In a bid to restrict expanding religious adherents, Chinese government has come up with a new way to put a lid to the evangelism. Online retailers have been banned from selling Bibles. In this regard, new rules had been introduced in the country, with an intention to curb growing public inclination towards religion- in a country where communism is prevalent.
The ban will take effect this week, after being announced over the weekend. After the introduction of online sales of Bibles, it was easy for Chinese to lay hands on Bibles. Online sales of Bibles had become popular in China given the growing dominance of online shopping.
In an effort to curtail online sales of Bibles new regulations were introduced in the country; effectively tightening rules on Christianity and Islam. On the contrary, these rules endorse Taosim, Buddhism and folk religion under the pretext of promoting traditional values. This has been termed as Chinese President’s effort to uphold traditions.
Under the banner of these new rules, finances of religious groups will be scrutinized greatly by the government. Moreover, students who travel abroad to study religion, may face close observation. Heavy fines are to be imposed upon people who will provide their space to be used as churches. These rules also include restrictions on religious schools, imitated access to foreign religious literature; as well as those available on the internet.
On the contrary, religious literatures for other major religions are available online in China. For example Taoist literature called the Daodejing is available for sale on JD, Taobao, and Amazon. Buddhist sutras are also available in the markets. Communist government’s policy endorses Taoism as Taoist music or folk religious pilgrimages were subsidized. Chinese President, Xi Jinping spoke positively about Buddhism, as he termed it an integral part of country’s cultural and spiritual life.
Christianity has been burgeoning in the country as an astonishing pace. In line with a survey, adherents of Catholicism were six million increasing from four million. Protest Christians increased to 38 million, from a previous figure of 10 million. Experts are of the idea that these figures present only half of the actual figures as underground churchgoers cannot be numbered.