Religions of Korea in Practice
Edited by Robert E. Buswell Jr.
Korea has one of the most diverse religious cultures in the world today, with a range and breadth of religious practice virtually unrivaled by any other country. This volume in the Princeton Readings in Religions series is the first anthology in any language, including Korean, to bring together a comprehensive set of original sources covering the whole gamut of religious practice in both premodern and contemporary Korea.
The book's thirty-two chapters help redress the dearth of source materials on Korean religions in Western languages. Coverage includes shamanic rituals for the dead and songs to quiet fussy newborns; Buddhist meditative practices and exorcisms; Confucian geomancy and ancestor rites; contemporary Catholic liturgy; Protestant devotional practices; internal alchemy training in new Korean religions; and North Korean Juche ("self-reliance") ideology, an amalgam of Marxism and Neo-Confucian filial piety focused on worship of the "father," Kim Il Sung.
Religions of Korea in Practice provides substantial coverage of contemporary Korean religious practice, especially the various Christian denominations and new indigenous religions. Each chapter includes an extensive translation of original sources on Korean religious practice, accompanied by an introduction that frames the significance of the selections and offers suggestions for further reading. This book will help any reader gain a better appreciation of the rich complexity of Korea's religious culture.
Robert E. Buswell Jr. is Professor and former Chair of Asian Languages & Cultures at the University of California, Los Angeles, and founding director of the university's Center for Buddhist Studies and Center for Korean Studies. He is the author of The Zen Monastic Experience: Buddhist Practice in Contemporary Korea (Princeton), and editor in chief of The Encyclopedia of Buddhism.