Taoism is an indigenous religion of China. It formally emerged at the end of the Eastern Han Dynasty, and its birth was marked by the emergence of the Wudoumi Dao and the Taiping Dao. Taoism is rooted in traditional Chinese culture, and its sources are largely the following aspects: primitive religions and exorcism which worship natural objects and ancestors in remote antiquity, the pursuit of immortality by means of Chinese alchemy in the Spring and Autumn Period and the Warring States Period, and the doctrine of yin and yang and wuxing (five elements) and the Daojia thought in the Warring States Period.
three master of Taoism 道教三圣
Taoism has complicated doctrines and a variety of sects. It worships Laozi, the representative of Daojia, as its founder, referring to him as “Taishang Laojun,” and views the Tao Te Ching written by Laozi as its major scripture.
老子 Lao Zi/Lao-Tzu (BC571-BC471)
Taoism holds that the Way is the primitive state of the universe, and the origin of the world, and all existence in the universe derives from the Way. Taoism views immortality as its ultimate goal, believing that human beings should pursue immortality and that the very way is through belief in Taoism. It contends that one can get the help or instruction
of immortals and gain supernatural ability and obtain immortality at last so long as he sincerely cultivates himself. In life, Taoism advocates acclimating oneself to nature, giving up various pursuits in the real society and living a natural and true life.
Wudang mountain 武当山
为了达到成仙的目的，道教发明了很多修炼的方法，包括精神修炼、形体修炼、食物修炼等等。内丹道和外丹道是其中比较著名的修炼方法。外丹是在丹炉中烧炼矿物以制造长生不老的“仙丹”；内丹是将人体比作炉鼎来习练 精、 气、 神， 通过调整人体内的气息 流 转， 回 到 生 命的原本状态而长生不死。
In order to achieve the goal of immortality,Taoism invented many ways of cultivation,including the cultivation of spirit, physical bodies and via one’s diet; in particular, the way of inner immortal pills and that of outer immortal pills are famous ways of cultivation. Outer immortal pills refer to “immortality pills” produced by way of Chinese alchemy, which are said to result in immortality; in contrast, the way of inner immortal pills compares a human body to a stove, advocating cultivating jing (material), qi (energy) and shen (mind) to adjust the breath and qi circulation of human bodies, returning to the original state of life and thus gaining immortality.
Taoism exerted considerable influence over the development ancient Chinese culture. Some aspects of Taoism exhibit the spirit of science and technology to a certain extent. For example, the alchemical refining of immortal pills was originally a pharmaceutical activity, but later led to the invention and use of gunpowder; the pharmaceutical and healing methods boosted the development of traditional Chinese medicines; the regimen and exercising methods of Taoism are the direct source of some of today’s sports, such as qigong, martial arts and shadowboxing, and its regimen theory still receives attention nowadays; its idea of the pursuit of immortality and its notion of the immortal world have aroused the imagination of writers and artists, and enriched the romantic color of Chinese literature; for folk customs, many traditional festivals have been infused with the contents of Taoism,
the folk beliefs in Taoist immortals, such as the Jade Emperor and the Goddess the Queen Mother, which remain popular in China and have a profound influence over the cultural psychological structure of the populace.
Five Famous Taoism Mountains of China: The Wudang Mountain in Hubei, The Luohu mountain in Guangdong, Mount Longhu in Jiangxi, the Qiyun Mountain in Anhui and the Qingcheng Mountain in Sichuan.The Wudang Mountain is the most famous of all, and is viewed as the leading one of the Four Famous Taoism Mountains, and the origin of Wudang martial arts.