Welcome to the May issue of Yang Sheng! It is my pleasure to be the guest editor-in-chief this month. Our theme of “Daoism in the West” is very interesting since, comparatively speaking, Daoism is just beginning to become a notable presence outside of Asia. Each day more people learn about the “dao” or “tao” and become aware of the influence of the Dao-De-Jing on western philosophical development and everyday life.
Our featured article by Professor Elijah Siegler documents his research on the migration of Daoism out of China and into the United States. His work is sure to be considered fundamental to future generations of Daoist scholars. DaoShi Li Chang Dao (Rinaldini) has documented the development of the American Dragon Gate Lineage and together, these two articles provide great insight on the current face of American Daoism.
As Prof. Siegler pointed out, “Daoism was imported to the West as a series of ideas.” The fact that some people define Yang Sheng as a Daoist practice reflects the history or reality that many books about Yang Sheng and techniques of Yang Sheng have roots in Daoist philosophy or practice. This issue of Yang-Sheng would further explore that relationship. However, it is important to remind our readers that Yang Sheng is not just practiced by Daoism, but by many different schools of health and healings, like Confucianism, Buddhism, martial-arts and medical traditions. Some of the oldest classic works on Yang Sheng, such as Yellow Emperor’s Internal Classic, appeared before Daoism was formed, and represented the general wisdom of Chinese health preservation.
Our regular contributors enlighten us with useful information on the regular practice of qigong, yoga and Taiji as well as tips for living in Yang Sheng. I hope you enjoy this edition of Yang-Sheng and send everyone many blessings for abundant and radiant health in all areas of the Three Treasures – Jing (essence), Qi and Shen (spirit).
Christina J Barea, DP,MMQ