Tuesday, October 21, 2014

[Photo] Persimmons drying in Youngdong South Korea

Rows of persimmons being dried by farmers in Youngdong County, North Chungcheong Province, Oct. 20. Around 2,500 tons of dried persimmons are produced each year in the Youngdong area, one of South Korea's main persimmon producing regions.The persimmons are dried outdoors, because exposure to frost brings out their flavors. (Newsis)

South Koreans More Accepting of LGBT Community


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Jet Crash In Moscow Kills Total Boss

Afghanistan Discussed At Munich Security Conference

Monday, October 20, 2014

China Nears Deal with Mexico to Export Bullet Trains for First Time


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Russian company to build railroads, develop natural resources in North Korea


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China-Vietnam Defense Hotline Agreed: What Next?

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KY Leung Hints At Foreign Influence in Hong Kong

2 Japanese Ministers Quit

BBC News - Japan ministers Yuko Obuchi and Midori Matsushima quit
Ms Matsushima had been accused by the opposition of violating election laws.
Ms Obuchi is alleged to have misused funds from her political support groups and other donations.
Correspondents say the resignations are a major setback for PM Shinzo Abe, who wants to bring more women into the top levels of government.
Mr Abe said he took responsibility for having appointed both women, and that they would be replaced within a day. Both are members of his governing conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).

“If we don’t face our past, we’re bound to repeat the same mistakes.” Japanese wartime medical orderly reports on army’s role in maintaining “comfort women” system

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Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Golden Lands: Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand & Vietnam by Vikram Lall reviewed by Jame DiBiasio


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From Sri Lanka to Tibet to Japan, the expression of Buddhism through art and architecture tells a wider tale. Vikram Lall, a practicing architect and teacher in New Delhi, wonders at the mind-boggling diversity of Buddhist buildings. Indeed, the variety on hand in Bagan alone is a testament to the endless creativity of presenting a uniform set of philosophical and religious tenets.
Buddhism's expansion has largely been a process of coexistence with other faiths rather than a premeditated program of displacement. Lacking a central organized Vatican, there is freedom to interpret Buddhism to suit local styles.
Some of the greatest monuments in Southeast Asia—the Shwezigon in Bagan, the Bayon in Angkor—housed local spirits as well as Buddhist imagery. In Shwezigon's case, the purpose was to lure the masses with the local spirits, called nats, and thereby expose them to Theravada Buddhism. At the Bayon, the inclusion of animist and Hindu statuary was meant to help Angkor's first Mahayana Buddhist king secure his position among the displaced and hostile Hindu aristocracy.
Lall traces such developments through the story of Buddhist architecture. Meant to be the first volume of a series spanning Buddhist architecture across Asia and the world, The Golden Lands focuses on Southeast Asia. He plans five more volumes, each covering a different geography, with the final one meant to incorporate contemporary Buddhist architecture in both Asia and the West.
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South Korea’s Coast Guard Is Here to Stay


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Hong Kong Protests - Live Video

Images: The sacred places of Vietnamese martyrs

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Truong Son Martyr Cemetery - located in Vinh Truong Commune, Gio Linh District, Quang Tri Province - is the eternal resting place of more than 10,000 soldiers who died on the Ho Chi Minh trail during the Vietnam War. This is the largest cemetery for martyrs in the country.