- Subj: Re: caodaism
Date: 99-03-16 19:27:30 EST
This is Jane Nelson again. I've thought about some questions and it
would be excellent if you could try to answer them.
What are some of the malor events cellebrated in the caodai religion?>>
+++ Dear Jane,
You have really good questions.
There are three major events in CaoDai:
1. Ceremony dedicated to the Supreme Being celebrated on the 9th day of the
first lunar month. The reason for choosing this date is because this date is
the most yang date of the most yang month of the year. The Supreme Being is
the most yang logos, and the Mother Goddess is the most yin logos. You may
need to know about Yin (negative or female principle) and Yang (positive or
male principle) to understand the formation of the universe and of human
beings. Everything consists of Yin (electrons) and Yang (protons). If you like
we may talk more about Yin and Yang later.
2. Ceremony dedicated to the Mother Goddess on the 15th day of the 8th lunar
month of the year. This date was the date when the first CaoDai disciples
organized the first meeting with the Mother Goddess (spirit) in 1925. It is
called "Hoi Yen Dieu Tri" (the feast for the Dieu Tri Palace, the Palace of
the Mother Goddess).
3. Ceremony for the anniversary of the opening of CaoDai on the 15th day of
the 10th lunar month. This opening ceremony was in 1926.
Besides, there are many others dedicated to Sakya Muni the Gautama, Lao Tse,
Confucius, Jesus Christ, Kwan Yin Boddhisavah, Ly Thai Bach, the spiritual
Giao Tong (Pope) of CaoDai....
<< What is the significance of the dress, in the ritual of services?>>
+++ The dress for everyone is a white "ao dai" (white dress). The white color
represents purity and also unity. From white there are all other colors among
them seven principals include red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and
purple, the colors of a rainbow. All other colors represents the diversity of
all religions which in reality are manifestations of one truth (white color)
thru a prism. This concurs with CaoDai principle that all religions come from
one truth, the Supreme Being (or CaoDai in Vietnamese).
The dress of dignitaries of the executive body is of three separate colors:
yellow, blue, and red, the three primary colors (colors that are not resulting
from a mixture of other colors) representing respectively three main
religions, religions for Buddhas (Hinduism, Buddhism), religions for Immortals
(Taoism), and religions for Saints (Judaism, Christianity, Islam).
<< I don't really understand the role of the woman who we are closest to in
our physical form? Can you explain further?>>
+++ The role of woman is like the role of the Mother Goddess. The Mother
Goddess is the mother of the visible physical universe. She gives birth to and
raises the visible world. The visible world inherit the yang spirit
(invisible) from the Supreme Being, and the physical appearance from the
Mother Goddess. The woman has the role of a mother in secular life, giving
birth to and raising children (feeding and educating). Feeding makes children
grow physically. Educating makes them grow spiritually. The ultimate purpose
of spiritual growth is to be one with the Supreme Being. The Supreme Being
taught: "I, your Master, am you, My children; and you are Me." The physical
body or the secular life is a means for the spirit to learn, be educated and
grow. The mother has therefore a very important role in guiding her children
in this life.
<< Do you have a book like the bible that you follow?>>
+++ There are two books. The "Thanh Ngon Hiep Tuyen" (Selected Spiritual
Messages) is for exoteric practice. The "Dai Thua Chon Giao" (The Great
Vehicle to the Truth) is for esoteric practice.
<<How can it be that all religions can be one when christians main focus
is the death of Jesus and the Muslim's believe that Jesus didn't really
die, but someone died in his place?>>
+++ People may see the one same truth differently, and express it in different
ways, using different languages. The ultimate truth is that everyone has the
Supreme Being (whether it is called Yewah or Allah) in their heart. The
details that people believe in religions may be different and even
contradictory. You may write to Todd Berry ( ramjisan@...) and Ed
Benveng (malikshah@...) about this issue. Todd is studying religions in
Indiana, and Ed is teaching religions in Brazil.
<< Do you practice esoterism, or exoterism? What do you do in following
this? How are they different?>>
+++ I am practicing both. Exoterically, I am serving humanity in observing
justice (Do unto others as you would have others do to you). Esoterically, I
cultivate myself by meditation. The difference between the two is that
exoteric practice takes care of the Yin part (physical body) and esoteric
practice takes care of the Yang part (the spirit) of humanity.
<< Cao-Dai - how do you know that the civil servant that CaoDai contacted
was telling the truth?>>
+++ One has to be very careful about spiritual messages. The ones coming from
CaoDai and other Superior Spirits would not teach anything for personal
interests. They always taught the way to cultivate self to reach peace on
earth and oneness with the Suprem Being [which is justice (exoteric) and love
(esoteric)]. To avoid abuse, CaoDai had stopped giving spiritual messages in
1928 for the purpose of expanding religion, the subsequent spiritual messages
were just for educational purpose.
<< Is CaoDaism dominant in the south or north Vietnam, or equally
represented in both.>>
+++ CaoDai had started and is more prominent in the South.
<< How does Buddha come into this religion?
How does Christianity come into this religion?
Why is it that you can belong to another faith and belong to the CaoDai
faith at the same time?>>
+++ At the beginning, the initial CaoDai disciples had also received spiritual
messages from Buddha and Jesus. Buddhism and Christianity were different
manifestations of CaoDai. Therefore, anyone of any faith may be considered as
CaoDai at the same time.
<< Do you know any statistics on the amount of caodaists that have migrated
from vietnam to australia?
Do you know any CaoDaists who are situated in Sydney, Australia?>>
+++ CaoDaists in Australia are mostly exoteric. In Sydney, you may contact the
Tam C. Dao
Sydney University Library
Phone: 02 9351 2602
Giao C. Nguyen
50 Terry st
Tempe, NSW 2044
Loc Q. Tran
15 Margareta Close
Guildford, NSW 2161
Ph: 2 9632 9121
Minh C. Mai
277 Canley Vale Rd
Canley Vale, NSW 2166
Ph: 2 9604 9997
<< These are the main questions that I have come up with so far. If you
have anything else to add please do so.
Thanks for your time
+++ Feel free to ask more questions.
Best wishes. I am looking forward to hearing more from you.