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Autumn is here! 
We are pleased to announce upcoming opportunities and events related to the FROGBEAR project and its affiliated networks and partners. Be sure to check the website regularly for more opportunities, and encourage others to sign up for our newsletter!


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OPPORTUNITIES:  2023 CRTA Workshop  •  Postdoctoral Fellowship Tel Aviv •  Mitacs Globallinks Research Awards
ANNOUNCEMENTS:  Carbon Offsets  •  Dharma-Ending Age Conference •  Keynote: Barrett  •  Lecture: Benn •  Lecture: Arntzen  •  Lecture: Lynn  •  Mitacs Project in Taiwan


— Call for Applications —
2023 Chinese Religious Texts Authority (CRTA) workshop on reading late imperial Chinese religious texts and database building

“Outliers and oddities: Identifying, contextualizing and questioning religious texts’ identity”

This four-day workshop is organized by the CRTA (Chinese Religious Texts Authority) project, supported by FROGBEAR and ITI HiSAAR. CRTA is an open-access, international collaborative database project aiming at describing Chinese religious texts. The workshop will introduce CRTA to participants and produce descriptions of chosen texts at the same time as it will train participants in readings late imperial religious texts of different genres. The workshop will take place in Strasbourg, France.

We open this call to 15 graduate students and early-career scholars of all nationalities and disciplines; we require a good reading command of classical Chinese and capacity of taking active part in discussions in English. We will also ask each participant to prepare in advance a 10-minute round-table presentation on an outlier late imperial, early Republican religious text of their choosing that they will contribute to the CRTA database. Each participant will choose a text that is an outlier in some way - an odd reprint, a strange volume, or anything that doesn’t fit the norm of religious texts. We hope that participants will maintain participation in the project after the workshop.

Full details and schedule:

Deadline: September 15, 2022

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Tel Aviv

— Call for Applications —
Postdoctoral Fellowships in Chinese Rural Religion, Culture, Society, and Environment, Tel Aviv University

The Israel Science Foundation Breakthrough Research Grant: Environment and Religion in China at Tel Aviv University under the direction of Prof. Meir Shahar is offering postdoctoral fellowships beginning October 2022 (with a possibility of beginning later in the academic year 2022-2023).

The successful candidates will be part of a unique interdisciplinary team investigating the traditional Chinese peasant’s interaction with his environment through the prism of religious and cultural practice.  The team will explore gods and rituals, artworks and legends that mirror the peasant’s conception of his environment: From the threat of drought and epidemics to the growing of crops and the tending of animals. 

Candidates interested in the traditional Chinese village and working in such diverse disciplines as religious studies, art history, literature, sociology, animal studies, and agricultural history are welcomed to submit their applications.

Full details:

Deadline: September 20, 2022

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— Call for Applications —
Mitacs Globalinks Research Awards

The FROGBEAR project has an agreement with Mitacs to fund several interns under their Globalink Research Award program, to support internships between partners in Canada, and institutions in East Asia. Any FROGBEAR Co-Investigators, and any students and post-doctoral fellows based in Asia or Canada are eligible to submit proposals.

Proposals may be submitted to FROGBEAR either by a Co-Investigator or by the student / post-doctoral fellow. FROGBEAR can assist in identifying a partner university in Asia where needed. Either the host institution or the home institution must be a FROGBEAR partner university in Canada. For proposals received from outside of Canada, FROGBEAR will determine the most suitable Canadian partner to host the intern.

FROGBEAR partners in Canada:

  •  McMaster University
  •  Mount Allison University
  •  University of British Columbia
  • University of Calgary
  •  University of Manitoba
  •  University of Saskatchewan
  •  University of Toronto

Full details:

Deadline: on-going

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Carbon Offsets

The FROGBEAR project recognizes the unprecedented outcomes of the Climate Emergency and is taking actions to combat this crisis while supporting sustainable practices. Air travel emissions are one of the major sources of emissions by individuals and institutions. For example, a round-trip flight from Vancouver to Beijing produces 2.76 tonnes of CO2 equivalent emissions. The global nature of the FROGBEAR project requires some air travel to conduct research, however the project is committed to reducing the negative environmental impacts associated with its activities. This is done by:

  1. Prioritizing alternatives to air travel for lectures and conferences by providing options and incentives for virtual participation, allowing some scholars to participate who otherwise would not be able to, while reducing project costs at the same time.   
  2. Tracking emissions associated with project activities and working to reduce these. 
  3. Purchasing high quality carbon offsets for all flights. Our funder, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) recently made changes to allow the purchase of carbon offsets as an eligible expense ( The FROGBEAR project now purchases Gold Standard offsets from Ostrom Climate, a company specializing in carbon management.

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Dharma-Ending Age

The Dharma-Ending Age: The Climate Crisis through the Lens of Buddhist Eschatology, Past and Present

Date: October 7–9, 2022Dharma-Ending Age conference QR code
Location: UBC C.K. Choi Building Room 120, and online

Since the Industrial Revolution, the world economy has seen unprecedented growth, while living standards have also improved drastically, driving the human population to increase at an exponential rate that is ultimately unsustainable. In the meantime, consumerism runs rampant, urban areas expand unchecked, while the predatory exploitation of forests, rivers, oceans, and mineral resources, as well as excessive pollution and unrestrained emission of greenhouse gas have led to worldwide pollution, land subsidence, global warming, sea level rise, and extreme weather. In addition, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction such as nuclear, biological, chemical weapons, and the blistering evolution of Artificial Intelligence have all cast a shadow on the future of humanity, all of which seem to augur that the dharma-ending age (mofa 末法) described in Buddhist classics that is now silently approaching us.

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— Keynote Presentation —
A Sense of an Ending: Chinese Buddhist Eschatology Reconsidered

Date: October 7, 2022, 6:30 PM PDT
Speaker: T. H. Barrett, SOAS
Location: UBC C.K. Choi Building Room 120, and online

In the 1970s the Cold War was still in full swing, and many had already confronted its possible conclusion in global nuclear annihilation after experiencing the Cuban missile crisis of 1961. Yet in the Anglophone study of Asia no awareness seemed to exist as to the possibility of reactions to that future that might not be identical to those of the Judaeo-Christian tradition. In 1976 however Dan Overmyer published Folk Buddhist Religion, a volume that drew attention to the apocalyptic visions of some popular groups influenced by Buddhist conceptions, amongst others, of global disaster. Since then, more has been written in this vein, and a considerable literature has grown up, including a certain amount concerning reaction in East Asia to climate change. What have we learned over the past five decades?

This is one of the keynote presentations of The Dharma-Ending Age: The Climate Crisis through the Lens of Buddhist Eschatology, Past and Present conference.

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climate change

— Glorisun Distinguished Lecture Series —
Buddhist Self-Immolation and Climate Change

Date: October 7, 2022, 7:30 PM PDT
Speaker: James Benn, McMaster University
Location: UBC C.K. Choi Building Room 120, and online

On Friday April 22, 2022 (Earth Day), Wynn Bruce, a Buddhist practitioner and climate activist, died after setting fire to himself on the steps of the United States Supreme Court. In 2018, David Buckel, a lawyer and environmental advocate, auto-cremated in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York. In an email sent to the media before he died, Buckel wrote: “Most humans on the planet now breathe air made unhealthy by fossil fuels, and many die early deaths as a result—my early death by fossil fuel reflects what we are doing to ourselves.”  We will probably see more of these responses to climate change in the future. Although the actions of Bruce and Buckel seem to be inspired by Buddhist auto-cremators of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, Buddhist self-immolation has a long history in East Asia. In this paper, I will explore some of the deeper historical connections between Buddhist self-immolation and climate change.

This lecture is one of the keynote presentations of The Dharma-Ending Age: The Climate Crisis through the Lens of Buddhist Eschatology, Past and Present conference.

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Guest Lecture: Ikkyū and the Crazy Cloud Anthology: Then and Now

Date: October 8, 2022, 7 PM PDT (tentative)
Speaker: Sonja Arntzen, Professor Emerita, University of Toronto
Location: UBC Asian Centre Auditorium and online

My study and selected translations of the Kyōunshū  狂雲集, an anthology of poems in literary Chinese by medieval Rinzai monk Ikkyū Sōjun 休宗純 (1394-1481) was published in 1986. The revised and expanded edition of this work was published this year 2022 by Quirin Press. My talk will focus on the insights and shifts in perception that resulted from the opportunity to revisit the work of my youth at this late point in my life. To make a connection with the conference theme of the potential wisdom and solace in a Buddhist perspective when contemplating the end of existence on many planes, my readings from the Crazy Cloud Anthology will concentrate on the poems from Ikkyū’s later years spent during the catastrophic Ōnin War (1467-1477). Ikkyū’s experience as a refugee watching the world crumble around him are encapsulated in poems that are as poignant and instructive now as ever.

This lecture is part of The Dharma-Ending Age: The Climate Crisis through the Lens of Buddhist Eschatology, Past and Present conference.

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Guest Lecture: A New Translation and Study of The Zhuangzi (Sayings of Master Zhuang)

Date: October 9, 2022, 7 PM PDT (tentative)
Speaker: Richard John Lynn, Professor Emeritus of Chinese Thought and Literature, University of Toronto
Location: UBC Asian Centre Auditorium and online

The Western reception of the Zhuangzi, a foundational text of the Chinese philosophical tradition and the cornerstone of Daoist thought, has a long history prior to the appearance of the first integral translations in the late 19th century by Herbert Allen Giles (1845-1935) and James Legge (1815-1897) as part of the 17th and 18th centuries European general encounter with South and East Asian religious traditions—Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Daoism—a religiocultural experience that profoundly shaped the development of modern Orientalism before imperialist ambitions and commercial greed during the 19th century compromised what had originally been essentially a search to expand Western religious perspectives—by discovering in Asia’s non-Abrahamic religions parallels and precedents for basic Judeo-Christian beliefs about God, creation, and the individual soul.

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Mitacs Project in Taiwan

Participant: Gaëlle Boscals de Réals, McGill University
Host Institution: National Cheng Chi University
Date: August–November 2022
Project Title: Religion, modernization and spatiality in Taiwan

Taiwan has been undergoing an important religious revival in the past forty-years. However, while religiosity used to be mainly locally based, the progressive modernization of the island led to new forms of country-wide temple lineages and displaced forms of worship. The aim of this project is to look at how this shift in religious location took place as well as how it is lived, produced, and assumed by the Taiwanese urbanites. Through the Mitacs Globalink Awards, I will gain the opportunity to be a visiting student at the Graduate Institute of Religious Studies at the National Chengchi University, Taipei. Under the mentorship of my host supervisor, Professor Yu-Chen Li, I will be able to do the necessary on-ground research in major cities such as Taipei and Tainan, and come up with both empirical data and a suitable problematic for my MA thesis. As a visiting student, I also plan to visit the unique library collection, and thus gain necessary access to the history of current temple lineages.

Learn more here:

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