214 IN THE SOUTH CHINA SEA
moral development. Although there is hardly a word of religion in the sacred treatise of Taoismanot one explicit word about God or the future life, and no provision for temples, priesthood, or form of worship, Taoism has become a conglomeration of base and dangerous superstitions, together with the wildest polytheism. This must be due to the infusion of popular Buddhism into it. For it abounds in all kinds of belief in spirits and magic, and of fear of goblins and devils. When things go wrong the Chinese are apt to beat their Buddhas and sometimes to smash them.
Foism is the Chinese form of Buddhism just as Lamaism, which has been largely influenced by Roman Catholicism, is that form of it in Tibet. Although Buddhism was started in India it was expelled from that country some centuries ago through that revival of Brahmanism known as Hinduism. Its purest form is found in Ceylon and Burmah, while that form of Hinduism known as Jainism, the splendid shrines of which on Mount Abu are among the seven wonders of India, may be said to represent it in India to a certain extent. Its followers number many hundreds of millions in Asia, arid I hope to describe it a little more fully after I have been to Colombo.* Suffice it to say here that its central idea and doctrine is that of Nirvna or extinction. Its devotees look forward to the ultimate extinction of conscious individual being, through being merged in an ocean of universal consciousness. It
* Aee page 243,* A ee page 243,