Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom

Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby gavesako » Fri Apr 24, 2009 6:34 pm

This newly published book looks very interesting, see the table of contents (deals with the current situation of Buddhism in Thailand):


Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand
The Religiosity of Urban Space
James Taylor, University of Adelaide, Australia


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This book presents a rethink on the significance of Thai Buddhism in an increasingly complex and changing post-modern urban context, especially following the financial crisis of 1997. Defining the cultural nature of Thai ‘urbanity’; the implications for local/global flows, interactions and emergent social formations, James Taylor opens up new possibilities in understanding the specificities of everyday urban life as this relates to perceptions, conceptions and lived experiences of religiosity. Changes in the centre are also reverberating in the remaining forests and the monastic tradition of forest-dwelling which has sourced most of the nation’s modern saints. The text is based on ethnography taking into account the rich variety of everyday practices in a mélange of the religious. In Thailand, Buddhism is so intimately interconnected with national identity and social, economic and ethno-political concerns as to be inseparable. Taylor argues here that in recent years there has been a marked reformulation of important conventional cosmologies through new and challenging Buddhist ideas and practices. These influences and changes are as much located outside as inside the Buddhist temples/monasteries.
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Contents: Thai Buddhism in postmodernity; Buddhist modernities, heresy and hybridization: Thailand's Thammakaai movement; New Buddhism: copying, and the art of the imagination; Buddhist cyber-worlds and changing urban space; Nation, embodiment, and the charisma of a Thai saint; Kammathaan monks, tradition and sites of memory; Sanctification of place, power and mobility; Conclusion/beginning; Bibliography; Index.
*

About the Author: Dr J.L.Taylor, author of Forest Monks and the Nation-State (1993) is a Senior Lecturer in Anthropology at the School of Social Sciences, University of Adelaide, Australia. His research and work experiences are in critical theory and practice of planned culture change and the transformation of rural society, the development discourse and anthropology, ethno-ecology, and Thai Buddhism.
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Reviews: This book is a valuable contribution to the field of Thai Studies and the study of modern Buddhism; offering new perspectives on fascinating phenomena in Thai society. The six case studies in this book allow the reader to gain interesting insights into Thai Theravada in the context of globalization.
Dr Martin Seeger, East Asian Studies, University of Leeds, UK

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Extracts from this title are available to view:

Full contents list

Chapter 1 - Thai Buddhism in postmodernity

Index


https://www.ashgate.com/default.aspx?pa ... n_id=10666
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby pink_trike » Fri Apr 24, 2009 8:33 pm

Sounds great. $99.50 USD at Amazon.
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby forestmat » Sat Apr 25, 2009 6:19 am

That's expensive!

I think I'll give the "Imaginings" a miss and get on with the present moment.

:)

Metta

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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby gavesako » Thu May 28, 2009 3:32 pm

Recommended Dhamma talk on a related subject:


"Forest tradition and practice" by Ven. Sujato (MP3)

-- about the simplicity and authenticity of the forest way of life, keeping it fresh and alive, adapting to new circumstances, not getting stuck in rigid patterns, Thai vs Western mentality

http://www.dhammanet.org/request.php?211
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
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Posts: 1326
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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby gavesako » Fri Jul 24, 2009 8:35 am

Article: Buddhism, democracy and identity in Thailand by Duncan McCargo

--Abstract--
Buddhism in Thailand has been characterized as a 'revolutionary' force, since rationalist Buddhist teachings offer considerable support for progressive and democratic political ideas. The reality, however, is that Thai Buddhism has been captured by the state, and its latent radicalism neutralized. The symbiotic relationship between the state and sangha has effectively limited Buddhism to the role of legitimating state power, and the universalistic teachings of Buddhism have been subordinated to nationalist ideology. While there is some interest in progressive ideas, overall numbers of monks are falling, and commercialized folk Buddhism has gained the upper hand. Monastic sexual and financial misdeeds are widespread. Thai Buddhism is also highly intolerant of those who deviate from mainstream teachings, making a mockery of ideas of freedom of religion. The Thai state strongly supports a conservative, orthodox and authoritarian mode of Buddhism. Insofar as Thailand has experienced processes of democratic transition and consolidation in recent decades, it has been in spite of the role of Buddhism.

Google Preview at
http://books.google.com/books?id=3ountj ... t&resnum=1
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
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gavesako
 
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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby gavesako » Fri Jul 24, 2009 8:41 am

Interesting contribution by Justin McDaniel about Thai Buddhism: Negotiating the Modern Age, in which he describes the social role of Thai forest monks.

Google Preview at
http://books.google.com/books?id=CRCD96 ... 1&pg=PA101
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby Pannapetar » Thu Jul 30, 2009 3:35 am

Judging from the abstract, Duncan McCargo has indeed hit the nail on the head. Not that Thailand is an exception. Most governments like to use religion as a controlling force, thus they emphasise orthodoxy and authoritarian structures.

Cheers, Thomas
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Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby gavesako » Fri Aug 14, 2009 2:27 pm

I found this author who is doing research on Western monks in Thailand, meditation centers in Thailand, cultural adaptations of Theravada tradition in the West, and similar things. You can read more on her blog and download two PDF articles which are very interesting:

http://wanderingdhamma.wordpress.com/re ... interests/

- Meanings of the Forest in Thailand
- Religious Encounters in Thailand: The Integration of Western Monks into Thai
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
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Location: England

Re: Buddhism and Postmodern Imaginings in Thailand

Postby Pannapetar » Sat Aug 15, 2009 2:20 am

Thank you for the link.

A Google book preview of this title is available online. I haven't seen this in Thai bookstores yet. At $99.95 it's a safe bet that it won't attract casual readers. If I only knew what the author means with "postmodern imaginings"... :thinking:

Cheers, Thomas
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