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The Buddha SideGender, Power, and Buddhist Practice in Vietnam$
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Alexander Soucy

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835989

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835989.001.0001

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Offerings and Blessings

Offerings and Blessings

(p.79) 4 Offerings and Blessings
The Buddha Side

Alexander Soucy

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter analyzes the practices and meanings of loc in order to flesh out the holistic way in which the Vietnamese typically interact with the supernatural. These supernaturally charged items are part of a practice that is a central activity of all religious expressions, crossing and uniting them. The practice of making offerings and then reclaiming them as talismans is performed almost exclusively by women, and is not restricted to age groups, as are other practices, such as chanting sutras at Buddhist pagodas. In most instances, the practice of making offerings and reclaiming them is both personal in nature, and has implicit interrelational connections through their distribution (phat loc). The logic of this practice is explained as being a way of improving merit (duc) through the act of giving.

Keywords:   Vietnamese loc, supernatural, religious expressions, offerings, talismans, phat loc, duc, giving

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