Towards an understanding of Korean Protestantism: The formation of Christian-oriented sects, cults, and anti-cult movements in contemporary Korea
Posted on 16. Aug, 2010 by James Miller
|Title||Towards an understanding of Korean Protestantism: The formation of Christian-oriented sects, cults, and anti-cult movements in contemporary Korea|
|Year of Publication||2008|
|Authors||Kim, Chang Han|
|ISBN Number||9780494382196, 0494382198|
By looking at the typology of church, sect, and cult, this research investigates the belief system of Korean Protestantism and its organizational variations. First, Korean Protestantism displays exclusive cultural and social attitudes compared with other Korean religious traditions. A heterodox infusion of religion in the Korean tradition began with the introduction of Roman Catholicism in the 19 th century. It was Protestantism, however, which shook the traditional religious culture to its core by creating strong religious boundaries. Second, in spite of its relatively short history, Korean Protestantism took root in a non-Western culture to shape it in ways that are without parallel in Korean history. In the process, it developed a far more uniform conservative religious ethos than is found in the West. Third, Korean Protestantism gave birth to various dissident new religious bodies in the form of Christian-oriented sects and cults. Although most of these new religious groups originated within this conservative religious milieu, they vary considerably. These range from new and innovative movements in high tension with the surrounding society to others with relatively little difference in terms of traditional Christianity. Lastly, the Christian anti-cult movement, as one notable response to these new religions, seeks to amplify the exclusive tendencies of Korean Protestantism. It can be argued, therefore, that Korean "Christian fundamentalism" represents a specific development of Protestantism which must be understood in the context of a complex historical process involving multiple intercultural exchanges. It is these exchanges and the resulting culture of Korean Protestantism that this dissertation seeks to explore. For a key to the Romanization of Korean words, see Appendix A.