Caodaism in Vietnam
Cao Dai is both a monotheistic religion and a polytheistic religion that was formed in Vietnam at the beginning of the twentieth century. Cao Dai religion literally means the high place, that is, the highest place where God resides and is also the short name of God in Cao Dai religion, with the full title of “Cao Dai Tien Ong Dai Bo Tat Ma Ha. All, “meaning Cao Dai” [the] Ancient Sage [and] Mahasattva Great Bodhisattva.
The official website of Cao Dai religion states that “Cao Dai is a universal faith with the principle that all religions have a common divine origin, that is, God, or Allah, or Tao, or Nothingness, a same morality based on LOVE and JUSTICE, and just different expressions of the same TRUTH. Cao Dai believes that God is the founder of religion and the universe. All doctrines, systems, and organizational symbols are assigned directly by “Cao Dai”.
Cao Dai Temple, Tay Ninh Province. Photo: @ maciek.paszek_notowpolske
Cao Dai is a fairly new religion and can be known as the integration of major religions, mainly Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. Its adherents faithfully follow religious dogmas such as prayer, ancestor veneration, non-violence, and fasting with the ultimate aim of escaping the cycle of birth and death. The number of Cao Dai followers in Vietnam ranges from two to three million in 38 provinces, making it one of the major religions in Vietnam.
Inside Cao Dai Temple. Photo: @zaparatemdookolaswiata
The largest Cao Dai sect is based in Tay Ninh Province, where it was founded in 1926 and where the Cao Dai government is located. Tay Ninh Holy See is a cluster of several architectural works of Cao Dai religion, located in the north of Long Thanh, Hoa Thanh district, Tay Ninh, 4 km southeast of Tay Ninh town. There is also another Cao Dai temple in Duong Dong town.