Erroneous Practices (Part 2)


Cultivating the Tao

Quoted from:

Cultivating the Tao: Taoism and Internal Alchemy, by Liu Yiming (1734-1821), page 124

. . . As for those who have not understood the discourses about "non-doing" (wuwei), some guard the Yellow Court,(1) and others concentrate on their fontanel; some concentrate on the tip of their nose, and others contemplate the Hall of Light;(2) some guard the point below the navel, and others concentrate on the Spinal Handle;(3) some contemplate emptiness, and others contemplate the mind; some stop their thoughts, and others forget their forms; some silently have audience with the Supreme Emperor, others reflect their form in a mirror and coagulate their Spirit, and others concentrate on their Spirit in order to "exit the shell."(4)

There are more than one thousand methods like these. Although their motives are not identical, they all stick to emptiness in the same way. If you think that this is the Way of "non-doing," you are greatly in error.

Source: Xiuzhen houbian (Further Discriminations in Cultivating Reality), sec. 20.



(1) On the Yellow Court (huangting) see note 6 to Chapter 16 of this book.

(2) Hall of Light (mingtang) in this sentence could refer to several parts of the body, including the nose (which, however, is also mentioned in the previous sentence) and the heart.

(3) See note 6 to Chapter 2 of this book.

(4) The "shell" (qiao) is the mortal body.


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