Friday, November 16 at 6:30 pm
Buddhism in Canada by Professor Victor Hori
The Japan Foundation, Toronto, 131 Bloor Street West, 2nd Floor
RSVP required: http://www.jftor.org/whatson/rsvp.php or 416-966-1600 x 103
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Buddhism came to Canada more than a century ago but for most of that period it remained confined to the Japanese community and unnoticed by mainstream Canadian culture. Then in the late 1970s, it suddenly started to grow, propelled by increased immigration from other Asian countries and by Westerners who began converting to Buddhism. Today although still a minority religion, Buddhism is becoming more and more a mainstream cultural option. In Canada there are more than 500 Buddhist temples, meditation centres and monasteries catering to both Asian immigrant communities and to Western converts. Practices associated with Buddhism—like meditation, vegetarianism and the shaved head—have split off and are now practiced by non-Buddhists. As Professor Hori will explain, all this testifies to the dramatic growth and acceptance of Buddhism in recent years.
Victor Sōgen Hori
Associate Professor, Japanese Religion, McGill University, Faculty of Religious Studies
Victor Sōgen Hori received his doctoral degree in philosophy from Stanford University in 1976 and that same year was ordained a Zen monk. After devoting the next thirteen years to training the Rinzai Zen headquarters temple of Daitoku-ji in Kyoto, he returned to Canada to begin academic life. He has taught in the Faculty of Religious Studies at McGill since 1993 and is a member of the Centre for East Asian Research and the Centre for Medicine Ethics and Law. Professor Hori’s research topics include Asian religion and culture, the teaching of Buddhist philosophy, and the kōans of the Zen masters.
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