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Could Jesus become a Chinese Deity?


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#1 General_Zhaoyun

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 05:29 AM

Among the chinese gods and deities system, there are countless of gods, heavenly beings that were originated from Daoism, Chinese Mythology, Historical Figures, Buddhism etc. In some sense, chinese religion had always tried to merge/syncretise several religion together to form a large deities system (i.e. poly-theism - the worship of several gods). Even a 'foreign religion' such as Buddhism has merged well into chinese beliefs system such that even Buddha, Bodhisattva or Arahats (buddhist figures/deities) had become part of the chinese deities.

I'm not too sure about Islam, but it seems to be a mono-theist religion and it would probably be an insult if Mohammed the Prophet/Allah become a chinese deity.

What about Christianity? Can it be merged or syncretised with chinese religion? For instance, can Jesus or any christian saints (religious figures) become part of the chinese deities so as to merge well into chinese religion?
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#2 Lin Duanwen

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 08:32 AM

For instance, can Jesus or any christian saints (religious figures) become part of the chinese deities so as to merge well into chinese religion?

The answer is yes, Jesus became Luohan(Arhat) in Yunnan.

筇竹寺罗汉像在云南昆明西北十余公里处云案山上的筇竹寺内 ... 更为奇特的是,五百罗汉中竟有耶稣的塑像。
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#3 DaMo

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 11:21 AM

Actually, it's quite interesting to check out murals of "Sakyamuni's first sermon" and try to pick out which gods are depicted. But I don't want to say where I saw such a mural in case the place get vandalized by erm, "christianists". :P

So Jesus is depicted there too? How? :blink:

OTOH, I've heard Muslims explain to me that they accept Sakyamuni as a prophet of Allah-- though I haven't heard that the Christians or Jews take this view... :g:

Well, if you believe that all good can only come from your god, and that X is good, then X must come from your god. I've seen orthodox Christians justify the Christianization of (originally Hindu) yoga based on this axiom.
As for the Christians, I remember a thread here about one St. Josephat being a Christianized version of the Buddha.
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#4 Prince of the South

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Posted 28 April 2006 - 12:01 PM

Jesus a Chinese deity?

I thought Jesus was the Elder brother of the Heavenly King of the Taiping Tianguo, if you would believe his younger brother Hong Xiuquan.

God, their father, was personalised by the East King Yang Xiuqing and even the Holy Spirit, shen sheng feng, in Xiao Chaogui, the West King.

And it was serious, as the Taiping Rebellion also brought the Qing dynasty





.... to its knees

#5 Prince of the South

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 04:43 AM

at that point in history-- the Qing Dynasty was ALREADY on its knees (& kowtowing to the colonial powers

The Taiping Rebellion 1851-64

Before this time, there was the First Opium War 1839-42 where China lost to England, culminating the treaty of nanking. Under the treaty, China agreed to cede Hong Kong Island (together with some small nearby islands) to the British Empire, and open the following treaty ports of China for foreign trade

The Second Opium War (arrow war) 1856-60. in June 1858 the first part of the war ended with the Treaty of Tientsin, to which France, Russia, and the United States were party. This treaty opened eleven more ports to Western trade. The Chinese refused to establish embassies in beijing according the Treaties, and were attacked by a naval force at taku forts, the xian feng emperor fled beijing for rehe, the June 1858 Treaty of Tientsin was finally ratified by the emperor's brother Prince Gong in the Convention of Peking on October 18, 1860, bringing The Second Opium War to an end.

When the Taiping first appeared on the scene, China had already been defeated by the British. But proud as they were, China never admitted defeat and treated the foreign with increased scorn. The first opium war shown Qing's military backwardness, but the Taiping fully exposed Qing's military weakness. Even after the second opium war, the Qing's court was as adamant in their attitude against the foreign power, until the court fled in 1859, they never actually "kowtowed" to the foreigners.

so i believe your statement is correct, but the Taiping Rebellion did helped put the Qing Dynasty on its knees.

#6 Elisha

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Posted 29 April 2006 - 06:42 AM

I'm not too sure about Islam, but it seems to be a mono-theist religion and it would probably be an insult if Mohammed the Prophet/Allah become a chinese deity.

What about Christianity? Can it be merged or syncretised with chinese religion? For instance, can Jesus or any christian saints (religious figures) become part of the chinese deities so as to merge well into chinese religion?


The answer is no.

Christianity is a mono-theist religion also. The trinity - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - does not mean 3 gods. God is still God. They are three and they are One.

Actually, in the bible it talks about righteousness imputed by faith (Romans 4) - and so, after being washed by the blood through which christians have the forgiveness of sins, they become the righteousness OF God in Christ. So, to be very accurate, according to the bible, they are already saints.

So your observation about "christian saints" (religious figures) I take it to mean those people who are cannonised by the catholic church? I do not know much about catholism, but I do not think the catholics worship their christian saints.

#7 DaMo

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 12:25 AM

Obviously the "syncretization"involves some erm, "re-interpretation", so it's arguable whether Jesus is still Jesus

Yes, exclusivity clauses and other such incompatibilities would need to be filtered out and dropped in order to assimilate Jesus into the Chinese pantheon. The same could just as theoretically be done with Muhammad.

Prepare to be deified! Resistance is futile! :P
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#8 lanjingling

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 04:12 AM

Erm, I think the question was whether Jesus can become a Chinese deity, as in whether the Chinese can accept Jesus as a deity-- not whether the Christians can accept the Chinese accepting Jesus as a deity.

I just think the opposite. China has accepted & integrated different foreign religions for centuries (Buddhism, Islam), wich became very important for the country (remember Zheng He). China was to accept Christanism too from the Jesuits missionaries, it's the Pope who refused , because Christianism is basically an intolerant religion ; look at Europe , it's only for a few years that others religions than Christianism are tolerated there (remember what they did to the Jews during WW2) , & i'm not even talking of the religious wars between Catholics & Protestants.
Only now they are more tolerant & accept that in the same country different people can have different religions ;
but IMHO , it's just a strategy , they preach tolerance but their ultimate goal is that the whole world become Christian , only now they accept different forms of Christianity . i've even met people who call themselves Jews for Jesus, who pretend that since Jesus was a Jew , then the Jews are real Christians...they really can't accept people of different religions...

Edited by lanjingling, 30 April 2006 - 04:13 AM.


#9 fcharton

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 05:10 AM

because Christianism is basically an intolerant religion ; look at Europe , it's only for a few years that others religions than Christianism are tolerated there (remember what they did to the Jews during WW2) ,


Care to explain the last part? Or am I justified by your comment in observing that, since the Japanese commited atrocities during WWII, and the japanese are buddhists, buddhism is a religion which preaches bloodletting, slaughter, etc... ???

Note to those who might be offended, OF COURSE I DO NOT BELIEVE THIS, I am just trying to explain that picturing the Holocaust as a Christian vs Jews thing is as absurd as presenting Japanese militarism in WWII as something like buddhism againt the world.

As far as I know, the most intolerant "religion" is jingoism (ignorance driven patriotism)
Francois

Edited by fcharton, 30 April 2006 - 05:55 AM.


#10 Elisha

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 06:30 AM

Obviously the "syncretization"involves some erm, "re-interpretation", so it's arguable whether Jesus is still Jesus (or the trinity)-- I mean, the Buddhists don't see Sakyamuni as a prophet of Allat or a Christian saint either... :unsure:


Hmm...

Why obviously? And if it's obvious that there'll be "re-interpretation" then it wouldn't be Christianity would it?

Actually, I agree with you, and that's why the answer is "no" :) Either that, or the question is moot ;) 'cos the subheading also elaborates it as "Christianity syncretism into Chinese Religion"

Like what Da Mo said, aside from the borg part, :closedeyes:

Yes, exclusivity clauses and other such incompatibilities would need to be filtered out and dropped in order to assimilate Jesus into the Chinese pantheon. The same could just as theoretically be done with Muhammad.


This changes what Christ is and fundamental doctrinal issues which is Christianity.

I think the question refers to whether Jesus is the same as all the other Chinese gods? The way it is put across is tactful and I appreciate that :)

#11 lanjingling

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 09:46 AM

Answer to fcharton
Didn't Vatican 2 concluded that what happened during WW2 was partially the result of centuries of a christian teaching to despise the jews ?
If you also consider that the nazis certainly weren't advocating Christianism , but they were, as all the others europeans, fed with the Christian values , mainly proselytism , wich translated in political terms means imperialism , the result is not a surprise.
When you look back at what Europe did in the name of Christianism (crusades , witch hunting, religious wars , pogroms') you definitively can not say that Christianism is the religion of love that it pretend to be (or maybe in a S.M. way). It's just a religion amongst others , with good & bad people, as in any religion ; the only difference is that it is a proselite religion (the same for Islam), by any means (conquistadores & colonialists always took missionaries with them), so Chistianism is a religion that can not bring peace on earth , despite what it says ; just compare the history of Christianism & Islam with Bhuddism , Sintoism, Daoism, Judaism , antics Roman or Greek religions , watever religion for wich proselytism isn't at the core of it , & tell me wich ones made a lot of religious wars, crusades & military conquest in the name of their religion ?

Edited by lanjingling, 30 April 2006 - 09:49 AM.


#12 fcharton

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 10:30 AM

Answer to fcharton
Didn't Vatican 2 concluded that what happened during WW2 was partially the result of centuries of a christian teaching to despise the jews ?
If you also consider that the nazis certainly weren't advocating Christianism , but they were, as all the others europeans, fed with the Christian values , mainly proselytism , wich translated in political terms means imperialism , the result is not a surprise.
When you look back at what Europe did in the name of Christianism (crusades , witch hunting, religious wars , pogroms') you definitively can not say that Christianism is the religion of love that it pretend to be (or maybe in a S.M. way). It's just a religion amongst others , with good & bad people, as in any religion ; the only difference is that it is a proselite religion (the same for Islam), by any means (conquistadores & colonialists always took missionaries with them), so Chistianism is a religion that can not bring peace on earth , despite what it says ; just compare the history of Christianism & Islam with Bhuddism , Sintoism, Daoism, Judaism , antics Roman or Greek religions , watever religion for wich proselytism isn't at the core of it , & tell me wich ones made a lot of religious wars, crusades & military conquest in the name of their religion ?


To Lanjingling,

Read your post, don't you think it is a bit inflamatory? maybe slightly insulting?

Now, here is a passage from the charter

"CHF is a politically neutral community. We are not associated with any form of political orientation, in order to avoid ourselves being tagged with a political stereotype. Because of our neutrality, CHF is able to accept and appreciate diversity, even when it comes to political orientations. We have members who are Chinese nationalists, Vietnamese/Yue nationalists, Korean nationalists, and even US nationalists. We have right-wingers and left-wingers. We have atheists, Buddhists, Daoists, Muslims, and Christians. We have Falungong members and Falungong opponents. We will tolerate all such beliefs, but there are two things we will not tolerate along with them: intolerance and insensitivity. Any member who exhibits "intolerance and insensitivity" will receive warning from staff."

I think it would be better if the discussion stopped at that. Consider that "you've won" if you wish, you will not get an answer from me.


To the moderators and administrators, this is the second time this week I see some "weird stuff" here.

On another thread a member suggested, on Muslims, that "The world will be more prosperous and peaceful without them around".
Now we have "because Christianism is basically an intolerant religion ; look at Europe , it's only for a few years that others religions than Christianism are tolerated there (remember what they did to the Jews during WW2)"


Thank you,
Francois

Edited by fcharton, 30 April 2006 - 10:52 AM.


#13 lanjingling

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 11:02 AM

If you felt offensed by my post , wich i admit is a bit inflammatory , please accept my apologies.
I would compare Christianism with communism : they advocate peace & love & happiness (on earth or in paradise) , but now, if you look at what happened in the name of communism...& many honest people were measleaded , really believing that Stalin , or PolPot (a few less for the last one, but there were a lot of enthusiasts of the Chinese cultural revolution )were acting for the humanity ; only , the communism have been (& still is , in North Korea particularly) much more bloody in a short period of time.
You didn't answer my question : how many wars have been made in the name of Christianism or Islam (with a long period of peace for this last one in the middle ages) , & how many in the name of the non-proselite religions ? I think it's much more for the 2 firsts ; maybe it's just a coincidence , or maybe a Vatican 3 would admit that Christianism is really not as good as many people believe.

edit: i didn't saw your last sentence. i agree that we stop here (& i do not consider that "i won " or "you lost", it's just the end of discussion)

Edited by lanjingling, 30 April 2006 - 11:11 AM.


#14 lanjingling

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 11:06 AM

Now we have "because Christianism is basically an intolerant religion ; look at Europe , it's only for a few years that others religions than Christianism are tolerated there (remember what they did to the Jews during WW2)"

I admit this sentence was uselesly aggressive , i didn't think enough when i wrote it; my apologies to people i could have offended.

#15 DaMo

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Posted 30 April 2006 - 12:39 PM

This changes what Christ is and fundamental doctrinal issues which is Christianity.

Erm, that's my point. Because it is not Christianity that is being assimilated, but Christ.
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