New England Daoist Assembly – Daoism Philosophy and Practice in Daily Living

Aug 24, 2023 - Aug 27, 2023

Daoist teachings are highly relevant for daily living. Philosophical concepts in this context include ethical guidelines and virtues, ways of looking at the world, modes of balancing or counteracting dominant values, opening visions of a more fluid and relaxed lifestyle, and so on.

In terms of practice, Daoists provide numerous methods of enhancing health and prolonging life, remaining calm in the face of adversity, going with the flow, harmonizing living space through Fengshui, purifying and sanctifying affairs in ritual, and many other ways of bringing life to its fullest expression.
            This conference, the first in-person gathering since the pandemic, explores just how Daoist ideas and techniques can improve and enhance daily living in the world today and how they have impacted life in various historical circumstances.


 Click to download the Daoism Conference agenda






Chairs: Eastover Estate and Eco-Villagein Lenox, MA; Livia Kohn, Boston University.


Standing Committee:

USA: Liu Xun, Robin Wang; China: Chen Xia, Thomas Michael, Liou Tong-Miin; France: Adeline Herrou, Georges Favraud, Karine Martin; Germany: Friederike Assandri, Elisabeth Friedrichs



After arrival in Lenox on Friday, June 16, the conference begins with registration at 3 pm. Dinner is at 6:30 followed, at 7:30, by a brief opening ceremony and keynote speeches. It ends at 2:00 pm on Sunday, June 19, after a closing session. The Estate is close to Tanglewood and Jacob’s Pillow, offering the opportunity to take in a musical and/or dance performance.


Panels: Three 25-minute or four 20-minute individual paper presentations on the panel theme, followed by the discussant’s 5-minute comments and 20 minutes of open discussion (1¾ hours).

Workshops: Emphasis on the experience of Daoist cultivation, martial arts (taiji quan), and forms of Daoist medicine (1¾ hours). The room will not have tables, chairs, or PPT equipment. It is specifically for practical experience.

–Artistic: Several 50-minute sessions will be dedicated to musical performances, video documentaries, stand-up comedy and exhibitions and discussions of fine art.

FEE: The conference is free of charge, but participants must be in residence at the Eastover Estate and Eco-Village. Rooms come in many different forms and price ranges.



Book room and board at



Send name, email, institution, paper or workshop title, and an abstract of no more than 200 words to Livia Kohn at



Abstracts due:                         June 01, 2023

Program on website:             June 05, 2023



There will be a limited number of tables available to distribute flyers or pamphlets and sell books, CDs, and other materials. This service is $20 per 8-foot table with two chairs, payable in cash after arrival. To reserve space, contact <>.


FRee/$0/ Day



June 16, 2023

Arrival Day

4:00pm arrival

Days In Between


June 19, 2023
Check Out Day

12:00pm check out


Livia Kohn is Professor Emerita of Religion & East Asian Studies at Boston University. Her specialty is Daoism and the study of Chinese longevity practices. She has written and edited numerous books and articles. A long-term practitioner of taiji quan and meditation, she is also a certified instructor of yoga and qigong. A top Daoist scholar, she is expert at outlining the details of all kinds of practices and placing them in a relevant context, both historically and as relevant for our lives today.

Livia earned her Ph. D. in 1980. After six years at Kyoto University in Japan, she joined Boston University as Professor of Religion and East Asian Studies in 1988, then returned to Kyoto twice more for two-year stays. She has also worked variously as visiting professor and adjunct faculty at Eötvös Lorand University in Budapest, the Stanford Center for Japanese Studies in Kyoto, Union Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio, San Francisco State University, and the Taoist College Singapore. She retired from active teaching in 2006 and now works as a freelance researcher and lecturer.

Her specialty is the study of the Daoist religion and Asian long life practices. Having lived in Kyoto for close to ten years, she is also an expert in Japanese religions. She has written thirty-four sole-authored books and over a hundred articles, as well as edited eleven volumes and translated five works from the German, French, Chinese, and Japanese. Since 2008, she has served as the executive editor of the Journal of Daoist Studies, editing a 250-page volume every year. She also manages Three Pines Press, the Western voice of Daoism (

In addition, she serves on numerous committees and editorial boards, leads Daoist qigong and Core Health workshops worldwide, and is the lead organizer of a series of major international conferences on Daoism: the next one will take place at Belmont University in Nashville in June of 2023 (join the Facebook group Daoist Conference for updates). She also guides study and hiking tours to Japan, the next one of which is scheduled for October 2022 (


Our menus are based on group preferences and budget. We offer delicious, balanced vegetarian and non-vegetarian meals which typically include raw salads and hot vegetable dishes. Upon request, we will gladly prepare unseasoned blanched or steamed dishes for lunch and dinner. We easily accommodate gluten/dairy free needs, and many of our seasonings and oils are provided on the side for guests to season meals to taste. Several rooms have refrigerators, so guests are welcome to bring food that suit their needs if they have issues we cannot accommodate. Please note that we are unable to reduce meal costs due to food allergies.

Payment Policy

A $50 non-refundable deposit is taken at the time registration occurs.
The full balance is collected 7 days prior to arrival.

Cancellation Policy

Other than the deposit, no fees are incurred if cancelled up to 7 days after reservation date.
50% of the total cost is retained if cancelled less than 4 days prior to event.
The $50 deposit given at registration is non-refundable.