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In the Wake of Aum: The Formation and Transformation ofa University of Belief
Author Shimazono, Susumu (著)=島薗進 (au.)
Source Japanese Journal of Religious Studies
Volumev.22 n.3-4
Pages381 - 415
PublisherNanzan Institute for Religion and Culture=南山宗教文化研究所
Publisher Url
Location名古屋, 日本 [Nagoya, Japan]
Content type期刊論文=Journal Article
AbstractThe purpose of this article is to consider Aum Smnrikyd as a religion, and
to clarify the defining characteristics of its universe of belief. Asahara
Shoko was a member of Agonshu, one of the New New Religions, and
spent several years diligently practicing that faith before founding his own
religious group in 1984. He emphasized intense ascetic practices for the
acmevement of sfedatsu (emancipation) and the teachino- of a world-
renouncing enlightenment. The tendency towards an introspective faith,
seen broadly in the New New Religions, is especially striking in Aum
Smnrikyd. The group fell into conflict with the surrounding society
because of its push to rapidly increase the number of its world-renouncing
members, adopting a style of proselytization common to previous New
Religions aimed at mass mobilization. Rather than trying to resolve the
tensions peacefully, Aum adopted an aggressive position, and especially
after 1989 its isolation deepened and headed towards violent introversion.
Although its destructive violent nature only became evident in 1994,the
roots of that violence were already present from the group’s beginning.
Elements that invite an eruption of violence, such as a conception of the
human person as a mass of data that can be manipulated, a distorted
understanding of Buddhism as justijying violence as a means and per­
ceiving reality as an illusion, and an intense leader worship, were all pre­
sent in Aum,s universe of belief.
ISSN03041042 (P)
Created date1998.04.28
Modified date2017.08.25

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