Section 4 : Tempering of the Spirit

第四節 精神之鍛鍊

  Since ancient times religious believers have long grappled with a difficult mystery, and that is how to hold fast, in this present body, to the endless work of tempering the three treasures: essence, ch’i and spirit. What should the path of such tempering be? It lies in purifying the heart and reducing desires. It lies in settling, quietude, tranquility, reflection, and attainment, by which one can reach the wondrous stage of perfection. This is the way for life to seek its homeward road, so it may become eternal, shared life. Such a secretly transmitted spiritual practice, a self-cultivation and self-creation which starts with matter and returns to Nature, is what Taoists call “meditation in stillness” and Buddhists call dhyana or Ch’an meditation. Ordinary people know it as “sitting meditation”. Getting at its source, it is the study of self-nature and the living body. But in our world the ones who understand its true significance, who steadfastly devote themselves to practice and press forward with diligence, are few and far between. Most cannot get a thorough grasp of principles by which matter fits into Nature, nor can they utilize the great Way that leads back to the source. Thus they cannot get interested and do not keep up their practice. Here I will reveal my actual experience over several decades, and attempt to elucidate the truth of it. My analysis proceeds from stage to stage, with clear and simple explanations, and is offered for verification by persons of understanding.


  1. Beginning with fundamentals: To do quiet sitting one must curb one’s physical desires and purify one’s heart. Let there be no distinction of self and other. What one does is sweep away every last delusory thought and vulgar consideration. Enter a trance, go along with Nature’s workings, and be in union with Heaven. At this time your bonding force will strengthen, and e-tropic light will radiate through your body. You will be carefree and at ease. Soon you will come to a state of lively possibility, knowing but seeming not to know, aware but seemingly unaware. Should you fixate ever-so-slightly on a form, or subconsciously guide the direction for ch’i, obstacles will arise and you will go against Nature.


  2. Embryo of ch’i: That which makes up your subtle essence is neither white nor black, partaking of both yin and yang. It is an ultra-yin sublimation within yin and yang e-tropons. Ch’i is an ultra-yang heat flow produced after high-level e-tropic substance from harmonon blends with bodies of static e-tropicity. Thus the circulation through the body of subtle essence and ch’i expels the ultra-yin etropic impurities (yin-ch’i). These are blended and circulated naturally, using ch’i to draw forth essence, and using blood to move the ch’i. The process moves through boundaries of each physiological orb, and it penetrates throughout the body. Thus the yang e-tropic substance (ch’i) draws forth yin e-tropic essence (subtle essence) and transports it everywhere in the body. A blending process is initiated; swiling currents interfused. After building up through many e-tropic conjunctions, with persistence over time and renewed beginning at each cycle, an embryo of ch’i will naturally be formed. And because it has established a certain cyclical pattern, the normal circulation of blood and ch’i will also lend itself to this formation. This practice is what Taoist scriptures call seizing the dragon and taming the tiger, or drawing out the lead and blending in the mercury. It is also the stage of transmuting subtle essence into ch’i. In most Taoist scriptures there is an excess of abstract terms for essence and ch’i, so I have analyzed and arranged them as follows:


subtle essencech’i
k’an(water trigram)li(fire trigram)
yu-t’u(jade rabbit)玉兔chin-wu(gold crow)金烏
ch’a-nu(maiden)姹女ying-erh(infant) 嬰兒
mu-mu(mother of wood)木母chin-kung(master of metal)金公
electropic essence電精electropic substance電質


  3. Electropic embryo: The workings of the ch’i embryo are driven by an interplay of e-tropic substance and essence, each giving rise to the other. They come against one another in a spontaneous interaction, neither too quickly nor too slowly, as yin-ch’i gradually disappears. Gradually they transmute into an e-tropic embryo. At such a time one’s intentions are pure and whole. At the extremity of stillness, movement arises; the spirit is held in and breath is suspended. This draws cosmic ch’i from vast space to join in a harmonious interchange. Only then can true water constantly rise and true fire constantly descend. Cosmic and bodily ch’i intertwine, rising and falling in a cycle. Attunement is constant within, and non-being is transformed into being. Yet the profound heart of this mystery cannot be described with words: it must be verified by one’s own practice. One finds realization and enlightenment on one’s own.


  4. Embryo of cosmic ch’i (sacred embryo): Among the elements of an cosmic ch’i embryo, as in Buddhist sarira and Taoist “golden elixir,” chemical analysis will show that raydon is present. Due to mutual attraction of the e-tropic embryo and cosmic ch’i from vast space, a transformation ensues. This is because the ch’i contains thermal energy and highly yang e-tropicity. The e-tropic embryo which is formed within also contains thermal energy and e-tropicity. But this e-tropicity, when juxtaposed with the highly yang sort, drops down to the yin polarity. The two opposite charges attract and have impact on one another to produce heat. When heated to a seething mass this becomes cosmic ch’i which contains raydon. This raydon congeals into granules clustered at the tan-t’ien [alchemical field, below the navel]. This will become the embryo of cosmic ch’i, also called the sacred embryo. But when this cosmic ch’i embryo first coalesces and takes form, it is still weak. Its composition still includes a small amount of e-tropic substance, and it is still static. It cannot function to full effect. Thus it needs regular fostering with warmth to expel its e-tropic substance, make it transmute to pure yang, and help its maturation as a cosmic ch’i embryo. The raydon possesses inherent attractive force and adamantine intensity. There is nothing it does not transform with its influence, which is pure, upward-rising and rapid. It continues to attract and join with cosmic ch’i from vast space. The two react to become a raydon body, wondrous in both physical form and spirit. When one achieves a spiritual breakthrough to this, it will ascend from the roof of the skull. One can choose to hold it in or release it, to let it come and go as one pleases. Taoists call this the “birthing of yang spirit”. Buddhists call it “seeing into one’s own nature”. This is the appearance of the true self (transmuted self), a transmutation of one’s original bodily frame engendered by bodily and cosmic ch’i. From this point one works to transmute spirit back to the source, to consume oneself with true fire. The fleshly body falls away and the true self endures. This is the power of raydon, the marvel of matter returning to Nature.


  At present, The Ultimate Realm has become a teaching text in our church. In order to elucidate the Lord of Heaven’s cosmic Way, our Church is adding the idea of the raydon embryo to this section, as an expansion of the teachings. Moreover, it explains the ultimate aim of an enduring, true self and eternal shared life.


  5. Raydon embryo: A raydon embryo is a concentration of the universe’s great motive force and energy. It is attained by further cultivation of a sacred embryo. In any instance where radiation of e-tropic force reaches an extremely high energy level, the e-tropons will undergo intense excitation and become radioactive. This is what is called a thermonuclear reaction, and what Taoist alchemy calls “fostering by warmth”. This is a further refining of the small raydon granules, a further purification. When it reaches a certain point they concentrate into a sacred embryo. The sacred embryo is like the body’s generating plant. It can store certain quantities of energy, and it can emit energy. But if we unceasingly develop this generating plant, it will change from a hydro-power plant to a nuclear-powered generating plant. Henceforth the body will have a raydon embryo which functions as a nuclear-powered generating plant. Thus a raydon embryo comes from a sacred embryo (able to control large quantities of e-tropicity and small portions of raydon emanations) which has gone through unceasing impact of e-tropic forces. All its yin e-tropons are expelled and a thermonuclear reaction (all raydon) arises by fusion among its yang e-tropons. It becomes a core controller much like in a nuclear reactor.


  With continued refinement a raydon embryo will expand its scope without end, and its radioactive force will be hard to control. It will be necessary to enter a certain location belonging to the Supreme Being for further cultivation. There special elements will be given out to protect and regulate the process. Thus the manifestation of the universe’s highest potentialities is accomplished.


  6. Dual cultivation of self-nature and the body: In the process of achieving each of these–the ch’i embryo, e-tropic embryo, embryo of cosmic ch’i, and raydon embryo–a foundation must be laid by dual cultivation of self-nature and the body. Self-nature is innate: it is spirit, it is the harmonon. The body is acquired: it is subtle essence and ch’i, it is e-tropons. Moving from the nonphysical to the physical, it is necessary for matter to make suitable accommodation to Nature; harmonons and e-tropons must reach a certain je-chun, a grasp on reality is needed, and union must be achieved between Heaven and man. Only then can the constraints of nature be overcome. Moving from the physical to the non-physical, we have to utilize matter to return to Nature, to see through life and death, to cultivate body and self-nature together. Only then can we attain equality of the sacred and mundane. That is why the ideas of self-nature and body are interlocked like two jade rings. And that is why we say that form is none other than emptiness, emptiness is none other than form. Make the real empty, and make the empty real. Having been born with self-nature, one should refine it; having been born with a body, one should temper it. Do not encumber the non-physical with the physical. Out of nothing the highest something will certainly come.


  At present people do not value self-nature and the body. They waste their spirit and e-tropons. Thus they die quickly and resign themselves to fate, never knowing the ultimate of life or where it returns to. They need to strive within themselves, to nurture perfect ch’i, to temper mind and body. Make the best use of one’s essence, ch’i and spirit by blending and refining them. Do quiet sitting at regular intervals to circulate blood and ch’i, joining the flows of e-tropicity and essence. With long persistence, yin-ch’i can be expelled and impure occlusions can be freed up, making the pure rise up and the impure sink down. Once the yin and turbid are gotten rid of, illness can naturally be kept away and the life-span extended. The person’s body will be filled with vital harmony, giving him a chance to reverse aging and recover youthfulness. This already marks the transition from e-tropic embryo to embryo of cosmic ch’i. The person glows with vital wisdom, and his intellect encompasses all sides. The fundamental practice of self-cultivation and self-creation is by now assured. Through this one can save oneself and then others, can be always responsive yet always serene. Once the true self is attained, one finds eternal shared life. Spirit intermediaries possess ability to transcend natural laws, precisely because of their attainments in spiritual practice during life.


  The above are only theories from experience. As for techniques of ongoing practice, explanation is still in order.