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Music in Taoism

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Taoist Music: The Great Depiction of Yin-Yang Philosophy
Taoism, also known as Daoism, is an indigenous Chinese religion with its origin traced to the sage Laozi (Lao-tzu), a philosopher of ancient China believed to have lived in the sixth century B.C.E (Little 115). In Chinese, Dao means "way" or "path,” which is the appropriate way to behave and to lead others — but the Daode jing also refers to Tao as something that existed "before Heaven and Earth," a primal and chaotic matrix from which all forms emerged. The Classic of the Way and Its Power (Dao de jing or Tao-te-ching) introduces the doctrine of the Tao and serves as a guide for Taoists’ behavior and experience. The Dao de jing teaches the importance of cultivating simplicity, detachment, of virtue, and of living in harmony and balance with the natural world which implied visually in the well-known symbol Ying-Yang, also known as the Tao Chi disk (Little 116). As common in other religion, music has long played an integral part in religious practice. Taoists believe that music is a way to communicate with the spirits, to improve and deepen faith, and to achieve inner harmony and balance; therefore, the significant function of Taoist music is demonstrated of how Taoism doctrine are reflected in elements of music such as tones, instrumentation, and chants in Taoist rituals and ceremony.
The main theme of Taoism is resided in the Yin and Yang symbol, also referred to as the Tai Chi disk. The yin-yang doctrine is based on the concept that there are continuous transformations within the Tao, the principle that embraces nature. This principle is divided into two opposites--yin and yang--which represent all the contrasting aspects and interrelationships of everything exists in the universe. The principles of yang represent heaven, sun, light, heat, masculine while the principles of the yin are earth, moon, dark,…...

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