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The brilliant teaching: Iranian Christians in Tang China and their identity

Deeg, Max ORCID: 2020. The brilliant teaching: Iranian Christians in Tang China and their identity. Entangled Religions 11 (6) , pp. 1-13. 10.46586/er.11.2020.8674

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The last three decades or so has seen an increasing interest in the early history of Christianity in China, particularly in the Christian communities in the Tang period. One of the pertinent questions asked – particularly from the side of Theologians – is whether the “Brilliant Teaching” (Jingjiao), as the religion called itself in Chinese, had a substantial number of Chinese converts, i.e., whether it was a proselytizing religion or rather an Iranian diaspora religion. While recent documents and new interpretation of the existing sources has made it probable that we are indeed dealing with an “expat” religious community the question of cultural and religious identity of this community has not really been addressed: using Syriac as their liturgical and communal language, but being Persian, Sogdian and maybe even Bactrian in terms of origin and culture on the other hand. This paper will collect the data we can get from the Chinese sources and discuss them in the light of religious and cultural identity.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
D History General and Old World > DS Asia
Publisher: Center for Religious Studies, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
ISSN: 2363-6696
Date of Acceptance: 2029
Last Modified: 03 May 2023 07:37

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