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Ancient religious traditions in Communist China

What is the state and practice of ancient religious traditions in Communist China?

Focus on how societal views of spirituality and religion have been influenced and how social and political life has been affected by the tradition. Then, compare and contrast the religion to another one studied (Hinduism).

Solution Preview

Religion in Chinese history has always been very pluralistic - all are focused on the family, ancestors, and the right path towards ethical behavior, which makes them focused candidates for certain Eastern religions. In fact, many scholars of Chinese Culture prefer that the tern religion be "Chinese Cultural Practices," at least when it comes to Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism.

In 1949, The People's Republic of China was established under the leadership of Chairman Mao Zedong, who took his philosophical inspiration from the Marxist/Leninist philosophy of communism, which was quite critical of religion as the "opiate of the masses," and a way for the upper class to control the peasants. During the early years of Chinese Communism, churches, mosques, temples, etc. were converted into secular use and the "Cultural Revolution" led to a State policy of elimination of outside religion and a replacement with communist philosophy.

The policy relaxed a bit in the 1970s, and in the 1978 Constitution freedom of religion is guaranteed. Since the mid-1990s many Buddhist and Taoist temples have been rebuilt, but Western religions (Catholicism, Judaism) are still frowned upon. The Community Party, though, still views party membership and religion incompatible, and being a party ...

Solution Summary

This solution focuses on how societal views of spirituality and religion have been influenced and how social and political life has been affected by the tradition.

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