of man set above plants, animals, mountains, water and other aspects of nature; rather man is a part of this greater whole. This paper explores specific references in both classic texts that reinforce this idea of man being simply part ...


Daoism And Sustainability: A Confucian Perspective, Pamela Herron Dec 2013

Daoism And Sustainability: A Confucian Perspective, Pamela Herron

Pamela Herron

The Dao De Jing is the foundation of Daoism while the Lun Yu, or the Analects of Confucius, is the central text for Confucianism. Both classic Chinese texts emphasize working toward a harmony with nature without the assumption of man set above plants, animals, mountains, water and other aspects of nature; rather man is a part of this greater whole. This paper challenges the western view of man’s superiority or dominion over nature and explores specific references in both classic texts that reinforce this idea of man being simply part of the natural world. In particular can Chinese or ...


"Confucianism As A Religious Tradition: Linguistic And Methodological Problems", Joseph Adler Dec 2013

"Confucianism As A Religious Tradition: Linguistic And Methodological Problems", Joseph Adler

Joseph Adler

No abstract provided.


"'The Great Virtue Of Heaven And Earth:' Deep Ecology In The Yijing", Joseph Adler Dec 2013

"'The Great Virtue Of Heaven And Earth:' Deep Ecology In The Yijing", Joseph Adler

Joseph Adler

No abstract provided.


宋明清的郊祀論述及儒臣對神明的概念 (The Song-Ming-Qing Discourse On The Suburban Sacrifice And The Confucian Conception Of Spirits), Thomas A. Wilson Aug 2013

宋明清的郊祀論述及儒臣對神明的概念 (The Song-Ming-Qing Discourse On The Suburban Sacrifice And The Confucian Conception Of Spirits), Thomas A. Wilson

Presentations

No abstract provided.


Political Interpretations Of The Lotus Sutra, James Shields Apr 2013

Political Interpretations Of The Lotus Sutra, James Shields

Faculty Contributions to Books

The Sutra on the White Lotus of the Sublime Dharma (Sk., Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-sūtra; Ch., Miàofǎ liánhuá jīng; Jp., Myōhō renge kyō), commonly known as the Lotus Sutra, is arguably the most influential sutra of Mahāyāna Buddhism, and certainly one of the most revered sacred texts in East Asia. Via parables and short stories, the twenty-eight chapters of the Lotus Sutra indirectly present a number of core doctrines of the early Mahāyāna, the form of Buddhism that first emerged in India and West Asia roughly five centuries after the death of the historical Buddha Siddhartha Gautama (c. 563–486 BCE) and would ...


To Believe Or Not To Believe: Zhou Zuoren's Alternative Approaches To The Chinese Enlightenment, Tonglu Li Apr 2013

To Believe Or Not To Believe: Zhou Zuoren's Alternative Approaches To The Chinese Enlightenment, Tonglu Li

World Languages and Cultures Publications

Resistances against May Fourth "enlightenment" (qimeng) have been celebrated as alternative versions of modernity that "decenter and destabilize" the mainstream paradigm (Chow et al. 2008: 3). But in this alternative modernities program, the complexity of the so-called center is often overlooked. Within the May Fourth movement, there are irreducible differences in position and different strategies of position taking. As Wang Hui (1997: 310) points out, what the May Fourth thinkers shared was only a common attitude toward tradition, not a unified theory; their proposals for establishing "newness" were quite different from each other. Surveying the roles the journal New Youth ...


早期 '地' 和 '土'之观 (Concepts Of Earth And Land In Early Chinese Texts), Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭) Jan 2013

早期 '地' 和 '土'之观 (Concepts Of Earth And Land In Early Chinese Texts), Deborah A. Sommer (司馬黛蘭)

Religious Studies Faculty Publications

Many studies have explored conceptualizations of heaven (tian 天) in early Chinese thought, but few if any have explored understandings of heaven's later cosmological counterpart, earth (di 地). This article examines Chinese understandings of earth and land (tu 土) in pre-Qin 先秦sources. In ancient texts such as the Book of Odes (Shi jing詩經) and Book of Documents (Shang shu尚書), the earth is not yet the paired counterpart to heaven that it will become in later Warring States (fifth-third centuries BCE) texts. Older works often depict earth and land as passive recipients of heaven's forces or human ...