I will be witnessing and documenting the social environment and living conditions that form the context of religious belief and practice as well as the conditions which give rise to revolutionary movements.
I am working on two projects relating to the interaction of India/Nepal and China and this trip will be invaluable in obtaining information about the current social realities which reflect the impact of this cross cultural connection. I am currently preparing lessons on the writing and transmission of Mahayana Sutras from India to China as well as the influence of Chinese communism on Nepal and India.
Preparation During Travel
I am reviewing the scholarship on the importance of the Mahayana Sutra canon in Sanskrit to the development and spread of Buddhism throughout Asia as well and reading accounts of the ongoing Naxalite insurgency in India and the Maoist movement in Nepal.