Juche Ideology and Religion
Juche is a Communist led and sponsored religion in North Korea made up of a mixture of ideology, philosophy, and religion for over 22,000,000 people, most of which are North Koreans, as stated by John Chin of the Religion-Info website (Chin). Juche is practiced, mandatorily, in North Korea by their government leader Kim Jong-Il, and is more of a social ideology instead of an actual religion. Although, the only way this ideology is promoted as a religion is by the way that Juche adopted some of the Confucius ideas. John Chin also states the ideas of Juche following only one “Great Leader”, and secondly that the Korean Worker's Party revolution belongs to the people (Chin). Then later the idea of self-reliance or self-sufficiency as a country was added to Juche which the word itself by Korean language means “self-reliance” (Adherents.com). Also, Jürgen Kleiner states that Kim Il-Sung created this ideology to save him from political and social obstacles of the day. So, really this religion in my opinion is not a true religion, but actually a social ideology; as a matter of fact, if Juche were really a religion then it would be a choice to adhere to not forced like it is in North Korea.
Juche ideology is practiced majorly in North Korea where the choice is not given to the people on whether they want to believe in something else or to follow the Juche beliefs. By Jürgen Kleiner the Juche ideology saved Kim Il-Sung from getting too deeply involved in the earlier rift between the Soviet Union and China (Kleiner). So, by what Kleiner is saying the Juche ideology was used to keep Kim Il-Sung from being involved with any Soviet or Chinese involvement. This “religion” does not have a main saint who has a life or death childhood experience nor does it have a saint who has a God experince where the God of their culture passes a vision onto that main saint. The closest thing that Juche has to a main saint figure, and in the working people’s...
Cited: Adherents.com. Major Religions of the World. January 2000. 4 April 2009 .
Chin, John. RELIGION-INFO.COM:A Guide to Religions, Religious Information and Help in Search for God. 21 December 2004. 6 April 2009 .
Kleiner, Jürgen. Korea, A Century of Change. World Scientific, 2001.
Marshall Cavendish Corporation. World and Its Peoples: Eastern and Southern Asia. Marshall Cavendish, 2007.
Oh, Kong Dan and Ralph c. Hassig. North Korea Through the Looking Glass. Brookings Institution Press, 2000.
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