PR Newswire, Beijing (May 25, 2016)
A cartoon character from a Buddhist temple in Beijing has been making waves online. But Xian’er the monk is no ordinary two-dimensional comic strip – he’s a walking, talking, 24-inch high robot who can chant, answer questions and interact with his surroundings.
Xian’er the robot monk is not the first high-tech solution to Buddhist teachings from Longquan Temple. The institution is staffed by monks who operate computers and smart phones along with their prayer beads and singing bowls. His creator, Master Xianfan joined the temple after graduating from China’s most prestigious art school – the Central Academy of Fine Arts
And in the online world, a cute cartoon character is the perfect way to bring Buddhist teachings into the fast-paced communication and sharing arena of social media.
Though some people might question this modern approach to the time-honoured teachings of Buddhism, followers of the temples seem to agree that technology won’t diminish the authenticity of the spiritual lessons but simply make them more accessible to the masses.
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