Du Daojian

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Du Daojian (1273-1318 AD), alias Chu Yi, was a famous Daoist at the turn of the Southern Song (1127-1279) and the Yuan (1271-1368). Du, from Dangtu (today's Anhui province) named himself Nanguzi. At the age of 14, Du obtained an unusual book from an unusual person. So he made up his mind to cultivate Dao with Mr. Geng of Mount Shishan. Later, Du moved to Mount Maoshan and read over the Daoist Canon. Jiang Zongying, Lineage Master of Mount Maoshan, appreciated him very much as he saw Du and transmitted the scriptural skills of the Great Grotto. Du was presented to Emperor Duzong of the Southern Song and conferred the title of Master of Assistance of Daoism. Later he lived as the abbot of the Temple of Embracing Virtue( 抱德觀 Baode Guan ) in Huzhou, where he advocated the science of mysteries and set up the monastic rules, and took care of neglected tasks, so that the Daoists at the temple were completely convinced. In the 1st year of Jingyan (1276 AD) of Emperor Ruizong's reign during the Song, the Mongol army attacked the south on a large scale and the people feared where the Mongol army had been. Daojian risked his life to see Boyan, the General of the Mongol army, and invited him to the south under the condition that the innocent people not be killed. Du went to the Mongol capital with Boyan after the war in the south ended. When he was presented to Kublai, the first emperor of the Yuan (Mongol) dynasty, he stated that at the time it was extremely urgent not only to seek for and maintain virtuous and talented persons but also to put them in key positions. Later Du became an administrator on the imperial order and lived at the Temple of the Yang Origin ( 宗陽宮 Zongyang Gong ) as its abbot. In the 7th year of Dade (1303 AD) in the reign of Emperor Chengzong of the Yuan, Du was appointed administrator of Daoism for the Hangzhou area and given the title of Lofty Master of Daoism. In the 1st year of Huangqing (1312 AD) in Emperor Renzong's reign, he was revered as the Perfect Man Who Advocates Dao, Embodies Perfection and Worships Orthodoxy ( 隆道沖真崇正真人 Longdao Chongzhen Chongzheng Zhenren ). With his insight into the science of mysteries, Du wrote several works on Daoism: The Original Meaning of the Mysterious Book of Dao and its Virtue ( 《道德玄經原旨》 Daode Xuanjing Yuanzhi ), Elucidation of the Original Meaning of the Obscure Book of Dao and its Virtue ( 《玄經原旨發揮》 Xuanjing Yuanzhi Fahui ), Guanyin's Elucidation of the Mystery ( 《關尹閘玄》 Guanyin Chanxuan ), Wenzi's Essays ( 《文子纘義》 Wenzi Zuanyi ), and so on.