Temple-Hopping and Virtual Prayers

Following a Zhejiang temple’s inundation with applicants for short-term monkhood, Zoey Zhang at The Diplomat looks at young Chinese seeking temporary refuge from the pressures of the dusty world: During the ten-day camp...

Can Traditional Chinese Medicine Survive?

At Aeon Magazine, James Palmer describes the political, economic and cultural drives behind the $60 billion Traditional Chinese Medicine industry in China and Hong Kong, and its uneasy relationship with science and modern...

Officials Seek Career Shortcuts With Feng Shui

At The New York Times, Dan Levin reports that some officials, eager to ward off career pitfalls ranging from protests to vengeful mistresses, are turning to feng shui and other alternative strategies for guidance and protection....

China to Banish Superstition, Promote Knowledge

Reuters covers State Administration of Religious Affairs director Wang Zuoan’s position on the importance of discouraging “superstitious” religious belief and promoting scientifically informed knowledge, as he...

Yu Hua: Feudal Answers for Modern Problems

While the Communist Party has long-excluded religion from its vision for China, some Chinese officials and common people still hold on to rather feudal beliefs. The well-known author, Yu Hua, tells stories on the New York Times:...

Add Locusts to China’s List of Calamities

Mark Magnier at the Los Angeles Times reports on an infestation of locusts that is threatening the Olympics, set to open in just over a month: Locusts? What is going on here? The litany of near-biblical woes would seem to lack...

Superstitions Fly as Chinese Reel from a Bad (Luck) Year

The Christian Science Monitor’s Peter Ford takes a look at Chinese superstitions in light of the country’s recent woes and the upcoming Olympic Games: Chinese popular culture is rich with symbolism: It is customary...

Earthquake Predicted? Rumors Rife

As the rescue crews continue to drag bodies out of the rubble of the Wenchuan earthquake, Meng Zhang at Global Voices translates a blog post written by CASS researcher Li Shihui, in which the seismologist says one of his...

Beijing Expects Weddings Rush as Olympics Open

It may sound superstitious, but many Chinese young couples want to tie the knot on a lucky day—the most auspicious one in 2008 happens to be Aug.8, the day Beijing Olympic Games opens. From AFP: The Beijing government is...

More Than Half Of Chinese Officials Of County Level Believe In Fortune Tellers

According to this article in Hong Kong’s Wenhui Daily, (via, a recent large-scale survey focusing on government officials at the county level (Âéø§ÑÁ∫ßÂÖ¨Âä°Âëò) revealed 54% of officials believe in superstition. The survey was done by a study group of National Administration College (ÂõΩÂÆ∂Ë°åÊîøÂ≠¶Èô¢), The report is named„ÄäAnalytical Report of Basic Science Literacy of County […]

In a China Flush With Fortune, Many now Want Theirs Told – Peter Ford

From Christian Science Monitor: In a culture increasingly focused on personal wealth, many Chinese look to traditional fortunetelling tools to enrich them. As the Chinese New Year approaches, heralding the auspicious Year of the Pig, porkers are everywhere. Fifteen-foot-high inflatable pigs beckon shoppers into electronics stores; fluffy pink pig snouts enliven winter ear-muffs; corkscrew tails […]

Dead Bachelors in Remote China Still Find Wives – Jim Yardley

From the New York Times: For many Chinese, an ancestor is someone to honor, but also someone whose needs must be maintained. Families burn offerings of fake money or paper models of luxury cars in case an ancestor might need pocket change or a stylish ride in the netherworld. But here in the parched canyons […]



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