Ming Princes and Daoist Ritual

Richard G. Wang

in The Ming Prince and Daoism

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199767687
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950607 | DOI:
Ming Princes and Daoist Ritual

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Chapter 3 divides the Ming princes into three groups. The first group includes the princes who joined the Daoist order by receiving ordination or were initiated into the neidan lineages; they were considered to be Daoists in the Daoist community. At the other end of the spectrum from this group were those princes who commissioned or participated in Daoist ritual but did not show a strong identity with Daoism and seem to have been lay patrons; they assumed this role either for their personal needs or for the lay community, just like any local leader. A third group of princes occupy an intermediary position. Whether those belonging to this middle group were ordained priests or not, they clearly identified themselves with Daoism and had the ability to personally perform some Daoist rites beyond any ordination or initiation conferred on them. Ming princes participated in communion with Daoist ritual from different perspectives, thus representing different social constituencies in the lay community.

Keywords: Daoist ritual; ordination; liturgical registers; Daoist priests; faming; initiation; activist patrons; ritual performance; lay patrons; observances

Chapter.  7990 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Religious Studies

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