Buddhism for centuries, has long been influencing the population all over the world, specifically in China . Buddhism first came to China as a result of merchant traders from India. From there it spread within the merchant community. It mainly expanded because it gave people a sense of hope and faith with the chaos they were experiencing from the collapse of the Han Dynasty. It also spread because it covered what Confucianism lacked; a more spiritual and emotional approach that appealed to many people of different classes. It is because of this that Buddhism spread and was able to influence and greatly affect China during the period of 300-900 CE. Buddhism influenced philosophy and moral teachings, kept the Chinese society peaceful and orderly, as well as affecting the overall economy. Buddhism had strong religious teachings that appealed to the lower class with the idea of afterlife and nirvana as well as an emphasis on following your own path that transformed Chinese beliefs causing a large portion of the population to convert (doc’s 1,4). Buddhism kept the Chinese society orderly by reminding all of Buddha’s life and teachings with statues and the influence it had on monks to spread charity and missionary work (doc’s 2,3,6). Buddhism also had an effect on the economy of China. As it spread from other regions, it caused more farmers and silk producers to convert and spread the religion as monks and nuns. (doc 7,5).
“In whom there is no sympathy for living beings: know him as an outcast.” -Gautama Buddha. In 2010 the Pew research center found that the Buddhism religion was being practice by four hundred eighty eight million people around the world. Buddhism’s history date back to the first century, but Buddhism’s popularity then was not as popular that it is today to the millions of devotee’s practicing. This research paper will argue how Buddhism from India spread to China by using the Silk Road as a critical bridge and also for change and continuity for the religion that came from India and traveled to China.
When Buddhism first spread into China, it was met with mixed responses. Many people either accepted it and converted to Buddhism or respected the new religion while maintaining their own beliefs. However, many people openly proclaimed their hate towards Buddhism.
China was affected tremendously by the spread of Buddhism from 300 to 900 C.E. Buddhism itself was spread to China around 100 C.E by Indian missionaries, and after taking hold during the Era of Division (300s-500s), it became a household religion (particularly the Mahayana and Chan variations . Buddhism’s popularity rose consistently from the late Han dynasty through it’s peak during Empress Wu’s rule in the late 600s and early 700s. But, the religion’s popularity fell sharply during Emperor Wuzong’s reign as the persecution of Buddhism grew common (CONTEXT). The spread of Buddhism affected all classes and people of China in different ways; Chinese peasants were able to worship this religion regardless of education or social position (though
China is a very influential world power and has been for many years. The Classical and Post-Classical years in China were a time of achievement and advancement, especially in the religious movement. Post-Classical and Classical China were very important historical periods, and their religions, and the effect of them on the world around them highlighted that importance.
The main Chinese religions have many key features. The main religions include shamanism/ancestor reverence, Confucianism, Daoism, Mahayana Buddhism, and idol worship. These 5 religions share some features in common. For example, Chinese popular religion focuses on the human being’s pursuit of health, wealth, and happiness in their lives (quote the textbook). Chinese popular religions want the human to be doing well and succeeding in their day-to-day activities of their lives. Another key component of the main Chinese religions is respecting one’s elders. The religions teach the importance of obeying the commands of the elders and honoring the family name. The Chinese allow place a strong emphasis on the temple. The temple is a place where the people could communicate, understand, and learn about their gods (quote the textbook). The next subsections will be describing the key religious practices of each of the 5 Chinese religions.
Religion has been a major factor for the growth and development of societies since the establishment of even the very first ancient civilizations. Though each of the ancient societies—the Chinese, the Egyptians, the Indians, and the Mesopotamians—had different spiritual beliefs, they each shared the common belief that the presence of religion within a civilization would have positive results upon the entire civilization.
“What does Eastern Religions mean to Americans?” Starting in the 19th century, Buddhism began to make its way to America through the immigration of the Chinese whom brought their religious traditions with them. Buddhism continued to gain popularity in America when Buddhist texts, as well as Buddhist teachers, were brought here to share and spread their religion. It wasn’t until the late 1950’s/early 1960’s that we see the interest in Buddhism, particularly Zen Buddhism, blossom throughout the country. Through the memoir “Sacred Hoops” by Phil Jackson, an NBA player and coach, we are able to see how Zen Buddhism not only altered his life, as well as his players, but how the religion also adapts to American culture. From reading both “Sacred Hoops” and learning about Buddhism throughout this semester, I would argue that Eastern religions, specifically Zen Buddhism, is not only a way for Americans to escape the reality of American culture but also provides a complete alternative to Christianity and other similar religions that are predominate in America.
Until about a fifty years ago, most people in the United States did not have much exposure to the Buddhist religion. Our only impression of it might have been statues of a grinning, bald Buddha with a large belly at the entrance of most Chinese restaurants. Those statues seemed a little scary and some thought they should nod or rub the belly as they passed as a gesture of good luck. The religion has come a long way in the last twenty years. Hollywood celebrities such as Richard Gere and Tiger Woods and Nobel Peace Prize winner, the Dalai Lama, may have heightened the appeal and gave some prominence of this religion to the people of the West. The Buddhist religion and its move into America is a fascinating 2000 year journey. To
Buddhism has been the main religion of china for several thousands of years. In fact, Buddhism is an indispensable element of Chinese philosophy and literature. As we all know, Buddhism originated in India and first spread to China around 100BC. Nevertheless, (Mahayana) Buddhism in China separated itself from the mainstream Buddhism and created a new form of Bodhisattva precept instead of following the Indian Vinaya precept. The distinct Chinese history and culture played significant roles in the development and formation of Mahayana Buddhism . The change of Chinese society also had a great impact on the doctrine and status of Mahayana Buddhism. In this paper, I will illustrate the reason why Buddhism was widely accepted by China as an alien religion , analyze how the indigenous philosophy such as Taoism and Confucianism affected the Mahayana concept and find the relationship between Mahayana Buddhism and Chinese Imperialism.
The traditional Chinese treatment of acupuncture is an affective alternative medicine that has been around for thousands of years. Acupuncture is one of the most researched and documented alternative medicines around (Acupuncture). Although a vast majority of people believe Western medicine is the only cure to sickness, many people benefit from acupuncture everyday. Most people disregard the ancient art all together without giving it a chance because are scared of the needles it involves. Also, since no accurate scientific explanation of how and why it works has been found, people shy away from it. The healing powers of the body are taken to a whole different level with this alternative medicine.
There are many different religions in both China and India. The most popular religions in China are ancient Confucianism and Taoism, Buddhism, Islam, Protestant, Catholic, and a new form of religion Falun Gong. India has many religions that are different or the same as the Chinese. Indian religions include: Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism. There are also many people from China that do not follow a religion because of its communist background.
One important aspect of Chinese culture is Traditional Chinese Medicine, also known as TCM. Chinese medicine has been around for quite awhile, and is still around today. In the United States, we see it as acupuncture and massage. TCM is still widely popular in its home country where it is still practiced as it was a few centuries ago. Chinese medicine is evolving to our modern day times, but it is keeping close ties to its roots. Chinese medicine is also becoming more affluent in different parts of the globe. It is a major part of Chinese history and culture, and the people who participate in it do so with great respect. With Chinese medicine, there is great history, procedures, risks, and how it lives in the modern world.
Traditional Chinese medicine, or TCM, is one of the oldest systems of medicine to exist among humans, and it is extremely prominent to this day. According to legend, the system has been in use since the third millennium BCE. The views of such an old system differ greatly from those found in modern western medicine. Perhaps most prominent is the fact that TCM focuses more on the patient than the illness. The system considers the human to be a microcosm of the universe, implying that the body is affected by the traditional Taoist forces of yin and yang, the five elements, and Qi in the same way the cosmos are. Each of these forces act upon the “zang fu,” or organ system, directly influencing a patient’s health. Healers use qigong to assist in the restoration of stability in the body. Achieving balance, both internally and externally, is the most important aspect of healing in TCM.
Qigong, another form of ancient Chinese medicine, utilizes three types of techniques, body, breath, and mind. Still widely used in the modern world, Qigong includes practices such as meditation, active movements and still stances. Exercise for medical purposes is derived from Qigong: “The meditation exercises tai chi… are examples of other integral features of traditional Chinese healing that have been incorporated into health and fitness programs to complement modern medicine” (Encyclopedia).