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Taoism: Origins Figures and Texts

Page history last edited by Brock Baker 11 years, 11 months ago



     Taoism's origins may be traced to prehistoric Chinese religions in China. They are found in the composition of the Tao Te Ching (3rd or 4th century BC). Laozi received imperial recognition as a divinity in the mid second century AD.Taoism gained official status in China during the Tang Dynasty, whose emperors claimed Laozi as their relative. Several Song emperors, most notably Huizong, were active in promoting Taoism, collecting Taoist texts and publishing editions of the Daozang.Aspects of Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism were consciously synthesized in the Neo-Confucian school, which eventually became Imperial orthodoxy for state bureaucratic purposes.The Qing Dynasty, however, much favored Confucian classics and rejected Taoist works. During the eighteenth century, the imperial library was constituted, but excluded virtually all Taoist books. By the beginning of the twentieth century, Taoism had fallen so much from favor, that only one complete copy of the Daozang still remained, at the White Cloud Monastery in Beijing.Taoism is one of five religions recognised by the PRC, which insists on controlling its activities through a state bureaucracy (the China Taoist Association).




Tao Te Ching

          - considerd to be the most influential text

          - It is a scripture about the importance of Taoism

          - It has been used as a ritual text



          - Sometimes referred to as the Taoist canon

          - Originally compiled during the Jin, Tang, and Song dynasties

          - The one used today was published during the Ming dynasty

          - The Ming Daozang contains almost 1500 texts



          - named after it's author, it is more of a collection of stories

          - It contains references to Confucius, and Laozi and the Tao Te Ching 











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