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De Gruyter BRILL De Gruyter BRILL
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In: Journal of Chinese Theology
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In: Journal of Chinese Theology
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Abstract

This paper discusses the conception of an ideal world present in T.C. Chao’s (Tsu Chen Chao) (1888–1979) early theological works, based mainly on the text Jesus’ Philosophy of Life (or, A New Interpretation of the Sermon on the Mount, written in late 1925). It concludes by pointing out that Chao’s view of a kingdom of heaven that ultimately eradicates the otherworld and does not transcend this world unconsciously echoes the Anti-Christian Μovement within Chinese churches during the same period. This is, indeed, a tragedy in the development of T. C. Chao’s personal theological thought in the 1920s and 1930s.

In: Journal of Chinese Theology
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Abstract

This paper explores the dynamic interplay between Christianity and the Roman Empire as articulated by Tertullian, a prominent figure in early Christian theology. Tertullian delves into the complex relationship between the burgeoning Christian faith and the established structures of the Roman Empire, highlighting the inherent tension between the two. Central to his analysis is the concept of dialogue, wherein Tertullian examines how Christians engage with the broader Roman society while maintaining their distinct religious identity. Furthermore, he discusses the conservative nature of Christian thought, emphasizing the preservation of core beliefs amidst external pressures. This paper provides insights into Tertullian’s perspective on the delicate balance between dialogue and the preservation of Christian values within the context of the Roman Empire.

In: Journal of Chinese Theology
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Abstract

The translation of the four Gospels into classical Chinese by Ma Xiangbo (1840–1939), published in 1949, has received little attention in the worlds of religion and scholarship. Based on a passing comment in Ma’s introduction, it is usually assumed that he based his translation on an edition of the Latin Vulgate published by Jean-Baptiste Glaire (1798–1879); however, Glaire’s work was not an edition of the Vulgate, but rather a translation of the Latin text into French. The goal of this paper is to determine the source text used by Ma Xiangbo based on textual and paratextual evidence and thus clarify this apparent contradiction.

In: Review of Religion and Chinese Society
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In: Review of Religion and Chinese Society
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Abstract

Churches in Hong Kong have served as contractors to the state since its British colonization. To secure their political and social privileges, these churches have often been fashioned into apologists for the state. This mentality was not widely challenged until the 1980s. Since the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration, some Hong Kong church leaders, theologians, and laypeople have started to articulate a democratic vision for civil society. This paper employs the notion of “religious activism” as an analytical framework to examine the role of Hong Kong Christianity in the pro-democracy movement. The influential voices and actions of Christians in 1984, 1989, 2003, 2014, and 2019 are chronologically summarized. Each political event triggered divergent reflections on the political participation of Christians. This paper offers an analysis of genealogical narratives of Christian activism and offers a prediction on the future of this political participation, particularly under the imposition of the National Security Law.

In: Review of Religion and Chinese Society
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Abstract

This article explores the founding of the Baikaryū, the Sōtō school’s lineage of goeika hymn chanting. In the 1920s, Buddhist reformers in other schools developed lineages of singing goeika and in this process standardized the performance practice. Seeing the great popularity of goeika hymn chanting, Sōtō clerics created their goeika lineage in the 1950s, strongly influenced by the Shingon goeika lineages. I examine the background that led to the founding of the Baikaryū. Why did Sōtō clerics decide to create a new goeika lineage? What were their models? And what steps did they take? Throughout this article, I demonstrate that music played a vital role in fostering lay engagement in Sōtō Zen, as well as in other traditional Buddhist schools, in the twentieth century as clerics felt the need to employ new hymns and songs that sound—and “feel”—fresh to lay people.

In: Journal of Religion in Japan