By Anne Ruth Hansen

ISBN-10: 0824830326

ISBN-13: 9780824830328

This formidable cross-disciplinary research of Buddhist modernism in colonial Cambodia breaks new flooring in figuring out the background and improvement of faith and colonialism in Southeast Asia. In How to Behave, Anne Hansen argues for the significance of Theravāda Buddhist ethics for imagining and articulating what it ability to be sleek in early-twentieth-century Cambodia. The Twenties in Cambodia observed an exuberant burst of latest published writings through self-described Khmer Buddhist modernists almost about the way to behave (as reliable Buddhists and ethical individuals) and find out how to purify oneself in daily life within the glossy global. Hansen's publication, one of many first stories of colonial Buddhism dependent principally on Khmer language resources, examines the modernists' wondering of Buddhist values that they deemed most crucial and appropriate. She explores their new interpretations of conventional doctrines, how they have been produced, and the way they characterize Southeast Asian moral and non secular responses to the sleek circulate of neighborhood and translocal occasions, humans, rules, and anxieties.
Hansen starts her research within the mid-nineteenth century with a Buddhist purification circulate that have been set in movement by means of the Khmer king Ang Duang. She follows Khmer priests to Siam as they sought out Buddhist scriptures and examines how they carried principles again to Cambodia and formed their very own reformist circulate in a colonial society prompted via French discourses of modernization. Drawing on literary and moral kinds of research in addition to ancient, Hansen not just money owed for this ancient upward thrust of modernist values but in addition introduces readers to modernist worldviews via cautious translations of sermons, ritual manuals, ethics compendia, and vernacular folktales.
How to Behave may be of curiosity to a large, multi-disciplinary viewers within the fields of Southeast Asian reviews, spiritual experiences, colonial heritage, and Buddhist ethics. It provides to the exam of the comparative and pan-Asian contours of non secular modernism between students of Asia and may be crucial interpreting for these operating within the fields of comparative colonialism, nationalism, and non secular modernity.

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Prose and Poetry at the course Ð Anne Carolyn Klein
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Extra resources for How to Behave: Buddhism and Modernity in Colonial Cambodia, 1860-1930 (Southeast Asia: Politics, Meaning, and Memory)

Example text

And asked, “ . . what acts of wrongdoing have they performed . . ” Mãtali, Charioteer of the Gods . . described [the ripening of] the fruit of wrong actions . . 36 They oppressed, criticized, and derided beings less powerful than themselves. ”38 After witnessing more gruesome scenes like this, King Nemi is transported to the levels of the heavens, where his sensations become markedly more pleasant. He learns of the wonderful celestial rewards experienced by people who give generously and create bene¤ts for others: King Nemi [said], “This palace with the appearance of meritorious actions,39 splendid with glittering walls made of diamonds and crystals, divided into symmetrical sections!

First, in a discussion of the linkage between the cosmos, temporality, and the history of the Dhamma in the Trai Bhûm, a cosmological text, I point to the prevalent imagining of a morally constructed universe, one in which the very temporal and spatial structure of the physical world has moral dimensions. This is the context in which human moral progress must take place. The second theme is the representation of moral development as individual journeys through this morally constructed cosmos. Third, I look at assertions about the relationship between power and merit, the spiritual bene¤t that accrues to those who live virtuously and generously support the Buddhist Sangha.

By contrast, in the Vessantar-jãtak, the idea that one person’s acts have cosmic moral reverberations is depicted quite literally, in the quaking of the earth, the churning of the waters, and the act of obeisance performed by Mount Sumeru. For the parents holding their children, this series of climactic scenes in the Vessantar-jãtak perhaps provided textual and ethical moments in which it was possible for those in the audience to recognize their own interdependence. When Vessantar gives away his children, all beings in the three realms and even the physical landscape of the earth itself are shown to be joined together.

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How to Behave: Buddhism and Modernity in Colonial Cambodia, 1860-1930 (Southeast Asia: Politics, Meaning, and Memory) by Anne Ruth Hansen

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