Fourth Japan-American Daoist Studies Conference
March 29-30, Tacoma, Washington
Organized by Terry Kleeman and hosted by Pacific Lutheran University, this meeting brought together eight Japanese and eight American scholars, plus three observers from Taiwan to discuss issues of transmission in Daoism. Japanese delegates include Asano Haruji, Hirose Naoki, Ikehira Noriko, Maruyama Hiroshi, Matsumoto Koichi, Mori Yuria, and Tanaka Fumio. The American presenters were Steve Bokenkamp, Daniel Burton-Rose, Michael Como, Stephen Eskildsen, Xun Liu, Gil Raz, and Terry Kleeman. Chang Chaojan (Fu Jen Catholic University), Erik Hammerstrom (Pacific Lutheran University), Hsieh Shu-wei (National Chengchi University), Lee Feng-mao (Academia Sinica emeritus), YamadaToshiaki (Toyo University) observed the proceedings. Questions were raised about the distinction between genuine and apocryphal materials, forms of liturgy and services, with a particular focus on transmission rituals, as well as internal alchemy and local practices.
Quanzhen Daoist Studies Conference
October 21-20, Weihai, Shandong
Funded by the Blue Pine Monastery (Qingsong guan) of Hong Kong, and organized by Zhao Weidong of Shandong Normal University, the two conference was attended by eleven Daoist scholars from various institutions of China, US and Japan who presented recent research on the early development of Quanzhen Daoism. Participants included Xun Liu, Fan Guangchun, Zhang Guangbao, Yin Zhihua, Guo Wu, Zhou Ying, Zhang [End Page 222] Yisheng, Wu Guangzheng, Qin Guoshuai, Fu Haiyan, and more. Topics focused on doctrinal issues as well as the lives of Jin-Yuan period Daoist masters, lineages, and the development of major centers, such as Laoshan and Taishan.
International Symposium on Daoist Studies
July 29-31, Mufushan, Hunan
The inaugural meeting of a new joint venture, by Renmin and Rutgers Universities and organized by Liu Xun and He Jianming, this was held on scenic Mt. Mufu 幕阜山 near Ping-jiang in Hunan. It convened over 60 scholars, mostly Chinese, but including also representatives from Japan, France, and the US. Presentations focused on local and regional expressions of Daoism, especially in Hunan, covering a wide range of periods from the middle ages to modernity, and also ventured into textual and ritual studies. A fruitful and pleasant, highly engaging event.
Religious Practice and Literary Expression
December 14-17, Wuhan, Hubei
Sponsored by and held at Wuhan University, this third meeting on issues of religion and literature brought together 80-plus scholars from N. America, Europe, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan, including 23 from the host institution. They explored the presence of Buddhist and Daoist themes in traditional Chinese poetry as well as the development of key mythological themes in doctrine and fiction. Particular attention was paid to more recent manifestations, including Western studies of Buddhist literature, issues of translation, and new developments over the last few decades. Other areas explored include hagiography, the religious role of poetry, and religious themes in popular novels. Short excursions were also taken into popular religion and Christianity.
—Liu Xun [End Page 223]
Third International Symposium of Quanzhen Daoism and Lao-Zhuang Studies
March 25-27, 2016, Wuhan, China
Sponsored by the Daoist Studies Center of Huazhong Normal University (Wuhan) and the Quanzhen Research Institute of Qingsong guan (Hong Kong), this conference convened 150 participants, including many young scholars, from seven countries (China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Europe, USA). About ninety presentations focused either on traditional Daoist thought in Laozi and Zhuangzi or new explorations of the Complete Perfection School, notably of activities, institutions, and masters in specific locations in late imperial China. The conference had extensive plenary sessions, with only Saturday morning divided into three panels. There was little room for discussion, but commentators provided comprehensive integration and pertinent questions. The conference was followed by a two-day excursion to Xingzhou, an ancient walled city on the Yangtze, joined by seventy participants.
Daoism: Self, Science, and Society 10th International Conference on Daoist Studies
May 25-29, Miaoli, Taiwan
Sponsored by the Society for the Study of Religious Philosophy and held at the spectacular Tian’an Taihe Retreat Center of Tiandijiao, this convened 180 participants from 20 countries. In ten sessions of four parallel events each, over a hundred presenters offered their recent research and/or practice expertise to a highly appreciative audience. Panels discussed Daoism in relation to art...