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The Laughing Sutra

Essay by   •  August 18, 2013  •  Essay  •  250 Words (1 Pages)  •  1,562 Views

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The Laughing Sutra, written by Mark Salzman, incorporates Confucianism, Buddhism, and Hinduism while portraying the journey of a young Chinese man named Hsun-ching. These three religions were the main religions at the time when the book was set and the religion play an enormous role by helping tell Hsun-ching's s journey. Hsun-ching is a young man who was in the woods one day with his mother when his mother was attacked and killed. A man nearby saved Hsun-ching and took him to the monk Wei-ching's house to be protected. Wei-ching decided to keep Hsun-ching and teach him the ways of a Buddhist monk. Wei-ching read many scrolls and was always in search of The Laughing Sutra. This is why Hsun-ching went on his journey to america.

Confucianism is though to be more of a philosophy than a religion due to the fact that it is based around wise teachers instead of deities. Confucius, the founder of Confucianism, provided and ensured social order and a stable government, all while telling the people of China how to live virtuously. An example of Confucianism is Hsun-ching traveling from China to America to acquire the sacred scroll, The Laughing Sutra, for his ailing father Wei-ching. "I'm only doing this for Master because it's the only way I can pay him back for taking care of me" (Salzman 111). Even though Hsun-ching has no use for the scroll himself he is honoring his father by obtaining the sacred text and risking his life in the process.

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