Places of worship in Shanghai (Slide-show)

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Places of worship in Shanghai (Slide-show)

Postby long_way » Sun Jun 29, 2008 1:42 pm ... 4338/show/

Religion in China (source: wikipedia and )

The People's Republic of China was established in 1949. Its government is officially atheist, which viewed religion as emblematic of feudalism and foreign colonialism.

Religious belief or practice was banned because it was regarded as backward and superstitious by some of the communist leaders, from Vladimir Lenin to Mao Zedong, who had been critical of religious institutions.

In recent times, the government has expressed support for Buddhism and Taoism, organizing the World Buddhist Forum in 2006 and the International Forum on the Daodejing in 2007. The government sees these religions as an integral part of Chinese culture.

In October 2007, the new statute of China cites religion as an important element of citizens' life. However, the Chinese government has also banned religious cults such as the Falun Gong and Xiantianism.

Although the People's Republic of China extends official recognition to some religious communities (Protestantism, Islam, Taoism, and Buddhism), Orthodox Christianity and Roman Catholicism are not among them (though with the latter, the Chinese government had formed a "Patriotic Catholic Church" or "Patriotic Catholic Association" that is not in communion with Rome). The officially declared reason for the government's non-recognition of The Orthodox Church is the government's fear that external political forces from outside nations—in this case, primarily Russia—could achieve influence within China. This places the Church to the legal status of religio illicita.
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