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Personally I wouldn't dismiss the assertion that China is an atheist society so easily. Membership in religious organizations of the sort described in the book certainly doesn't involve the majority of the Chinese population. While in the countryside a lot of people still engage in a limited level of traditional religious practices over the Spring Festival period, in urban China it is pretty much correct to claim that most people are atheists, or in any case non-religious.
Dear Sam, thank you for continuing to post these informed and piercing refutations of apologists like Daniel Bell. I only wonder if you aren't slightly too romantic about Confucianism itself. The reality is that state-Confucianism has always been an oppressive ideology for the average person, and it continues to be so nowadays. Anyway, keep up the good work! Gabriel is now following The Typepad Team
Dec 26, 2015