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    New Research Topics of Asian Religions

    Subjects: Religion
    View times: 493
    Submitted by: Song Chong Lee
    (This entry belongs to Entry Collection "Asian Religion ")


    This entry opens up a discussion on new research ideas of Asian religions for the contemporary world. 

    1. Introduction

    This entry collection features new research ideas, discoveries, and results on Asian religions. The geographic areas include but not limited to South Asia, Southeast Asia, and East Asia. With consideration of the theological, philosophical, and devotional complexity that most Asian religions share, this entry is open to a variety of themes and research methodologies. The themes covered in this entry collection explore major traditions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism, and their sectarian developments and interaction with Western traditions such as Christianity and Islam. Possible topics are as follows: textual studies embracing both exegesis and eisegesis, ritual studies, philosophical reflections, the study of religiously inspired pop-culture such as manga and anime, comparative studies with Western counterparts, interdisciplinary discussions discovering the extended role and meaning of religion in society such as feminist, psychological, and sociological approaches, biographical essays of historically significant religious figures, the study of mysticism and folk religions, the historical survey of religious communities and movements, the discussion of the instrumentality of Asian religions in responding to contemporary issues, and application and reevaluation of religious theories. This entry collection welcomes new ideas of all areas of research on Asian religions and particularly encourages innovative approaches to the old themes and theoretical development and expansion. Possible sub-topics/sub-entries, which can be developed out of this entry collection, can be as follows:

    2. Buddhism in Cyberspace

    Cyberspace is a conceptual, functional domain[1]constructed through the Internet’s infrastructure and digital technology, in which people create a virtual self and life, interact with others, exchange ideas, perform meaningful and productive acts and build a new sense of self and community. This concept is known to have been first used by William Gibson in his writings in Omni magazine and Neuromancer.[2]Cyberspace is real not physically but functionally. According to Statista,[3]almost 4.57 billion people, which are 59% of the world population, use the Internet. As we get connected to each other online faster than ever, not only is the general perception of self and community being questioned, reshaped, and expanded but we also feel that some of our moral understandings are not relevant to the new challenges in cyberspace. For this new wave of technological advances, Buddhism has a lot to offer. Of the countless issues related to cyberspace, the state of mind, personal identity, and the notion of belonging and community are profound philosophical themes to deal with the fundamental human problems in this epoch. The world suffering from cyber-crimes, cyber-terrorism, and cyberwar is seeking answers not only to develop a new technology to counteract those unwanted outcomes but also to build a positive disposition in human character, which can foster a new sense of self and community to move our world forward. In particular, Buddhism’s larger sense of self and impact of human action and its deeper understanding of interconnectedness of both physical encounters and the states and flows of human consciousness would enrich our conversation of cyberspace and our identity and morals.

    3. Other topics: 

    Pandemics and Asian Religion

    New Religious Movements in Asia

    Globalism, Glocalism, and Indigenization

    Interreligious Dialogue and Asian Religions

    Asian Religions for Environment

    Sexuality and Asian Religions

    Asian Christianity

    Ethics of Asian Religions

    Politics, Democracy, and Asian Religions

    Migration and Asian Religions

    Asian Religions for Cosmopolitanism

    AI and Asian Religions

    Happiness and Asian Religions


    1. Andi Mihail Băncilă; Cyberspace - the new dimension of human interaction. Scientific Bulletin 2018, 23, 5-10, 10.2478/bsaft-2018-0001.
    2. Cyberspace . Britannica. Retrieved 2020-5-4
    3. Global Digital Population as of April 2020 . Statista. Retrieved 2020-5-4