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Originally established in 2003, the Center for Daoist Studies is the education and research branch of the Daoist Foundation, a non-profit religious and educational organization. The Center for Daoist Studies conducts and supports research and education on the Daoist tradition.


Our Directors


Louis Komjathy (Kang Siqi 康思奇; Xiujing 修靜; Wanrui 萬瑞;  Ph.D., Religious Studies, Boston University) has been involved in Daoist Studies for over seventeen years. He is currently Assistant Professor of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Diego, Research Associate in the Institute of Religion, Science and Social Studies of Shandong University (PRC), and Co-chair of the Daoist Studies Group of the American Academy of Religion. He has published Title Index to Daoist Collections (Three Pines Press, 2002), a technical reference work for accessing classical Daoist texts; Cultivating Perfection: Mysticism and Self-transformation in Early Quanzhen Daoism (Brill, 2007), a scholarly monograph on that twelfth-century Daoist religious movement; and Handbooks for Daoist Practice (Xiudao shouce 修道手冊; Yuen Yuen Institute [Hong Kong], 2008), a translation series for Daoist practitioners and students. His current research focuses on early Quanzhen 全真 (Complete Perfection) Daoism, contemporary Daoist monasticism, and the history of Daoist Studies. In 2006, he received ordination into the Huashan  lineage of Quanzhen Daoism and lived as a visiting Daoist monk in the Daoist monasteries of Laoshan 嶗山 (Mount Lao; near Qingdao, Shandong) and Huashan 華山 (Mount Hua; Huayin, Shaanxi). He lives in San Diego, Calif. Email.


Kate Townsend (Tang Xiang'en 唐鄉恩; Baojing 抱靜; Wanqing 萬清; L.Ac.; LMP; C.S.O.) is a Chinese medical practitioner and an ordained Daoist priest of the Huashan 華山 (Mount Hua) lineage of Quanzhen Daoism. Over the last twenty-five years, she has studied with some of the foremost first- and second-generation Daoist teachers in North America and has traveled and studied extensively in China, including two internships at the Chengdu College of Traditional Chinese Medicine. She is particularly interested in female Daoist cultivation and is currently working on a book on this topic. She also received classical Yoga training at Samadhi Yoga Center (Seattle, Wash.) and is a certified Yoga instructor. She lives in Seattle, Wash., where she oversees and practices Chinese medicine at an acupuncture, herbal and massage therapy clinic in the upper Queen Anne area. Email.