The Academy of Finland’s Research Council for Culture and Society today decided to grant Academy Project funding for 53 research projects.
Among funded projects are Lived Scriptures: Ascetics, Martyrs, and Miracle Workers in Late Antiquity by Senior Lecturer Outi Lehtipuu, and The Impact of Religious Values on Chinese Social Life by Professor Miikka Ruokanen.
Lived Scriptures: Ascetics, Martyrs, and Miracle Workers in Late Antiquity, Project description:
The project examines the use and interpretation of “biblical texts” in the age, when there was no “Bible” and the level of literacy was low. The project combines recent research trends in a novel way by addressing the issue of textual fluidity of biblical texts. Approaching scriptures as lived scriptures, it differentiates between ancient and modern notions of holy texts and further integrates the research on early Christianity with early Judaism. It considers the variety of lived realities from which these texts emerge and which they reflect, paying special attention to three interrelated forms of religious practice: asceticism, martyr cult, and miracles. The focus is on early acta literature (apocryphal acts, martyr literature, hagiography) in relation to other early Christian and Jewish literature; the New Testament texts are not prioritized. Studying reception, the project contributes to a better understanding of the reciprocal relations between scriptures and their various users.
The Impact of Religious Values on Chinese Social Life, Project description:
The global influence of China is on the rise, but the values of this biggest nation of the world are in the state of flux. Materialism and atheism do not suffice as a basis for individual and social values. The Chinese are looking for new values, religions are attracting followers and their impact on social life is growing. The project analyzes the individual and social core values of the four growing faith traditions of China, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and Confucianism, as interpreted by leading contemporary religious intellectuals. Using philosophical analysis, we find out how they make the faith-based values relevant to the modern Chinese.We ask why and how these values have an impact on the nation. The project draws a map of the ideological changes which are shaping the future of China. The results will deepen the understanding of China among the Finns. Our Sino-Finnish team is the first to conduct comprehensive research on the changing faith-based values of China.
The total funding is worth around 24.4 million euros. The funding, primarily granted for four years, will go towards research team salaries, research costs as well as national and international research collaboration.
The applications were peer-reviewed by panels of international experts.
Further information: Academy of Finland