By Mircea Eliade
In quantity 2 of this huge paintings, Mircea Eliade keeps his magisterial development throughout the heritage of spiritual rules. The religions of historic China, Brahmanism and Hinduism, Buddha and his contemporaries, Roman faith, Celtic and German religions, Judaism, the Hellenistic interval, the Iranian syntheses, and the beginning of Christianity—all are encompassed during this quantity.
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Extra info for A History of Religious Ideas: From Gautama Buddha to the Triumph of Christianity
Pp. ; see also Granet's Danses et legendes de la Chine ancienne, pp. 116 fT. ), the sovereign in a certain sense incarnates the axis mundi and forms the connection between Earth and Heaven. The spatiotemporal symbolism of the "centers of the world" is widespread; it is documented in many archaic cultures as well as in every urban civilization. 39 We should add that, just like the royal palace, the humblest primitive dwellings of China have the same cosmic symbolism: they constitute, that is, an imago mundi.
If noblemen and kings were able, imitating the Tao, to hold to this attitude of nonintervention, the ten thousand beings would at once follow their example of themselves" (37. 2). Like the true Taoist, "the best [of princes] is the one whose existence is not known" (17. 1). Since "the heavenly Tao triumphs without striving" (73. 6), the most effective ways of obtaining power are wu-wei and nonviolence. 63 "The supple and the weak overcome 60. See Kaltenmark, Lao tseu, pp. 19 ff. 61. , p. 22. The same situation is also found in other traditional literatures: the work, attributed to a certain sage or contemplative, is usually continued and enriched by his disciples.
Fragment translated by Dubs, pp. 71-72. , p. 74). Belief in the natural metamorphosis of metals is of considerable antiquity in China; see, especially, Needham, Science and Civilisation, vol. 3, pp. 636 ff. 100. See the texts cited in Eliade, The Forge and the Crucible, pp. 114 ff. 101. Lionel Giles, A Gallery of Chinese Immortals, pp. 67 ff. "Bodily immortality" was usually obtained by absorbing elixirs prepared in a laboratory; see Needham, Science and Civilisation, vol. 5, pt. 2, pp. 93 ff. 40 THE RELIGIONS OF ANCIENT CHINA is black like lead," etc.