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date: 20 April 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents an overview of developments of Buddhism in Latin America. Although not a major religion in the region, Buddhism has thrived among the tertiary-educated, white middle classes. Nevertheless, there has been a paucity of research on the topic, and the region seldom features in the scholarship on global Buddhism. Drawing on the extant scholarly work, government statistics, and Internet sites of Buddhist institutions, this chapter shows that the ways in which Buddhism arrived and is taking root in the region is similar to other parts of the Western world: with the arrival of Asian migrants, the flourishing of the counterculture and New Age spirituality, and globalization. This chapter argues that although Latin America may take a peripheral place in a network of global flows of Buddhism, it has never been isolated from flows of Buddhist ideas, beliefs, practices, material culture, and people circulating around the world.

Keywords: Buddhism, Asian migration, globalization, global flows, Latin America, New Age spirituality

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