佛教与商业丶市场与功德:古今佛教与经济的互动

佛教与商业丶市场与功德:古今佛教与经济的互动

国际研讨会规划 作为新兴的交叉研究领域,佛教与经济之关联正日益受到学术界的关注。富有影响的德国着名学者马克思·韦伯(Max Weber)在讨论新教伦理时,曾认为佛教的遁世态度切断了其与任何经济伦理的关联。然而,佛教经济史丶社会史及人类学等方面的研究,已逐渐转变了学术界关於佛教僧尼与世隔绝丶遗世孤立的刻板印像。纵观古今,寺院和僧团一直是其所在社会的重要经济力量:透过以慈悲和功德为基础的净财募施丶慈善事业丶以及商业经营等途径,佛教影响力得以深入社会各个方面,为其持续发展奠定了基础。 与此同时,经济学和社会学领域的中外学者在面对当代社会资源环境丶商业伦理丶可持续发展等多方面的议题时,亦开始把目光投向佛教,希望从中寻求对改善当今社会经济问题有所助益的见地和实践方法。在这样的语境之下,对佛教经济活动和经营理念的历史性探索,与当代社会经济的现实性问题相交,形成了与佛教相关的历史学丶宗教学丶人类学丶经济学丶社会学等多学科交叉研究的新范畴。 为此,以增进各领域学者交流沟通丶相互启发为目的,“市场与功德”学术会议将於2017年6月16日到18日在加拿大英属哥伦比亚大学(UBC)举行。此次会议由UBC佛教研究论坛和“佛教与东亚宗教”(Buddhism and East Asian Religions, www.frogbear.org)项目资助,该项目作为跨国界丶跨学科的长期研究课题,新近得到了加拿大联邦政府社会和人文科学研究委员会(SSHRC)的基金支持。会议组织者在此诚挚邀请关注佛教与经济交叉研究的学者提交论文,从人类学丶历史学丶哲学丶社会学丶文本学以及其他角度深化学术界对佛教经济史与当代经济议题相关性的理解。论文可涵盖(但不限於)以下话题: 社会经济学理论方法在研究佛教活动及其效果上的运用和局限; 佛教经济学领域的新发展; 与佛教艺术相关的器物制造等活动中存在的经济关系; 佛教理念对经济实践研究的启发; 佛教丶经济与性别之间的交叉研究; 东亚佛教和企业创新文化之间的关联; 佛教经济实践在过去及当下跨区域交流中所承担的角色,特别是和所谓的“丝绸之路” (Silk Road)以及“书籍之路” (Book Road)相关的研究; 在环境方面,佛教活动可能带来的效用; 科技变革与佛教实践(如创造功德)之间的关联; 寺庙与僧侣在资财的创造丶使用和转化中所起的作用,例如和“无尽藏”相关的印度大乘佛教理念和实践,以及据称实践了“无尽藏”理念的中国隋唐时期的三阶教; 对於佛教在促进经济或倡导平等等方面有所启发的故事丶历史丶或当代实例。 Continue reading

Lines and Enlightenment: Chan Buddhism and Literature in Medieval China

August 9, 2016. Vancouver, Canada.
The relationship between literary and religious activities has been a lasting theme for any society of any time all over the world. One lens to see through the patterns of interactions between the religious and literary practitioners is provided by the relationship between Chan Buddhism and literature in medieval China. This one-day workshop, co-sponsored by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and the UBC Buddhist Studies Forum, invites several top scholars based in China and Canada to jointly shed new light on this intriguing issue.

The Second International Conference on the Wutai Cult

July 19-24, 2016. Great Sage Monastery of Bamboo Grove, Mount Wutai, China.
Located in central China, the mountain range known as Wutai 五臺 was perceived as the new Chinese abode for the famous Indian bodhisattva, Mañjuśrī. As such, it came to be widely venerated by Buddhist believers from all over East Asia. This conference explores a plethora of trans-cultural, multi-ethnic, and cross-regional factors that contributed to the formation and transformation of the cult centered on Wutai and its dwelling bodhisattva (Mañjuśrī), as well as the “international” roles (religious, political, economic, commercial, diplomatic and even military) that the Wutai-centered cult has played in Asia and beyond.

“Compassionate Killing”: Violence in East Asian Buddhism

May 29, 2016. Vancouver, Canada.
This workshop aims to throw light on East Asian Buddhism’s involvement in warfare and other violent and semi-violent activities (e.g., military chaplains and counsellors, warriors, practitioners and promoters of the martial arts, and spices). In addition to bringing to light an important (and severely understudied) front in which the samgha (i.e., Buddhist community) intervened in the secular world, this workshop will also underscore the necessity to move beyond studying the “real situation of Buddhism” through the prism of the Buddhist precepts, which prescribed, rather than described, the circumstances under which the samgha grew and was transformed. Another aim is to study new features and patterns of state-samgha relations in East Asia.

East Asian Manuscript and Print as Harbingers of the Digital Future

May 26-28, 2016. Vancouver, Canada.
While considering reading, writing, and media today alongside Asian traditions of the past, this event will also look ahead toward ways of preserving and transmitting the past, including demonstrations of digitization in the fields of education, library studies, journalism, history, literature, and religion. The roundtable will bring scholars, curators, librarians, community leaders, and policymakers into conversation to examine an array of approaches and technologies.