Thursday, April 19, 2012

Religion of the Vietnamese people

"Vietnam - Religions". Encyclopedia of the Nations. Advameg, Inc.. 2007-08-14.      History has it that the earliest form of religion practiced by the Vietnamese was animistic in nature. According to demographic estimates, Buddhism is listed as the dominant religious belief system in Vietnam.  Buddhism came to Vietnam as early as the second century through the North from central Asia and via Southern routes from India. The earliest established religions in Vietnam are Mahayana Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism, which is also called the triple religion or tam giao. Vietnamese people and their culture have withstood centuries of domination by foreign powers. Both China and France have tried to conquer not only the land but the spirit of its people by attempting to impose their cultural standards and beliefs on the Vietnamese people. The Vietnamese people accepted only those cultural beliefs they saw as sensible and harmonious with their own beliefs in the ways of life. Throughout all this, the Vietnamese people have remained strong in their resolution to maintain their own culture. They have endured many hardships and grown culturally due to their ability to take only the best from their invaders while retaining their own core culture.
     In my opinion, it is important that everyone should be free to practice any religion of their choice so long as it does not interfere with maintenance of law and order or challenge the rule of government. 
     In the 4th century, Mahayana Buddhism became more popular due to Vietnam's proximity to China. Buddhism, in Vietnam, progressed rapidly during the reigns of the Ly (1009-1225 AD) and Tran Dynasty (1225 - 1400 AD). During this period Buddhism attained the status of state religion. 
     Some of the major principles of Buddhism include the Four Noble Truths, the Noble Eight fold Path, Refuge in Three Jewels, the Five Precepts and the Three Marks of Conditioned Existence. The Four Noble Truths of Buddhism teach that life is a suffering, there is a cause of this suffering, it is possible to put an end to this suffering and the Noble Eight fold Path is the means to end this suffering; Refuge in Three Jewels are the three components of Buddhism which protect a person from the unstable world as he progresses on the path to become a Buddhist. The Five Precepts lay down the moral conduct to make the world a better place to live. These precepts prevent Buddhists from indulging in deeds that restrict spiritual growth and cause harm to others. The Three Marks of Conditioned Existence explain that everything in this world is impermanent, without substance and full of suffering.
     A fundamental belief of Buddhists is reincarnation. This is a concept where people are reborn after dying. In reincarnation, the individual may recur repeatedly, after which they can attain Nirvana – a state of liberation and freedom from suffering.


  1. Iggy, many S. Vietnamese were Buddist. What are some of the major principles of Buddism? What do Buddists believe?

  2. i agree with you i also think that everyone should believe what they want and it should be there choice.

  3. From the novel, some of the soldiers stayed at a church. They were nice to them and offered great hospitality. They were people that treated others well.

  4. I Agree, freedom of religion should be free to practice everywhere and anytime !

  5. I like the way you talk about religion, I agree with you, because its good to believe what you want.

  6. I agree with you! People do have the choice to believe whatever religion they want!


  7. Makes sense to me. I wasn't aware Confusianism was practiced in Vietnam


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