Daoism in History (cap. 7)


pp. 121-158 – 7. Fabrizio Pregadio : "Early Daoist Meditation and the Origins of Inner Alchemy".

p. 122 the god Yi (‘the One’) & his goddess consort, according to the Lao-zi Z^on-jin ‘Lao-zi Central-Scripture’ (= DZ 1168), sec. 5-7 : as redacted in the Yun-ji Qi-qian ‘Clouds-Bookcase 7-Lots’ (= DZ 1032), juan 18-19

"The Lord of the Dao is the One (Yi). He is the Emperor on High of the August Heaven [Huan-tian S^an-di] and is the central star of the Northern Asterism of the Central Ultimate [Z^on-ji Bei-c^en]. He resides above the Nine Heavens, ten thousand zhang on high, within the palace of the Purple Chamber [Zi-fan Gon] in the Great Abyss [Tai-yuan]. He is clothed in five-coloured garments and wears the Headgear of the Nine Virtues [Jiu-de Z^i Guan]. Above him is the five-coloured glow of the cloudy pneumas of Great Clarity. Underneath a nine-layered flowery canopy, Laozi and Great Harmony attend upon him at his left and his right.
... [He hath as] spouse (the Jade Woman of Mysterious Radiance of Great Yin, [Tai-yin Xuan-guan Yu-nu:])".

pp. 125-126 transmutation into an immortal by ingestion of a Tai-qin elixir, according to the Jin-ye Jin ‘Golden-Elixir Scripture’ : extant in the Bao-pu Zi S^en-xian Jin-z^ou Jin (= DZ 917), 1:7a-b

p. 125 "take an ounce each of Gold Water [jin-s^ui] and Mercury Water [hon-s^ui], and drink them facing the sun, and you will immediately become a Golden Man (jinren). Your
p. 126 body will turn into pure light and will grow feathers and wings. On high you will put into motion Original Essence [yuan-jin]".

p. 126 itinerary of Lao-zi, according to the "Inscription for Lao-zi"

station on itinerary which is the __ dan-tian (‘cinnabar field’) located in the __
Dan-lu (‘Cinnabar Hut’) upper brain
Huan-tin (‘Yellow Court’) lower abdomen

p. 128 deities dwelling within loci of the inner body, according to the Tai-pin Jin ‘Great-Peace Scripture’

'' source : Tai-pin He-jiao, by Wan Min text
72:292 "The subtle spirits (jingshen) ... are, within, the subtle sprits of the five viscera of man".
71:283 "Meditate [si-nian] on the gods [s^en] of the five viscera; depict (hua) their coming and going [wan-lai], and see their moving around. You can talk to them".

p. 128 "The term translated as ‘depict’ .... is likely to refer to creating ‘mental pictures’ of the inner gods as they move within the inner gods."

p. 129 the environs of "the North Pole" (Wan Min : Bao-pu Zi Nei-pien Jiao-s^i 18:324)

at __ is the __
front Min-tan (‘Hall of Light’)
rear Jian-gon (‘Crimson Palace’)
imposing Hua-gai (‘Flowery Canopy’)
great Jin-lou (‘Golden Pavilion’)

p. 130 itinerary of S^i-qin in 2 halves which "combine to become one." (Wan Min : Bao-pu Zi Nei-pien Jiao-s^i 6:128)

motion through __
exit from Yu-c^i (‘Jade Pond’)
ingress into Jin-s^i (‘Golden Chambers’)
ascension to You-guan (‘Obscure Barrier’)
establishment in Min-s^en (‘Gate of Life’)

p. 130 s^ou-yi ("guarding the One")

in __ the One is __ tenths of an inch tall
men 9
women 6

pp. 133-134 the 12 [or rather 17] deities of the 1st 12 sections of the Lao-zi Z^on-jin (‘Lao-zi Central-Scripture’)

p. sec. deity nature in macrocosm in microcosm
133 1st S^an-s^an Tai-yi (‘Supreme Great-One’) "the head of a man and the body of a bird, ... a rooster" "Great Clarity" "just above your head"
2nd Wu-ji Tai-s^an Yuan-jun (‘Ultimateless Most-High Original-Lord’) "comes spontaneously from the Original Pneuma" Tai-wei (‘Great Tenuity’) "space between the eyebrows"
133-4 3rd Xi-wan Mu (‘West-Queen Mother’) moon-goddess = Yan-yu (‘Reclined Jade’) mt. Pen-lai right eye
133 4th Don-wan Fu (‘East-King Father’) sun-god = Fu-xi mt. Kun-lun left eye
134 5th Dao-jun (‘Way-Lord’) = Yi (‘One’) "Great Clarity" gallbladder
6th Lao-jun (‘Old Lord’) his divine wife is Su-nu: (‘Pure Woman’) to the left of human
7th Tai-he Jun (‘Great-Harmony Lord’) his divine wife is Yu-nu: (‘Jade Woman’) to the right of human
8th Ni-wan Jun (‘Muddy-Pellet Lord’) = Nan-ji Lao-ren (‘Southern-Ultimate Old-Man’) upper dan-tian = brain
9th Nan-ji (‘Southern Ultimate’) planet mars heart
10.1 Si-tu Gon (‘Controller-of-Education Minister’) kidneys
10.2 Si-kon Gon (‘Controller-Works Minister’) "
10.3 Si-min (‘Controller-of-Destiny’) "
10.4 Si-li Xiao-wei (‘Commandant Metropolitan’) "
10.5 Si-lu (‘Controller of Registers’) "
10.6 Tin-wei (‘Chamberlain for Law-enforcement’) "
11th Z^on-ji Huan-lao (‘Central-Ultimate Yellow-Old’) = Z^on-huan Z^en-ren (‘Central-Yellow Real-Man’) = S^an-s^an Z^on-ji Jun (‘Supreme Central-Ultimate Lord’) z^on-dou (‘central dipper’) constell. lower dan-tien
12th C^i-zi (‘Red Child’) son of Yellow Old Man and of Jade Woman of Mysterious Radiance’) stomach

p. 135 deities of the dan-tian, according to the Huan-tin Jin "inner" sec.s 9, 11, 16, 17, and 20 (– see :- Catherine Despeux : Taoi:sme et corps humain : le Xiuzhen tu. Paris, 1994. pp. 135-8)

deity location
[Tai-yi] ‘Great One’ upper dan-tian
Bai-yuan (‘White Origin’) two chambres of the upper dan-tian
Wu-yin (‘Blossomless’) = Gon-zi (‘Lordling’)
Tao-hai (‘Peach Child’) = Tao-kan (‘Peach Vigor’) lower dan-tian

p. 135 successive stations on itinerary of essence & pneuma from sun & moon, according to the Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 11

Crimson Palace (heart)
Yellow Court (spleen)
Purple Chambre (gall bladder)
Great Granary (stomach)

p. 136 how to feed on essences of sun & of moon, according to the Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 39

the __ man saintly worthy
dissolveth liquifieth
the __ pearls jade
by ingesting the essence of __ sun moon
into the __ eye left right

Therewith one’s s^en (spirit) becometh bright, so that one discerneth "throughout the eight directions."

p. 136 how to achieve inner light, according to the Huan-tin Jin "inner" sec. 2

"Circulate [hui] the purple [zi] and embrace [bao] the yellow [huan], so that they enter the Cinnabar Field";
an inner light in the Abyssal Chambre [you-s^i] illuminateth the Yan Gate [yan-men].

p. 137 evocations for the elixir

textual source deity evoked evocation
'' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 25 Yuan-guan Tai-yi Jun (‘Original-Radiance Great-one Lord’) "Old Man of the Southern Ultimate ...! I want to obtain ... the Divine Elixir of the Great One!"
'' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 11 Huan-c^an Zi (‘Yellow-Gown Master’), the father of the Red Child "Real Man of the Yellow Court, reside in me! Summon for me the medicinal liquor ...!"
'' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 28 "Double Indigo, the god of the liver" "Flesh Child (Rouzi), Double Indigo (Lanlan)! ... I want to obtain the Divine Elixir of the Great One ...!"

pp. 138, 155 the Self

p. textual source text
138 '' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 12 "The self is the son of the Dao ... . He sits facing due south on a couch of jade and pearls, and a flowery canopy of yellow clouds covers him. He wears clothes with pearls of five hues."
155, n. 56 '' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 23 "Child-Cinnabar, Original Yang, is the self"
'' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 37 "the stomach is the Great Granary, the residence of the Prince, the hut of the self"
'' Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 39 "the Dao is the self"

pp. 139-140 description of the lower dan-tian, according to the Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec. 17

p. 139 "The Cinnabar Field is ... the Storehouse of the Red Child [C^i-zi Z^i Fu]. Men store it in their semen, and women in their menstrual blood. It is ... attached to the Caudal Funnel
p. 140 (weilu:), and is the root of the two kidneys. Within the Cinnabar Field the centre is red, the left is green, the right is yellow, above is white and below is black."
The god of the dan-tian "has the surname Kong, the name Qiu and the style Zhongni."

p. 140 "Effulgent Lord, Original Yang [Jin-jun Yuan-yan]! ... Lord of the Moon, Child-Light [Yue-jun Zi-guan]!" (Lao-zi Z^on-jin sec.s 34 & 35; quoted in Lin-bao Wu-fu Xu 1:18b-19b)

p. 140 etymology of /ni-wan/

"The theory that the term niwan originated as a phonetic transcription of nirvana appears to have no foundation, as this meaning is not attested in the dozen or so occurrences of this term in the Taisho Buddhist canon. The earliest sources that mention the term niwan to mean the upper dantian are ... the Central Scripture and the Yellow Court.
Interestingly, a passage [Bao-pu Zi 16:287-8] in Ge Hong’s Inner Chapters lists niwan as ... used in waidan (possibly the mud used for luting the crucible)."

{So, the brain is regarded as a glue uniting (scil., the mental world with the physical world) – this "glue" is also mentioned by Carlos Castan~eda.}

pp. 141-142 cloud emanated by the brain, according to the S^an-qin Da-don Z^en-jin ‘Great-Profundity Authentic-Scripture’ (= DZ 6) 6:13b-14a

p. 141 "a five-coloured purple cloud entering within you from your Muddy Pellet. ... It will coalesce into a divine person [s^en-s^en], wrapped in a five-coloured, purple, white and roseate round luminous wheel. The god is inside the wheel."
p. 142 This ‘inner child’ is Di-yi Zun-jun (‘Emperor-One Venerable-Lord’).

p. 142 jie-jie (‘knots and nodes’)

"When one is born, there are ... twelve knots and nodes". (S^an-qin Jiu-dan S^an-hua Tai-jin Z^on-ji Jin (= DZ 1382) 3a-b)
"To untie the ‘knots of death’, adepts are instructed ... in ... receiving the Nine Elixirs (the pneumas of each of the Nine Heavens) and then visualising the Original Father in the upper dantian, and the Original Mother in the lower dantian, ... in the middle dantian to generate ... an inner immortal body."

p. 142 S^an-qin practices "performed to ensure that the souls of one’s ancestors obtain release from the underworld."

"Through these practices, ancestors may ‘return to the embryo’ (fantai) and become ‘immortals at the embryonic state’ (taixian), obtaining ... rebirth in heaven. ... Thanks to their descendant, ancestors can rise to the Golden Gate (Jinmen), a station in the heavenly circuit of the sun, where they ‘refine their marrow’ (lianzhi) by bathing themselves in the Water of Smeting Refinement (yelian zhi shui)." (RSh, vol. 1, pp. 172-3)


RSh = Isabelle Robinet : La re’ve’lation du Shangqing. Paris, 1984.

p. 146 terminology in the Can-ton Qi

term meaning
can survey
c^a examine
kao investigate
tan explore
ji enquire
s^en inspect
cun gauge
du measure
si relect
lu: ponder
tui infer
kui assess
guan contemplate

p. 151 rising of the divine ‘child’ within one’s body

source description
lian-du ("Salvation through Refinement") rite "a child [yin-er] within his lower dantian ... moves ... to the central and upper dantian, where the child becomes the Supreme Emperor of Primordial Commencement [Yuan-s^i S^an-di]. The assistant spirits of this deity enter Fengdu, the administration of the underworld ..., to release the souls imprisoned there."
dao-c^an (‘Way-Land’) rite "a ‘child’ in his own lower dantian ... moves ... to the central and upper dantian. Transformed into a Real Man [z^en-ren] dressed in red, this deity submits a petition to the gods of the Golden Portal [Jin-que], which ... is ... located in the pearl-shaped pin of the priest’s crown."


Benjamin Penny (ed.) : Daoism in History. Routledge, London, 2006. [festschrift in honor of professor emeritus Liu Ts’un-yan of Australian National University] (pp. 121-158)