Buddhist networks amid political transition


From Comrades to Bodhisattvas: Moral Dimensions of Lay Buddhist Practice in Contemporary China
written by Gareth Fisher

2014 | 301 pages | 13 illustrations
Cloth | ISBN 978-0-8248-3966-6 | $50.00
Topics in Contemporary Buddhism


“From Comrades to Bodhisattvas reveals for the first time an important and rapidly developing aspect of Chinese religiosity—the rise of lay Buddhism, which takes place in the cracks of China’s strict system of religious control. Nothing in the current literature on Buddhism or on religion in China is comparable to Fisher’s important contribution. His fascinating findings include, for example, showing how a ‘karmic’ morality offers an alternative for people unhappy with the more utilitarian morality of connection-building that characterizes much of life in Beijing. Other sections show counter-intuitively how a nostalgia for some of the ideals of the Maoist period—a sense of community, a commitment to a kind of egalitarian fairness for all, a broadly shared sense of thrift and poverty—can combine with Buddhist ideals to create a critique of the current system.” —Robert P. Weller, Boston University