How Taiwanese death rituals have adapted for families living in the US

July 23, 2020

Taiwanese people living in the United States face a dilemma when loved ones die. Many families worry that they might not be able to carry out proper rituals in their new homeland.

As a biracial Taiwanese-American archaeologist living in Idaho and studying in Taiwan, I am discovering the many faces of Taiwan’s blended cultural heritage drawn from the mix of peoples that...

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Children celebrate Chinese New Year with parade, temple visit

February 21, 2020

The Year of the Rat came alive in Mendocino last Thursday. Despite the gloomy overcast, local school children carrying signs, banners and rattles coursed down Main Street as the culmination of class lessons about Chinese culture.

A dragon led the procession, weaving its way toward the ocean. Right behind, the little ones led off the march in a formation complete with a colorful dragon head.

Passersby and visitors couldn’t help but smile. Older students followed behind. Parents walked among the children, herding them in the right direction. Teachers resolved last...

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Daoism in Boston

Though there are significant Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Korean immigrant communities in Greater Boston, East Asian traditions such as Confucianism, Daoism, and Shintō are difficult to survey as there are very few religious centers. These traditions are deeply imbedded in the unique history, geography, and culture of their native countries and are often practiced in forms that are not limited to institutional or communal settings.

The ancient Chinese sage Lao-Tzu from the sixth century BCE taught a way of living in harmony with the Dao (“the...

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The Critical Angle: Is 'Star Wars' really about Taoism?

December 19, 2019
I was raised in a hippy household. We started our meals with a reading from the Tao Te Ching, the founding text of Taoism. I also had the more conventional experience of growing up obsessed with Star Wars. I loved the original film trilogy, and though I watched Return of the Jedi until the VHS tape broke, it’s the scenes with Yoda in Empire Strikes Back that ultimately resonated with me the most. Yoda was the first experience I ever had with a taoist sage. He managed both the irreverence and wisdom that goes with living in harmony with the Tao. As an adult, I’ve... Read more about The Critical Angle: Is 'Star Wars' really about Taoism?

Healing Tao

The Healing Tao organization is the largest Daoist organization in the United States with its network of Healing Tao centers. Since the early 1980s, the organization has been led by Mantak Chia, trained in both Daoist practice and Western medicine, who has trained hundreds of practitioners which have led to dozens of Healing Tao centers being established across the globe.

Jade Emperor

Since the 12th century CE the Jade Emperor has been the head of the Daoist celestial pantheon. He presides over the councils of heaven and, on the last day of each year, he receives reports on the activities of all gods and humans so that he may mete out the appropriate reward or punishment.
Wing-tsit, Chan (trans.). The Way of Lao Tzu. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1963.