Emperor Tang Taizong Banned the Use of Cane-Beating


PureInsight | March 23, 2008

[PureInsight.org] According to Tang dynasty historical records, one day Emperor Tang Taizong read a book that showed pictures of acupuncture points for treating illnesses. These pictures showed that a human's five viscera (heart, liver, spleen, lungs, and kidneys) were all connected to the back. There were five methods of punishing criminals in several dynasties, depending on degree of seriousness of the crime committed. As a "light" punishment, officials beat the criminal's back repeatedly with a cane and it often caused death.

The Emperor thought that beating people on their back would shock the five viscera and could injure a person or cause death. He, therefore, gave the order banning the use of canes to beat the back of criminals. Emperor Taizong was kind and always considered the benefits of his people. It was well known that Emperor Taizong governed the country with benevolence. The removal of cane beating was one example.

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