China’s actions to sinicize religions rational and lawful

By Mu Lu Source:Global Times Published: 2019/4/7 21:53:40

Why was Buddhism able to take root in China? This is the first question anyone who wants to criticize China's religious policy should figure out. If you do not understand the question and its significance, you are actually not qualified to discuss this issue with China. 

Buddhism, like Islam, was also introduced to China from the outside, but Buddhism not only is deeply rooted in China, but also has an important influence on Buddhism around the world. One of the main reasons why Buddhism can survive and develop in China is its sinicization.

Ensuring freedom of religious beliefs is one of the most important issues related to human rights. This is a long-held concept of the Chinese government, which has been developing its own cause of human rights. The indigenization of Islam in China is essentially safeguarding, not harming, Muslims' human rights.

Religious governance in China is different from that in the West. We are trying to reasonably and legally manage religions to promote sinicization that will lead to a harmony between various religions and atheists in China. On the contrary, some Western countries are upholding so-called freedom, even allowing religions to develop and spread without limit, which has triggered confrontations between different theists. In some Western countries, discussing the indigenization of a certain religion has become taboo. 

Much of the global unrest in the past was caused by the spread of religions which led to conflicts against local traditions. But what we see from the governance of Western countries today is that they seem still to have no way to deal with the problem. China - different from how the West is describing - is not wiping out Islam, or assimilating it, or politicizing it, but rather sinicizing it. This is in fact conducive to Islam's existence and development in China, because any religion must adapt to a country's culture and national conditions, otherwise it wouldn't have room to survive, not to mention to blossom. 

Islam's development in China now is facing the increasing impact of extreme thoughts and overseas separatism, which has led to extreme incidents. This once overlooked reality has given the Chinese government no choice but to solve extremist problems brought about by foreign religious infiltration with strong means. Such measures aim to ensure stability, peace and development in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, which are the best guarantee and protection of local residents' human rights. 

China's attempt of religious sinicization is rational and lawful based on its history and national conditions. There are various branches of Islam in the world, so there must be one fitting Chinese culture and national conditions. Chinese Muslims have made efforts in this field and they should be encouraged to carry them forward. 

The vocational education and training centers in Xinjiang are part of China's efforts in religious sinicization. They help trainees get rid of extreme thoughts and learn to integrate into the country's development. 

Understanding China's religious policy is not difficult. The key is whether you are willing to understand it according to China's actual situation. Some alleged Western experts and human rights activists do not want to understand China's efforts in religious affairs. They stubbornly stick to their so-called Western standards of human rights on any China-related issue. To serve that malicious purpose, the US-government-funded Voice of America Chinese site published a video clip of an interview with a seven-year-old girl in a recent report about a gathering in Washington, DC that went against China's policies in Xinjiang. 

What China is doing is a great contribution to figure out religious harmonious development in one country, and the West will eventually realize the significance of this contribution to them.

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