Lina Verchery F'15
The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Dissertation Fellowships in Buddhist Studies 2015
The Fajie Fojiao Zonghui: Rethinking Monasticism, Moral Selfhood, and Modernity
This dissertation explores modern Chinese Buddhist monasticism and the cultivation of moral personhood through the first ethnographic study of Master Xuan Hua's (1918-1995) transnational Buddhist monastic organization, the Fajie Fojiao Zonghui (Dharma Realm Buddhist Association, DRBA). Using the DRBA as a case study, this study situates the phenomenon of religious conservativism within a larger program of self-cultivation that promotes a particular vision of moral personhood. I show that this vision is inextricably modern, and has much to contribute to current discussions of personhood, agency, and ethics in the broader field of Buddhist Studies.