Daoism

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The Beliefs and the History By Danielle Petersen

. monks have been attempting to make the elixir for everlasting life. humans and butterflies. For most of the time Daoism has been around. They must achieve the full understanding or µThe Dao¶ to be completely contented in life. It is a spirit that is present in everything around them and it is the one who watches over nature. The balance between nature and life. but just because people know it doesn¶t mean they understand it completely. The next important part of Daoism that pertains to µThe Dao¶ is De. History in the Making Daoism started around 500BC by an old philosopher named Laozi. But mortality isn¶t what is achieved through The Dao. He began the religion with the basic outline and a combination of psychology and philosophy. it explained his ideas about the religion. The Daoist beliefs are consisted around µThe Dao¶ or µThe Path¶ to ultimate understanding. The path to understanding is a long one that is must be thought through carefully. Yin and Yang The Yin Yang symbol is one of the most well-known symbols in the world. De is really just the proof that the Dao is there and it represents the things it stands for. helping others. In the Daoist religion. The De. De symbolizes having virtues. It is believed that you can gain immortality by meditating. also demonstrated by the Yin Yang Symbol. It symbolized that Dao was in everything.The Dao. but only a few are able to. Laozi wrote a book about it titled Dao De Jing. Laozi¶s successor¶s name was Zhuangzi. Many people believe it means peace. it is merely a neutral balance between the two. Then he began to think that he was the butterfly. and Immortality. but that is only half of the meaning. and using elixirs. living with mortality. µThe Dao¶ is no one thing. he developed the religion even more and had a dream about a butterfly. but they ended up creating gunpowder while they were trying. Many people try to live their lives to answer the questions of life and only few are able to succeed. So many people have tried to comprehend the whole truth around Daoism (also known as Taoism). But even though the religion was developed in 500BC it didn¶t actually begin to be as big as it was until 100 AD. and having integrity. immortality is. It continued to grow during the period of 200 ± 700 AD. µThe Dao¶ is not good nor is it a bad force of energy.

peanuts mean metals. once that is found. to find the understanding of the universe and the elixir of life. life is nearly complete. The fifth century brought in a school that taught Daoism with some of the beliefs of Buddhism as well. and tea. The green apples mean the woods and timber. much like a stone. it represents the breath in heaven or the life in heaven. The beliefs have changed over time though and traditions that are used now aren¶t the ones that were originally part of the religion. Talismans were stones. moon cakes are used for different festivals. You put a bunch of sticks in a barrel and shake it. or other objects engraved with words or pictures that had extreme power. In the sixth century they began to perform offerings made up of food. Yin is nothing without Yang and Yang is nothing without Yin. moon cakes. chestnuts mean water. and tea is for the god¶s consumption.The Black half of the symbol is Yin. Incense sticks are required to be given to the gods. red apples mean fire. Daoism was taught with reincarnation and cosmology. The first one that pops out has a message on it that gives you an answer. Beliefs change and some stay the same Daoism is the based on the main belief of finding the ultimate truth. red apples. rings. stating that you would keep being reborn until you completely understood the meaning of life. . The curved halves of the symbol mean they are interdependent with one another. Yin is considered to be Strong and passive. In the second century a school began to teach the art of meditation. and sticks. Each thing has a different meaning that is important to the gods. The White half of the symbol is Yang. chestnuts. They are meant to be understood as two halves of a whole. a constant cycle that is always changing but always linked together like dark and light.) Daoism based it¶s thoughts around reincarnation after the meaning of ultimate understanding. The Wishing Sticks are used to ask questions to the gods. oranges mean earth. No one is quite sure why but each god is given three sticks. (Cosmology is a branch of philosophy dealing with the origin and general structure of the universe. while Yang is weak and energetic. it represents the breath in earth or the life in earth. oranges. This same school also taught the uses of talismans and alchemy. peanuts. like the breeze. wishing sticks. papers. Alchemy is a form of chemistry that was associated with philosophy. The circles in Yin and Yang are used to represent that they are nothing without each other. It was believed that meditation could help you achieve the ultimate truth and that it put you more in touch with Dao and the spirits that Dao took form of. The kinds of food that the Daoists offer are green apples.

wood. fire. The Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty was attempting to choose a religion again and Buddhism and Daoism tried to gain the favor. It is considered disrespectful if you don¶t. Daoism and the Dynasties Buddhism and Daoism had constantly been fighting to be the official religion of the state. In 1254. Daoism. The most important things to know about Daoism beliefs is that there is a distinct harmony with Dao and that health and vitality are important. There are five main organs in your body that go along with the sky (water. In 1980 the temples were restored and more people began to follow the religion again.The kinds of papers they give the gods are Taoist money. The lines between these religions are still too blended together to be distinctly told apart and it is very hard to tell the differences. But after the dynasty that choose them faded. Daoism failed and in result many Daoist text were burned. Most of the people that practice Daoism also practice Buddhism. and Buddhism. It is bought on anniversaries and are used for different festivals. And for awhile Daoism had succeeded. If they are left alone they will show it without earning anything. The other kind of paper is Joss paper. . Buddhism was developed as a sub-religion.000 Daoist priests and nuns in China and there are about 1. Most ethnic minorities practice Daoism and another religion that goes nearly hand in hand. You need to nurture and respect the air or the breath you are given. Today there are more than 25. and lastly they believe that people are compassionate by nature. It is bought by believers and burned on the anniversaries of different gods. They began to combine Confucianism. metal. meditation and vegetarianism became very popular. and earth). In 1966-1976 Daoism temples were destroyed because of communism.500 Temples in China.

com/browse/talismans http://dictionary.about.org/taoism1.htm http://www.htm http://www.reference.htm http://chineseculture.religioustolerance.htm Word Definitions http://dictionary.com/browse/cosmology .htm http://members.com/oldsage1/offerings.religioustolerance.org/taoism2.about.com/browse/alchemy http://dictionary.fortunecity.reference.http://taoism.reference.com/od/visualsymbols/p/YinYang.com/od/religioninchina/a/Daoism.