Many Petals of the Lotus: Five Asian Buddhist Communities in Toronto

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University of Toronto Press, 1999 - History - 264 pages
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Toronto sustains a remarkable variety of distinct Buddhist communities. Over sixty Buddhist temples and associations represent a diversity of ethnic, national, and linguistic identities. Here, for the first time, is a rigorous, richly detailed, comparative examination of several groups within five Asian Buddhist communities: Japanese-Canadian, Tibetan, Vietnamese, Cambodian, and Chinese.

With an intimate knowledge of her subject matter, McLellan documents each group's establishment in Canada, and the specific shape of that group's practice today. She examines how innovative forms of worship and ritual services developed from the group's confrontation with Canadian social attitudes, constraints, and policies, and how transplantation acts as a catalyst for alterations in gender roles for both Sangha (ordained clergy) and laity. Buddhism, in responding to unstable local, national, and global realities, plays a crucial role in maintaining and reinforcing ethnic identity, and in coping with the stress of emigration.

Shedding light on unfamiliar concepts and presenting a wealth of new information, Many Petals of the Lotus is an essential source book for professionals, and compelling reading for anyone interested in the changing face of Buddhism.

  

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Contents

Overview of Buddhist Groups in Toronto
11
Japanese Canadians and Toronto Buddhist Church
35
Tibetan Buddhists in Toronto
74
Vietnamese Buddhists in Toronto
101
Cambodian Buddhists in Toronto
133
Chinese Buddhists in Toronto
159
Conclusion
190
BUDDHIST GROUPS IN TORONTO 1998
221
REFERENCES
237
INDEX
252
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

JANET MCLELLAN is a lecturer in the Department for the Study of Religion at the University of Toronto.

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