The Sages of Mount Shang fled into the mountains during the reign of the Han Dynasty Emperor Gaozu (reigned 206 - 195 BC), becaue they disagreed with the emperor and wished to maintain their moral integrity. While usually held up as examples of model Confucian hermits, by the fourth century the Sages were also seen as Taoist adepts or immortals (xian), renowned for their techniques of self-cultivation and alchemy. The Sages lived solely on mushrooms, and one of the Sages, Luli, composed the famous "Song of the Purple Mushroom." (To zoom out, click here)

The IGS Art Gallery (Chrysanthemum)

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