Religion in China

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), January 25, 2004 | Go to article overview

Religion in China


Byline: Arnold Beichman, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Some years ago at a Washington meeting on the future of Asia, one of the panelists was the military attache at the Chinese Embassy. The then-head of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), Deng Xiao-ping, was busy introducing the first of many internal reforms, explaining Marxism didn't have all the answers.

At the end of the panel presentations, I asked the Chinese diplomat whether, in the light of Mr. Deng's surprising announcement, the People's Republic of China (PRC) was still a Marxist-Leninist state.

He stared at me and then began talking rapidly in Chinese. We were all amazed, because until that moment he had been speaking in better than passable English. In any case, the translation didn't answer my question.

Later I realized that while Mr. Deng's China was revising Marxism, the other half of communist ideology, Leninism - the totalitarian party - was unamendable and that for the Chinese leadership Leninism, unlike Marxism, has all the answers.

In other words, neither Mr. Deng nor any of his successors were going to do a Gorbachev - that is, rob a Leninist dictatorship of its revolutionary legitimacy.

The best proof of my thesis, that the PRC is welded to Leninism (while Marxism is in the eye of the revisionist beholder), is how badly to this very day religious Chinese are treated by the party, the police and the government. And I say to this very day because of the Jan. 6 appearance in the official party organ, People's Daily, of the latest article denouncing religion and congregants in language that goes back to the early post-revolution days in Russia.

The Soviet CP established a national newspaper called the Bezbozhnik, "The Godless," and in 1925 it established the "League of the Godless" in a campaign against the Russian Orthodox Church.

In China, the People's Daily message touting "scientific atheism" against what it calls "theism" is this: You can diddle with the economy as much as you can get away with, but you risk life and limb when you organize any institution, especially a religious institution, that might threaten CCP totalitarian power. As I read the People's Daily article, I thought to myself: How can anyone conceive of a reunion of Taiwan, a democratic land of free religious practice and free trade unions, with a communist dictatorship - one that regards all religions as contemptible?

The People's Daily commentary by Gong Xuezeng, a prolific anti-religion propagandist, is titled "Education in materialism, atheism must be further enhanced.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Religion in China
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.