Religion returns


The oddest thing about China is resurgent religion. It is not the middle-aged or the old who take to religion, it is the young. You can see the fervour with which they pray to Buddha in the photo above. I saw this again and again, in different temples. Shatters my naive belief in the materialistic culture of the orient.

By I. J. Khanewala

I travel on work. When that gets too tiring then I relax by travelling for holidays. The holidays are pretty hectic, so I need to unwind by getting back home. But that means work.


  1. I’m glad that you brought this up. It seems to me that many of Asia’s youth are seeking to fulfill the spiritual part of their life. Yet, on the other hand, many of my Asian friends have told me, the purpose of their trip to the temple was to ask the heaven for a good grade on their exam (in China, it is especially true for high school students to pray for a high score on their Gaokao or college entrance exam), to ask for help seeking a high-paying job, or something to that manner. Also, many do not study the texts related to the religion. In Japan, people pay for a prayer at a Shinto temple, and, once again, the gods will give them favor, usually for good test scores, etc. For me as an individual interested in Asian culture, it’s difficult to frame this. Is this behavior really following the traditions of the religion?


    1. I did wonder. Thank you for confirming this. In India too this is one of the reasons for resurgent religion: as competition gets tougher, people try anything which might give them an edge. Religion is also sometimes used as a token of identity in India. I don’t know whether this dimension is present or missing in China.

      Liked by 1 person

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