Wuhan Quan Zhen Daoist Music Cultural Heritage – Master Ren Zongquan

Ren Zongquan is the Vice Chairman of the Hubei Provincial Taoist Association, Vice Chairman of the Wuhan Taoist Association, Secretary-General of the Wuhan Taoist Cultural Research Association, Jian Yuan of the Wuhan Da Dao Guan, and a member of the 13th Committee of the Wuhan Municipal Political Consultative Conference. He was born on November 18, 1968, in Pucheng County, Shanxi Province. In 1992, he graduated from the “High-Rituals Class” at the Chinese Taoist Academy. In 2002, 2016, 2017, and 2018, he was appointed by the China Taoist Association as a master of the Qianshan Wulong Palace, the Wuhan Changchun Temple, the Laoshan Taiqing Palace, and the Nanyue Hengshan Daoist Academy, respectively.

Taoist Master Ren Zongquan has been inheriting Quan Zhen Daoist Music the  for over thirty years. He has conducted numerous “Taoist High-Rituals Music Study Classes” in more than twenty provinces and cities, including Henan, Shandong, Shaanxi, Liaoning, Hunan, Gansu, Hubei, Jiangsu, Yunnan, and others. He has been teaching Quan Zhen Daoist Music and the secret teachings of high-rituals for over thirty years. His students are spread across major temples and Daoist institutions throughout the country, such as the Baiyun Temple in Beijing, the Baxian Palace in Xi’an, the Zixiao Palace in Wudang Mountain, the Changchun Temple in Wuhan, the Nanyue Temple in Hunan, Laoshan Mountain in Shandong, Taishan Mountain’s Bixia Temple, Zhongyue Temple in Henan, and the Baiyun Temple in Lanzhou. He has also been invited to give lectures at prestigious Daoist institutions such as the Wudang Mountain Daoist Academy, the Nanyue Daoist Academy in Hunan, the Hong Kong Daoist Academy, and the Cross-Strait Daoist Academy. He has taught over two thousand students in high-rituals, who are now scattered throughout famous mountains, temples, and overseas.

In 2004, the Wuhan Da Dao Guan established the Wuhan Da Dao Guan Orchestral Group, with Master Ren Zongquan serving as the group leader and Meng Chengliang and Yang Chenglan as deputy group leaders. Since its establishment, the group has organized various Taoist ritual and music training classes, such as the “Taoist High-Rituals Seminar” and the “Wuhan Taoist High-Rituals Music Study Class,” cultivating a large number of Taoist ritual and music talents for the Daoist community nationwide. The group has also participated in major Daoist and cultural events nationwide, such as the “Huxian Shuanglufa Water and Land Ritual” in Shanxi, the “Seventh Longtaitou Festival of Xiaodongtian in Sanya, Hainan,” the “Lanzhou Baiyun Temple Daoist Classical Music Evening,” and the “14th Daoist Music Concert” organized by the China Taoist Association, receiving praise from both inside and outside the Daoist community.

The Wuhan Da Dao Guan Orchestral Group is a well-known Daoist music ensemble within the Daoist community. It was invited by the China Taoist Association to preside over the transmission of precepts and rituals in 2016, 2017, and 2018. In 2017, the troupe was awarded the “Outstanding Jingyue Troupe” by.

Transmission of Disciples by Daoist Master Ren Zongquan:

Mainland China:

Meng Chengliang, Lin Chengxue, Jiang Chengtian, Liu Chengwei, Wang Chengzheng, Yang Chenglan, Lei Chengjiu, Huang Chengxian, Deng Chengze, Yu Chengding, Wen Chengmou, Li Chengxia, Ren Chengzhi, Liang Chengshun, Yang Chengxiu, Tang Chenghua, Cheng Chengjin, Qi Chengyi, Meng Chengjian, Wang Chengche, Guo Chengduan, Jin Chengtong, Zhang Chengxiu, Ta Chengjun, Xu Chengai, Zhu Chenghou, Li Chenghong, Wang Chengge, Gao Chengqiu, Yang Chengru, Zheng Chengliao

Taiwan: Zhang Chengyao, Li Chengdao, Gao Chengzheng, He Chengzhen, Wu Chengxing, Yang Chenghua, Zhang Chengxuan

Germany: Liu Chengyong

France: Jing Xiu

Additional Disciples:

Geng Xinjia, Lan Xinchang, Lei Xinjiu, Chen Xinke, Feng Xinjiao, Chen Xinjing, Shi Xingang, Zheng Xinxuan, Wu Xinzhi, Bai Xinchang, Lin Xincheng, Chen Xinjing, Yang Xindao (Taiwan), Ding Xinyao

Malaysia: Liu Liqing, Li Lihua

Image description:Image

Date: May 25, 2001

Location: Dailuo Palace, Mianshan, Shanxi Province, China

Event: The religious ceremony music was successfully conducted without any makeup. In the photo, Daoist Master Ren Zongquan is seen alongside Professor Xiang Siyi (second person from the right), the Executive Vice President of the Chinese Bamboo Flute Association and Director of the “Chinese Daoist Music Research Center” at Wuhan Conservatory of Music, and Professor Hu Jun (first person from the left), the Vice Director of the “Chinese Daoist Music Research Center” at Wuhan Conservatory of Music.


Date: May 2002

Location: Nanyue Temple Daoist Management Committee, Hunan Province, China

Event: Daoist Master Ren Zongquan was invited to teach Daoist music at the “First Daoist Ritual Music Learning Class” organized by the Hunan Daoist Association. In the photo, Daoist Master Ren Zongquan is seen with Huang Zhian (third person from the left), Vice President of the Chinese Daoist Association, President of the Hunan Daoist Association, and President of the Nanyue Daoist Association. Also present in the photo are Zhao Deyi (third person from the right), the President of Wuhan Conservatory of Music, renowned Daoist musician and Qigong master Ren Fajiu (second person from the left), Professor Xiang Siyi (first person from the right), the Executive Vice President of the Chinese Bamboo Flute Association and Director of the “Chinese Daoist Music Research Center” at Wuhan Conservatory of Music, and Professor Hu Jun (first person from the left), the Vice Director of the “Chinese Daoist Music Research Center” at Wuhan Conservatory of Music.


Location: Qianshan Wulong Palace, Liaoning Province

Date: August 23, 2002

Event: Discussed Daoist ritual music with Daoist Master Min Zhiting, the Chairman of the 6th Council of the Chinese Taoist Association.


Date: September 18, 2003

Location: Second floor of Changchun Guan Dao Zang Ge (Changchun Temple Daoist Scripture Repository), Hubei Province

Event: The opening of the “Hubei Province Daoist High-Rituals Music Study Class” advocated and taught by Daoist Master Ren Zongquan. Forty-seven Daoist masters from over twenty provinces, municipalities, and autonomous regions across the country attended the class. The photo shows Daoist Master Ren Zongquan instructing on Daoist Quanzhen music.


Date: July 2005

Location: Music Hall, Sarawak State, Malaysia

Event: Daoist Master Ren Zongquan served as the director of the first Daoist Music Evening in Malaysia. The photo shows Daoist Master Ren Zongquan during the performance of “Huangguan Chaoyuan Ceremony.”


Date: August 2006

Location: Lounge at Tianhe Airport

Event: Sorting and collecting Daoist music during a layover.


Date: July 4, 2007

Location: Jiugongshan, Xianning, Hubei Province

Event: On July 4, 2007, the Hubei Province Taoist Association successfully held the “800th Anniversary Ceremony of Daoist Patriarch Zhang Daoqing’s Attainment of Dao” at Jiugongshan. The “Jiugongshan Imperial School Zhang Daoqing Ancestral Hall” and the “Jiugong Promote Dao and Harmonious Development” Daoist Music Concert were performed at Jiugongshan. The performance of the Huangguan Chaoyuan Ceremony by the Da Dao Temple received a warm response. The photo shows Daoist Master Ren Zongquan conducting the Daoist music performance.


Date: 2016

Location: Jinzhou Cultural Bureau, Dalian

Event: Performance of Daoist Gu Qin music piece “Yuqiao Wenda” (Dialogue between Fisherman and Woodcutter).


Date: November 2009

Location: East Lake Bibo Hotel, Wuhan City

Event: Daoist Master Ren Zongquan hosted the “First Daoist Music and Culture Symposium of Wuhan Dadao Temple.” The symposium was attended by Liang Jun, Director of the Wuhan Municipal Ethnic and Religious Affairs Commission; Zhao Deyi, Dean of the Wuhan Conservatory of Music; Professor Xiang Siyi, Director of the “Chinese Daoist Music Research Center” at the Wuhan Conservatory of Music, as well as renowned high-level Daoists from across the country, including Wang Zhiquan, Ren Fajiu, Chen Fayong, Zou Tongxuan, and Zhou He from Hong Kong Qing Song Guan, and Venerable Wang Liyi, the abbot of Malaysia’s Jiang Taigong Temple.


Date: 2017

Location: Wudang Mountain Taoist Academy

Event: Invited by the Wudang Mountain Taoist Association, directed Taoist music at the Wudang Mountain Taoist Academy.


Ren Zongquan: The Four Communities of Wuhan and Quanzhen Taoist Music

Wuhan’s Changchun Temple, Dadao Temple, Xuanmiao Temple, and Wudang Palace are known as the “Four Communities of Wuhan.” They all practice Quanzhen rituals and Taoist music, especially known for their Taoist music at Changchun Temple and Dadao Temple.

Changchun Temple is located at the southern foot of She Mountain (also known as Huanghu Mountain) in Wuchang Big East Gate. It is one of the famous Four Communities of Taoism in China. According to legend, this place was a lake with many pine trees, so it was called “Song Island” (Pine Island). The Chu region had a strong belief in witchcraft, which had a great influence. Therefore, from the Qin and Han dynasties onwards, this place was known as the “Altar of the First Farmer,” the “Altar of Gods and Ancestors,” and the “Taiji Palace,” where kings and nobles made sacrifices to heaven, earth, and ancestors. According to legend, the founder of Taoism, Laozi, once responded to the invitation of his disciples to meet the “Five Elders” in Lufu, and he arrived in Changsong Island, a village at the foot of Shuangfeng Mountain in Ezhou, Hubei. During the Northern Song Dynasty, Shuangfeng Mountain established Yuanqing Temple, which inherited the teachings of Jiangxi Gezao Fulu Golden Elixir, and it was spread to Ezhou, becoming a Tian Shi Taoist site.

In the Yuan Dynasty, Qiu Chuji sent his disciples to Wuhan to establish Taoist communities. His disciples recorded the events and built Changchun Temple on Song Island to worship Changchun Zhenren (Eternal Spring Immortal). Every year, on the 19th day of the lunar month, the birthday of Changchun Zhenren, Changchun Temple holds a grand ritual ceremony known as the “Spring Welcoming Ceremony” or “Yanjiu Festival” in Wuhan folk customs. During the Ming Dynasty, when Emperor Zhu Zhen of Chu celebrated his birthday, he went to Changchun Temple on Huanghu Mountain to pray for his father Zhu Yuanzhang’s longevity and offered incense. He renamed the mountain as Changchun Mountain, taking the two characters “Changchun” from Changchun Temple. The poet Wang Boxin of the Qing Dynasty wrote in his poem “Passing by Changchun Temple, Deer Frequents the Forge of Master Lianqi”: “Mountains and rivers bow to the remnant of calamity, outstanding temples open the divine garden. Purple palaces and jade terraces still seem elusive, the lost capital’s golden palace is ancient and empty.” This indicates the history and vicissitudes of Changchun Temple after experiencing wars and renovations.

During the reign of Emperor Shizong of the Ming Dynasty, Changchun Temple was already renowned for its “divine presence, exceptional in the Hubei province, with over a hundred buildings and tens of thousands of Taoist practitioners, flourishing in incense.” The temple housed a complete set of the Ming edition of the “Orthodox Dao Zang,” which before the liberation was one of the only four sets in the country. The renowned musician Qian Daxin came to Changchun Temple in 1774 (during the thirty-ninth year of the Qing dynasty’s Qianlong reign) to study the “Dao Zang” and wrote the “Preface to the Three Caverns’ Rotating Brilliance” in the Lai Cheng Tower. At that time, Changchun Temple was praised as the “famous area of Jiangchu, gathering place of Taoist disciples, and the refuge of the Huangguan sect.” The temple’s transmission of precepts is recorded twice in history. One occurred in the fourth year of the Qing Tongzhi era (1865) when Zhang Gengyun, the abbot of Beijing’s Baiyun Temple, was invited to Wuhan to preside over the transmission of precepts in Wuchang. Since Zhang Gengyun did not receive the government’s official document when leaving Beijing, the transmission of precepts was interrupted before the completion of the hundred-day precept period due to government intervention, and he was ordered to leave. The other occurred in the fourteenth year of the Republic of China (1925) when Liu Sishou, the twenty-second-generation disciple of the Longmen sect, presided over the transmission of precepts. At that time, Liu served as the abbot of Yuanmiao Temple and received support from Changchun Temple. With the approval of the authorities, he conducted the transmission of precepts in the scripture repository of Changchun Temple. The precept period was successfully completed, and the names of 454 precept recipients were recorded in the “Changchun Temple Yichou Precept Register” of Hubei Province. Li Yuanhong and Xiao Yaonan each presented a plaque with inscriptions reading “Great Vow Fulfilled” and “Ascend the Path Together.” After the transmission of precepts, Liu Sishou remained as the abbot of Changchun Temple.

In 1864, the sixteenth-generation grandmaster of the Longmen sect, He Hechun, came to Changchun Temple from Wudang Mountain and made a vow. With the support of official documents and donations from Li Shizong, the commander-in-chief of Jiangnan, he carried out large-scale repairs, restoring Changchun Temple to its former grandeur.

Changchun Guan is a renowned Taoist temple known for its “Scriptures Repentance Communities,” a practice of repentance and chanting that has gained fame throughout the world. Many famous masters with extraordinary Taoist abilities have emerged from this temple. According to the “Records of Changchun Guan,” a famous master named Pan Jiuyang entered the Wudang Mountains at the age of sixteen to become a Taoist monk during the early Qing dynasty. He excelled in reciting and chanting scriptures and made significant progress in his practice. He compiled a text called “Guangcheng Jiyao,” which contained prayers for saving the dead and relieving suffering and was included in the Dao Zang. The text also mentions that Pan Jiuyang received teachings from the Eight Immortals during his travels. The Eight Immortals taught him methods such as the Five Thunder technique, offering rituals to heavenly officials, and key prayers. They knelt and passed on these teachings to him. They left behind a bowl for sale, which Pan Jiuyang dared not consume. He stirred it with his finger, and it transformed into a golden finger. From then on, he was known as “Golden Finger Pan.” Once, during a drought in Wuchang, with the city’s officials and residents praying for rain, Jiuyang encountered a boy who playfully wrote the character “thunder” on his palm and advised him to sell thunder to the governor’s office. The news spread throughout the city, indicating Jiuyang’s Taoist abilities. Later, it is mentioned that Jiuyang established a ritual at Changchun Guan known as “Jing Chan Feng Kai.” This ritual would take place for three or five days and would always involve offering sacrifices to the heavens, with white cranes flying in the sky and spiritual clouds protecting the altar. In the Upper True Palace, a book edited by Jiuyang called “Jiuyang Jiao Lian” was discovered and included in the “Records of Changchun Guan.” After leaving Changchun Guan, Jiuyang went on to establish lineages at Yousheng Palace in Ningbo, Zhejiang, and Fuyou Palace in Huai’an.

During the early years of the Republic of China, a well-known master named Wu Lixiang from Changchun Guan, a native of Shaoyang, Hunan, entered the temple of Dafuping in Anhua at the age of twenty-eight. He studied under Master Jiang Zhiming and learned the rituals, melodies, and Quanzhen Taoist practices from Chen Gao Gong and Wang Chengxiao, who graduated from the Huangpu Military Academy in Wuhan.

Changchun Guan has been home to many famous Taoist masters throughout history, such as Chen Mingkun, Wang Shinan, La Wanhui, Han Gaochao, and former President of the Chinese Taoist Association, Min Zhi ting. They have been engaged in scholarly pursuits and education at this temple. After the “Cultural Revolution,” it is said that only the concept of the “Three and a Half Masters” remained in the Taoist community, with Han Gaochao, the supervisor of Changchun Guan, referring to himself as the “half-master.”

Changchun Temple in Wuhan has incorporated a significant “Han Opera” element into its Taoist rituals and musical melodies. It is said that several generations of high-ranking practitioners at Changchun Temple in Wuhan were trained in “Han Opera” during their childhood. As a result, the Taoist rituals and musical melodies at Changchun Temple have become heavily influenced by “Han Opera” elements. Prior to the liberation of Wuhan, Changchun Temple was renowned nationwide for its ritual chanting and repentance practices. Therefore, the Taoist rituals and musical melodies at Changchun Temple have expanded beyond the traditional “Quan Zhen Rituals” and the Chengdu Erxian An version of the “Reprinted Taoist Music: Quan Zhen Zheng Yun.” The rituals at Changchun Temple are rich in content, and the musical melodies are diverse and vibrant. The main instruments used are percussion instruments, as well as wind instruments such as sheng, guan, di, and xiao. Changchun Temple incorporates unique elements such as “running in the five directions” during its flame-watching rituals, which are not found in other Taoist temples. Particularly noteworthy is the performance of the “Ten Kings Transformation” at Changchun Temple, which involves ten high-priests changing their attire ten times, accompanied by the sound of gongs and drums. The scene is lively, featuring ox-headed and horse-faced characters, golden-faced ghosts, changing masks, and creates a festive atmosphere. The role of the drummer is crucial during this performance and requires an experienced high-priests with exceptional drumming skills. Sometimes, the drumming is fast-paced, and the drumsticks frequently slip out of hands, so it is necessary to prepare several extra drumsticks in advance and assign someone specifically to collect the ones that fall. This spectacular performance became the talk of the town, attracting a large number of believers and visitors, resembling a theatrical festival. These exceptional skills at Changchun Temple are on the verge of being lost, with only one person, named “Huang Zongsheng,” possessing and preserving them. However, Huang Zongsheng, who is now 94 years old, is unable to pass on these skills due to his advanced age. In 1981, Han Gaochao, a renowned high-priest from Changchun Temple, specifically traveled to Baiyun Temple in Beijing to teach “Quan Zhen Gao Gong” at the “First Taoist High-Rituals Class in China.”

Presently, the Taoist rituals and musical melodies of Changchun Temple in Wuhan are based on the Chengdu Two Immortals An’s “Reprinted Taoist Canon: Quan Zhen Zheng Yun.” Previously, the famous Taoist master Min Zhiting and the Taoist Music Research Office of Wuhan Conservatory of Music recorded the “Quan Zhen Zheng Yun Pu Ji” as teaching materials. It is now being taught and applied by Min Zhiting’s students, such as Hui Xingde and Ren Zongquan. The authentic Wuhan version of “Quan Zhen Yun” is no longer in use.

Originally, Daoguan Temple in Wuhan was located at No. 171-199 Liji Road in Hankou. Although its history is not long, it is widely known. The original site was a pond with a Yu Huang Pavilion by its side. During the reign of Emperor Daoguang in the Qing Dynasty, it was expanded into a temple named Yu Huang Ge. In the 11th year of the Guangxu reign (1885), a resident priest named Li Min donated the temple’s foundation, buildings, statues, and ritual objects to a fellow Taoist named Du Yuanchun. Du then expanded it into a ten-directional communities and renamed it Da Dao Guan. At that time, there were more than ten buildings, three main halls, and two courtyards, covering an area of over 300 square meters.

During the Wuhan Crisis, when the government expanded Liji Road, a part of Da Dao Guan’s premises was used as the roadbed. After the temple buildings were demolished, Hengde, the supervisor of Changchun Temple in Wuchang, initiated fundraising efforts and sent Pei Zhide as the chief reconstruction officer. Da Dao Guan was eventually restored, and Pei stayed on as the abbot. The rebuilt Da Dao Guan was even larger in scale, with a total of seven buildings including halls, guest quarters, dormitories, halls, and storage rooms. Both the mountain gate Lingguan Hall and the Yu Huang Ge were two-story structures. There were also nine storefronts facing the street. The total area occupied was 1,632 square meters, with a construction area of 2,461 square meters.

Da Dao Guan was famous in Wuhan’s Taoist community for its ritual chanting activities. Before the liberation of Wuhan, there were about sixty to seventy resident priests, with the majority of them skilled in ritual chanting. Da Dao Guan primarily relied on the income from ritual chanting activities and the rental income from a small number of houses to support the livelihood of its practitioners. During the period from 1945 to 1950, ritual chanting activities flourished, with more than ten half-month or longer ritual chanting ceremonies held each year, and small-scale flame-watching and vegetarian offerings held almost daily. Highly skilled high-ranking practitioners emerged one after another. Especially during Yin Jingshan’s tenure as a high-ranking practitioner, ritual chanting activities at Da Dao Guan became even more frequent. Yin Jingshan had thick eyebrows and big eyes, a dignified appearance, and a robust physique. His recitation of verses and the rhythmic tones of his chanting captivated the congregants, leaving them enthralled.

Han Kou Da Dao Guan holds a grand “Yuhuang Sacred Assembly” every year on the ninth day of the lunar calendar in the first month. On that day, at midnight, the ceremony of receiving the deity is held. All Taoist practitioners kneel in front of the Yuhuang Pavilion, respectfully welcoming and reciting scriptures, offering prayers for the prosperity and peace of the country, favorable weather conditions, abundant harvests of crops, thriving prosperity of the temple, continuous incense offerings, and flourishing morality. People from all walks of life, including visitors and devotees, flock to the temple, offering incense and making vows to seek year-round safety and abundance in clothing and food. Several large commercial enterprises in Han Kou or certain charitable organizations pool funds to invite the chanting of the “High Supreme Yuhuang Scripture,” with up to 36 people participating in the recitation, which continues for forty-nine days. The ritual includes presenting petitions, making offerings to the heavens, refining rituals, specific rituals, offering sacrifices, delivering and distributing offerings, battling evil spirits, opening seals, the Qingxuan morning court ceremony, inviting the deities, and summoning lost souls. These activities aim to allow Yuhuang to fully enjoy the fragrance and blessings from the human world during his half-month journey to the mortal realm and return to the heavenly palace on his auspicious birthday (the ninth day of the first lunar month) in the afternoon.

In the early years of the Republic of China, famous Taoist practitioners at Da Dao Guan included Yin Jingshan, Wang Shinan, and La Wanhui. La Wanhui later returned to Wudang Mountain.

Wudang Palace is the only Taoist sacred site among the four major Taoist monasteries in Wuhan that is bestowed with the title “Palace.” According to legend, the disciple of the esteemed Wudang Taoist Lu Dayou vowed to build the Wudang Mountain practice monastery at the foot of Mount Huanghu, hence the name “Wudang Palace.” The successive abbots of Wudang, such as Liu Sishou and Jiang Zongshan, not only emphasized music, valued arts, and promoted the ways of health preservation but also had extensive knowledge of traditional Chinese medicine.

According to the Ming Dynasty’s “Huan Yu Tong Zhi,” Wudang Palace was originally built inside the Pinghu Gate of Wuchang County, to the east of the ancient Yellow Crane Tower. It was extended during the early years of the Hongwu period and underwent major reconstruction in the tenth year of the Ming Zhengtong era (1445). In the twelfth year of the Qing Kangxi era (1673), it was rebuilt on a large scale, and a stele named “Reconstruction of Wudang Palace” was erected. In the early years of the Qing Guangxu era, the government authorities relocated the palace to the west of the school.

It is said that Wudang Palace originally applied the royal music of Wudang Mountain. In the Qing Dynasty, the Dragon Gate sect of the Quanzhen Taoist tradition took charge of Wudang Palace, and the Taoist music and rituals of the Quanzhen sect were introduced.

According to historical records, Yuan Miaoguan is the earliest Taoist monastery in the Wuhan area. Due to the favor of emperors, Yuan Miaoguan changed its name three times with the succession of emperors. In the fifth year of the Song Dynasty’s Qiande era (967), after Wang Xiu established the Taoist temple, it was named “Tianqing” by Emperor Mu of Song after thirteen years. In the first year of the Yuan Huangqing era (1312), it was renamed “Xuanmiao.” During the Qing Kangxi era, it was renamed “Yuan Miaoguan” to avoid using the name of Emperor Kangxi (Xuanye).

Originally, it was built to the east of Hanyang County, and during the reign of Emperor Lizong of the Southern Song Dynasty (1241-1252), the local authorities commissioned Taoist practitioner Ye Jing’an to rebuild it. It was destroyed during the late Yuan Dynasty due to warfare, and in the early years of the Ming Hongwu period, when Zhao Tinglan was the county magistrate, the temple was moved to the west of the city. In the sixteenth year of the Ming Hongwu era (1383), when “King Zhao of Chu fell ill,” the government conducted “extensive repairs to famous sites within the territory.” The local yamen in Hanyang Prefecture, responsible for managing Taoist affairs, established the “Daoji Office” inside the temple, and the famous Taoist Han Mingshan once served in the Daoji Office. The temple was surrounded by lush forests, creating a pleasant landscape. Behind the main hall, there is a centuries-old elm tree, beneath which lies the burial place of the founder of the temple, the enlightened Daoist master Wang Xiu.

During the early Yuan Dynasty, Xuanmiao Temple began to exhibit traces of Quanzhen Taoist activities. From the “Xuanmiao Temple Jiantan Stele,” it can be inferred that Xuanmiao Temple began using Quanzhen rituals and music from the Ming Dynasty. In the mid-Qing Dynasty, Xuanmiao Temple invited the abbot of Beijing’s Baiyun Temple to impart the “Three Altar Great Precepts” of Quanzhen Taoism. Due to historical changes, these records are no longer available. According to Huang Zongsheng, an elder monk at Xuanmiao Temple who is now ninety-four years old, during the Guangxu era of the Qing Dynasty, Xuanmiao Temple already applied the Chengdu Erxian An version of the “Revised Collection of Taoist Canons: Quanzhen Zhengyun.” However, he mentioned that works such as the “Quanzhen Morning and Evening Practices,” “Dafan Douyi,” “Jade Emperor’s Scriptures,” “Jade Emperor’s Repentance,” and “Sazu Iron Can Flame Mouth” used the Shanghai version, just like Changchun Temple and Da Dao Guan. He also stated that among the four major Taoist communities in Wuhan, apart from Da Dao Guan, which frequently uses instrumental music, the other monasteries use it sparingly.

Original artical by Wuhan Da Dao Guan

Editor: Fan Xin Rui

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