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In the Shadow of the Banyan
A hauntingly powerful novel imbued with the devastation of monumental loss and...
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How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

Created: 05/24/13

Replies: 12

Posted May. 24, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 503

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How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I thought their religion was only a minor part of their life. They celebrated various days and holidays, but it did not seem to make a big difference in their lives.


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I don't know. I think it was more evident with the mother and her acceptance of her fate. Buddhists believe that everything that happens is another step to enlightenment. It must have been more difficult to accept the actions of the organization since they were so against the teachings of Buddhism


Posted Jun. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lisag

Join Date: 01/12/12

Posts: 298

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

Buddhism also teaches you to sort of detach from the events around you, to note them but realize you have no control over life, anyway. It's a very accepting philosophy, as rebajane mentioned. That doesn't mean you have to stand passively by and allow yourself to be harmed but it is a way of enduring the unendurable by seeing it as something you could not have prevented.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
alisonf

Join Date: 01/31/13

Posts: 35

RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I think the decision Papa made is better understood through understanding of Buddhist life and faith. His own "survival" was in his daughters' hope of survival. There was hope beyond this life.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
paml

Join Date: 10/25/12

Posts: 36

RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I believe their Buddhist faith made their lives bearable during an unbearable time. The Buddhist philosophy gave them some peace and beauty regardless of the situation. Death was not a finality, that gave Raami and Mama some hope to carry on. I also felt a thread of calmness and remoteness that each character possessed due to their Buddhist faith and culture. Every act of violence and inhumanity that occurred in this novel seemed tempered with a form of quiet dignity. I feel their Buddhist faith was a huge part of the reason they survived.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
joyces

Join Date: 06/16/11

Posts: 235

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

One of the outstanding things I found in this book was the while almost everything that was going on was so dehumanizing the characters were always able to find bits real of human kindness that kept the story from being totally depressing. The deep Buddhist faith of the entire population helped them to just keep going and was very important for their mental health which was what allowed them all to survive in such difficult physical conditions.


Posted Jun. 06, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
kathleenb

Join Date: 09/14/12

Posts: 13

RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I think Raami embodied the Buddhist spirit. She looked for the beauty everywhere. She thought often of her father's stories and things that she had learned in school. For such a young person she was able to withstand so much more than most people could. I definately believe the Buddish faith helped the people hang on and they had such an assurance of a future life after death.


Posted Jun. 12, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
johnw

Join Date: 03/11/12

Posts: 22

RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I believe their Buddhist faith helped them survive and remain human during an inhumane time. Buddhism explains a purpose to life, it explains injustice and inequality occurs in the world, and it provides a way of life that leads to true happiness.


Posted Jun. 13, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
terri

Join Date: 04/11/12

Posts: 102

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I don't know anything about the Buddhist faith. I actually thought the little celebrations they performed were more cultural than religious.


Posted Jun. 19, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 127

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I'm not sure that this novel necessarily struck me as "Buddhist" (and I know many people in Southeast Asia who are Buddhists) - I think the people shifted to a mere survival mode. The more people travel the globe and get to know people of various religions and ethnic backgrounds, I think we see that all human beings really want the same thing: shelter, clothing, enough to eat, and the health/ safety of family members.


Posted Jun. 19, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
rebajane

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 138

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RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

No, I don't think the novel was Buddhist, either, but their religion was Buddhism and the philosophies certainly focused their actions and reactions during this time. terri, it might be interesting for you do some reading on Buddhism. Religion and culture are difficult to separate because they are so intertwined


Posted Jun. 22, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sallyg

Join Date: 05/14/11

Posts: 19

RE: How do Raami and her family's Buddhist faith help them endure life under the Khmer Rouge?

I found the belief in Buddhism through out the book but more a culture belief than a religious belief.


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