【Global Times】Xi stresses developing religions in Chinese context

2021-12-06 10:56:00 ciwa

Source: Global Times | 05-Dec-2021

Original link: https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202112/1240709.shtml

Such policy the only correct way for religions to better develop in this country: expert


Chinese President Xi Jinping has stressed upholding the principle of developing religions in the Chinese context and providing active guidance for the adaptation of religions to the socialist society.

Experts hailed that adoption of such policies is the only correct way for religious groups to develop themselves and to better integrate with the Chinese society, especially when the worldwide religious situation is becoming more complex.

Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, made the remarks while addressing a national conference on work related to religious affairs, held from Friday to Saturday in Beijing.

Xi highlighted fully implementing the CPC's theory on religious affairs in the new era, the basic policy on religious affairs, and the policy on the freedom of religious belief.

He required religious groups to strengthen their self-management and emphasized the need to improve the rule of law in religious affairs governance.

Efforts are needed to better rally and guide religious believers to work together with the general public to develop China into a great modern socialist country in all respects and realize the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation, Xi noted.


Zhuo Xinping, former director of the Institute of World Religions of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Sunday that stressing the importance of developing religion in the Chinese context is partly because some wrong ideas about China's religious development have emerged as the development of world religion has grown more complicated in recent years.

"Under the current situation, upholding the principle of developing religions in the Chinese context is the only correct way for China's religious development, with regard to the country's situation, history and cultural tradition," said Zhuo, noting that such policies can also improve religious development in China and make religions integrate with Chinese society and culture.

Zhuo further explained that developing religion in the Chinese context can help religion and religious people to play a positive role in building the society.


People dancing in front of Id Kah Mosque in Kashgar to celebrate Eid al-Fitr. Photo: Xinhua

In recent years, China's policies to guide religions to fit into the socialist society have been often hyped by Western media as "suppression of religious freedom." For example, a Fox News article published on January 8, 2021,  entitled China imposes harsh new rules governing religious groups in 2020, attacked a regulation on China's new regulation for religious groups emphasizing Party leadership, and called them a "total submission to the Communist Party of China."

However, the article failed to give any evidence to prove this absurd claim, observers found.

Zhuo said such behavior reflects a kind of cultural hegemony, where it tries to impose its own religious ideology on others and chides other countries' religious policies. But as some Western countries, especially the US, are adopting protectionism toward some mainstream religions, such as Catholicism and Christianism, while cracking down on other religions, it does not wish imported religions to integrate into its mainstream society.