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Old 12-17-2012, 07:43 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
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When in Sri Lanka I had a guide/driver, he was Catholic and had a crucifix in his car (that's why I asked him if he was a Christian), but I noticed every time we passed say a Buddhist or Hindu temple, or a statue of Buddha, Ganesha or other Hindu Gods, he would bow and put his hands together, as if acknowledging them or something. As he did before statues of saints, Mary or Christ. I didn't ask him about it, but I do wonder what he was doing. I don't think he worshipped Buddha, Ganesha.etc lol, I mean I can understand Buddha, maybe he respected him as a teacher/another saint, but the Hindu gods were more puzzling. Was he merely acknowledging the spiritual nature of them? Is there something about Sri Lankan culture I don't know about?

Which got me wondering about how Christians view other religions in Asia. It'd vary a lot by country, the type of Christian they are (Catholic, Protestant, also Anglican, Pentacostal, Baptist, Presbyterian). My assumption is that, as in Brazil and Africa, Catholics seem to blend more with other religions/folk religions than Protestants. Then again, I know Diem, the South Vietnamese president, was anti-Buddhist and destroyed many temples. It'd be interesting to see what say Korean Christians think about Buddhism/Taoism/Confucianism. The last is probably not as much a problem apart from the ancestor worship since it's more of a philosophy. What about the Philippines? How 'pure' is their Catholicism/Christianity? In Japan or something where it's such a minority I guess Christians can't help but be more tolerant. You also have the whole Muslim thing in Indonesia, Malaysia etc.

 
Old 12-18-2012, 01:51 AM
kyh
 
Location: Malaysia & Singapore
383 posts, read 1,061,470 times
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Korean Protestants have had a notorious track record in persecuting Buddhists and Confucianists (google that up), including one megachurch service where the flock prayed for the Buddhist temples in Korea to "come crumbling down" (youtube video). So much for "love thy neighbour".

In Malaysia/Singapore, the charismatics and members of the house churches, as well as Jehovah Witnesses generally adopt a fundamentalist, radical, or puritanical outlook in religion, and are less tolerant than other Christian groups. They are extremely notorious for preaching door to door in school campuses and distributing leaflets in residential areas. They refer to the traditional mainstream churches as 'dead churches'. Their practices and closed services appear cultish to me, as are their behaviours.

Presbyterian and some Baptist groups can be quite conservative too, and sometimes pushy in preaching their faith. From my experience, the most pleasant groups are the Catholics and Anglicans - they don't shove their faith to you, and they don't evoke God's name in vain, or place God by their mouth wherever they go, which is quite a contrast to their co-religionists centuries ago where Catholics were known to be extremely radical and fervent proselytisers in the region.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 03:00 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyh View Post
Korean Protestants have had a notorious track record in persecuting Buddhists and Confucianists (google that up), including one megachurch service where the flock prayed for the Buddhist temples in Korea to "come crumbling down" (youtube video). So much for "love thy neighbour".

In Malaysia/Singapore, the charismatics and members of the house churches, as well as Jehovah Witnesses generally adopt a fundamentalist, radical, or puritanical outlook in religion, and are less tolerant than other Christian groups. They are extremely notorious for preaching door to door in school campuses and distributing leaflets in residential areas. They refer to the traditional mainstream churches as 'dead churches'. Their practices and closed services appear cultish to me, as are their behaviours.

Presbyterian and some Baptist groups can be quite conservative too, and sometimes pushy in preaching their faith. From my experience, the most pleasant groups are the Catholics and Anglicans - they don't shove their faith to you, and they don't evoke God's name in vain, or place God by their mouth wherever they go, which is quite a contrast to their co-religionists centuries ago where Catholics were known to be extremely radical and fervent proselytisers in the region.
Christianity in South Korea has grown a lot since 1960, I think it's a lot of the American Evangelical influence that makes them very zealous and evangelical, they send out more missionaries than any other country after the US.

Yeah my dad is Malaysian and a Christian, my mum is Singaporean, and they're very against other religions. I mean I can understand it, idols are supposed to be an abomination to God, but I do wonder about the Buddhists statues in particular, it probably depends on how the individual sees Buddha, whether as a God or just a teacher. My parents were both raised in Buddhist families, although after his conversion to Christianity my dad prayed that a big statue of Guanyin or Buddha in Penang would fall to the ground, much in the same way as those Koreans...I also know that some Protestants think that Catholics pray to or worship Mary and the saints which is mostly false. Then again I know a lot of Christians who aren't like that, so it's a pretty personal thing too.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 05:35 AM
kyh
 
Location: Malaysia & Singapore
383 posts, read 1,061,470 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
Christianity in South Korea has grown a lot since 1960, I think it's a lot of the American Evangelical influence that makes them very zealous and evangelical, they send out more missionaries than any other country after the US.

Yeah my dad is Malaysian and a Christian, my mum is Singaporean, and they're very against other religions. I mean I can understand it, idols are supposed to be an abomination to God, but I do wonder about the Buddhists statues in particular, it probably depends on how the individual sees Buddha, whether as a God or just a teacher. My parents were both raised in Buddhist families, although after his conversion to Christianity my dad prayed that a big statue of Guanyin or Buddha in Penang would fall to the ground, much in the same way as those Koreans...I also know that some Protestants think that Catholics pray to or worship Mary and the saints which is mostly false. Then again I know a lot of Christians who aren't like that, so it's a pretty personal thing too.
Honestly, that is a radical and creepy view, and the only difference between that and the destruction of the Bamyan Buddhas is that the Talibans actually carried out what they had in mind. If every follower of each religion in this world is having this "destruction to other religions" mindset, human civilizations would have been wiped out for a long time. Thankfully not everyone holds the same view and we're still surviving.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 05:54 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
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Originally Posted by kyh View Post
Honestly, that is a radical and creepy view, and the only difference between that and the destruction of the Bamyan Buddhas is that the Talibans actually carried out what they had in mind. If every follower of each religion in this world is having this "destruction to other religions" mindset, human civilizations would have been wiped out for a long time. Thankfully not everyone holds the same view and we're still surviving.
Yeah they're pretty zealously against anything remotely idolatorous, they didn't even like the fact I took photos of some of the temples in Taiwan lol.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 06:12 AM
kyh
 
Location: Malaysia & Singapore
383 posts, read 1,061,470 times
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Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
Yeah they're pretty zealously against anything remotely idolatorous, they didn't even like the fact I took photos of some of the temples in Taiwan lol.
Some Protestant friends of mine don't even like the idea of entering temples, because the latter "creep them out". Many Muslims here have never entered a house of worship other than their own. I think a majority of them hold the same view too.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 06:53 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
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Originally Posted by kyh View Post
Some Protestant friends of mine don't even like the idea of entering temples, because the latter "creep them out". Many Muslims here have never entered a house of worship other than their own. I think a majority of them hold the same view too.
Oh yeah they won't enter temples even just to have a look. They think that evil spirits dwell there. Although my grandmother, who is a Buddhist/Taoist, has a shrine in her house and we stay there because it's convenient. My dad thinks there are evil spirits there and that he feels 'oppressed' every time we stay there.

I mean if God is protecting you why should you fear what idols of stone can do? I sort of think it's educating to see how people of other religions worship. I mean I don't approve of idol worship myself, but since I've travelled throughout Asia a lot I guess a lot of the architectural sights and whatnot are religious as well.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 07:15 AM
kyh
 
Location: Malaysia & Singapore
383 posts, read 1,061,470 times
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We are no longer living in a feudal world, and to have that unfounded paranoia and close-mindedness is just plain silly. And it is this mindset that gives birth to lots of conflicts and ignorance of cultures other than our own. Take the religious rights of the US as an example. Most of them have never encountered the so-called "devil or enemy culture" personally, and yet they are all made to believe that those are tricks of the devil to fool the believers. Many have absolutely no idea of the world beyond their backyard, and yet they argue like they have seen it all.

If God had intended us all to be a follower of Him, say a Christian, He would have made all of us born into a Christian family. The reason why there are so many ethnics and creeds out there is to give us all the chance to learn and appreciate each other, enriching our lives with the good and ridding ourselves from the bad, and not demeaning and vilifying the other because "they're different than us". Respect and tolerance are something we've yearned for so long but are vanishing in this world instead. Most religions preach "love", and yet more often than not, the followers that claimed to be following a religion of peace and love are spreading pure hatred instead, which is extremely sickening.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 07:19 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,352,353 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyh View Post
We are no longer living in a feudal world, and to have that close-mindedness is just plain silly. And it is this mindset that gives birth to lots of conflicts and ignorance of cultures other than our own. If God had intended us all to be a follower of Him, say a Christian, He would have made all of us born into a Christian family. The reason why there are so many ethnics and creeds out there is to make us all learn and appreciate each other, not demeaning and vilifying the other because "they're different than us". Respect and tolerance are something we've yearned for so long but are vanishing in this world instead. Most religions preach "love", and yet more often than not, the followers that claimed to be following a religion of peace and love are spreading pure hatred instead, which is extremely sickening.
I agree that there's a risk of thinking of heathens as deserving of punishment (in this world and the next I suppose too) and, by extension, excusing hatred and violence towards them. This is a corruption of Jesus' teachings, and even Ashoka, the Indian king, killed many for being 'heretics' against Buddhism. I do respect my parents' views, I mean they don't hate Hindus or Buddhists as people. As a child though I remember hearing about how all the unsaved, including my grandmother, would end up in hell, and that it was so important that we save as many souls as possible. It must be a big burden to bear to believe that most people are headed for eternal wrath and it's up to you to save them.
 
Old 12-18-2012, 07:51 AM
kyh
 
Location: Malaysia & Singapore
383 posts, read 1,061,470 times
Reputation: 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I agree that there's a risk of thinking of heathens as deserving of punishment (in this world and the next I suppose too) and, by extension, excusing hatred and violence towards them. This is a corruption of Jesus' teachings, and even Ashoka, the Indian king, killed many for being 'heretics' against Buddhism. I do respect my parents' views, I mean they don't hate Hindus or Buddhists as people. As a child though I remember hearing about how all the unsaved, including my grandmother, would end up in hell, and that it was so important that we save as many souls as possible. It must be a big burden to bear to believe that most people are headed for eternal wrath and it's up to you to save them.
That's exactly the same thing I've been hearing hahaha.

Anyway, I think it is unfair if we were to judge every heathen as hell-worthy - some creeds and nations may not even have heard of Jesus or the Bible in their lifetime! Before the globalized age, many people living outside the Christian radar were born and brought up with the only religion they had known all their life, and to punish them with hellfire is just too unimaginable.

It is the same with the Muslim population here. Since the day they were born, they've been repeatedly taught that Islam is the only true path to God and other religions are corrupted and thus, hell-worthy. Even a tiny bit curiosity of other religions or the searching of 'truths' in them would have alarmed the family members, neighbours, and the whole community. They would have sent him to some religious rehab camps in order to walk him back to the original path. That's why the authorities are extremely paranoid and wary of proselytization efforts by Christian missionaries, which are deemed as the number 1 danger to the faith of Muslims.

But what I appreciate is that the Muslims would not openly preach their faith to non-Muslims the same way the Christians do in public - they only preach in mosques, Muslim centres, or on TV but then the targeted group are mainly Muslims themselves. Even if they disapprove of other religions, they voice it out within their own premise and not shove their views down your throat like the Christian zealots, who will always scare you with hell and etc.
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