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  • Coming to Terms with “Engaged Buddhism”: Periodizing, Provincializing, and Politicizing the Concept

    Hsu, Alexander O. (Society for the Study of Global Buddhism, 2022-07-07)
    Whatever happened to “Engaged Buddhism”? Twenty years after a flurry of publication placing this global movement firmly on the map, enthusiasm for the term itself appears to have evaporated. I attempt to reconstruct what happened: scholars turned away from the concept for its reproducing colonialist understandings of traditional Buddhism as essentially world-rejecting, and they developed alternate discourses for describing Buddhist actors’ multifarious social and political engagements, especially in contemporary Asia. I describe the specific rise and fall of the term in Anglophone scholarship, in order for scholars to better grasp the evolution of contemporary Western, Anglophone Buddhisms, to better understand what Buddhists in Asia are in fact doing with the term, and to better think through what it might mean politically for us as scholars to deploy the term at all. In particular, I identify “Academic Engaged Buddhism” (1988–2009) as one hegemonic form of Engaged Buddhism, a Western Buddhist practitioner-facing anthological project of Euro-American scholars with potentially powerful but unevenly distributed effects on Buddhist thought and practice around the world.
  • Gender Roles in Transmitting Vietnamese Buddhism to Taiwan: Two Case-studies of Vietnamese Buddhist Nuns

    Cheng, Wei-Yi (Society for the Study of Global Buddhism, 2022-07-07)
    This paper introduces the works of two Vietnamese Buddhist nuns in Taiwan. They both envision a permanent or long-term stay in Taiwan and have purchased properties to function as their temples. They provide services to the Vietnamese diaspora. Special attention will be given to the discussion of gender role in the transmission of Vietnamese Buddhism to Taiwan and an assessment of what Buddhist feminist Rita Gross calls “the prison of gender role” in the works the nuns conduct.
  • The Cultural Appropriation of Buddha in American Advertisements

    Bao, Jiemin; Willis, William M. (Society for the Study of Global Buddhism, 2022-07-07)
    Employing a mixed qualitative and quantitative method, this paper explores why and how Buddha is being reimagined, appropriated, and baked into American advertisements, as well as what underlying values inform such a practice. Building upon previous scholars’ work, we argue that Buddha-branded advertisements cater to all socio-economic classes not just the elite. Buddha is used as a spiritual resource to promote desire, reinforcing rather than challenging consumer culture. Buddha-branded advertisements are shaped by American cultural principles, and in return, the advertisements reshape various facets of identity and everyday American life.
  • Pennies From the Pure Land: Practicing the Dharma, Hanging Out, and Raising Funds for the Oldest Buddhist Temple Outside Asia

    Wilson, Jeff (Society for the Study of Global Buddhism, 2022-07-07)
    Jōdo Shinshū temples outside of Asia draw on mutually-reinforcing networks of Dharma practice, social association, and fundraising/labour to meet community and individual needs. These three phenomena rarely, if ever, occur apart from one another. Rather, each is an indelible aspect of the others, such that fundraising is a form of Dharma practice, gathering with peers is a way to raise money, and Buddhism is practiced as a form of group solidarity and support. These tight weaves have enabled temples to thrive in racially and religiously hostile lands, under changing economic circumstances, and through periods of stability, war, and natural disaster. This article takes as its case study the Honpa Hongwanji Hilo Betsuin, on the Big Island of Hawai’i, especially the late 20th century building of their multipurpose Sangha Hall. Fundraising for the building demonstrated the necessity of Dharma, social, and economic activities for the financial health of the temple.
  • "Disembedded" Buddhism in a Techno-Global Cosmology: The Case of Spike Jonze’s Film Her (2013)

    Barker, Jesse (Society for the Study of Global Buddhism, 2022-07-07)
    This essay explores the subtle but key influence of Buddhist ideas in Spike Jonze’s highly successful 2013 film Her, which reflects the currents of disembedded Buddhism woven through ostensibly non-Buddhist cultural spaces and texts, engaging with contemporary social concerns. In Her they manifest most surprisingly in the character of Samantha, an artificially-intelligent consciousness that transcends the limitations of ego-based thought. Like the Buddha, Samantha has capacities that extend beyond the reach of ordinary humans, and by imagining these extraordinary powers of thought we are provided a glimpse of an absolute reality beyond our experience of the everyday. In this sense Her’s techno-global cosmology parallels miraculous aspects of the Buddha that are embedded in premodern cosmologies.
  • The Cultural Appropriation of Buddha in American Advertisements

    Jiemin Bao; William M. Willis (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
    Employing a mixed qualitative and quantitative method, this paper explores why and how Buddha is being reimagined, appropriated, and baked into American advertisements, as well as what underlying values inform such a practice. Building upon previous scholars’ work, we argue that Buddha-branded advertisements cater to all socio-economic classes not just the elite. Buddha is used as a spiritual resource to promote desire, reinforcing rather than challenging consumer culture. Buddha-branded advertisements are shaped by American cultural principles, and in return, the advertisements reshape various facets of identity and everyday American life.
  • Pennies From the Pure Land: Practicing the Dharma, Hanging Out, and Raising Funds for the Oldest Buddhist Temple Outside Asia

    Jeff Wilson (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
    Jōdo Shinshū temples outside of Asia draw on mutually-reinforcing networks of Dharma practice, social association, and fundraising/labour to meet community and individual needs. These three phenomena rarely, if ever, occur apart from one another. Rather, each is an indelible aspect of the others, such that fundraising is a form of Dharma practice, gathering with peers is a way to raise money, and Buddhism is practiced as a form of group solidarity and support. These tight weaves have enabled temples to thrive in racially and religiously hostile lands, under changing economic circumstances, and through periods of stability, war, and natural disaster. This article takes as its case study the Honpa Hongwanji Hilo Betsuin, on the Big Island of Hawai’i, especially the late 20th century building of their multipurpose Sangha Hall. Fundraising for the building demonstrated the necessity of Dharma, social, and economic activities for the financial health of the temple.
  • If You Meet the Buddha on the Road

    Antonio Terrone (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
  • An Introduction to Engaged Buddhism

    Tiziano Bielli (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
  • Secularizing Buddhism: New Perspectives on a Dynamic Tradition

    Dagmar Schwerk (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
  • Coming to Terms with “Engaged Buddhism”: Periodizing, Provincializing, and Politicizing the Concept

    Alexander O. Hsu (University of Lucerne, 2022-07-01)
    Whatever happened to “Engaged Buddhism”? Twenty years after a flurry of publication placing this global movement firmly on the map, enthusiasm for the term itself appears to have evaporated. I attempt to reconstruct what happened: scholars turned away from the concept for its reproducing colonialist understandings of traditional Buddhism as essentially world-rejecting, and they developed alternate discourses for describing Buddhist actors’ multifarious social and political engagements, especially in contemporary Asia. I describe the specific rise and fall of the term in Anglophone scholarship, in order for scholars to better grasp the evolution of contemporary Western, Anglophone Buddhisms, to better understand what Buddhists in Asia are in fact doing with the term, and to better think through what it might mean politically for us as scholars to deploy the term at all. In particular, I identify “Academic Engaged Buddhism” (1988–2009) as one hegemonic form of Engaged Buddhism, a Western Buddhist practitioner-facing anthological project of Euro-American scholars with potentially powerful but unevenly distributed effects on Buddhist thought and practice around the world.
  • An Approach to Justifying Normative Arguments in Sustainability Science, with Insights from the Philosophy of Science and Social Theory

    David O'Byrne (Librelloph, 2022-06-01)
    In this paper, I put forward an argument that sustainability science can make objectively grounded normative claims about what courses of action society should pursue in order to achieve sustainability. From a survey of the philosophy of science, social theory and sustainability science literature, I put forward an approach to justifying these normative arguments. This approach builds on the insight that social theories are value-laden and that dominant and pervasive social practices find their justification in some social theory. The approach: (i) focuses on the analysis of concrete cases; (ii) paying attention to the social practices that produce environmental problems and the theories that support those practices; (iii) examines alternative theories, and (iv) justifies a normative position by identifying the most comprehensive theoretical understanding of the particular case. Although the approach focuses on the analysis of particular cases it does not rely on value relativism. Furthermore, while the focus is on the role of science in producing normative arguments about society’s trajectory, it maintains space for the inclusion of the values of the public in environmental decision-making. However, while this approach aims to provide a rational basis to normative positions, it does not presume that this will lead to social consensus on these issues.
  • Assessment of urban river water quality using modified NSF water quality index model at Siliguri city, West Bengal, India

    Samsad Parween; Nigar Alam Siddique; Mir Talas Mahammad Diganta; Agnieszka I. Olbert; Md Galal Uddin (Elsevier, 2022-12-01)
    Rivers are the source of freshwater for any urban community and hence, monitoring of river water is an obligatory yet challenging task. This study was conducted in a subtropical urban river in India with the view of developing a quantitative approach to assess its water quality (WQ) status. For the purposes of this study, water samples were collected from five locations across the Mahananda River main streams encompassing both urbanised and non-urbanised parts of the Siliguri city during April to June of 2021 and collected samples were analysed for fourteen common WQ indicators: pH, Temperature, Conductivity, TDS, Turbidity, Total Hardness (TH), DO, BOD, COD, NO3−, PO43−, Cl−, Fecal Coliform (FC) and E. coli for assessing water quality. In order to obtain WQ status, the present study utilised the modified national sanitation foundation (NSF) water quality index (WQI) model, whereas the crucial WQ indicators were identified using the principal components analysis (PCA) technique. All WQ indicators were considered to compute the NSF-WQI except water pH and TH. Most WQ indicators were breached the guideline values of the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and Indian Standards (IS) for surface water. The modified NSF-WQI results revealed that the Mahananda River water quality was “good” to “medium” quality and the water is only suitable for limited purposes under certain conditions. The findings of this study provided evidence that the river WQ is heavily influenced by urban pressures because relatively “good” WQ was found at the sampling location of the outer part of the urban area. The results of this research could be effective in improving the Mahananda River's water quality and maintaining its complex ecosystem in order to ensure sustainable urban growth.
  • Factores socioeconómicos explicativos en la decisión de reforestar: experiencia en poblaciones de La Sepultura, Chiapas

    Juan Carlos Caballero Salinas; Leonardo Daniel Valencia López; Vicente Javier Aguirre Moreno; Hugo Adrián Pizaña Vidal (El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, 2022-09-01)
    Este artículo tiene el objetivo de examinar los factores socioeconómicos que incidieron en los habitantes de un área natural protegida en Chiapas, México, para que adoptaran prácticas de reforestación en el marco de un proyecto interinstitucional que impulsó la restauración de sus predios forestales afectados por el huracán Bárbara en el año 2013. Con la información recopilada en el trabajo de campo entre 2014 y 2016, a través de observación directa y datos de 51 encuestas, se realizó un análisis cualitativo y estadístico con el apoyo de un modelo Logit. Los resultados muestran que la disposición de las personas a reforestar disminuye a medida que la ganadería representa su principal ocupación. Además, se revela que la población más proclive a reforestar es aquella que tiene mayor participación en actividades forestales, que es motivada por factores intrínsecos y reside de manera permanente en el lugar. Se concluye que los aspectos socioeconómicos ligados a las actividades productivas locales son factores que inciden en la decisión a reforestar.
  • Table of Contents: International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning 13(1)

    UCL Press, 2021-05-01
    Issue information for International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning 13(1).
  • Table of Contents: International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning 14(1)

    UCL Press, 2022-05-01
    Issue information for International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning 14(1).
  • Rethinking adult learning and education as global citizenship education: A conceptual model with implications for policy, practice and further research

    Marcella Milana; Massimiliano Tarozzi (UCL Press, 2021-05-01)
    This article provides a conceptual analysis of the two domains of global citizenship education and adult education and learning, along with their similarities and differences. It begins by unpacking the ambiguous and contested concept of global citizenship education and proposing a critical vision of it, within a global social justice framework. Against this backdrop, the article argues for re-conceptualizing adult education and learning as global citizenship education, instead of considering the latter to be one of the key issues of the former. Their structural link is grounded in their common epistemological nature. The domains are interlocked to the extent that both (1) promote active citizenship skills, (2) strive towards equality and social justice on a global level and (3) adopt a values-based approach and promote transformative learning. In conclusion, an original ‘Four-dimensions approach to adult education and learning as global citizenship education’ conceptual model is advanced potentially to inform policymakers, practitioners and researchers. The model is made up of four basic components of adult education and learning as global citizenship education, namely: aims and scope (what for), contents and skills (what), processes and pedagogies (how), actors and learning environments (who).

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