Gender and Religion

Syncretism is the hallmark of religion. Blending Daoist, Confucianist, Buddhist, and animist beliefs, people worship a pantheon of supernatural figures. The scheme of gods and goddesses is a complex of many traditions that fuses both bureaucratic and nonbureaucratic orders (Shahar & Weller, 1996). Religion is not a simple reifica-tion of patriarchal hierarchy, and female deities, such as Mazu and Guanyin, occupy prominent positions in the pantheon of popular religion (Sangren, 1983; Shahar & Weller, 1996).

Women are not necessarily more religious than their male counterparts, but they are more likely to volunteer in religious activities and to choose religion as a lifetime career (W. A. Chang & Lin, 1997). Those who belong to groups restricted to nuns enjoy greater respect than those who are members of communities accepting nuns and monks (W. A. Chang & Lin, 1997). Reflecting the tradition which privileges male over female, the gendered hierarchy in Buddhism parallels the secular world. In the 1980s, when feminist thought gained popularity, women in Buddhist groups begin to receive more respect than earlier (W. A. Chang & Lin, 1997).

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

If Pregnancy Is Something That Frightens You, It's Time To Convert Your Fear Into Joy. Ready To Give Birth To A Child? Is The New Status Hitting Your State Of Mind? Are You Still Scared To Undergo All The Pain That Your Best Friend Underwent Just A Few Days Back? Not Convinced With The Answers Given By The Experts?

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