Letter from Genghis Khan Asking for the Secret of Eternal Life // (1219) Invitation to Taoist Monk

By the end of his reign, Genghis Khan was the most powerful man in history. As he oversaw his vast empire, there was one final enemy he found himself facing – his own mortality. Here we have the letter Genghis wrote to the famous Taoist monk Qiu Chuji urging him to cross the vast distance to come to his court, as the Supreme Khan wished to discover the secret of “preserving life” – immortality.

Check out the original source (and the story of the monk) at this excellent website:
depts.washington.edu/silkroad/texts/changchun.html

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Voices of the Past is an attempt to tell the story of our species through the written accounts of the very people who lived through it. Join me, David, as I introduce the stories of both the great figures of history and the lesser known witnesses of great events; not through the analysis of modern historians, but through the words written and the speeches spoken by these figures themselves.

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