Chinese Religions Session 4 & 5

Chinese Religions Session 4 & 5 - Chinese Religions...

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Chinese Religions Session 4: Life and Practice—11/29/11 Popular Religion - The form of a religion that doesn’t fit well into any particular box - Category - Practiced by populist, not elite or aristocrats - Not written about - About practical things, getting things you want, pragmatic 1. Beliefs and practices that do not fit neatly into recognized religious categories 2. Tend to be practiced by the non elite, sometime in tension with the elite religions 3. Tend to be practical and concrete goals, not speculative reflection Popular Religion in China - 3 categories 1. Gods - The more local the God, the more they care about local issues - National Gods - Most important Gods are the local Gods - Economic or Reciprocal/Contractual Relationship 2. Ancestors - Began as ancestors by those who have a good death and fed by family 3. Ghosts - Suffered a bad death - Rome around seeking vengeance and chaos -Ghost and Ancestors can be elevated to deities - Ling: Spiritual Power - The amount of ling you get is determined by how spiritually pure you are - More pure, more ling - Gods have the most ling Jade Emperor God (Heaven) - Highest
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