Short-term Monasticism in Contemporary Chinese Society: A Case Study in Bailin Temple

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Date

2016

Authors

Yu, Siwen

Advisors

Kim, Hwansoo

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Abstract

This thesis applies David Harvey's theory of time and space compression into the modern Chinese society, especially in the terms of religious development. The theory will also give the reason for the occurrence of popular short-term monastic life programs which are launched be Chinese Buddhism. I will introduce the basic information of short-term monastic life in the first chapter, which include its history, how temple stay program works in China, and its social influence. In the second chapter, I will summarize different theories of time and space compression in modernization, and analyze how these theories can be applied into Chinese society. Based on these theories, the inner contradiction of compression of time and space will be revealed. Then in the third chapter, the case study will be used to explain how short-term monastic life serves a social and psycho-social function, and how short-term monastic life solves the problems under time and space compression in contemporary Chinese society. Meanwhile, in the following chapter, I will try to discuss although temple stay program can work effectively as a social and psychological function, it also shows many characters of time and space compression under the process of globalization. Also, I will argue that the conflict of short-term monastic life about the time and space compression is indeed an epitome of the conflict of globalization. In the last chapter, I will also discuss the necessity of improving Buddhist activities and how Buddhist activities should face and solve the current problems caused by modernization.

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Yu, Siwen (2016). Short-term Monasticism in Contemporary Chinese Society: A Case Study in Bailin Temple. Master's thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/13443.

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