The goal of this book is to study the ways in which Chinese Buddhists expressed their religious faiths and how Chinese Buddhists interacted with society at large since the Northern and Southern dynasties (386-589), through the Ming (1368-1644) and the Qing (1644-1911), up to the Republican era (1912-1949). The book aims to summarize and present the historical trajectory of the Sinification of Buddhism in a new light, revealing the symbiotic relationship between Buddhist faith and Chinese culture. The book examines cases such as repentance, vegetarianism, charity, scriptural lecture, the act of releasing captive animals, the Bodhisattva faith, and mountain worship, from multiple perspectives such as textual evidence, historical circumstances, social life, as well as the intellectual background at the time.
From the fifth century BC to the present and dealing with the Three Teachings (Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism) as well as popular religion, this introduction to the eight-volume
Early and Modern Chinese Religion explores key ideas and events in four periods of paradigm shift in the intertwined histories of Chinese religion, politics, and culture. It shows how, in the Chinese church-state, elite processes of rationalization, interiorization, and secularization are at work in every period of major change and how popular religion gradually emerges to a position of dominance by means of a long history of at once resisting, adapting to, and collaborating with elite-driven change. Topics covered include ritual, scripture, philosophy, state policy, medicine, sacred geography, gender, and the economy. It also serves as the basis for an on-line Coursera course.
Catherine Despeux’s book
Taoism and Self Knowledge is a study of the Internal Alchemical text "Chart for the Cultivation of Perfection." It begins with an analysis of pictographic and symbolic representation of the body in early Taoism after which the author examines different extant versions of the "Chart" as it was transmitted among Quanzhen groups in the Qing dynasty. The book is comprised of four main parts: the principal parts of the body and their nomenclature in Internal Alchemy, the spirits in the human body, and the alchemical processes and procedures used in thunder rituals and self-cultivation. This is a revised, expanded edition of the original French edition
Taoïsme et connaissance de soi. La carte de la culture de la perfection (Xiuzhen tu) Paris, 2012.
In this exciting book, Ronald Suleski introduces daily life for the common people of China in the century from 1850 to 1950. They were semi-literate, yet they have left us written accounts of their hopes, fears, and values. They have left us the hand-written manuscripts (
chaoben 抄本) now flooding the antiques markets in China. These documents represent a new and heretofore overlooked category of historical sources.
Suleski gives a detailed explanation of the interaction of
chaoben with the lives of the people. He offers examples of why they were so important to the poor laboring masses: people wanted horoscopes predicting their future, information about the ghosts causing them headaches, a few written words to help them trade in the rural markets, and many more examples are given. The book contains a special appendix giving the first complete translation into English of a chaoben describing the ghosts and goblins that bedeviled the poor working classes.
A history of traditional Chinese knowledge, thought and belief from the seventh through the nineteenth centuries with a new approach that offers a new perspective. It appropriates a wide range of source materials and emphasizes the necessity of understanding ideas and thought in their proper historical contexts. Its analytical narrative focuses on the dialectical interaction between historical background and intellectual thought. While discussing the complex dynamics of interaction among the intellectual thought of elite Chinese scholars, their historical conditions, their canonical texts and the “worlds of general knowledge, thought and belief,” it also illuminates the significance of key issues such as the formation of the Chinese world order and its underlying value system, the origins of Chinese cultural identity, foreign influences, and the collapse of the Chinese world order in the 19th century leading toward the revolutionary events of the 20th century.
Chinese people have been instrumental in indigenizing Christianity.
Sinizing Christianity examines Christianity's transplantation to and transformation in China by focusing on three key elements: Chinese agents of introduction; Chinese redefinition of Christianity for the local context; and Chinese institutions and practices that emerged and enabled indigenisation. As a matter of fact, Christianity is not an exception, but just one of many foreign ideas and religions, which China has absorbed since the formation of the Middle Kingdom, Buddhism and Islam are great examples. Few scholars of China have analysed and synthesised the process to determine whether there is a pattern to the ways in which Chinese people have redefined foreign imports for local use and what insight Christianity has to offer.
Contributors are: Robert Entenmann, Christopher Sneller, Yuqin Huang, Wai Luen Kwok, Thomas Harvey, Monica Romano, Thomas Coomans, Chris White, Dennis Ng, Ruiwen Chen and Richard Madsen.
This book represents the first monograph-length study of the relationship between Protestant Bible translation and the development of Mandarin from a
lingua franca into the national language of China. Drawing on both published and unpublished sources, this book looks into the translation, publication, circulation and use of the Mandarin Bible in late Qing and Republican China, and sets out how the Mandarin Bible contributed to the standardization and enrichment of Mandarin. It also illustrates that the Mandarin Union Version, published in 1919, was involved in promoting Mandarin as not only the standard medium of communication but also a marker of national identity among the Chinese people, thus playing a role in the nation-building of modern China.
The matter of saṃgha-state relations is of central importance to both the political and the religious history of China. The volume
The Middle Kingdom and the Dharma Wheel brings together, for the first time, articles relating to this field covering a time span from the early Tang until the Qing dynasty. In order to portray also the remarkable thematic diversity of the field, each of the articles not only refers to a different time but also discusses a different aspect of the subject.
Contributors include: Chris Atwood, Chen Jinhua, Max Deeg, Barend ter Haar, Thomas Jülch, Albert Welter and Zhang Dewei.
Michael Loewe calls on literary and material evidence to examine three problems that arose in administering China’s early empires. Religious rites due to an emperor’s predecessors must both pay the correct services to his ancestors and demonstrate his right to succeed to the throne. In practical terms, tax collectors, merchants, farmers and townsmen required the establishment of a standard set of weights and measures that was universally operative and which they could trust. Those who saw reason to criticise the decisions taken by the emperor and his immediate advisors, whether on grounds of moral principles or political expediency, needed opportunities and the means of expressing their views, whether as remonstrants to the throne, by withdrawal from public life or as authors of private writings.