is adhered to by 8.5% of the entire population of Singapore. In general, nearly all adherents of Taoism
are associated with the mainstream Zhen Yi
school. Owing to the decline in religious knowledge amongst the younger generations, Taoists, like followers of other religion, focus on rituals with little or no knowledge of Taoist scriptures and cultivation.
Taoism first arrived in Singapore with the first Chinese settlers in Singapore. The majority of these settlers worshipped 妈祖 (Ma Zu
) to guide them safely in on their arrival in a new foreign country. Taoist practice later flourished as an increasing number of Chinese merchants and coolies settled in Singapore.
Many Taoist followers worship Buddha as well as these two religions have traditionally enjoyed a peaceful coexistence, thereby leading to obscured delineation between the two religions. Subsequently with the rise of Buddhist activists in the 1980s, the pool of worshippers who worship both Taoist deities and Buddha realigned to declare themselves as Buddhists even if they were primarily worshipping Taoist deities (defined as families which worship Taoist deities at home). This led to a statistical decline in the Taoist population in Singapore. However, any attempt to deny Taoism its right as a religion on its own is dubious owing to the substantially growing and unreported numbers of youngsters embracing the faith.
Role of Taoism in the Chinese community
Taoism itself... Read More