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Chinese Buddhism There is evidence of Buddhists in China as early as the 3rd century but Buddhism was not popular in China for years Buddhism was probably introduced after the Han emperor Ming Ti had a dream of a flying golden deity that was interpreted as a vision of the Buddha After this dream the emperor sent emissaries to India who returned to China with the Sutra in Forty-two Sections It is kept in a temple outside the capital of Lo-yang Buddhism was brought to China from the trade routes of Southeast Asia and grew slowly Buddhism first became popular in China during the Han dynasty and was full of magical practices like the popular Chinese Taoism The first Chinese Buddhists taught that the soul was indestructible Nirvana was the belief of immortality and peace They also taught karma which taught the people to be compassionate There was always a connection between Taoism and Buddhism until the end of the Han dynasty Everybody believed that Lao-tzu had been reborn in India as the Buddha Many Chinese emperors worshiped Lao-tzu and the Buddha on the same alter The first translations of Buddhist sutras into Chinese used a Taoist vocabulary so the Chinese could understand it better One of the most important reasons why Buddhism grew in China during this period was because of translation The most important translator was a very smart monk named Kumarajiva who had studied the Hindu Vedas the occult sciences astronomy and the Hinayana and Mahayana sutras During the 5th and 6th centuries Buddhist schools were started in China and India Buddhism was becoming very powerful in China there had been a large increase in the monk population and Buddhism was becoming popular with the common people When the Sui dynasty was started in China Buddhism became the official religion The golden age of Buddhism in China occurred during the Tang dynasty Even though the Tang emperors were
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