Matching Items (8)

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Twelve-Step Programs and Buddhism in Treating Addiction to Alcohol and Drugs

Description

Common treatments for substance addiction in the United States (U.S) are the twelve-step programs of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA). However, there is a lack of evidence indicating

Common treatments for substance addiction in the United States (U.S) are the twelve-step programs of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA). However, there is a lack of evidence indicating the effectiveness of AA and NA as substance addiction treatment methods. The U.S. is currently grappling with one of its worst-ever alcohol and drug crises, illustrating that now more than ever it is necessary to examine alternative treatment methods for substance addiction to successfully treat this type of addiction. Thus, Buddhism can be seen as both a complement to and alternative for AA and NA treatment programs for treating substance addiction. The Buddhist teachings and practices of the Four Noble Truths, The Eightfold Path, mindfulness, and meditation can be used to treat substance addiction. Although only recently utilized in the U.S. to treat substance addiction, Buddhist teachings and practices offer a nontheistic approach to recovery which research has shown to be successful in treating substance addiction in countries with established Buddhist cultures. By determining what treatment method is most successful in treating this type of addiction, the U.S. will be able to effectively reduce substance addiction rates -- which is crucial to protect the health, safety, and quality of life for all.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019-05

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Information Measurement Theory as an Introduction to Zen Buddhism

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Information Measurement Theory (IMT) is a decision-making system developed by ASU's Dr. Dean Kashiwagi that emphasizes the inefficiencies caused by decision-making and personal bias. Zen Buddhism is an ancient philosophical

Information Measurement Theory (IMT) is a decision-making system developed by ASU's Dr. Dean Kashiwagi that emphasizes the inefficiencies caused by decision-making and personal bias. Zen Buddhism is an ancient philosophical system designed to reduce life's suffering. IMT introduces readers to common-sense notions which are spun into more complex topics that reveal flaws in our normal modes of thinking. This style is often employed by Buddhist teachers, and the rigidly logical structure of IMT already proves many points tangent to Buddhist philosophy. In my thesis, I have exploited the similarities of IMT and Zen Buddhism to create a website introducing curious Western readers to the beauty of Zen in a refreshingly frank manner. This project will demonstrate the power of information theory and dominant communication to break down barriers towards understanding. Ultimately, this should offer an exciting new path for prospective students of Zen and help to build understanding between ideologically disparate groups.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

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An ethnography of the living's solidarity with the dead: Tibetan refugees and their self-immolators

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Since 1998 and as recently as November 2018, 165 Tibetans have burned themselves alive in public protest, both inside Tibet and in exile. This study foregrounds Tibetan refugees’ interpretations of

Since 1998 and as recently as November 2018, 165 Tibetans have burned themselves alive in public protest, both inside Tibet and in exile. This study foregrounds Tibetan refugees’ interpretations of the self-immolation protests and examines how the exile community has socially, politically, and emotionally interrogated and assimilated this resistance movement. Based upon eleven months of ethnographic field research and 150 hours of formal interviews with different groups of Tibetan refugees in northern India, including: freedom activists, former political prisoners, members of the exile parliament, teachers of Tibetan Buddhism, families of self-immolators, and survivors of self-immolation, this project asks: What does activism look like in a time of martyrdom? What are the practices of solidarity with the dead? How does a refugee community that has been in exile for over three generations make sense of a wave of death occurring in a homeland most cannot access? Does the tactic of self-immolation challenge Tibetan held conceptions of resistance and the conceived relationship between politics, religion and nation? These questions are examined with attention to the sociopolitical expectations and vulnerabilities that the refugee community face. This study thus analyzes what it means to mourn those one never knew, and examines the fractious connections between resistance, solidarity, trauma, representation, political exigency, and community cohesion. By examining the uncomfortable affect around self-immolation, its memorialization and representation, the author argues that self-immolation is a relational act that creates and ushers forth witnesses. As such, one must analyze the obligations of witnessing, the barriers to witnessing, and the expectations of solidarity. This project offers the theory of exigent solidarity, whereby solidarity is understood as a contested space, borne of expectation, pressure, and responsibility, with its expression complex and its execution seemingly impossible. It calls for attention to the affective labor of solidarity in a time of ongoing martyrdom, and demonstrates that in the need to maintain solidarity and social cohesion, a sense of mutual-becoming occurs whereby the community is reconciled uneasily into a shared fate.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Non-attachment in the creative process

Description

This ethnographic research focuses on the specific creative processes of one dance-maker who worked collaboratively with seven dancers, a sound designer, a costume designer, and a narrative speaker. Together they

This ethnographic research focuses on the specific creative processes of one dance-maker who worked collaboratively with seven dancers, a sound designer, a costume designer, and a narrative speaker. Together they created an evening-length dance work entitled "The Now Creature." Throughout the creative process, the dance-maker was interested in noticing attachments, finding freedom from these attachments, and being aware of how the work was affected by the choice to detach or remain attached to certain ideas. This interest stemmed from the dance-maker/researcher's interest in Buddhist philosophy and a system of decision-making she had been developing since childhood. The creative process for "The Now Creature" began with experiments in chance procedures as a method of non-attachment. After the first public showing of the piece, the process shifted to include intuition and aesthetic integration. "Embodied nowness," or the awareness of one's physical and mental sensations in the present moment, played an important role in rehearsals and in the overall process of letting go of attachments. All collaborators kept journals and were usually given specific prompts about which to write. The researcher/dance-maker also conducted one-on-one verbal interviews and group discussions with the collaborators. These data informed the development of the work presented on January 31-February 2 at Arizona State University, Findings from this research can be applied to any kind of creative process, or any life situation that includes decision-making.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Jōjin’s Travels in Northern Song China: Performances of Place in the Travel Diary A Record of a Pilgrimage to Tiantai and Wutai Mountains

Description

In 1072 Jōjin (1011-1081) boarded a Chinese merchant ship docked in Kabeshima (modern Saga) headed for Mingzhou (modern Ningbo) on the eastern coast of Northern Song (960-1279) China. Following the

In 1072 Jōjin (1011-1081) boarded a Chinese merchant ship docked in Kabeshima (modern Saga) headed for Mingzhou (modern Ningbo) on the eastern coast of Northern Song (960-1279) China. Following the convention of his predecessors, Jōjin kept a daily record of his travels from the time he first boarded the Chinese merchant ship in Kabeshima to the day he sent his diary back to Japan with his disciples in 1073.

Jōjin’s diary in eight fascicles, A Record of a Pilgrimage to Tiantai and Wutai Mountains (San Tendai Godaisan ki), is one of the longest extant travel accounts concerning medieval China. It includes a detailed compendium of anecdotes on material culture, flora and fauna, water travel, and bureaucratic procedures during the Northern Song, as well as the transcription of official documents, inscriptions, Chinese texts, and lists of personal purchases and official procurements. The encyclopedic nature of Jōjin’s diary is highly valued for the insight it provides into the daily life, court policies, and religious institutions of eleventh-century China. This dissertation addresses these aspects of the diary, but does so from the perspective of treating the written text as a material artifact of placemaking.

The introductory chapter first contextualizes Jōjin’s diary within the travel writing genre, and then presents the theoretical framework for approaching Jōjin’s engagement with space and place. Chapter two presents the bustling urban life in Hangzhou in terms of Jōjin’s visual and material consumption of the secular realm as reflected in his highly illustrative descriptions of the night markets and entertainers. Chapter three examines Jōjin’s descriptions of sacred Tendai sites in China, and how he approaches these spaces with a sense of familiarity from the textual milieu that informed his movements across this religious landscape. Chapter four discusses Jōjin’s impressions of Kaifeng and the Grand Interior as a metropolitan space with dynamic functions and meanings. Lastly, chapter five concludes by considering the means by which Jōjin’s performance of place in his diary further contributes to the collective memory of place and his own sense of self across the text.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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The paracultural imaginary: cultural appropriation, heterophily and the diffusion of religious/spiritual traditions in intercultural communication

Description

Buddhism is thriving in US-America, attracting many converts with college and post-graduate degrees as well as selling all forms of popular culture. Yet little is known about the communication dynamics

Buddhism is thriving in US-America, attracting many converts with college and post-graduate degrees as well as selling all forms of popular culture. Yet little is known about the communication dynamics behind the diffusion of Buddhist religious/spiritual traditions into the United States. Religion is an underexplored area of intercultural communication studies (Nakayama & Halualani, 2010) and this study meets the lacuna in critical intercultural communication scholarship by investigating the communication practices of US-Americans adopting Asian Buddhist religious/spiritual traditions. Ethnographic observations were conducted at events where US-Americans gathered to learn about and practice Buddhist religious/spiritual traditions. In addition, interviews were conducted with US-Americans who were both learning and teaching Buddhism. The grounded theory method was used for data analysis. The findings of this study describe an emerging theory of the paracultural imaginary -- the space of imagining that one could be better than who one was today by taking on the cultural vestments of (an)Other. The embodied communication dynamics of intercultural exchange that take place when individuals adopt the rituals and philosophies of a foreign culture are described. In addition, a self-reflexive narrative of my struggle with the silence of witnessing the paracultural imaginary is weaved into the analysis. The findings from this study extend critical theorizing on cultural identity, performativity, and cultural appropriation in the diffusion of traditions between cultural groups. In addition, the study addresses the complexity of speaking out against the subtle prejudices in encountered in intercultural communication.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Protecting the spiritual environment: rhetoric and Chinese Buddhist environmentalism

Description

This dissertation analyzes the way in which leaders of certain Taiwanese Buddhist organizations associated with a strand of Buddhist modernism called "humanistic Buddhism" use discourse and rhetoric to make environmentalism

This dissertation analyzes the way in which leaders of certain Taiwanese Buddhist organizations associated with a strand of Buddhist modernism called "humanistic Buddhism" use discourse and rhetoric to make environmentalism meaningful to their members. It begins with an assessment of the field of religion and ecology, situating it in the context of secular environmental ethics. It identifies rhetoric and discourse as important but under acknowledged elements in literature on environmental ethics, both religious and secular, and relates this lack of attention to rhetoric to the presence of a problematic gap between environmental ethics theory and environmentalist practice. This dissertation develops a methodology of rhetorical analysis that seeks to assess how rhetoric contributes to alleviating this gap in religious environmentalism. In particular, this dissertation analyzes the development of environmentalism as a major element of humanistic Buddhist groups in Taiwan and seeks to show that a rhetorical analysis helps demonstrate how these organizations have sought to make environmentalism a meaningful subject of contemporary Buddhist religiosity. This dissertation will present an extended analysis of the concept of "spiritual environmentalism," a term developed and promoted by the late Ven. Shengyan (1930-2009), founder of the Taiwanese Buddhist organization Dharma Drum Mountain. Furthermore, this dissertation suggests that the rhetorical methodology proposed herein offers offers a direction for scholars to more effectively engage with religion and ecology in ways that address both descriptive/analytic approaches and constructive engagements with various forms of religious environmentalism.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Transmission of law and merit: a comparative study of Daoist ordination rite and esoteric Buddhist abhiṣeka in medieval China (400-907)

Description

This is a comparative study of two advanced ordination rituals, Daoist chuanshou (conferral of ordination rank) and Buddhist abhiṣeka (guanding) in the mid-late Tang and Five Dynasties (763-979). I analyzed

This is a comparative study of two advanced ordination rituals, Daoist chuanshou (conferral of ordination rank) and Buddhist abhiṣeka (guanding) in the mid-late Tang and Five Dynasties (763-979). I analyzed a number of not-well-studied Daoist ritual protocols in the early medieval period, and revealed that rituals recast gender and fostered monastic relations. On the other hand, relying on both canonical materials and a manuscript preserved in Japan that recorded an abhiṣeka performed during the Tang dynasty in 839 C.E., I demonstrated how the canonical prescriptions of Indian origin, with modified actions and reinterpreted meaning, were transformed to respond to the Chinese religious and social environment. Having examined the language of the texts and the step of the rituals, I interpreted how these rituals were made sense in their own religious context, and compared their frame, structure, modality, symbol, and meaning.

Ordination rite concerns the transmission of religious knowledge and authority, and the establishment of religious identity. It is in the relationship between the individual body and the community that Daoists and Buddhists found the form of apprenticeship that led to the embodiment of the community. The mastery of religious knowledge within the community––scriptures, register, mantras, and precepts, etc., was known only through the actual ritual practice. In other words, the ritual body became the locus for coordination of all levels of bodily, social, and cosmological experience via the dialectic of objectification and embodiment in the ordination rites. As the ritualized bodies, those who were ordained coherently comprised the community, which in turn remolded them with dynamically and diversely shaped identities.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2019