2021-12-05

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?

By yqqlm yqqlm

(East West question) Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation

China News Agency, Beijing, December 5 (Xinhua) question: why do we say that adhering to the direction of Sinicization of religions in China has both historical necessity and cultural innovation

author Zheng Xiaoyun, director of the Institute of world religions, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and President of the Chinese religious society

bcd264b4c9ae41d8af92b4c1daa471a5 - East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?

after a lapse of five years, the national religious work conference was held again recently *** *** Socialism with Chinese characteristics has entered a new era and embarked on a new journey of building a modern socialist country in an all-round way. Why is it both historical inevitability and cultural innovation to adhere to the direction of Sinicization of China’s religion and actively guide religion to adapt to socialist society

religious localization is not a unique phenomenon in China

from the perspective of the development history of world religions, religious localization is a historical process of religious communication and development, which is the law of the development of world religions. On the other hand, the localization of religion is not a unique phenomenon in China, but a phenomenon occurring and going on in many parts of the world

from the historical evolution of Chinese religions, there are not only local religions such as Taoism, but also foreign religions such as Buddhism, Christianity and Islam. These foreign religions were introduced into China by different people in different ways and took root in China. No matter when and where they start, when they are not as overseas Chinese culture, but with local believers as the carrier, they have begun the process of localization, that is, they begin to interact and interact with other elements of Chinese culture as a cultural element

this process is the unity of diachrony and synchronicity. Not only are these religions in historical evolution, but Chinese society is also evolving and developing. As an integral part of Chinese culture, religious culture is always in dialectical interaction from the perspective of history and reality. Therefore, adhering to the direction of Chinese religion is not only a historical necessity, but also a realistic necessity in progress

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?

the Buddhist statue of the Tang Dynasty – Lushena Buddha (first from the left) in Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang is a typical oriental face. China News Agency reporter Liu Peng photo

Chinese civilization provides a platform for dialogue, communication and integration for the development of religious culture

since ancient times, religions have both successful experience and profound lessons in the historical process of integrating into China’s mainstream culture and taking root in China’s fertile land. Chinese civilization provides rich cultural fertile ground for the evolution of different religions, and provides a solid platform for adhering to the direction of Sinicization of religions in China

in the long-term historical development, China’s major religions have formed their own unique development pattern in the process of their communication and development, and also formed the overall pattern of religions related to each other. The emergence of major Buddhist sects in the Sui and Tang Dynasties is an important milestone in the Sinicization of Buddhism. The earliest Buddhist sects began in Chen and Sui dynasties, and most Buddhist sects were formed in Sui and Tang Dynasties. For example, the faxiangzong, one of the eight sects of the Tang Dynasty, is a new sect formed by the Buddhist master Xuanzang of the Tang Dynasty after he returned from his study in India using the theory and practice model of Indian Buddhism. Later, it carried forward and inherited, and became a typical representative of the Sinicization of Buddhism in the Tang Dynasty

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?(1)

on January 1, 2013, the ancestral court of the French Prime Minister Xi’an dacien Temple held a New Year bell praying activity. China News Agency reporter Zhang Yuanshe

Southern Buddhism in China is also an example. Once Southeast Asian Southern Buddhism was introduced into Yunnan, China, it has been in the process of localization. While maintaining the basic tradition of Southern Buddhism, it adapts to the cultures of all ethnic groups in Yunnan. It struggles and integrates with the inherent primitive religion and ethnic minority culture, and gradually infiltrates into all aspects of the secular life of local ethnic minorities. It also forms the characteristics of the times that are very different from Southern Buddhism in Southeast Asia

the same is true of the Sinicization of Christianity. The topic of “Christianity in China” is old and often new. Due to the intermittent and ups and downs of the spread of Christianity in China, the process of Its Sinicization is also complex and changeable. It has been introduced into China four times. As early as the Tang Dynasty, Nestorianism was introduced into China. After repeated and intermittent introduction, it finally became an important part of Chinese religion. The spread of Christianity shows that the spread and development of religion in China is a phased and deepening process, and has its unique historical development context and theoretical logic in different historical stages

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?(2)

in May 2015, Fujian museum displayed refrigerator stickers of cultural and creative products based on Jingjiao bronze plates of the Yuan Dynasty (second from the left in the lower row). Photo by Zhang Bin of China News Agency

the historical process of religious Sinicization presents a wave of development. Each wave of development makes religious culture add new cultural elements and cultural accumulation to the overall Chinese social culture, and provides background, soil and experience for the next wave of religious Sinicization

cultural innovation is the practical endogenous driving force to adhere to the direction of Chinese religion

there is a concept of cultural “acculturation” in Western cultural anthropology. This theory is helpful to understand why we should adhere to the direction of religious Sinicization in China, but we can’t copy it mechanically. From the perspective of subject culture, a society has not only cultural acculturation, but also cultural integration. The sublation of integration is inseparable from innovation, that is, to realize integration in a new form. The theoretical analysis from cultural acculturation to cultural integration can enable us to have a more comprehensive understanding and grasp of how to treat and practice and adhere to the direction of Chinese religion

here, we should also emphasize an important mechanism of Chinese traditional culture in cultural integration – cultural infiltration. The influence and absorption of Chinese traditional culture on different cultural systems, although there is cultural hedge, is more often the silent influence of spring rain. Taking Guanyin belief as an example, the reasons for its popularity are complex, including the internal reasons of the Buddhist system, and more importantly, it conforms to the Chinese traditional social and cultural proposition with Confucianism and Taoism as the main pillar

compared with the Chinese Guanyin belief system, the Guanyin belief in Dali, Yunnan Province also integrates the Guanyin beliefs of Indian Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism and Chinese Buddhism. At the same time, it also shows the characteristics of growing up and growing with the Bai nationality’s own worship, which is a cultural innovation of its integration with the local culture in the process of communication. The theoretical logic of the development of religion in China shows that adhering to the direction of religion in China is also a process of cultural innovation, which needs to constantly explore new methods and practice new ways

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?(3)

the white jade Guanyin statue standing deep in the primeval forest of Dali, Yunnan Province. China News Agency reporter Ren Dong photo

in the process of adhering to the direction of Sinicization of China’s religions, China’s major religions show both distinctive commonalities and differences. In the process of practice, various religions have gradually formed new models and practice paths, which are mainly reflected in the aspects of consolidating the foundation, cultivating the yuan and maintaining integrity and innovation

the first is to consolidate the foundation and cultivate the yuan. If religion wants to realize the goal of Sinicization in a wider range and at a deeper level, it must make the Sinicization of religious thought in the leading and basic position. In recent years, in combination with the characteristics and requirements of the times, various religions have carried out preaching exchanges in the three major language families of Buddhism, preaching in the Xuanmen of Taoism, the newly compiled Woltz speech contest of Islam, the localization construction of Catholicism and the discussion on the Sinicization of Christianity, which have given new era implications to religious doctrines and rules, and have formed a number of new achievements in ideological construction

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?(4)

in June 2015, the 10th National Wolz speech competition and the 11th National Koran reading competition with the theme of “middle road, harmony and Chinese dream” were held in Xinjiang Islamic Sutra college, Urumqi, Xinjiang. China News Agency reporter Wang Xiaojun photo

followed by integrity and innovation. Adhering to the direction of religious Sinicization in China is not only a complex and arduous systematic project, but also a historical process of continuous development and deepening. We need to constantly explore new methods and practice new ways. We need to adhere to the cultural innovation driving force of positive innovation and strengthening the foundation, establish a deep and extensive cultural exchange mechanism, and publicize various principles and policies adhering to the direction of religious Sinicization, Suit the remedy to the case, “implement policies according to education” should be combined with establishing models and exchanging experience, so as to promote exchanges among all ethnic groups, strengthen cultural self-confidence, and forge a strong sense of community with a shared future for the Chinese nation. We should deeply explore the philosophical ideas, humanistic spirit, values and ethics behind China’s religious culture and historical relics, so as to promote the creative transformation and innovative development of China’s excellent traditional culture, We should also reveal the cultural spirit, cultural mind and cultural self-confidence of the Chinese nation, so as to provide spiritual support for adhering to and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era. At the same time, we should strive to consolidate the cultural cornerstone of exchanges and mutual learning with world civilizations, deepen exchanges and mutual learning among civilizations, and jointly build a community with a shared future for mankind

East West question | Zheng Xiaoyun: why do you say that adhering to the direction of Chinese religion has both historical necessity and cultural innovation?(5)

in October 2019, the Chinese Buddhist Chant concert was performed at Lincoln Center in New York, USA, and the David finger concert hall was full. Fanbai refers to the singing and praising of Buddhist practices. It is the original origin of Chinese Buddhist music. The art teams of famous temples in Chinese Buddhist circles, such as Lingyin Temple in Hangzhou, daxiangguo temple in Kaifeng, Shaolin Temple in Zhengzhou, Yunnan general Buddhist temple and Yonghe palace in Beijing, were all among the performers. *** It puts forward the “nine necessities” to do a good job in religious work in the new era, which provides a fundamental basis for religious theory in the new era

therefore, to do a good job in religious work in the new era and adhere to the direction of China’s religious sinicization, it is necessary to consciously identify politically, consciously integrate culturally and consciously adapt to society, keep pace with social development and the progress of the times, so as to make religion a harmonious factor and positive force in the construction of socialist modernization, so as to build a powerful socialist modernization country in an all-round way To realize the Chinese dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. (end)

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