One year ago today on Round and Square (12 April 2011)—Luoyang Longing.
|[a] Dragon Mountain Temple RF|
|[b] Incense RF|
The note itself is (this a familiar refrain of mine) not analytical enough. Still, the purpose of fieldnotes, from my perspective back then and now, is just to do them. Almost any level of detail will "call to mind" the material that an ethnographer needs in writing at more advanced stages of the process. Most of this note, however, is contextual, and represents a path toward explanation for people who tend to think about "multiple religions" in confrontational ways. The syncretic traditions I mention are key to understanding cultural life in China and, indeed, the rest of East Asia.
The "Confucian in the morning, Daoist by midday, and Buddhist by evening" idea is one that I first noted here, but have used in all sorts of ways in my teaching and writing over the years. It is a fairly common way of discussing syncretism in a Chinese context. It is as if to say that one can "live" all three doctrines, and that they merge and flow within individual and social life. For me, the most significant thing about this note in my career is that even this rather mediocre set of observations led me toward a great deal of further study and clearer articulations of this fascinating phenomenon which has different doctrines living side-by-side in everyday life.
|[c] Temple morning RF|