Religion 328. Buddhism and Development
This course brings together the themes of Buddhism and development in an effort to uncover the core values of contemporary Bhutanese society. Traditionally, Buddhism has emphasized development in the form of individual and collective “psycho-technologies” designed to transform affliction and confusion into enlightenment. In the case of Bhutan, as a modern nation in a pluralistic world, development also involves implementing Buddhist paradigms from the top down by developing a Buddhist social theory, a Buddhist approach to economic development, as well as in environmental and cultural conservation.
During this course students will examine development in Bhutan through weekly seminar meetings enhanced by visits to monasteries, temples and sacred places, as well as by exploring contemporary Bhutanese approaches to economic development, to environmental conservation and to the forces of globalization.