Written by Dena Merriam. Narrated by Marie T. Russell.
(audio version only)
I was born during the late Eastern Han Dynasty (25 CE-220 CE) into a family of ardent Daoists who were very much inspired by the teachings of the great sage Zhang Daoling, who had been instructed by the blessed Laozi himself, in a vision, to help free the world of falsehood and corruption, which had become endemic. Without a return to virtue, he warned, political and social instability would increase and cause much suffering.
It was true that the countryside around us was filled with poverty and misery, and Zhang Daoling inspired a vision of what we could create together to transform the world into a paradisal one. It was with much hope and passion that a small band of followers left their homes to create a community that would be ruled by Daoist principles, a community of people bonded by their commitment to a common ideal of equality and peace. I was fortunate to grow up in such an environment, where the ideals of the virtuous state were taught.
I was born after Zhang Daoling had already left the world, having mysteriously disappeared at the age of 123 years, leaving his son Zhang Heng and then his grandson Zhang Lu to fulfil his vision. Some say he died, but others say he ascended to heaven on a celestial creature. I chose to believe the latter and was fascinated by him from an early age, eager for any story...
Continue Reading at InnerSelf.com (plus audio/mp3 version of article)
Read by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com
Music By Caffeine Creek Band, Pixabay
About the Author
Dena Merriam is the Founder of The Global Peace Initiative of Women, a non-profit that brings spiritual resources to help address critical global issues. She is the author of My Journey through Time: A Spiritual Memoir of Life, Death and Rebirth.
A long-time disciplined meditator, Dena’s access to her past lives brings a clearer awareness and purpose to her present life, and also overcomes any fear of death. Learn more at www.gpiw.org as well as at DenaMerriam.com/