Secularizing the sacred, sacralizing the secular reflections on the Buddhist monastic institution in China

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


The confrontation and accommodation between Chinese (namely Confucian) culture and Buddhism is one of the most interesting episodes in the history of religion. This paper examines the role of Buddhism in Chinese culture, focusing on the questions that the dialogue between Buddhist and Chinese values precipitated, and how these were resolved. It focuses on the ritualization of Buddhist monastic practice and the domestication of the Buddhist monastic institution in China, especially as exhibited in the experience of the Buddhist monk and literatus, Zanning (919-1001).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-330+337
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History

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