Movement and Stillness

动静无偏
Movement and Stillness
without Deviation and Inclination

One should move when time to move, one should be still when it is time to be still time.
This is about the right timing of movement and stillness.

This is called ‘the Gong of Purity, Tranquillity and Non-action’.

When movement and stillness are being inappropriate, then the disaster of Yin and Yang flourishing unilaterally ensues. Yin and Yang will be deviated to one side. This is a hidden danger. The reason is the following:

“When movement is in its extreme one must then form stillness.
If one is not tranquil,
Yang flourishes and injures the Spirit.
When stillness is in its extreme one must then form movement.
If one is not moving, Yin flourishes and injures Qi. “

Always in Wu-Ji the two earths intermingle and turn into the jade tablet.
Wu stands for the thoughts; Ji represents perceptions, the spirit feeling and the sixth sense
It draws up an image of Post-Heaven and Pre-Heaven thoughts unifying, the sixth sense merging with the Post-Heaven thoughts, the Pre-Heaven Spirit and Post-Heaven thinking combine into One, congealing into s sphere or circle.

Movement and stillness are cycling; Yin and Yang are revolving.
Yin turns into Yang, Yang turns into Yin.
Without deviation to one side, one is able to obtain the objective.

The ancient people said:

“The world has sufficient innate-nature Gong,
however the life-destiny Gong is deficient.
Even if one is able to nourish
until the Cinnabar Field’s bright moon,
one inevitably will be unable to refine
until to the turtle shrinks and does not lift anymore.
-This is the practice of the Yin Spirit that is so popular in the West-.
The world has sufficient life-destiny Gong,
however the innate-nature Gong is deficient.
Even if one is able to refine
until the turtle shrinks and does not lift anymore,
one inevitably will be unable to nourish
until the Cinnabar Field’s bright moon generates its splendour.
One’s thoughts will fail to reach a higher plane and
one will still die in the end,
but having lived longer than normal people.

Only double cultivation is without deviation. The Gong of innate nature and life-destiny’s are equal in standing. When one’s Skill reaches this point, it means that Yin and Yang face no danger of being inclined to one side, no danger of being out of balance. Therefore there will be no disastrous consequences. Extreme movement and stillness are repeated over and over. The innate nature is the Spirit; the life-destiny is the Qi. Naturally the horse’s Yin, its genitals, hides in the box and the Cinnabar light generates brightness. The Cinnabar Field as if a luminous as the full moon on the 15th day of the lunar month.

There is a saying in Daoism:

“Only cultivating innate-nature without cultivating life-destiny
this is the first error of one’s cultivation practice.
If one only cultivates the ancestral nature
without cultivating the Elixir,
for countless generations it will be difficult
for the Yin Spirit to enter sagehood.

Male-female cultivation is a mistake and misinterpretation of the dual cultivation principle and must be criticized here. The bed-chamber arts are therefore side doors, the unorthodox Dao, the wicked paths and the crooked road.
With those methods one cannot achieve eternal life. One cannot reach the higher dimensions.
Certainly one must protect the body, life comes first. But no Daoist would dare claim that Daoism equates longevity. This is just the way it is taught to commoners in society. Any Daoist would be heavily criticized for exclaiming this statement.

A word of warning at this point:
Anyone who claims to have high Gong of the turtle shrinking must have lost the biological appearance of a man and a woman. If a woman still has large and voluptuous breast and does not have a flat-chest like a child, she is a cheat. If a man has still large genitals at this stage he is a liar. On this level man and woman must have reverted to ‘Centre-People’, not being man or woman anymore, in order to be able speak the truth about having achieved a high Gong.

Therefore this translation serves as a bright light and as a lamp, hopefully preventing people from being hoodwinked and deceived. It is the objective to rescue people from wandering about destitute or even worse being guided into the absurd, fantastic and preposterous. There are many black racketeers out there.
In terms of religion only Daoism proceeds from form to formless. It is unique in that respect and the physical body is considered a tower to the heavens, a ladder to the heavenly realms.

Without a body where would there be life on earth?

Despite the importance of the body, eventually one must have the attachment to one’s Ego broken. If one pursues longevity, the hospital has methods on offer such as hormones or injecting a young person’s blood. In twenty years time DNA changes might be possible and feasible.

But how could you elevate to higher thoughts through injections?

How can you get the compassion of the Buddhist and Daoist Patriarchs and Founding Fathers?

How could you live eternally?

If chanting the names of the Gods and stern faith were enough
to join the ranks of the immortals,
how come not all later generations of believers
enter through the heavenly gate?

Annotation:
This content originates from the Zhou Peng Lai’s research, advanced studies and cultivation. He physically verified it step by step.

Reference: http://fiveimmortals.com/movement-and-stillness-without-deviation-and-inclination/

Lishen Gong

Kidney Regulation Exercise

Functions: Regulates the blood and of the Kidney Channel, nourishes the kidneys, strengthens Yang (vital function), and invigorates primordial energy. Methods

1. Taking Black Qi. Assume a standing, sitting, or lying posture and relax. Place the tongue against the palate and expel distractions. Tap the upper and lower teeth together 36 times, and stir the resulting saliva with the tongue. After tapping, swallow the saliva in three segments sending each one down to the Dantian. Imagine the color black. Inhale it nasally and fill the mouth with it. Send it slowly to the kidneys during expiration. Repeat this 6–12 times. Resume starting posture to complete exercise.

2. Rubbing the Abdomen and “Chui.” Stand or sit, place one hand against the lower abdomen, and inhale slowly. Utter “Chui” when exhaling and stroke the lower abdomen with the palm simultaneously. Repeat this for 10 or 20 respiratory cycles.

3. Strengthening the Kidney and Guiding Qi. Stand erect, make hollow fists and apply them against the soft parts at the sides of the waist (the kidney area). Turn the waist counterclockwise and clockwise for 6 times in each direction.

4. Rubbing the Renal Regions. Stand or sit, put the two hands on the sides of the waist, and then rub the entire area 36 times while concentrating the mind on the waist.

Application
The Kidney Regulation Exercise is used for health preservation and for the prevention and treatment of pain along the spinal column, tinnitus, deafness, frequent urination, aversion to cold, and coldness or dampness of the genitals. It is also used to treat nephritis, neurosis, and cystitis. Those with kidney deficiency may practice Taking Black Qi. Rubbing the Abdomen and “Chui” may be practiced by those with dampness and itching of the genitals due to dampness and heat of the lower Jiao (Xiajiao lower portion of the body cavity). The exercise can be performed with emphasis on Strengthening the Kidney and Guiding Qi to treat syndromes of both deficiency and excess types. For the middle aged and older people, frequent practice of Rubbing the Kidney will help to invigorate Yang and strengthen the kidneys. Strengthening the Kidney and Guiding Qi and Rubbing the Kidney are also suitable for those with deficiency of Kidney Yang manifested by pain and weakness of the waist, spermatorrhea and impotence.

Points for Attention
Practice the exercise once in the morning and once in the evening or up to 4 times a day. Lead a balanced life with moderate sexual activity. Young people should avoid masturbation so as to cure seminal or involuntary emission.

Reference: Qigong for Treating Common Ailments: The Essential Guide to Self Healing by Xu Xiangcai p. 44 – 45

 

A Female Story of Daoist Cultivation

Lindsey Wei

A young woman, Lindsey Wei, graduates from high school in America and sets out to find her roots in China, questing for who she is and where her life path belongs. She discovers in herself a skill for martial arts and seeks the hidden knowledge of meditation. After three years of study in various martial styles and unveiling false teachers, she is finally led to the ancient Wudang Mountains. Here she meets a Daoist recluse, Li Shi Fu, who has renounced the world of the ‘red dust’ and long since retired into an isolated temple to cast oracles and read the stars. The coming together of these two extraordinary characters, master and disciple, begins a spiritual relationship taking the young adept on an unforgettable journey through the light and dark sides of modern China and deep into herself. Battling between earthly desires and heavenly knowledge, she makes the transformation into a dynamic and complete woman.

A coming-of-age, personal account, the book describes the lived experiences of a profoundly sincere, bitter yet ultimately liberating female quest. It is written for anyone who ponders the true meaning of Chinese wisdom and the way of the Dao in the hope of discovering a deeper strength within themselves.

Reference: The Valley Spirit: A Female Story of Daoist Cultivation by Lindsey Wei

thevalleyspirit.wordpress.com

A Japanese Alchemical Chart of the Body

The Japanese alchemical chart of the body reproduced above is entitled Shūshin kyūten tandō zu 修真九轉丹道圖, or Chart of the Way of the Elixir in Nine Cycles for the Cultivation of Reality (the Chinese reading of the title is Xiuzhen jiuzhuan dandao tu). Although no precisely corresponding picture seems to be found in Chinese texts, it is likely that this chart is either copied from, or based on, an earlier Chinese exemplar that may now be lost.

The Chart, which is undated, is now kept in the library of Tenri University in Japan. It is reproduced here from the book by Katō Chie 加藤千恵, Furō fushi no shintai: Dōkyō to “tai” no shisō 不老不死の身体 — 道教と「胎」の思想 (The Ageless and Deathless Body: Taoism and the Idea of the “Embryo”; Tokyo: Taishūkan shoten, 2002), p. 121. Dr. Katō is one the main Japanese scholars of Taoist Internal Alchemy. She has published extensively in particular on the Wuzhen pian (Awakening to Reality) and on the Taoist views of the “embryo.”

From top to bottom along the vertical axis, the Chart shows: the upper Cinnabar Field; the eyes; the tongue; the trachea; the middle Cinnabar Field; the lower Cinnabar Field; and the Caudal Funnel.

Like most similar Chinese pictures, the Chart contains short captions. Below are translations of the captions, with short notes:

1. “Palace of the Muddy Pellet” (niwan gong). The upper Cinnabar Field, commonly called Muddy Pellet.

2. “On the left the Great Yang”. This and the next captions refer to the eyes. The left eye represents Great Yang.

3. “On the right the Great Yin”. The right eye represents Great Yin.


4. “The tongue is the Red Lotus” (honglian).

5. “Under the tongue, on each [side], there are two openings”. These openings are the Cinnabar Cavities (danxue), which should be kept closed by the tongue so that the True Breath (zhenqi) does not escape.

6. “The throat is the Twelve-Storied Pavilion” (shi’er lou). This is a common name of the trachea in Neidan and meditation texts.

7. “Through two [of the four] openings, Breath (qi) flows and pervades the body”.

8. “The heart is the Crimson Palace” (jianggong). The middle Cinnabar Field, commonly called Crimson Palace, is shown at the center of the picture.

9. “Cinnabar Field” (dantian). The lower Cinnabar Field is the dantian proper.

10. “At its first descent, the Elixir is similar to a Luminous Pearl.” This sentence refers to the first stage in the formation of the Elixir, i.e., the first of the nine cycles mentioned in the title of the Chart.

11. “Caudal Funnel” (weilü). Located near the coccyx, this is the first of the “three barriers” or “three passes” (sanguan) in the back of the body. (See an essay by Wang Mu on the “three barriers”.)

12. “As I sit and forget my form (xing), all the mountains, the rivers, and the ten thousand things are within my body”. The word used here for “body” is shen 身, which denotes not only the physical body, but the whole person.

13. “The Breath (qi) of the gallbladder rises above”.

Although its origins and transmission deserve more study, the Japanese Chart appears to be closely related to a work attributed to Chen Nan (?-1213), a Neidan master belonging to the Southern Lineage (Nanzong) of Internal Alchemy. His Cuixu pian (The Emerald Emptiness), which is part of the Xiuzhen shishu (Ten Books on the Cultivation of Reality), contains these verses:

一轉之功似寶珠,山河宇宙透靈軀。紅蓮葉下藏丹穴,赤水流通九候珠。
The result (gong) of the first cycle is similar to
a Precious Pearl;
mountains, rivers, and the whole cosmos pervade
the Numinous Body.
Under the petals of the Red Lotus are stored
the Cinnabar Cavities;
the Vermilion River flows and pervades the Pearl
of the Nine Times.

The Precious Pearl in Chen Nan’s first verse is equivalent to the Luminous Pearl of the Chart (no. 10 above). The second verse is matched by one of the captions in the Chart (no. 12). The term Red Lotus in the third verse is found in the Chart (no. 4), which also mentions the two pairs of “openings”, i.e., the Cinnabar Cavities (no. 5). The expression “flow and pervade” in the fourth verse is used in the Chart (no. 7).

(According to Chen Nan’s own explications, the “nine times” in the fourth verse refer to a form of breathing in nine stages performed after the Pearl of the Elixir descends into the Cinnabar Field.)

In his work, Chen Nan also writes:

天一真水藏於膽,陰陽和合降而成丹,初降之狀,如露一顆明珠。
The True Water [generated] by [number] 1 of Heaven is stored in the gallbladder. When Yin and Yang conjoin, they descend [into the lower Cinnabar Field] and form the Elixir. At its first descent, its shape is similar to a Luminous Pearl made of one drop of dew.

Besides including the term Luminous Pearl, one of captions in the Chart (no. 10) consists of sentence that alludes to the final part of this passage. Finally, another caption in the Chart (no. 13) mentions the gallbladder.

(The words “The True Water [generated] by [number] 1 of Heaven” allude to Water, the first of the five agents, which is given birth by Heaven and is associated with number 1.)

Considering these multiple analogies, it is significant that the Cuixu pian is concerned with a Neidan process in nine cycles, which are also mentioned in the title of the Japanese Chart of the Way of the Elixir in Nine Cycles for the Cultivation of Reality. As for the words Cultivation of Reality, they may be a direct reference to the above-mentioned work that now contains the Cuixu pian.
 
Reference: Golden Elixir Press. – “A Japanese Alchemical Chart of the Body”

The Inner Entreprise

Section 1: The essential qi

It is the essence of things that gives life to them. Below, it gives birth to the five grains;
above, it is the ranks of stars. Flowing between heaven and earth:
we call these ghosts and spirits. Stored within the breast:
we call these sages.
This qi is So bright! As though climbing to heaven. So dark! As though entering the abyss. So broad! As though permeating the sea. So compact! As though residing within oneself.
This qi
Cannot be detained through physical force, but may be brought to rest by force of virtue.
It may not be summoned by means of sound, but may be received through one’s thoughts.
To guard it alertly without fail, this is called perfect virtue.
When virtue is perfected wisdom emerges and all the things of the world are grasped.

Section 2: The nature of the heart

The form of the heart is Spontaneously full and replete, Spontaneously born and complete.
It loses this form through care and joy, pleasure and anger, desire and profit-seeking.
If are able to rid itself of care and joy, pleasure and anger, desire and profit-seeking, the heart returns to completion.
The natural feelings of the heart cleave to rest and calm;
Don’t trouble them, don’t derange them, and harmony will spontaneously be perfect.
So gleaming! As though just beside. So dim! As though ungraspable. So remote! As though exhausting the far limit.
Its basis is near at hand; daily we draw its force of virtue.

Section 3: The Dao

By means of the Dao forms are made full,
yet men are not able to cleave firmly to it.
Once gone it may not return, Once come it may not remain. So silent! None hears its sound. So compact! It resides in the heart. So dark! Invisible of form.
So overflowing! It is born along with me. Its form unseen,
Its sound unheard,
Yet its doings perfectly ordered. Such we call: the Dao.
The Dao has no fixed place; it dwells at peace in a good heart.
When the heart is tranquil and the qi aligned, the Dao may be made to stay.
The Dao is not distant, people gain it in being born.
The Dao never departs, people rely on it for awareness. How compact! As though it could be bound up. How remote! As though exhausting all nothingness.

The natural being of the Dao abhors thought and voice.
Refine the heart and calm thoughts, and the Dao may be grasped.
The Dao Is what the mouth cannot speak, Is what the eye cannot see, Is what the ear cannot hear.
It is the means to refine the heart and rectify the form.
Men die when they lose it. Men live when they gain it. Affairs fail when they lose it. Affairs succeed when they gain it.
The Dao has neither root not stalk, nor leaves, nor blossoms.
Yet the things of the world gain it and are born; the things of the world gain it and mature.
This is termed: the Dao.

Section 4: The sage

The pivot of heaven is uprightness. The pivot of earth is flatness. The pivot of man is quiescence.
Spring, autumn, winter, and summer are the season times of heaven.
Mountains ridges and river valleys are the limbs of earth.
Showing pleasure or anger, taking or giving, there are the schemes of man.
The sage adapts with the times but is not transformed, follows along with things but is not moved by them.
He is able to be balanced and tranquil and so he is settled.
With a settled heart within,
the eyes and ears are keen and clear,
the four limbs are strong and firm. He is fit to be the dwelling of the essence.
By essence is meant the essence of qi. When qi follows the Dao there is birth.
With birth there is awareness. From awareness comes knowing. With knowing the limit is reached.

Section 5: The One

If the form of the heart acquires excessive knowledge, life is lost.
Unifying with things and able to transform them– this is called spirit-like.
Unifying with affairs and able to adapt– this is called wisdom.
To transform without altering one’s qi, and adapt without altering one’s wisdom–
only a junzi who grips the One can do this. Gripping the One without fail,
he is able to be ruler to the world of things.
The junzi manipulates things; he is not manipulated by things. He grasps the principle of the One,
a regulated heart at his center, regulated words come forth from his mouth, he engages others in regulated affairs,
and thus the world is regulated. In one phrase he grasps it and the world submits;
in one phrase he sets it and the world obeys– this is called impartiality.

Section 6: The inner grasp

If the form is not balanced, the force of virtue will not come.
If the center is not tranquil, the heart will not be regulated.
When a balanced form controls the force of virtue then the ren of heaven and the righteousness of earth
will come spontaneously as a torrent. The polar limit of spirit-like brilliance shines in the understanding. The central rightness of the world of things is flawlessly preserved.
Not letting things disrupt the senses;
not letting the senses disrupt the heart– such is called inner grasping.

Section 7: Controlling the essence

There is a spirit that spontaneously resides within the person: it comes and goes, none can anticipate it.
Lose it and one is certain to become disrupted; grasp it and one is certain to become regulated.
Reverently sweep its abode and the essence will spontaneously come.
Ponder it with tranquil thinking, calm your recollections to regulate it.
Maintain a dignified appearance and a manner of awe, and the essence will spontaneously become stable.
Grasp it and never release it, and your ears and eyes will not go astray, your mind will have no other plans.
When a balanced heart lies at the center, the things of the world obtain their proper measures.

Section 8: The core of the heart

The Dao fills the world and spreads through everywhere that people dwell, yet the people cannot understand it.
Through the explanation of a single phrase one may penetrate to heaven, reach the limits of the earth,
and coil through all the nine regions. What is this explanation?
It lies in setting the heart at rest.
When our hearts are regulated, the senses are regulated as well. When our hearts are at rest, the senses are at rest as well. What regulates the senses is the heart;
what places the senses at rest is the heart.
By means of the heart, a heart is enclosed– within the heart there is yet another heart.
Within that heart’s core the sound of a thought is first to speak: after the sound of thought, it takes shape, taking shape, there is speech, with speech, there is action, with action, there is order.
Without order, there must be disruption, and with disruption, there is death.

Section 9: The flood-like essence

Where essence is stored there is spontaneous life: externally it blooms in contentment, internally it is stored as a wellspring.
Flood-like, it is harmonious and even, the fountainhead of the qi.
When the fountainhead never runs dry, the limbs are firm.
When the wellspring is never exhausted, the nine bodily orifices are penetrating.*
Thereupon one may exhaust heaven and earth and cover the four seas.
Within, there are no confused thoughts, without, there are no irregular disasters.
The heart complete within, the form is complete without:
*The nine orifices include mouth, eyes, nostrils, ears, anus, and urethra.
encountering neither disasters from Tian,
nor harm from man. This is called: the sage.

Section 10: Physical perfection

When a man is able to attain balanced tranquility, his skin is sleek, his flesh full, his eyes sharp, his ears keen, his muscles taut, his bones sturdy.
And so he is able to carry the great circle of heaven on his head and tread upon the great square of earth.
He finds his reflection in the great purity and sees by the great light.
Attentive and cautious, he never errs, and every day renews the force of his virtue.
Knowing everything in the world and exhausting the four poles of the earth, he attentively nurtures his plenitude:
this is called: grasping within. To be so and never to revert
is life without error.

Section 11: The nature of the Dao

The Dao is always abundant and dense, always broad and easy,
always hard and steady.
Guard the good and never release it, expel excess and let go of narrowness.
Once knowing the extremes, return to the force of the Dao.

Section 12: The charisma of the completed heart

When the heart completed lies within, it cannot be concealed. It may be known through the form and countenance,
seen through the skin and expression. When such a one encounters others with the qi of goodness,
he becomes closer to them than brothers. When such a one encounters others with the qi of hatred,
he is more dangerous then weapons of war.
The unspoken sound travels faster than a clap of thunder. The form of the heart’s qi
illuminates more brightly than the sun or moon,
and is more discerning than a father or mother. Rewards are insufficient to encourage goodness;
punishments are insufficient to discipline transgressions. But when the intent of the qi is in one’s grasp,
the world will submit. When the intent of the heart is fixed,
the world will obey.

Section 13: Concentration

Spirit-like, concentrate the qi, and the world of things is complete. Can you concentrate?
Can you become one? Can you know the outcomes of events without divining? Can you halt? Can you stop? Can you grasp in it yourself and not seek it in others?
Ponder it! Ponder it! Then ponder yet again! If you ponder and do not comprehend,
the spirits will make it comprehensible. Yet it is not by the power of the spirits:
it is the utmost of the essential qi.

Section 14: The limits of contemplation

When your four limbs are balanced and the qi of your blood tranquil, unify your thoughts and concentrate your mind.
Eyes and ears never astray, though distant, it will be as though near.
Contemplative thought gives birth to knowledge; careless laxity gives birth to cares; violent arrogance gives birth to resentments; cares and melancholy give birth to illness.
If you contemplate things and don’t let go, you will be harried within and haggard without.
If you don’t plan against this early on, your life will slip away from its abode.
When eating, it is best not to eat one’s fill. When contemplating, it is best not to carry it to the end. When there is regularity and equilibrium,
it will come of itself.

Section 15: Moderating emotions and desires

In the life of man, heaven produces his essence, earth produces his form.
These are combined and create a man.
With harmony there comes life, without harmony there is no life.
In discerning the dao of harmony, its essence is invisible,
its manifestations belong to no class.
When level balance controls the breast and sorted regularity lies within the heart,
long life is assured. If joy and anger lose their proper rule,
attend to this. Moderate the five desires,
eliminate the two evils– neither joyous nor angered–
and level balance will control your breast. The life of man must rely on level balance,
and these are lost through the heart’s joy and anger, cares and dismay.
To quell anger nothing is better than the Poetry. To dismiss cares, nothing is better than music. To moderate joy, nothing is better than li. To observe li, nothing is better than attentiveness.
To maintain attentiveness, nothing is better than tranquility.
Inwardly tranquil, outwardly attentive,
able to return to your nature: thus will your nature be well stabilized.

Section 16: The dao of eating

The dao of eating: gorging is harmful, the form will not be fine; fasts of abstinence make the bones brittle and the blood run dry.
The mean between gorging and abstinence is the harmonious perfection: the place where the essence dwells and wisdom is born.
If hunger or satiety lose their proper measures, attend to this.
If you have eaten too much, move about rapidly. If you are famished, make broader plans. If you are old, plan in advance.
If you have eaten too much and do not move about rapidly, your qi will not flow through your limbs.
If you are famished and do not make broader plans, your hunger will not be alleviated.
If you are old and do not plan in advance, then when you are in straits you will be quickly exhausted.

Section 17: The magnanimous qi

Enlarge your heart and be daring; make your qi magnanimous and broad.
With form at rest and unmoving, you will be able to guard your oneness and discard a myriad burdens.
On seeing profit, you will not be enticed. On seeing danger, you will not be frightened. With easy magnanimity you will be jen,
and alone, you will delight in your person. This is called cloud-like qi,
for thoughts float in it as clouds in heaven.

Section 18: Moderation

All human life must rest upon contentment. Through cares its guiding lines are lost. Through anger its source is lost. When there is care or sadness, joy or sorrow,
the Dao finds no place.
Loves and desires–quiet them! If you encounter disorder, put it right. Draw nothing near, push nothing away;
blessings will spontaneously come to stay. The Dao comes spontaneously,
you may rely upon it to shape your plans. If you are tranquil you will grasp it;
agitated, you will lose it.
The magical qi within the heart, now it comes, now departs.
It is so small that there can be nothing within it. It is so great that there can be nothing outside it. It is lost through the harm of agitation. If the heart can grip tranquility,
the Dao will spontaneously fix itself therein.
In he who grasps the Dao it steams through the lines of his face and seeps from his hair.
There is no failing within his breast. With the Dao of moderating desires,
the things of the world cannot harm him.

Reference:
GUANZI 管子 : THE INNER ENTERPRISE (Neiye 內業)
R. Eno, Indiana University, 2005
www.indiana.edu/~p374/Neiye.pdf

Original Tao: Inward Training (Nei-yeh) and the Foundations of Taoist Mysticism (Translations from the Asian Classics) by Harold Roth
ISBN 0231115652

The Inner Smile

One of the most well-known of Taoist neidan (Inner Alchemy) practices is the “Inner Smile” – in which we smile inwardly to each of the major organs of our body, activating within us the energy of loving-kindness, and waking up the Five-Element associational network. Here we will learn a variation on this classic practice, which allows us to direct the healing energy of a smile into any part of our body that we would like …

Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 10 – 30 minutes, or longer if you’d like
Here’s How:
1. Sit comfortably, either on a straight-backed chair, or on the floor. The important thing is for your spine to be in an upright position, and your head arranged to allow the muscles of your neck and throat to feel relaxed.
2. Take a couple of deep, slow breaths, noticing how your abdomen rises with each inhalation, then relaxes back toward your spine with each exhalation. Let go of thoughts of past or future.
3. Rest the tip of your tongue gently on the roof of your mouth, somewhere behind, and close to, your upper front teeth. You’ll find the spot that feels perfect.
4. Smile gently, allowing your lips to feel full and smooth as they spread to the side and lift just slightly. This smile should be kind of like the Mona Lisa smile, or how we might smile – mostly to ourselves – if we had just gotten a joke that someone told us several days ago: nothing too extreme, just the kind of thing that relaxes our entire face and head, and makes us start to feel good inside.
5. Now bring your attention to the space between your eyebrows (the “Third Eye” center). As you rest your attention there, energy will begin to gather. Imagine that place to be like a pool of warm water, and as energy pools there, let your attention drift deeper into that pool – back and toward the center of your head.
6. Let your attention rest now right in the center of your brain – the space equidistant between the tips of your ears. This is a place referred to in Taoism as the Crystal Palace – home to the pineal, pituitary, thalamus and hypothalamus glands. Feel the energy gathering in this powerful place.
7. Allow this energy gathering in the Crystal Palace to flow forward into your eyes. Feel your eyes becoming “smiling eyes.” To enhance this, you can imagine that you’re gazing into the eyes of the person who you love the most, and they’re gazing back at you … infusing your eyes with this quality of loving-kindness and delight.
8. Now, direct the energy of your smiling eyes back and down into some place in your body that would like some of this healing energy. It might be a place where you’ve recently had an injury or illness. It might be a place that just feels a little numb or “sleepy,” or simply some place you’ve not recently explored. In any case, smile down into that place within your body, and feel that place opening to receive smile-energy.
9. Continue to smile into that place within your body, for as long as you’d like … letting it soak up smile-energy like a sponge soaks up water.
10. When this feels complete, direct your inner gaze, with its smile-energy, into your navel center, feeling warmth and brightness gathering now in your lower belly.
11. Release the tip of your tongue from the roof of your mouth, and release the smile (or keep it if it now feels natural).
Tips:
1. As with all neidan practices, it’s important to find a balance between effort and relaxation. If you notice a build-up of tension, relax, take a couple of deep breaths, then return to the practice. If your mind wanders, simply notice this, and come back to the practice.
2. Remember to maintain the quality of a gentle, genuine smile – infused with the energy of loving-kindness and compassion – particularly when directing your “inner smile” into an injured place. If you notice frustration, anger, fear or judgment creeping in, take a couple of deep breaths, then connect again with loving-kindness and compassion – the energies that can heal us.
3. The Crystal Palace is known also – in Hindu yogic traditions – as the Cave of Brahma.

Reference: How To Practice The “Inner Smile” by Elizabeth Reninger about.com

Internal Alchemy: An Overview

By Elizabeth Reninger, About.com 

Inner Alchemy (Neidan) – a term often used synonymously with Qigong – is the Taoist art and science of gathering, storing and circulating the energies of the human body. In Inner Alchemy, our human body becomes a laboratory in which the Three Treaures of Jing, Qi, and Shen are cultivated, for the purpose of improving physical, emotional and mental health; and, ultimately, merging with the Tao, i.e. becoming an Immortal.

Each of the Three Treasures used in the practice of Inner Alchemy is associated with a particular physical/energetic location: (1) Jing, or reproductive energy, has its home in the lower dantian (and Snow Mountain area); (2) Qi, or life energy, has its home in the middle dantian; and (3) Shen, or spiritual energy, has its home in the upper dantian. Taoist practitioners learn to transmute Jing into Qi into Shen, and the reverse, i.e. learn to modulate consciousness along its full spectrum of vibratory frequencies, in much the same way that we are able to tune into different radio stations. The dantians can be thought of as similar to the “chakras” of Hindu yogic systems – locations within the subtle bodyfor the storing and transmutation of qi/prana. Of particular importance for Inner Alchemy practice is the lower dantian, referred to also as the “stove,” and the home, ultimately, of the Immortal Fetus.

Internal Alchemy understands the human body to be a precious and necessary resource for our spiritual journey, rather than as something to be ignored or transcended. Along with the dantians, the practitioner of Inner Alchemy learns to perceive and work with the meridian system, in particular the Eight Extraordinary Meridians. As we open, cleanse and balance the meridians, our Awareness flows in/as the present moment. What emerges, then – quite naturally – is good health, clarified perception and a direct experience of our connection to and embodiment of Tao.

Inner Alchemical processes are represented visually in theNei Jing Tu, a diagram whose various components are described here by Master Mantak Chia. These processes are represented also by the Lamp, candles and other items found on the altarsused in Ceremonial Taoism, and by the practice of Baibai – offering incense to the altar. Taoist ceremonies are ritual enactments not only of Taoist Cosmological principles, but also of the transformations of Inner Alchemy.

An excellent place to begin your practice of Inner Alchemy is with the “Inner Smile” practice. As you move deeper into this wonderful terrain, it will be important for you to receive the guidance of one or more qualified teachers. If you don’t have access to flesh-and-blood guides, Tai-Chi-and-Meditation-Direct offers an excellent program of online instruction. Tonic Gold is a supplement (created by the hermetic alchemist Petri Murien) that I’ve found to be a powerful support for Inner Alchemy practice. (Enter the discount code “vitality” to receive a practitioner’s discount.) Dr. Zhi Gang Sha is a contemporary Master of qigong/Inner Alchemy, who offers free weekly teleconferences, and powerful transmissions that you can register for. Finally, each of the books listed below offers valuable insights, information, practices and clues to the magic and mystery, art and science of Internal Alchemy practice. Enjoy!

Suggested Reading:

Golden Elixir Chi Kung, by Mantak Chia offers instructions on turning our saliva into a potent form of Inner Alchemical “medicine.” Highly recommended!

Cultivating The Energy Of Life, by Eva Wong is a translation of the Hui-Ming Ching (“Treatise on Cultivating Life”), one of the most important and straightforward of classical Inner Alchemy texts. Wonderful!

Taoist Yoga & Sexual Energy, by Eric Yudelove offers a veritable feast of Inner Alchemy practices, to cultivate Jing, Qi and Shen. Excellent for beginners as well as more advanced practitioners.

Taoist Yoga: Alchemy & Immortality, Lu Kuan Yu and Charles Luk is an Inner Alchemical manual of considerable detail – excellent for the serious practitioner.

Understanding Reality: A Taoist Alchemical Classic, by Chang Po-tuan (translated by Thomas Cleary) is – as the title implies – one of the foundational texts of Taoist Inner Alchemy (in particular the Kan-Li practices). The language of this text is richly symbolic – a poetic description of Inner Alchemical processes – and as such can be simultaneously inspiring and elusive.

Reference:
Internal Alchemy: An Overview about.com