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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Atheist China turns spiritual?

We all know that China is an officially atheist nation, as a result of decades-old Marxist ideology that had planted firm roots on the Mainland following Mao's revolution and his creation of a Communist state.

At the turn of the 21st century, sociologists and analysts have found that a surge for spirituality is rising among Chinese citizens. As China's hunger for a sophisticated and modern living grows, the thirst of her people for spirituality and inner peace thrives. Lots and lots of well-educated young Chinese generations are turning towards spirituality, hoping to find a way to cope with the increasing pressures of China's rapid modernization and recent economic boom.

Apart from the traditional Chinese folk religions (eg Taoism and Confucianism), Buddhism is the largest religion in China with adherents numbering as many as 150 million, ie 11.5% of the population. It is also the most favoured religion among government officials (despite membership of the Communist Party requires one to be an atheist), due to its strong historical presence in the People's Republic and also its significant influence on the Chinese culture, architecture, cuisine, languages and ethics.

On the other hand, Christianity is harshly treated by the Communist regime, despite the faith being legally recognized by the state in the forms of Roman Catholicism and Protestantism, along with Buddhism, Taoism and Islam. In spite of this adversity, Christianity is blooming like never before among Chinese citizens and Protestantism fluorishes to become China's fastest growing religion. Estimates have shown that the followers of this world's largest religion to be exceeding 80 million in China alone. On top of that, this number is growing fast annually at high rates.

I sincerely hope that China will soon be embracing the long-anticipated full religious freedom after she tastes the sweetness of her riping prosperity. Even though spirituality undermines the very core of Communism, it does absolutely no harm to the society in its most moderate forms. In fact, religious beliefs enlighten those who are in quest of the pure meaning of life besides inspiring one to be constantly marching forward and helping those who are in need of humanitarian aids. Ain't this beneficial to the society and humanity as a whole?

Life isn't perfect in any way, yet we should try our very best to live it to the fullest. What say you?

1 comment:

Tibbar de Gniw said...

I say that people should be able to choose what religon they prefer, and that I also think that people (not referring to you, of course) should let me be and stop trying to convert the stubborn atheist I am.