Name Title Description


Seminar in Asian Studies

Capstone experience for majors in the discipline. Varied topics.


Death and Afterlife

Overview of conceptions of death and afterlife in a variety of Asian religious contexts, such as Hindu, Jain, Buddhist, Shinto, and Daoist. Students will examine how religious communities conceptualize death and dying, manage the process of death, and re-create worlds of meaning, as well as how these implicate values concerning status, gender, and age. Examples of symbols explored include: Hindu rites of passage, Buddhist relic veneration, Chinese mummifications, Daoist thaumaturgy and funerary rites, Japanese Mizuko Kuyo (memorials for aborted fetuses), and others.


Religions of the World

Important ideas and practices of major religions in historical and cultural context.


Introduction to Buddhism

Examining the doctrines, practices, and communal life of the Buddhist religious tradition. Beginning with the origins of Buddhism in India, its spread and transformation through Asia and to the West. Exploring the various interpretations about Buddhology, the meaning of Dharma and how it becomes embodied in practice. Studying the Buddhist perspectives and approaches to issues and challenges Buddhist face in the modern world.


East Asian Buddhism

Aspects of East Asian Buddhism, focusing on the Bodhisattva model. The development of early Indian Buddhism and its role in the debate between early Buddhist schools and the emergent Mahayana views. The role of this model in the hagiographic traditions of Buddhist monks, nuns, founders, and saints. Special attention given to the pantheon of Bodhisattva Savior figures, such as Guan Yin (Kannon), Dizong (Jizo), and Milo (Maitreya).

University of Virginia
Harvard Divinity School
Southeastern Baptist Seminary
Furman University

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