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Download Daoism: A Beginner’s Guide (Oneworld Beginner’s Guides) by James Miller PDF

By James Miller

Spanning the centuries and crossing the globe, this attractive creation covers every little thing Daoist, from the faith of the ancients to twenty first century T'ai Chi and meditation. entire with a timeline of Daoist background and a whole thesaurus, this can turn out priceless to scholars, and a person who needs to profit extra in regards to the origins and nature of a profound culture, and approximately its function and relevance in our fast-moving twenty first century lifestyles.

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Extra resources for Daoism: A Beginner’s Guide (Oneworld Beginner’s Guides)

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Daoism as lineages of transmission An alternative to the ethnic and functional perspectives outlined above is to regard Daoism in terms of its genealogy, that is, the lineages of transmission and ordination that are claimed by Daoist priests. The advantage of this is that it is less dependent on the racial or ethnic categories surrounding the notion of ‘Chinese religion’. Daoist priests trace their lineage back to the first Celestial Master, Zhang Daoling. According to Daoist tradition, in 142 ce Zhang was living as a hermit on Mount Heming in present-day Sichuan province in China’s fertile west.

It is used in Chinese to refer to the transmission of Daoist teachings chiefly within an institutionalized, religious setting that takes place when priests in the tradition of the Celestial Masters are trained and ordained. The third term refers mostly to Daoist practices such as breathing meditation or energy movements that may be undertaken either in a formal religious context, or on one’s own or under the auspices of a lay Daoist organization. The interesting point about all this is that different people have different ideas as to which of these three sorts of ‘Daoism’ legitimately deserve the label ‘Daoism’ in English.

The hun, on the other hand, separates from the body at death and is thought to ascend to heaven. The hun of the ancestor is traditionally venerated in the form of a tablet that records the ancestor’s name and his or her image in the form of a photograph or other likeness. The most spectacular case of care given to the soul can be seen in the famous terracotta warriors, some six thousand of them who were buried to protect the grave of the first Qin Emperor (Qin shi huangdi, r. 221–210 bce). A more conventional way of ensuring the successful afterlife of the po in the underworld was by offering the blood of sacrificed animals and other desirable goods.

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