RLST 102, EAST 390
Atheism and Buddhism
A critical examination of atheism and religions (Buddhism), with a focus on intellectual, religious, philosophical, and scientific debates about God, the origin of the universe, morality, evolution, neuroscience, happiness, enlightenment, the afterlife, and karma. Readings selected from philosophical, scientific, and religious writings. Authors include some of the following: Charles Darwin, Bertrand Russell, Christopher Hitchins, Richard Dawkins, Deepak Chopra, Sam Harris, Owen Flanagan, Stephen Batchelor, and the Dalai Lama.
RLST 121, EAST 391
Religion and Culture in Korea
Introduction to Shamanism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, Christianity, and new religions in Korea from ancient times to the present. Examination of religious traditions in close relationships with social, economic, political, and cultural environments in Korean society. Examination of religious tensions, philosophical arguments, and ethical issues that indigenous and foreign religions in Korea have engaged throughout history to maximize their influence in Korean society.
RLST 357, EAST 392, WGSS 359
Buddhism and Sexuality
Critical examination of the relation of religion and sexuality with special attention to Buddhism. Discussion of religious interpretations of sex, sexuality, and gender; the codification and normalization of these rules through texts, symbols, and practices; and recent challenges to these interpretations. Topics include homosexuality, same-sex marriage, abortion, contraception, gender equality, clerical marriage, married clerics’ wives, and clerical sexual abuse. Draws on religious theory, gender theory, and critical theory. Places Buddhism in conversation with Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions.
RLST 598, EAST 511
Modern Korean Buddhism in the Global Context
This course situates modern Korean Buddhism in the global context of the late nineteenth century to the present. Through critical examination of the dynamic relationship between Korean Buddhism and the Buddhisms of key East Asian cities—Shanghai, Tokyo, Taipei, and Lhasa—the course seeks to understand modern East Asian Buddhism in a transnational light. Discussion includes analyzing the impact of Christian missionaries, pan-Asian and global ideologies, colonialism, Communism, capitalism, war, science, hypermodernity, and atheism.