At first, Buddhism allied itself closely with Taoism to gain a foothold in China and borrowed from it. But in later centuries it was the Taoists who borrowed from Buddhism! Taoism was never a religion, it was a set of beliefs and doctrines left behind by a master and “preserved in a corpus of literature”. They got the idea of a ‘religion’ from Buddhists and also borrowed the idea of making statues and images from the latter.
Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism constitute the essence of the traditional Chinese culture. The relationship among the three has been marked by both contention and complementation in history, with Confucianism playing a more dominant role.
Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism