Tao and Longevity: Mind-body Transformation

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  • Author: Nan Huaijin;
  • Language: English
  • Format: Papercover
  • Page: 179
  • Publication Date: 08/2008
  • ISBN: 9787506032728
  • Publisher: Orient Press
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
Translator's Preface

Part Ⅰ:The Nature of Meditation
1.Longevity is Actually Possible
3.Mental and Physical Conditions During Meditation
4.Ch'i Phenomena of the Body
5.Postures in Meditation
6.Use of the Mind in Meditation
7.Concentration on the Ch'iao Cavity in Taoist Meditation

Part Ⅱ: The Nature and Reactions of Ch'i
8.The Nature of Ch'i
9.Reactions of Ch'i During Meditation
10.How to Open Up Jen Mai
11.Fasting and the Function of the Middle Ch'i
12.A Big Belly is Not Tao
13.The Human Body and the Importance of Feet
14.Arguments Over the Ch'i Channels
15.Ch'i Channels from Taoism and Buddhism
16.What is Middle Mai?
17.Why Ch'i Channels Vibrate
18.What Happens After Ch'i Channels Open?
19.Motives for Meditation
20.The Theory of Ching, Ch'i and Shen

Part Ⅲ:Cultivation of Ching, Ch'i and Shen
21.Timing and Stages of Cultivation
22.The Concept of Ching
23.Transmutation of Ching into Ch'i
24.Cultivation of Ch'i and Stopping the Breath
25.The Wonder and Mystery of Breath
26.Changing Temperaments and Cycles of Ch'i
27.Cultivating Ch'i and Calming the Mind
28.Three Flowers and Five Ch'i
29.Meditation and Cultivation of Shen

Appendix Ⅰ:Cultivating Samadhi and Wisdom Through Ch'an (Zen)
Appendix Ⅱ:Ch'an (Zen) and Pointing at the Moon
Sample Pages Preview
The pharynx is composed of the esophagus in the back which leads to the stomach, and the trachea in the front which leads to the lungs. If someone has a disease in the tracheal sys- tem or catches a cold or the flu, coughing occurs. There are two kinds of coughs;one is a dry cough with no phlegm and one is a cough with phlegm. A dry cough is usually due to bronchitis. Some phlegm coughs are related to the diseases of the stomach which is connected with the esophagus.
A person who practices meditation after the initiation o{ the stomach ch‘i and the phenomena of persistent hiccoughs and long yawns may feel something blocked in his chest that he wishes to vomit out but cannot. If he waits until he is full of ascending ch’i, he will suddenly vomit out dense phlegm of a turbid dark gray color. This indicates the initial opening of the ch‘i through the esophagus. Taoists refer to this as the “twelve reiterated floors. “Esoteric Buddhists calls it the throat chakra. Actually, both expressions refer to the system from the larynx down the esophagus to the stomach.
The practitioners of esoteric teachings often believe that a person will stop being troubled by illusions after his throat chakra ch’i route is open. This is unclear. After opening the throat chakra, one‘s thinking will decrease, and troubles arising from emotions and worries can be quieted. But this will not enable a person to attain”no illusions’completely, since it cannot be attained without the practice of mental samadhi.
is the esophagus very important to mental and physiological health? Yes, it is extremely important. Since it is the main route of food transportation, food refuse is deposited on the walls of the esophagus. This refuse is not automatically cleaned out by physiological functions alone. Day by day deposits accumulate on the walls of the esophagus and may eventually cause many troubles, such as cancer of the esophagus. For example,if a glass is filled with milk,no matter what happens to the milk, some fine particles of milk adhere to the walls of the glass. Some yogis try to clean the esophagus and stomach by swallowing a long cloth. But, cleaning the esophagus through ascending ch‘i is much more refined than cleaning it using this method.
The Taoist” Upper and Lower Bridges of Small Birds“
After the esophagus is opened by the ascending stomach ch’i, the chest feels opened and broadened. When people are in a state of extreme quiet, they may even hear crackling sounds a- round the heart. Then the ch‘i entering into the lower abdomen will cause two almost spontaneous reactions.a feeling of something sinking down, and the curling up of the tongue. One of the basic meditation mudras, in Buddhism,Taoism, and the esoteric teachings of yoga, is to curl the tongue to touch the incisor gum. Generally speaking, the purpose of touching the incisor gum is to stimulate and facilitate the secretion of saliva. Part of the saliva is secreted by the pituitary gland and it effects rejuvenation. Therefore, in meditation, one can fill the mouth full of saliva by putting his tongue to the salivary gland of the incisor gums;this saliva should be swallowed often. Sometimes it even tastes slightly sweet and aromatic.
When the stomach ch’i ascends to pass through the esophagus, the larynx spontaneously presses downward and the tongue curls up to touch the uvula to close the larynx. At this stage one‘s breath, inhalation and exhalation, almost stops. This is described as harnessing the”upper bridge of small birds“and”climbing the ladder of heaven. “In yoga it is called bottled ch’i. The phenomenon of a”condor crying at the back of the head“is perceived as clicking sounds. What is known as the “golden light appearing in front of the eyes‘will become clearer and clearer. One’s mind will be more quiet and be without illusions.
Special attention is required for the descending ch‘i that is generated from the stomach to reach the lower Tan Tien. For a child with neither sexual knowledge nor experience who cultivates the Tao, this problem is different. For a person who has already engaged in sexual activity such as masturbation and nocturnal emissions,it is not as easy for ch’i to reach the Tan Tien. When the descending ch‘i is passing to the lower Tan Tien, the nerves extending upward from the lower abdomen and pubis will register piercing pain.

Since childhood I have been fascinated by the stories of immortals portrayed in Taoist books and teachings. I wondered how a person could become an immortal and achieve the god- ship. I read hundreds of Taoist books but always had a complex feeling of fascination, confusion and frustration whenever I finished reading. They seemed to be written in such a way that only the rare person could understand them. The standard excuse was that the heavenly secret should not be revealed. I could not tell which books were good and which were bad, and I did not know who, among these many authors, was a real immortal and who was a phony or a fake. So, I continued in search of Tao in the Taoist tradition by looking for a genuine teacher and,fortunately,I met my teacher in 1961. He is the author of this book.
In China, people usually meditate in order to achieve spiritual growth and to enhance their health. I have lived in the Unit- ed States for many years. To my surprise, the ideas and methods of Western meditation practices are quite different from those of the Chinese. It seems to me that most Americans meditate solely for spiritual growth and seem to want to expand consciousness or develop esp.
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Tao and Longevity: Mind-body Transformation