Images depicting the life of Jesus in Korea freak out Chinese Internet usersPosted: October 16, 2013 Filed under: Asia, Censorship, China, History, Mediasphere | Tags: China, Chinese language, Internet forum, Jesus, Korea, Middle East, South Korea, UNESCO 1 Comment
Casey Baseel writes: There seems to be a long-running debate over whether Jesus was white or African (as opposed, to, you know, Arabic, as most people born in the Middle East tend to be).
Apparently concerned that the squabble doesn’t have enough sides, a participant in a Chinese Internet forum has come forward with images suggesting yet another theory: Jesus was Korean.
Recently, a thread appeared on a message board in China with the title, “Even Jesus could not escape the destiny that was placed upon the people of Korea.” The lengthily-phrased topic attracted the attention of other users, who found that the thread contained a series of scenes depicting the life of Jesus Christ in a uniquely Korean light.
The uploader of the pictures explained, “This information is not fabricated. I obtained these images from a seminary in Korea at great risk to my life.”
In the pictures, Jesus is shown dressed in traditional Korean garb, surrounded by similarly attired followers. The architecture depicted is also unmistakably Korean in design.
The original poster’s attempts to spread the good word were met with a less than enthusiastic response, however. In recent years, Chinese media has publicized alleged claims by Korean researchers that the characters used in writing the Chinese language were originally developed in Korea, as well as an assertion that the philosopher Confucius, largely believed to be Chinese, was actually of Korean descent.
Roman soldiers? Apparently also Korean.
In recent years, this cultural tug of war has extended to bickering over international recognition as well. UNESCO designated Korea’s Danoje Festival an intangible cultural asset in 2005, touching a nerve with pundits in China who claim the celebration is simply a modified copy of China’s own Duanwu Dragon Boat Festival.
That cow is Korean, too!
In that light, the response to the implication that Jesus was Korean generated a number of exasperated and angry responses, some of which contained racial slurs directed at the ostensibly Korean original poster.
“What an impudent thing to say.”
“This person must have the universe’s most active imagination.”
“And I bet Korea was also behind the Big Bang that created the universe.”
Thankfully, some cooler heads were present as well.
“In China, the Virgin Mary is sometimes depicted as being Chinese. This is just a simple example of regional or cultural adaptation.”
“All he did was post the pictures. He didn’t directly say that Jesus was Korean.”
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