Qingyang Taoist Temple
Taoism teaches the Way, the path to enlightenment, and the first verse of the seminal Dao De Jing explains that the Way that can be taught is not the true way. Good luck with that, then. To try and get your head around this and other millennia-old Chinese riddles, probably the best place to start is in a mountain temple. Start by rubbing the ram statue for good luck then enter a world of unconventional, spontaneous worship. Any trip to Qingyang Temple is a celebration of the most original and intriguing aspects of traditional Chinese culture that include soothsaying, alchemy, medicine, meditation, taichi and the tea ceremony.
Set in well-manicured and extensive grounds, the temple has a public and private section where monks live and practice. Religious Taoism has its own gods and texts, but has always been open to other influences, absorbing ideas from Confucianism, Buddhism or folk religion much more easily than other creeds.