bettytian, Tuesday, July 26th, 2011
As early as 2008, Shi Daoxing (释道心) have been known as the first Chinese monk to set foot in the entertainment industry with the release his album “Samsara Far Over.” After two years of full-time micro-blogging about Buddhism and uploading photos of himself posing with various hip accessories via iPhone, the monk is now a full-fledged Internet celebrity with hundreds of thousands of micro blog followers.
Shi Daoxing has taken it upon himself to spread the idea that there is great value in allowing Buddhism to internationalize, modernize, popularize, and become a trendy religion relevant to contemporary society. Though there was never a shortage of netizens calling out against the rise of Shi’s fame and accusing him of wrongful self-promotion for material gain, Shi never wavered from belief that popularizing “Trendy Buddhism” was his true calling. He had once reflected on his micro blog that “it isn’t the monk that has changed, but that the times have.” Shi sees himself as a product of the contemporary society, recognizing that the Internet has contributed tremendously to his popularity and influence on the public.
Since the man is known for looking freakishly similar to the handsome Hong Kong celebrity Nicholas Tse, it isn’t all that surprising that a television production team would want a piece of him. Recently, news of Shi to appear on the reality dating series “Hot Summer Days” has been spreading like wild fire, propelling “monk dating”（和尚相亲 hé shàng xiāng qīn）to fourth place on Baidu’s popular events search list. As a special guest commentator on the show, Shi will be expected to offer helpful advice to young singles hoping to find true love, all with a healthy dose of “Trendy Buddhist” flavor.
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