What Are Taoism's Holy Days?

Taoism is a Chinese-based religion that has more than two dozen holy days. At least one holy day occurs per lunar month, and most lunar months have two or three holy days. The first new moon of the first full lunar month represents the beginning of the Chinese and Taoist year.

Taoist holy days do not have fixed annual dates because they are based on the lunar calendar. Some of the Taoist holy days also happen to coincide with secular holy days, but most are primarily celebrated in Taoist temples. Most of the holy days are dedicated to deities or important figures in Taoist history.

One of the better-known holy days is the celebration of Lao tzu, the founder of Taoism. This day happens on the first day of the first month, and it coincides with the beginning of the Chinese New Year. Among the deities honored by holy days are Xuantian Shangdi, the god of rain, and Mazu, goddess of the sea.

Other popular holy days include the Festival of Lanterns, which happens on the 15th day of the first month to celebrate the Officer of the Celestial Realm and the Mid-Autumn Festival on the 15th day of the eighth month.