01 December 2010

China’s urbanites rediscover Buddhism

China's urbanites rediscover Buddhism, by Mitch Moxley (Asia Times, 2 December 2010)

Quan Zhenyuan discovered Buddhism by accident. After the owner of a vegetarian restaurant here in the Chinese capital gave her a book about the religion, she became hooked. Today, Quan is one of a growing number of urban Chinese turning to the religion for spiritual fulfillment.

"I always used to believe Buddhism was a kind of superstition, but I changed my mind completely after reading the book Recognizing Buddhism”, says Quan, 32, an executive manager at a tourism agency in Beijing. She says Buddhism has taught her how to better solve problems and cooperate with employees and clients. "Buddhism gives me peace of mind."

China, an officially atheist country, is experiencing a Buddhism revival. In the three decades since Deng Xiaoping announced the reform and opening up policy, a spiritual void has opened among many Chinese, experts say. Stressed and overfocused on careers and material gain, many of its citizens have started to look for answers in religion. Buddhism has a 2,000-year history in China.
Link: China's urbanites rediscover Buddhism, by Mitch Moxley