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History of Taoism

Traces the history of Taoist philosophy & practice from its roots in the Shamanic cultures of China, through the dynasties, and into its modern-day manifestations.

The Shamanic Origins of Taoist Practice
The roots of Taoism lie in the shamanic cultures of ancient China and, specifically, in the practices of the "wu" - their visionary shamans.

History Of Taoism Through The Dynasties
A brief history of the major events of Taoism, traced through China's dynasties.

Shangqing Taoism
Shangqing Taoism is the most mystical of Taoism's lineages, and includes practices such as spirit-travel and communication with the deities residing in the organs of the body, as well as in the stars and galaxies.

The Quanzhen Lineage of Taoism
An introduction to the Quanzhen ("Complete Reality" or "Complete Perfection") lineage of Taoist practice.

Tianshi Dao (Way of the Celestial Masters) Lineage
Tainshi Dao ("Way of the Celestial Masters") was the first form of organized religious Taoist practice. The lineage was founded by Zhang Daoling, after engaging in visionary dialogue with Laozi.

Timeline of Chinese History
A nice chart of China's dynasties, with links to short articles about many of them.

Yangtze River Tiger Leaping Gorge
Taoism has its roots in the Shamanic cultures of ancient China, which settled along the Yangtze River. The source of the Yangtze is high in the Tibetan plateau. As it travels through the mountains to the plains were these cultures mostly would have been found, it passes through the magnificent Tiger Leaping Gorge ...

The fangshi were Han Dynasty "masters of formulae" -- Taoist healers/magicians who traveled throughout China, offering their services for pay.

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