ChiDragon

Where is The Concept of Neidan(內丹) Came From...?

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effilang:

You just dropped a bomb on the thread. hahah - Love you man ^_^

 

I'm wondering If I should chime in on the discussion. I do have a lot to say.

hmm.. *I'll make some more pop-corn for now :D

 

Ok. Ok. Just a little bit. Then I slap myself on the wrist.

 

Neidan is not Qigong and Qigong is not Neidan ^_^

 

But does Qigong include Neidan?

Does Neidan include Qigong?

 

Let's see who the real master is now :P

 

On your marks. Get set! Discuss!

 

*slap

Edited by ChiDragon

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The idea about Neidan(內丹) was coming from the idea of external elixir(外丹, Waidan). The ancient Chinese Taoists(ACT) were considered that Neidan is a higher form of Chi Kung because it is requires heavily in breathing. At this point, we must consider that the definition of Chi Kung is the ultimate method of breathing(UMB). Otherwise, the concept of Neidan in this thread would be invalid.

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Qigong isn't just about the breath though, the breath and the energy work together with the mind, and they are all qualified as Qi, albeit different types.

 

Qigong can include a lot of practices and is also part of Neidan, but it is not Neidan.

Neidan is Neidan and Qigong is Qigong, but both include each other in different stages.

 

I don't get what all the arguing is bout on the other thread.

 

I agree the idea of Neidan comes from Waidan, that's why they used so many metaphors as mercury, lead and gold, crucibles, cauldrons and bellows.

 

Neidan is the process of transforming the inherent energetic potentials of the body through purification, combination and transmutation with the aim of bringing about the birth of the immortal.

 

Does that include Qigong? - Yes.

Can it be done without Qigong? - No.

 

So wherein is the confusion? - O_O

Edited by effilang
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Qigong isn't just about the breath though, the breath and the energy work together with the mind, and they are all qualified as Qi, albeit different types.

 

Qigong can include a lot of practices and is also part of Neidan, but it is not Neidan.

Neidan is Neidan and Qigong is Qigong, but both include each other in different stages.

 

From a Chinese point of view, what I trying to say is that Chi Kung cultivates three things, breathing(調息), mind(調心) and body(調身). However, regulating the breath(調息) is the main ingredient among the three. The other two and the energy part are only the result from the cultivation. If people can realize that the main emphasis is on regulating the breath, then they would understand what Chi Kung is all about.

 

You see regulating the breath, 調息, is different from just breathing. Regulating the breath involves with the movements of the abdomen. That is what Chi Kung is all about. Without the movements of the abdomen, it would be just normal breathing which is not Chi Kung.

 

 

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Sometimes in Neidan the postnatal breath is needed to support the movement of Yang Qi, which naturally wants to flow down and that of Yin Qi which naturally wants to flow up, especially if the quantity is too weak to make its way through an obstruction. Because sometimes the flow of Qi in a meridian classified as Yang or Yin is reversed for certain purposes.

 

Eventually when the breath, mind and Qi fuse, then postnatal breath is no longer needed, but until that happens IMO, Qigong plays an integral part in Neidan.

 

And Neidan doesn't have to be done only sitting. You can be standing, walking, whatever. It depends on how far you are in the process. Every phase has different requirements.

 

There are a lot of processes in Neidan which demand working with the breath to clear obstructions and catalyse various internal transformations in order to facilitate further development of the 3 bodies.

 

In fact everywhere along the process regardless of what you are doing even if sometimes on a minor scale, the Shen, Qi and Jing are always interacting, so is the Yuan Qi and Yuan Jing and Yuan Shen and the Gu Qi and Di Qi and Wei Qi and Zheng Qi and Tian Qi and Zhou Qi and Qing Qi and Zhong Qi and what have you.

 

The more we advance the less separation there is and the more all this melts together into one, until it does become one.

 

Just one. Only one remains.

 

Like you said ChiDragon if the breath is not regulated, the heart will not be regulated, if the heart is not regulated the Shen is not regulated, If Shen is not regulated the Jing is not regulated, if the Jing is not regulated the kidneys are not regulated and if the kidneys are not regulated, the liver is not regulated if the liver is not regulated the Hun are not regulated, if the Hun are not regulated the Po run a mock, if the Po run a mock the Lungs cannot be regulated and neither can the heart.

 

Regulating the breath in itself is a crucial part of Neidan, because of the effect it has on the energy of the 5 Yin organs, without the transformation of which, IMO, no real alchemy can reach maximum development.

 

But here is where I differentiate from many Taoists, because despite what I know or have learned and have experienced, I will still say anything is possible and I will always remain open to other possibilities, until I can prove them wrong of my own doing.

Edited by effilang
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Also it's a long way into Neidan the point at which the postnatal breath must be stopped, during the second manifestation of the golden light of the unified 5 organ energies.

 

This is after the Micro-cosmic is developed, after the Macro-cosmic is developed, after the white light of Qi manifests, after the cauldron moves to the Shang Dantien, after the 5 organ energies merge..... so many things happen before that.

 

Until then the postnatal breath and Lower Dantian play an integral role in Neidan development, clearing meridians and assisting the Qi in adding pressure where it is needed to perform certain internal actions.

Edited by effilang
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Here is a simply Chinese description about Neidan.
內丹術道家一種重要的修鍊方法,現在一般視為道家氣功(道家多稱「煉氣術」)的一種。內丹術指以「人身是一小天地」的「天人合一」、「天人相應」思想為理論,進行性命的修鍊,以人身為鼎爐,修鍊「精、氣、神」等而達成強身健體、提高人體的生命功能、延長壽命、乃至成長生不老之目的。

Neidan method is an important kind of cultivation procedure for Taoists. Presently, most people are considering it is a kind of Taoist Chi Kung(Taoists referred it as a method of Chi cultivation). The Neidan method is pointing out that the body is a small universe which is the integral of heaven and human. The thought of heaven and human are corresponding with each other as their philosophy. During the course of cultivation, using the body as the cauldron, refining Jing, Chi and Shen to accomplish the invigoration of the body; to enhance the vital functions of the body, to prolong life, even to become an immortal and the goal to reach longevity.


Ref: 內丹術, Neidan Shu

Edited by ChiDragon

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The way that the ancient Chinese Taoist(ACT) in describing the definition of Neidan is very esoteric and fictional. For the relevancy of the thread, I will try to be simple, brief and nonfictional.

內丹氣功

 

(1)什麼是內丹術

  內丹術是用丹理說明的氣功。內丹術屬於氣功,但與氣功不是同概念。

  氣功的產生早於內丹術。先秦諸子有很多的氣功論述,直到東漢,才有人開始以丹道說明氣功,始有內丹術。

  內丹術的發生和盛行稍遲於外丹術。古人訪仙人、求仙藥不得,就轉而自己煉外丹——靈丹妙藥,煉丹又不見成效,就轉而用丹理練內丹——氣功。外丹術盛行于漢唐,內丹術盛行于宋以後。

  內丹術只是氣功的一個分支。氣功還包括更多的內容,如靜坐、導引、硬氣功、辟穀等。

  內丹術屬於道教氣功系統,道士煉丹。氣功屬於大眾,文人多練氣功。內丹的內容頗有些荒唐,牽強附會,現在不太為人接受。

 

內丹氣功(Nei Dan Chi Kung)

(1) What is the Neidan method?
Using the alchemical theory to describe the Neidan method, it is a form of Chi Kung

The Naidan method is Chi Kung with the description of alchemical theory. Neidan is categorized as Chi Kung but it is a different concept of Chi Kung. Chi Kung was way before the Neidan method. There were many talks about Chi Kung during the Warring States. Until the East Han Dynasty, people were begin to talk the Neidan Chi Kung.

Neiddan was came very late after the Waidan Method. The ACT try to find immortals and hunted for elixir but failed. Thus they tried to make the own elixir and alchemical pills but they have no effect. Thus they came up with a alchemy theory for internal elixir(Neidan) -- Chi Kung.

The Neidan Chi Kung is only an offshoot of Chi Kung. It even includes more features, such as still sitting, indexing, hard Chi Kung and 辟穀(unknown) etc. The Neidan method belongs to the Chi Kung System of the Taoist religion. The Neidan method is practiced by Taoists; and Chi Kung is universal. However, the most scholars practice Chi Kung. unfortunately, the brief description of Neidan was kind of ridiculous and farfetched. Hence, nowadays, there are not many people are willing to accept it.



Ref:Neidan Chin Kung(內丹氣功)

 

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Sometimes in Neidan the postnatal breath is needed to support the movement of Yang Qi, which naturally wants to flow down and that of Yin Qi which naturally wants to flow up, especially if the quantity is too weak to make its way through an obstruction. Because sometimes the flow of Qi in a meridian classified as Yang or Yin is reversed for certain purposes.

 

Eventually when the breath, mind and Qi fuse, then postnatal breath is no longer needed, but until that happens IMO, Qigong plays an integral part in Neidan.

 

And Neidan doesn't have to be done only sitting. You can be standing, walking, whatever. It depends on how far you are in the process. Every phase has different requirements.

 

There are a lot of processes in Neidan which demand working with the breath to clear obstructions and catalyse various internal transformations in order to facilitate further development of the 3 bodies.

 

I agree with the points made... but as systems/lineages/teachings vary, some may not call it neidan while others might say this is pre-neidan (or qigong). I think the important thing is to understand that systems process and progress. At a later stage, one will realize that linear and sequential thinking applied to practice is non-linear in the end.

 

 

The more we advance the less separation there is and the more all this melts together into one, until it does become one.

 

Just one. Only one remains.

 

That is a great point and one which applies to Qigong and Neigong practices... I wish that more people would explain it this plainly.

 

 

Like you said ChiDragon if the breath is not regulated, the heart will not be regulated, if the heart is not regulated the Shen is not regulated, If Shen is not regulated the Jing is not regulated, if the Jing is not regulated the kidneys are not regulated and if the kidneys are not regulated, the liver is not regulated if the liver is not regulated the Hun are not regulated, if the Hun are not regulated the Po run a mock, if the Po run a mock the Lungs cannot be regulated and neither can the heart.

 

Regulating the breath in itself is a crucial part of Neidan, because of the effect it has on the energy of the 5 Yin organs, without the transformation of which, IMO, no real alchemy can reach maximum development.

 

I agree that many systems follow this idea and I would say this is mostly in qigong if this is linear; the non-linear applications are in neigong. Meaning, the regulation comes as a result of a higher practice.

 

 

But here is where I differentiate from many Taoists, because despite what I know or have learned and have experienced, I will still say anything is possible and I will always remain open to other possibilities, until I can prove them wrong of my own doing.

 

Yes. The mistake we often make is to suggest that the system we are following has the one answer... Yes, it is but one answer/method/path/way. Some methods may be more efficient or not; easier or not. less time consuming or not. The most important issue is not whether one is in the right system or not, but rather whether one is in the path of their destiny.

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Neidan is the process of transforming the inherent energetic potentials of the body through purification, combination and transmutation with the aim of bringing about the birth of the immortal.

 

I'd agree to this definition! :)

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I agree the idea of Neidan comes from Waidan, that's why they used so many metaphors as mercury, lead and gold, crucibles, cauldrons and bellows.

 

Tradition says that Waidan came later, but who cares, right? When the first waidang treatise was created? when Lao Zi wrote DDJ?

 

Neidan is the process of transforming the inherent energetic potentials of the body through purification, combination and transmutation with the aim of bringing about the birth of the immortal.

 

Does that include Qigong? - Yes.

Can it be done without Qigong? - No.

 

So wherein is the confusion? - O_O

 

Confusion comes from the fact that immortal cannot be born just based on the inherent energetic potential :excl:

So even the first step in Neidan needs to change that potential and it's impossible to do with Qigong.

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Waidan is a process to manufacture an elixir by external means such as using elements and minerals baked in a cauldron with fire. It may not be related the DDJ directly at all. Waidan was existed during the Warring States.


BTW How did you come to this conclusion......???

So even the first step in Neidan needs to change that potential and it's impossible to do with Qigong.

 

 

 

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Waidan is a process to manufacture an elixir by external means such as using elements and minerals baked in a cauldron with fire. It may not be related the DDJ directly at all. Waidan was existed during the Warring States.

 

Can you refer some Waidan books written that time?

And no, DDJ has no relation to Waidan, at least as far as I know it.

 

 

 

BTW How did you come to this conclusion......???

 

I wrote about it in other themes. Humans need to restore Yuan Jing to be able to start the transformation. There is one exception from that rule, maybe somebody know it?

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Can you refer some Waidan books written that time?

And no, DDJ has no relation to Waidan, at least as far as I know it.

 

 

I wrote about it in other themes. Humans need to restore Yuan Jing to be able to start the transformation. There is one exception from that rule, maybe somebody know it?

 

I will look into the former. However, the Yuan Jing in the latter was mentioned to be restored is not a valid statement. It is because by definition, Yuan Jing(元精) is the original jing that must be existed at all time for vitalization. Thus there is no need to be restored. If it does, then one is dead already.

 

 

 

I wrote about it in other themes. Humans need to restore Yuan Jing to be able to start the transformation. There is one exception from that rule, maybe somebody know it?

Okay, that was what you wrote. Did you have someone verify it....???

 

 

Edited by ChiDragon

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I wrote about it in other themes. Humans need to restore Yuan Jing to be able to start the transformation. There is one exception from that rule, maybe somebody know it?

Well I believe the exception is when one begins the work while still in possession of "superior virtue". Ah to be in possession of superior virtue again..

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Well I believe the exception is when one begins the work while still in possession of "superior virtue". Ah to be in possession of superior virtue again..

 

It looks almost right, but can you elaborate what you mean by "superior virtue"? or just quote if you refer to some book.

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I mean when the Yuan Jing is still full and intact at a young age. Something full and intact doesn't need to be restored. If you film the life cycle of a plant and then play that film in reverse, it takes much less time and effort for the sprout to become the seed than it does the full grown plant.

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I mean when the Yuan Jing is still full and intact at a young age. Something full and intact doesn't need to be restored. If you film the life cycle of a plant and then play that film in reverse, it takes much less time and effort for the sprout to become the seed than it does the full grown plant.

 

Sweet! Very traditional and shows an understanding of the reverse process! That's how it works: process to restore Jing is faster then people can spend it.

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The idea about Neidan(內丹) was coming from the idea of external elixir(外丹, Waidan). The ancient Chinese Taoists(ACT) were considered that Neidan is a higher form of Chi Kung because it is requires heavily in breathing. At this point, we must consider that the definition of Chi Kung is the ultimate method of breathing(UMB). Otherwise, the concept of Neidan in this thread would be invalid.

 

Which "ancient Chinese" text before 1910 uses "qi gong" in any such context? AFAIK at this time "qi gong" was used as a broad term for a number of practices for the very first time at all. Later uses of "qi gong" are basically all post cultural revolution.

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It looks almost right, but can you elaborate what you mean by "superior virtue"? or just quote if you refer to some book.

 

Just to give some quotes:

 

"According to the principles of alchemy, at a young age the human body grows like a young sprout. Borrowing a term from the Daode jing (Book of the Way and its Virtue), this is called “superior virtue.” Spirit and Breath are abundant, and there is no need of performing any practice to build the foundations. After growth and maturity, Essence, Breath, and Spirit become consumed and should be replenished. In the alchemical practice, this is referred to as “inferior virtue”: one must provide what is missing."
An alchemical poem says:
“Superior virtue has no doing,” and you enter the practice of Xing (Nature):
is there any need of repairing or harmonizing what is damaged or full?
The Cantong qi says:
“Superior virtue has no doing”: it does not use examining and seeking.
“Inferior virtue does”: its operation does not rest.
“Superior virtue has no doing: it does not use examining and seeking.” Inferior virtue extends life by means of a practice. One begins from effort and ends with stability, and performs the way of “doing”; thus one is able to revert to the Origin. Therefore the Cantong qi says, “Inferior virtue does: its operation does not rest.”
-- Fabrizio Pregadio (Wang Mu - Foundations of Internal Alchemy. The Taoist Practice of Neidan)

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bakeneko....
Tuna(吐吶) was the classic term for the modern term Chi Kung(氣功).

Edited by ChiDragon

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However, the Yuan Jing in the latter was mentioned to be restored is not a valid statement. It is because by definition, Yuan Jing(元精) is the original jing that must be existed at all time for vitalization. Thus there is no need to be restored. If it does, then one is dead already.

 

It is neigong Alchemy 101. Your trying to equate TCM ideas with neigong alchemy. In youth, we are full and do not need any restoration; when old we restore what has been lost. One has to know the difference between Qigong and Neigong to get this point.

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The way that the ancient Chinese Taoist(ACT) in describing the definition of Neidan is very esoteric and fictional. For the relevancy of the thread, I will try to be simple, brief and nonfictional.

 

內丹氣功(Nei Dan Chi Kung)

(1) What is the Neidan method?

Using the alchemical theory to describe the Neidan method, it is a form of Chi Kung

 

I hear what your saying but it is a little bit of a hard sell once their difference is understood. If we want to simply call anything which utilizes energy work as Qigong then mindfulness should maybe be included as well.

 

Consider two recognized methods of energy work:

1. By means of 'practice': This is the doing aspect and is mostly for physical cultivation. This is Qigong

2. By means of 'dao': This is the non-doing aspect and is mostly for spiritual cultivation. This is neigong alchemy.

 

I will say that some from #2 are used in #1 as a kind of hybrid, and Medical Qigong may be the best example. There is a distinct difference and purpose in each.

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