(RL ST 181)
Introduction to the Religions of China and Japan (3) A survey of the history, philosophy, and cultural impact of the major Far Eastern religions: Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism, and Shinto.
ASIA (RL ST) 181 Introduction to the Religions of China and Japan (3)
(BA) This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements.
This is an introductory survey of the historical, philosophical, and cultural dimensions of the major religious traditions in China and Japan. The course delineates and highlights the organic view of the universe and the hierarchical ordering of society in East Asia. It traces the evolution of the major traditions—Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism in China, as well as Shinto, Buddhism and Confucianism in Japan—by examining their ideas of humanity and nature, morality and society, and metaphysics and ethics. It also reveals the interaction and interrelation between ideology, politics and society, and their impact on the development of the major religious traditions in history. A major focus is the relation between the “little tradition”—the popular and folk practices and beliefs of esoteric Daoism, devotional Buddhism, and fertility-cult Shinto—and the “great tradition”—the elite and literate doctrines and precepts of Confucianism, philosophical Daoism, and monastic Buddhism. The course also devotes some attention to the influence of religion on various facets of culture, such as medicine, science, literature, art and food.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.