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Herbert Allen Giles

Religions of Ancient China

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Religions of Ancient China is a summary of the different spiritual beliefs in China. The book has five chapters: The Ancient Faith, Confucianism, Taoism, Materialism, Buddhism and Other Religions. Excerpt from the book: The problem of the universe has never offered the slightest difficulty to Chinese philosophers. Before the beginning of all things, there was Nothing. In the lapse of ages Nothing coalesced into Unity, the Great Monad. After more ages, the Great Monad separated into Duality, the Male and Female Principles in nature; and then, by a process of biogenesis, the visible universe was produced. An addition, however, to this simple system had to be made, in deference to, and on a plane with, the intelligence of the masses. According to this, the Male and Female Principles were each subdivided into Greater and Lesser, and then from the interaction of these four agencies a being, named P'an Ku, came into existence.
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