[Buddha-l] Questions

jkirk jkirk at spro.net
Wed Jun 25 16:37:47 MDT 2008

>I'm pretty sure that the last thing one will ever see in East
Asia is any kind of mixture (healthy or otherwise) of
Christianity and Buddhism.  

Actually, there is one in Vietnam, called Cao Dai. It mixes some
Xtianity and some Buddh. and other stuff--spirit channeling etc--
check it out online.

Curt Steinmetz

You wrote:
>I'm pretty sure that the last thing one will ever see in East
Asia is any kind of mixture (healthy or otherwise) of
Christianity and Buddhism. 
The East Asian Buddhists are too smart for that - they know that
any such "mixing" is just more Jesuit trickery. At least that is
my hope.<

Christianity has been making heavy inroads in east Asia,
especially in Korea. In China the government gives them a hard
time, which probably only reinforces their desire to remain
Christian. The latter has been working on Mongolia, but which
also has been seeing a Buddhism revival. Taiwan on the other hand
seems to be well-served by variations on Buddhism. Taiwan also
has Christians, I suspect the latter have been missionizing
Taiwan's hill peoples. Vietnam has Christians, but the French
colonial period left hostility in its wake about Christianity,
especially Catholicism. Vietnam also enjoys a mix of various
traditions, as well as Buddhism, in Taoism, Confucianism,
ancestor worship, ghost placation, Immortals worship, Chinese
goddesses worship, etc.
In India, some Christians have been there for centuries. In the
20th c. many Indians were becoming evangelized, and so
missionizing began to re-appear. The dominant Hindu nationalism
strain today doesn't take kindly to missionizing.
The first time I visited south Asia, we were traveling on a
freighter to Karachi, in 1955. While sailing along we met the
other 9 cabin travelers, among whom were two very young women
Jehovah's Witness missionaries en route to Lahore. There were
also two Catholic nuns aboard and one Protestant lay worker. The
latter three women were already assigned to established
institutions in Pakistan (a hospital and a school--they weren't
missionaries). We, and they, were amused that the J. Witnesses
had been taught by their mentors that the Muslims of Pakistan
were ripe for conversion. Later in Lahore, my Pakistani friends
had been visited by these same two girls, who were politely
received but that was it.
Muslim missionizing, under the aegis of Saudi and Gulf states,
promoting the radical Wahhabi or Salafi sects, has during the
latter half of the 20th c. led to formerly southeast Asian
peoples (who are Muslim but who once observed a regular SE Asian
lifestyle and dress) forcing the women into wearing a nun-like
headdress, even little girls have to wear it. So Christians are
not the only missionizing outfits that have invaded vulnerable
people around the world and changed their cultures.


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