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Dream Trippers

Author : David A. Palmer
ISBN : 9780226484983
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 65.23 MB
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Over the past few decades, Daoism has become a recognizable part of Western “alternative” spiritual life. Now, that Westernized version of Daoism is going full circle, traveling back from America and Europe to influence Daoism in China. Dream Trippers draws on more than a decade of ethnographic work with Daoist monks and Western seekers to trace the spread of Westernized Daoism in contemporary China. David A. Palmer and Elijah Siegler take us into the daily life of the monastic community atop the mountain of Huashan and explore its relationship to the socialist state. They follow the international circuit of Daoist "energy tourism," which connects a number of sites throughout China, and examine the controversies around Western scholars who become practitioners and promoters of Daoism. Throughout are lively portrayals of encounters among the book’s various characters—Chinese hermits and monks, Western seekers, and scholar-practitioners—as they interact with each other in obtuse, often humorous, and yet sometimes enlightening and transformative ways. Dream Trippers untangles the anxieties, confusions, and ambiguities that arise as Chinese and American practitioners balance cosmological attunement and radical spiritual individualism in their search for authenticity in a globalized world.
Category: Social Science

Qigong Fever

Author : David A. Palmer
ISBN : 0231511701
Genre : History
File Size : 67.31 MB
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Qigong& mdash;a regimen of body, breath, and mental training exercises& mdash;was one of the most widespread cultural and religious movements of late-twentieth-century urban China. The practice was promoted by senior Communist Party leaders as a uniquely Chinese healing tradition and as a harbinger of a new scientific revolution, yet the movement's mass popularity and the almost religious devotion of its followers led to its ruthless suppression. In this absorbing and revealing book, David A. Palmer relies on a combination of historical, anthropological, and sociological perspectives to describe the spread of the qigong craze and its reflection of key trends that have shaped China since 1949, including the search for a national identity and an emphasis on the absolute authority of science. Qigong offered the promise of an all-powerful technology of the body rooted in the mysteries of Chinese culture. However, after 1995 the scientific underpinnings of qigong came under attack, its leaders were denounced as charlatans, and its networks of followers, notably Falungong, were suppressed as "evil cults." According to Palmer, the success of the movement proves that a hugely important religious dimension not only survived under the CCP but was actively fostered, if not created, by high-ranking party members. Tracing the complex relationships among the masters, officials, scientists, practitioners, and ideologues involved in qigong, Palmer opens a fascinating window on the transformation of Chinese tradition as it evolved along with the Chinese state. As he brilliantly demonstrates, the rise and collapse of the qigong movement is key to understanding the politics and culture of post-Mao society.
Category: History

China S Green Religion

Author : James Miller
ISBN : 9780231544535
Genre : Religion
File Size : 28.26 MB
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How can Daoism, China’s indigenous religion, give us the aesthetic, ethical, political, and spiritual tools to address the root causes of our ecological crisis and construct a sustainable future? In China’s Green Religion, James Miller shows how Daoism orients individuals toward a holistic understanding of religion and nature. Explicitly connecting human flourishing to the thriving of nature, Daoism fosters a “green” subjectivity and agency that transforms what it means to live a flourishing life on earth. Through a groundbreaking reconstruction of Daoist philosophy and religion, Miller argues for four key, green insights: a vision of nature as a subjective power that informs human life; an anthropological idea of the porous body based on a sense of qi flowing through landscapes and human beings; a tradition of knowing founded on the experience of transformative power in specific landscapes and topographies; and an aesthetic and moral sensibility based on an affective sensitivity to how the world pervades the body and the body pervades the world. Environmentalists struggle to raise consciousness for their cause, Miller argues, because their activism relies on a quasi-Christian concept of “saving the earth.” Instead, environmentalists should integrate nature and culture more seamlessly, cultivating through a contemporary intellectual vocabulary a compelling vision of how the earth materially and spiritually supports human flourishing.
Category: Religion

Chinese Religious Life

Author : David A. Palmer
ISBN : 9780199731381
Genre : Religion
File Size : 57.64 MB
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Offering an introduction to religion in contemporary China, the essays in this volume consider many diverse themes including religion in urban, rural and ethnic minority settings and the historical, sociological, economic and political aspects of religion on the country as a whole.
Category: Religion

The Religious Question In Modern China

Author : Vincent Goossaert
ISBN : 9780226304182
Genre : Religion
File Size : 30.1 MB
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Recent events—from strife in Tibet and the rapid growth of Christianity in China to the spectacular expansion of Chinese Buddhist organizations around the globe—vividly demonstrate that one cannot understand the modern Chinese world without attending closely to the question of religion. The Religious Question in Modern China highlights parallels and contrasts between historical events, political regimes, and cultural movements to explore how religion has challenged and responded to secular Chinese modernity, from 1898 to the present. Vincent Goossaert and David A. Palmer piece together the puzzle of religion in China not by looking separately at different religions in different contexts, but by writing a unified story of how religion has shaped, and in turn been shaped by, modern Chinese society. From Chinese medicine and the martial arts to communal temple cults and revivalist redemptive societies, the authors demonstrate that from the nineteenth century onward, as the Chinese state shifted, the religious landscape consistently resurfaced in a bewildering variety of old and new forms. The Religious Question in Modern China integrates historical, anthropological, and sociological perspectives in a comprehensive overview of China’s religious history that is certain to become an indispensible reference for specialists and students alike.
Category: Religion

Drawn To The Gods

Author : David Feltmate
ISBN : 9781479890361
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 75.78 MB
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A new world of religious satire illuminated through the layers of religion and humor that make up the The Simpsons, South Park and Family Guy. Drawing on the worldviews put forth by three wildly popular animated shows – The Simpsons, South Park, and Family Guy– David Feltmate demonstrates how ideas about religion’s proper place in American society are communicated through comedy. The book includes discussion of a wide range of American religions, including Protestant and Catholic Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Native American Religions, New Religious Movements, “Spirituality,” Hinduism, and Atheism. Along the way, readers are shown that jokes about religion are influential tools for teaching viewers how to interpret and judge religious people and institutions. Feltmate, develops a picture of how each show understands and communicates what constitutes good religious practice as well as which traditions they seek to exclude on the basis of race and ethnicity, stupidity, or danger. From Homer Simpson’s spiritual journey during a chili-pepper induced hallucination to South Park’s boxing match between Jesus and Satan to Peter Griffin’s worship of the Fonz, each show uses humor to convey a broader commentary about the role of religion in public life. Through this examination, an understanding of what it means to each program to be a good religious American becomes clear. Drawn to the Gods is a book that both fans and scholars will enjoy as they expose the significance of religious satire in these iconic television programs.
Category: Performing Arts

In Search Of Cumorah

Author : David A. Palmer
ISBN : 0882907832
Genre : Religion
File Size : 66.2 MB
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In Search of Cumorah is one of the most significant books ever to be published on the Book of Mormon. It asserts that the location where the Nephites fought their final battle, the "hill Cumorah," may actually be el Cerro Vigia, a site located near Mexico's Isthmus of Tehuantepec, just inland from the Gulf of Mexico. Using many of the archaeological discoveries made in Mexico during recent decades as its guide, the book presents extensive evidence to support its hypothesis.
Category: Religion

Religion And Families

Author : Loren D. Marks
ISBN : 9781317804956
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 47.20 MB
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This is the first multidisciplinary text to address the growing scholarly connection between religion and family life. The latest literature from family studies, psychology, sociology, and religion is reviewed along with narratives drawn from interviews with 200 racially, religiously, and regionally diverse families which bring the concepts to life. Written in a thought-provoking, accessible, and sometimes humorous style by two of the leading researchers in the field, the book reflects the authors’ firsthand experience in teaching today’s students about religion’s impact on families. Prior to writing the book, the authors read the sacred texts of many faiths, interviewed religious leaders, and attended religious services for a wide array of faiths. The result is an accurate and engaging account of why and how families are impacted by their religion. The pedagogical features of the text include boldfaced key terms defined in the glossary, text boxes, chapter conclusions, summary points, and review questions. Religion and Families: Examines several denominations within Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Reviews findings from racially and ethnically diverse families, from traditional and diverse family forms, and examines gender and life-course issues. Addresses the impact of one’s religious involvement on longevity, divorce rates, and parenting styles. Considers demographic, family-, couple-, and individual-level data that relate to prayer and other sacred practices. Presents a balanced treatment of the latest research and a new model for studying family and religion. Explores the "whys," "hows," and processes at work in the religion-family connection. The book opens with a discussion of why religion and family connections matter. Chapter 2 defines religion and presents a new conceptualization of religion. Empirical research connections between religion and marriage, divorce, family, and parent-child relationships are explored in chapters 3 through 6. The interface between religion and the family in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are reviewed in chapters 7, 8, and 9. Chapter 10 explores the unique challenges that religion presents for diverse family forms. Prayer as a coping mechanism for life’s challenges such as death and disability are explored in chapter 11. Chapter 12 examines forgiveness in the context of marriages and families. The book concludes with a review of the book’s most important themes and findings. Intended as a text for undergraduate courses in family and religion, the psychology or sociology of the family, the psychology or sociology of religion, pastoral/biblical counseling, or family and youth ministry, taught in human development and family studies, psychology, sociology, religion, social work, pastoral counseling, and sometimes philosophy. This book also appeals to family therapists and counselors.
Category: Social Science

Making Saints In Modern China

Author : David Ownby
ISBN : 9780190494568
Genre : Buddhism
File Size : 53.20 MB
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"Sainthood" has been, and remains, a contested category in China, given the commitment of China's modern leadership to secularization, modernization, and revolution, and the discomfort of China's elite with matters concerning religion. However, sainted religious leaders have succeeded in rebuilding old institutions and creating new ones despite the Chinese government's censure. This book offers a new perspective on the history of religion in modern and contemporary China by focusing on the profiles of these religious leaders from the early 20th century through the present. Edited by noted authorities in the field of Chinese religion, Making Saints in Modern China offers biographies of prominent Daoists and Buddhists, as well as of the charismatic leaders of redemptive societies and state managers of religious associations in the People's Republic. The focus of the volume is largely on figures in China proper, although some attention is accorded to those in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and other areas of the Chinese diaspora. Each chapter offers a biography of a religious leader and a detailed discussion of the way in which he or she became a "saint." The biographies illustrate how these leaders deployed and sometimes retooled traditional themes in hagiography and charismatic communication to attract followers and compete in the religious marketplace. Negotiation with often hostile authorities was also an important aspect of religious leadership, and many of the saints' stories reveal unexpected reserves of creativity and determination. The volume's contributors, from the United States, Canada, France, Italy, China, and Taiwan, provide cutting-edge scholarship. Taken together, these essays make the case that vital religious leadership and practice has existed and continues to exist in China despite the state's commitment to wholesale secularization.
Category: Buddhism

Facets Of Qing Daoism

Author : Monica Esposito
ISBN : 3906000079
Genre : Religion
File Size : 74.34 MB
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As China is rapidly reemerging as the world's dominant economic powerhouse that it had been until the mid-eighteenth century, interest in its religions and philosophies is on the rise. Just as the history and culture of Western civilizations can hardly be grasped without a measure of knowledge about Christianity, an understanding of Chinese civilization and its history seems impossible without some comprehension of Daoism. Though it has long been clear that modern Daoism has its roots in Daoist movements of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911), research on premodern Daoism had been largely neglected. Published in six languages (Italian, French, English, German, Chinese, and Japanese), the pioneering studies by Monica Esposito (1962-2011) on Qing Daoism have been instrumental in kindling keen scholarly interest both in the West and in China and Japan. This book presents corrected and augmented versions of three of Dr Esposito's seminal articles that had originally been published in English ("Daoism in the Qing," "The Longmen School and its Controversial History," and "Longmen Daoism in Qing China: Doctrinal Ideal and Local Reality") along with English versions of two articles that had hitherto only been available in Japanese and Chinese: "Beheading the Red Dragon: The Heart of Feminine Alchemy" and "An Example of Daoist and Tantric Interaction during the Qing Dynasty: The Longmen xinzong." In addition, this volume contains a bibliography of all her publications and a detailed index.
Category: Religion