Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/19055
Title: 新加坡九鲤洞的目连戏:中国宗教仪式剧个案研究 = The Mulian Play in Singapore Kiew Lee Tong Temple. A Case Study of Chinese Ritual Theatre
Authors: 余淑娟
YEE SOK KIANG
Keywords: the Mulian Play, religious institution, death salvation, Dana(Bushi), the Ghost Festival, Kiew Lee Tong Temple
Issue Date: 13-Jan-2010
Source: 余淑娟,YEE SOK KIANG (2010-01-13). 新加坡九鲤洞的目连戏:中国宗教仪式剧个案研究 = The Mulian Play in Singapore Kiew Lee Tong Temple. A Case Study of Chinese Ritual Theatre. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This thesis attempts to study the role and agency of a religious institution in shaping the performance of Chinese Ritual Theater. To capture the multi-faceted dramatic characteristics of Chinese ritual play, I suggest that the performance should be taken and studied as a unified event of totality, instead of treating (written) text and (performance) context as two separated aspects. Such theoretical orientation gives not only insights into the complex relations between text and context of the Chinese ritual theatre, it also calls attention to the significance of a hosted temple in the performance culture which have been overlooked in the previous studies. I argue that a religious institution sponsoring the performance of the Chinese ritual theatre, for instance, the Mulian play under study, is not merely a hosted temple. Rather, it is the major agent in structuring the entire performance. It wades into the whole performance of a Mulian play that defining and delineating the major characteristics of the theatrical enactment. In order to illustrate my main argument, I studied the Mulian play performed in the Kiew Lee Tong Temple (KLT), Singapore, in the year of 2004. My research shows that the Buddhist practice of Dana (bushi), the first of the six paramitas, is the central concept that dominating the Mulian text and the ritual- theatrical performance in the KLT. Dana is the underpinning thought that motivates the production and dissemination of the Mulian play. In the Yu-lan-pen Sutra, Buddha prescribes the practice of Dana to salve Mulian?s mother from Hell and offers this dharma unselfishly to all the human beings. The Mulian play text displays the Buddhist doctrine of practicing Dana to acquire a special merit to ascend to the Heaven. In the actual performance, the Kiew Lee Tong Temple and its believers donate to hold a Mulian play in order to salve their ancestors and the wandering ghosts. The idea of merit transference in the text and context interacts perfectly. Hence, by organizing this performance or giving donation to help all sattva, the Kiew Lee Tong Temple and its believers grasp this opportunity to gain religious merits.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/19055
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