Category Archives: religion

On sinicizing Christianity – Ian Johnson

China’s central government has been trying to sinicize religion, and that had especially a major effect on Christianity, writes journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao. For the New York Review of Books, he reviews Jesus in Asia by R.S. Sugirtharajah, but starts with a thorough overview of Beijing’s efforts to curtail 

How China’s urbanites create new identities – Ian Johnson

China’s big cities are developing a new city life, including new identities, writes journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, at the opening chapter of, Shanghai Sacred: The Religious Landscape of a Global City, by photographer and anthropologist Liz Hingley, quoted in a review of the photo exhibition in Liverpool at Creative Boom

First Rome-approved bishop good news for Vatican – Ian Johnson

The first ordination of a bishop, Father Yao Shun, approved by the Pope and the central government is good news for the Vatican, says journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, to AFP. 

Ian Johnson no.1 in 2019 Best In-Depth Newswriting on Religion Contest

Journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, has won the 2019 Best In-Depth Newswriting on Religion Contest, says the website of the American Academy of Religion (AAR). 

A realistic view on Tibetan Buddhism – Ian Johnson

Journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao reviews a show at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City on Tibetan Buddhism for the NY Review of Books, a must read even when you do not make it to New York. Ian Johnson adds on Facebook: “Probably no faith is more stereotyped than Tibetan Buddhism, which has morphed in the West to a sort of feel-good faith led by a nice guy with a Nobel Peace Prize.”

Christians return from China’s diaspora – Ian Johnson

Religion is on the rise in China, despite worries from the government. China’s diaspora’s are a source of Christianians, as a growing number of Chinese return home with their newly found religious feelings, says journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, at CNN in a story on Kenya.

Pacifying the Islam by force does not help – Ian Johnson

China is trying to pacify Islam by force, but is achieving the opposite of the stability it wants to secure, says Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China, to Foreign Policy. “By using more force to increase stability, the government is achieving the opposite effect.” 

On Taoism and sex – Ian Johnson

Western interest on Taoism has much focused on sex and especially premature ejaculation, and Amuse author Kate Lister asked journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, for his take on the subject.

China can still step back from repressing religion – Ian Johnson

China’s central government has been cracking down on both Protestantism and the Islam over the past year. The direct future looks grim, says journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao at Foreign Affairs in an addition to a piece he wrote two years ago. The government can still go back to its pragmatic take on religion, but Johnson is not sure it will.

Religion: a double-edged sword for the government – Ian Johnson

The Chinese government has raided a few popular underground churches, illustrating how it sees religion as a double-edged sword, says journalist Ian Johnson, author of The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao, at NPR.