Monks and MBAs

From fierce fighting Shaolin Monks to Monks with MBA’s… Although it might not seem so at first, Buddhism and Business blend very well in Modern Day China. Call it Zen and the art of business management.

Proving that in China’s booming commercial hub of Shanghai, even Buddhism is big business. A group of 18 Buddhist monks are taking MBA classes to better manage their temple, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The course, specially designed by Shanghai’s Jiaotong University, teaches temple management and corporate strategy, along with marketing religious articles. Monks also will gain some tips on how to get ahead in business from Sun Tzu’s ”The Art of War”.

Thousands of Buddhist temples have been restored or rebuilt in the last quarter decade, largely to attract tourists. In one extreme example, a ruined Buddhist pagoda (Leifeng Pagoda) in the ancient lakeside city of Hangzhou was recently rebuilt in glass, steel and concrete, complete with escalators, elevators and touch-screen electronic guides.

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