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Pause Switch to Standard View Zen and Taoism: A Connection?
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Flag alyosha77 February 22, 2009 6:30 AM EST
I read in Huston Smith's "The World's Religions" that Zen Buddhism perhaps draws from "Chinese thought." I take this to mean Taoism, since it possesses some of the same characteristics. Has a historical link been identified between the two?
Flag kilgoretrout2006 February 22, 2009 11:53 PM EST
Absolutely. Buddhism started in India right? So when it moved into China there was a lot sharing.

But sharing is nice. :)
Flag MengTzu February 27, 2009 2:05 PM EST

Yes, Chinese/East Asian Buddhism, or at least Zen (Ch'an) Buddhism, is influenced by some aspects of Daoism.  On the other hand, Daoism, particularly Lingbao and Quanzhen Daoism, is influenced by some aspects of Buddhism.

Flag alyosha77 March 1, 2009 9:13 AM EST

Feb 27, 2009 -- 2:05PM, MengTzu wrote:


Yes, Chinese/East Asian Buddhism, or at least Zen (Ch'an) Buddhism, is influenced by some aspects of Daoism.  On the other hand, Daoism, particularly Lingbao and Quanzhen Daoism, is influenced by some aspects of Buddhism.




 


I'm kind of bummed. I don't know if this is because the recent transition of Beliefnet, but I believe you had posted a longer reply to my original question which somehow disappeared. I really wanted to take to absorb what you had said previously. Could you resend the information we sent before?

Flag MengTzu March 1, 2009 2:14 PM EST

Mar 1, 2009 -- 9:13AM, alyosha77 wrote:


Feb 27, 2009 -- 2:05PM, MengTzu wrote:


Yes, Chinese/East Asian Buddhism, or at least Zen (Ch'an) Buddhism, is influenced by some aspects of Daoism.  On the other hand, Daoism, particularly Lingbao and Quanzhen Daoism, is influenced by some aspects of Buddhism.




 


I'm kind of bummed. I don't know if this is because the recent transition of Beliefnet, but I believe you had posted a longer reply to my original question which somehow disappeared. I really wanted to take to absorb what you had said previously. Could you resend the information we sent before?




It was a very long post =P  Let me try to summarize the points that I can remember:


I think the nutshell of what I said is that Daoism and Buddhism in China were influenced by each other as they developed.  Buddhism was in fact mistaken by some early Daoists as a new form of Daoism.  Some early translations of Buddhist texts used Daoist terms to interpret Buddhist concepts, so the Chinese probably first understood Buddhism in a very Daoist way.  During the 3rd and 4th century, there was a Neo-Daoist movement called Xuan Xue, and many Buddhists entered into Xuan Xue discourses, and it was by way of Xuan Xue discourses that Buddhism became integrated into the intellectual mainstream of Chinese thought.  On the more popular level, the turbulent times from the beginning of 3rd to the beginning of the 7th century in China caused many to look for hope in immortality and salvation, so Daoism and Buddhism both became increasingly influential on the popular level.  Throughout Chinese history, there had been some hostilities between them, but I believe their mutual influence and in mutual inclusivity are more significant.

Flag alyosha77 March 1, 2009 8:40 PM EST

Thanks for the information.

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