Tai-I

Doctrines The term "Tai-I" means supreme unity, a term used in early Taoism to refer to the One from which all beings emanate. Tai-I was dedicated to therapeutic practices by means of talismans. Of particular importance was a talisman call T'ai-I San-yuan that Hsiao claimed had been given to him by an immortal. Nothing, however, is known about the content of the talisman. The sect did not use elixirs of immortality or seek immortality in any way. There was a strong moral dimension to the sect. It forbad the use of intoxicants and required its priests to remain celibate.

History The Tai-I first appeared in northern china in the 12th century. It was founded by Hsiao Pao-chen in about 1140. The sect became popular because of Hsiao's ability to heal people and disperse evil spirits. Such was Hsiao's reputation that he was invited by the emperor Hsi-tung to his court in 1148. Hsi-tung was so impressed by Hsiao that he recognised and offered patronage to his sect. In spite of this support tai-I did not survive beyond the middle of the 14th century.

Symbols The movement made use of talismans in its therapeutic practices. But nothing is known of the character of these talismans.

Adherents It is not possible to determine the number of adherents associated with the movement.

Headquarters/
Main centre
 The Taoist temple in chi prefecture (modern day Honan province).