Scholar

Can someone explain me the basic concept of chi like im five ?

Recommended Posts

I kinda have an idea of what chi and jing is but I dont really understand it very well...

Can someone explain me those 2 and the others energies in a simple way ? Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chi is the intent and jing is the manifestation of the intent. For instance, stand in  front of a wall and think about pushing it (chi) and then push it (jing). 

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The are whole tissue or organ energy. Preaheven is the mind itself or cellular energy. 

 

Jing is your vigour and wakefullness. Chi is your stamina or pump. Shen is your focus and quality of expression.

 

So when you run chi is your stamina. If you loose jing you feel soft. If you loose shen you feel no motivation or discipline. 

 

Jing makes you strong and helps build muscle. Chi keeps muscles healthy. Shen makes skin radiant like children.

 

So when full of jing you are wakefull, calm and centred, no need to shake legs or if you do agitate yourself like shake your limbs while talking to someone you feel grounded and not scaterred from the extra movement. Similarly you wont be horny or angry, etc.

Low on chi and youre hungry. But when full you don't need food. You have energy for many thoughts as well...mental stamina. As thoughts are fabricated out of chi.

When shen is strong youre focused. Also when full on shen no sleep needed.When youre late up at night the shen keeps you going. But when youre working out hard the chi keeps you going. 

 

So essentially jing is not mind at all. It the raw energy for any kind of action of the cells/mollecules. To grow? Jing. Have surgery and get cut? JIng. 

Chi sustains the body, keep it in maitenance. This is why you dont need food with chi. But you live somewhat in minimal state if you live without food...ie, you cant lift weights and build muscle because now youre shorting the jing and you need food to replenish that. 

Shen guides the maintenance worker (chi). This is why it makes your skin look good, it tells it how to do it properly. Its a supervisor.

Edited by EmeraldHead
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi @Scholar :) 

 

Chi is a word cultivators use often to describe energy without being specific about where the energy resides. Here is a brief outline to help you.

 

Jing is the heaviest energy of the body. It is stored in the lower dan tien (intestines area) and other parts of the body around the ldt. Jing is one’s physical energy. Many martial artists have a resonance for jing arts and have well-developed physical traits and explosive physical power.

 

Chi is mental energy and less heavy than jing. It is stored in the middle dan tien (diaphragm area and heart and lungs too). Chang Tzu’s energetic center was in this area. He was an excellent writer and a sage. Einstein also was a genius in this chi area. 

 

Shen is lighter energy and is stored in the face area (chin to eyes). 

 

Once you go above the middle of the brows, you enter formless energies, entering the upper dan tien, the home of the north star, big dipper and beyond. Buddha is an example of a person who was born with his energetic center in this formless area. He had a natural talent for spiritual cultivation and did not need a teacher to guide him.

 

Tao formless energy is in the middle of the brain. There are even higher formless energies beyond Tao (mother nature is one example). Lao Tzu wrote of mama.

 

Every person is born with natural talent(s) that can be can be traced to one of these areas I mentioned above. Some

examples of talents: athletic chi, engineer chi, artist chi, writer chi, debater chi, musician chi, leader chi, criminal chi, beach bum chi (some talents may not always be positive).

 

Understanding chi may not be easy

as a newbie. However, experiencing chi is simply engaging in life. You run? Feel your leg chi. You eat? Notice your food chi. You are digesting your food? Notice your stomach, spleen and pancreas chi. You pray to Jesus, Lao Tzu or Buddha? Notice your formless chi.

 

Energy flows to where your attention goes. This means, watch where your mind is interested in going. A good cultivation practice is to reflect on your awareness often, so you can know if you are directing your mind, or if your mind is directing you.

 

Enjoy the journey of life. :) 

Edited by rainbowvein
  • Like 3
  • Thanks 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

however rainbowveinm, after formless(preaheven) begins dao. to go by line of thought of form and formless, i call it boundless. Or pure space. It is beyond formless. It is what hindus may refer to as "you can't hurt me". Because you can't. Formless and Form are bound to karma or cause and effect, They cannot exist on their own.

 

The first level of dao, is above the head in that line of thought...so theres at least 3 levels. post, pre and dao. of course theres ilke infinite levels in the grand scale as evolution keeps going.

4 level is not often spoken about and you cant really directly cultivate it much without mastering dao which you cant without being healthy and having a strong force of consciousness or form and formless cultivation...but anyway the likes of some you mentioned like Buddha stopped at 3rd level :).

 

Energy follows Yi or any of that principle. First any bodily or incarnated energy is postheaven. So any layer of you attention follows and is followed by some energy that you can perceive in space and see move directly in space as does your arms and legs or maybe sound and light that you can perceive is not formless or beyond. Formless attention starts to leak 360. So this is practices where its like you watch yourself. Or basically anything that brings you in the present moment. One pointness stuff or "mental focus" is postheaven. 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Qi is movement between the poles of a polarity.

 

No polarity = No movement.

 

YinYang is the study of Polarity.

 

 

 

 

 

-VonKrankenhaus

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jing is the inherited and acquired physical potentials (poles of polarities) that Qi moves in.

 

 

 

 

 

-VonKrankenhaus

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like the title of the thread.

 

Before Western interpretations were put on top of the concept of qi -- the way a cowboy might put a saddle on a panda because he knows how to handle horses -- a five-year-old in China might get this explanation:

 

His mom would light a fire, put a pot of water on, and as soon as the water comes to a boil, add some rice and cover the pot with a lid.  Once the water comes to a boil again, the lid on the pot would start to jump and rattle.  She would then ask the kid,

 

"What do you think causes this jumping and rattling?  Is it fire, water, pot, rice, lid, steam?" 

 

"No," the smart and observant five-year-old would respond, "it's all of them put together, they work as a team and change each other, and this change is what causes the jumping and rattling."  "See," the proud mom would beam, "you've figured it out!  Now you know what qi is."     

calligraphy_Qi.jpg.2876e2454d794b1ea8a62bfa643f6230.jpg

  • Like 7
  • Thanks 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do you see how when you flip a switch in your home the TV or a light bulb comes on? What makes it happen is a type of energy called electricity which flows through the TV or the metal filament/coil in the light bulb to make that happen. Qi is the energy that makes the human body function. If there is no qi, human body is dead. If there is qi, you have a living being. This is also true for all things we call "living". 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/31/2019 at 11:37 PM, Taomeow said:

I like the title of the thread.

 

Before Western interpretations were put on top of the concept of qi -- the way a cowboy might put a saddle on a panda because he knows how to handle horses -- a five-year-old in China might get this explanation:

 

His mom would light a fire, put a pot of water on, and as soon as the water comes to a boil, add some rice and cover the pot with a lid.  Once the water comes to a boil again, the lid on the pot would start to jump and rattle.  She would then ask the kid,

 

"What do you think causes this jumping and rattling?  Is it fire, water, pot, rice, lid, steam?" 

 

"No," the smart and observant five-year-old would respond, "it's all of them put together, they work as a team and change each other, and this change is what causes the jumping and rattling."  "See," the proud mom would beam, "you've figured it out!  Now you know what qi is."     

calligraphy_Qi.jpg.2876e2454d794b1ea8a62bfa643f6230.jpg

 

 

Such a great and easy to understand explanation! Thank you!

Can we use your analogy to explain  jing, qi, and shen too?

Something like :  the fire under the pot is the pre heaven qi. The clay pot is the physical body ( jing). The rice is the

post heaven qi ( food).  What would shen be ?   

 

 

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, mitzy said:

 

 

Such a great and easy to understand explanation! Thank you!

Can we use your analogy to explain  jing, qi, and shen too?

Something like :  the fire under the pot is the pre heaven qi. The clay pot is the physical body ( jing). The rice is the

post heaven qi ( food).  What would shen be ?   

 

 

 

 

I guess it would be something like,

 

the matches to light the fire, the fuel for the fire, the cold water, the uncooked rice, the container, the know-how of cooking rice, and the potential to put them all together and start the process of cooking -- that's jing.

 

The steam that formed under the lid in the process of transforming this jing into qi, cold water into hot, uncooked rice into cooked, the aroma escaping good rice (e.g. jasmine), that steam and aroma and flavor getting turbulent and mobile and moving every grain of rice, bubbling up, aiming upward, gathering under the lid and then escaping the pot and dissipating -- that's shen.

 

So then, jing is the basis, foundation, prerequisites for the transformation; qi, the process of transformation; shen, the expenditures of this process.  Hence two types of practices, the easy one that goes with the flow, in the direction things go anyway (from concentration to dissipation, from potential to actualization) and the difficult one that goes against the flow.  It is easy to cook rice.  It is easy for the steam to escape.  One can speed up this process by increasing the fire.  One can get more shen faster by spending jing and transforming it into qi, and qi into shen more actively.  The opposite, which is taoist proper, is about capturing the steam that escaped, putting it back in the pot, cooling off the water, uncooking the cooked rice!!  Reversing the "natural" flow of the order of things.  Or, as another taoist metaphor put it, "putting the oak tree back into the acorn." 

 

Now that's tricky.  Which is why you will encounter many instructions as to how to get what will happen anyway to happen at will -- jing to qi to shen transformations -- toward leaving the "material world," the pot and the rice and the water -- the body -- behind, toward a "lighter," "immaterial" existence as pure spirit.  While the opposite process entails seeking out older, immortalist-taoist alchemical reversal practices aimed at preserving and rejuvenating, possibly indefinitely, the material body in the material world -- or at least slowing down the process of its "immaterialization" and gaining longevity.  Capturing dissipated ling (an aspect of shen that I've heard translated as "supernatural intelligence"), finding a way for the steam to condense and drop back into the pot...  But that's probably for a six-year-old, a five-year-old is not ready yet. :D 

    

Edited by Taomeow
  • Like 3
  • Thanks 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Taomeow said:

 

I guess it would be something like,

 

the matches to light the fire, the fuel for the fire, the cold water, the uncooked rice, the container, the know-how of cooking rice, and the potential to put them all together and start the process of cooking -- that's jing.

 

The steam that formed under the lid in the process of transforming this jing into qi, cold water into hot, uncooked rice into cooked, the aroma escaping good rice (e.g. jasmine), that steam and aroma and flavor getting turbulent and mobile and moving every grain of rice, bubbling up, aiming upward, gathering under the lid and then escaping the pot and dissipating -- that's shen.

 

So then, jing is the basis, foundation, prerequisites for the transformation; qi, the process of transformation; shen, the expenditures of this process.  Hence two types of practices, the easy one that goes with the flow, in the direction things go anyway (from concentration to dissipation, from potential to actualization) and the difficult one that goes against the flow.  It is easy to cook rice.  It is easy for the steam to escape.  One can speed up this process by increasing the fire.  One can get more shen faster by spending jing and transforming it into qi, and qi into shen more actively.  The opposite, which is taoist proper, is about capturing the steam that escaped, putting it back in the pot, cooling off the water, uncooking the cooked rice!!  Reversing the "natural" flow of the order of things.  Or, as another taoist metaphor put it, "putting the oak tree back into the acorn." 

 

Now that's tricky.  Which is why you will encounter many instructions as to how to get what will happen anyway to happen at will -- jing to qi to shen transformations -- toward leaving the "material world," the pot and the rice and the water -- the body -- behind, toward a "lighter," "immaterial" existence as pure spirit.  While the opposite process entails seeking out older, immortalist-taoist alchemical reversal practices aimed at preserving and rejuvenating, possibly indefinitely, the material body in the material world -- or at least slowing down the process of its "immaterialization" and gaining longevity.  Capturing dissipated ling (an aspect of shen that I've heard translated as "supernatural intelligence"), finding a way for the steam to condense and drop back into the pot...  But that's probably for a six-year-old, a five-year-old is not ready yet. :D 

    

 

Thank you for answering my question! I bow my head to the depth of understanding  and clear mind you have. Your  

simple, any 5 yo could understand ,  and  concise way of explaining things is extraordinary!  

 

Without diverting the topic, hoping all will get a better understanding, WHO has the intention to speed up the fire, go with the flow, reverse the process ?  The mind?  Shen itself ?  

 

Thank you again. :)

 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess I already answered this in other comment, but here it goes:

 

Qi can mean many things in eastern context. In qigong and neigong it usually means anything imaterial that makes things move.

 

You can harvest Qi from a miriad of sources, but you'll need to be attentive to what kind of Qi you're harvesting.

 

Jing is a form of Energy (like Qi) but which is very close to matter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, I couldn't find it. So I'll go through a more detailed explanation:


"Qi" is a chinese word with many meanings. It can mean "substance", "energy" or any form of immaterial thing that exists.

 

So, many daoists say that "Qi" is everything. You're Qi, the air is Qi, etc.

 

However, that's the shallow explanation of things.

 

If you're into Daoism in a more hardcore way, you'll find that there's an explanation for the existence of Qi:

 

From the Dao that cannot be named comes the Void. From the Void comes Yin and Yang. From Yin and Yang comes Qi.

 

But what does that means?

 

It means that there's something which is beyond what our words can explain, and that there is something that comes from that. That is, if you're able to expand you consciousness and reach beyond space-and-time, and beyond existence itself, and beyond the intrinsic qualities of things, you'll find what has been called the "Void".

 

The "Void" is something primordial, from before the existence of things. There comes naturally what we call "Yin" and "Yang" in its more primordial state - that is, the intrinsic duality of existence.

 

Also, Yin comes from Yang, but that's kinda like really difficult to comprehend on this level of conversation, so let's make things simpler.

 

There two "things", or intrinsic qualities of everything, are mutually destructive and construtive. That is, Yin and Yang both create and destroy one another.

 

From the interaction between both, and which allows for this movement of creation and destruction, rises Qi. That's to say that there's movement beyond existence. That is, movement exists and it is the basys of existence itself, but it goes beyond existence (that's to say what you see as "movement" of things isn't true "movement", only the manifestation in the transitory plane of "existence" of what is true "movement", or "Qi").

 

From the interactions of Yin, Yang and Qi comes the Dao that can be named - that is, everything in the world. All things, big or small.

 

From that comes existence itself, and things that exist are called Earth, while things that change what exists are called Heaven.

 

In that sense, Qi is closer to Heaven than Space and Mater, since it has to do with movement - from the states of Existence which change.

 

Once we look deeper into Existence itself (into the Earth) we see that it interacts with the primordial forces (Yin, Yang and Qi) to give birth to a series of things, like the Five Movements (Elements) and so on.

 

But that's the more esoteric approach.

 

Once we start to apply that to QiGong, Neigong and TCM, we deal with Qi as change. It is the existence of change in things itself.

 

So, everything that changes, has been under the influence of Yang (the forces which generate change) which generates Qi (changing itself).

 

Anywere there's change there's Qi, and "changing" itself can be made happen by a number of ways - through nature, physical exercise, consciousness and so on.

 

Once we learn QiGong or Neigong, or use TCM, we learn how to "manipulate Qi" and that can be translate as "manipulate change". So once you insert a needle into an acupoint (an acupuncture point) you're using Yang (insertion) to gather Qi (change) and then produce a certain result in the body.

 

Then again, we go into the confusion of words. There are also substances, things that exist in the many planes of existence, which are called "Qi". The "tingling" or "hot" sensation we feel when practicing Neigong, Qigong or TCM is usually a form of energy (that is, a form of accelerated matter) which runs through the body and can be manipulated.

 

This energy isn't either esoteric Qi or Qi as "change", but Qi as a certain form of "substance". A "thing" that flows in the body.

 

It can even be seen or felt, even though what we're really seeing or feeling when we see this is the gathering of Yin (matter) due to Qi (movement) and not Qi itself.

 

Confusing? It gets worst.

 

Once we learn how to manipulate Qi we either learned how to manipulate this etheric substance we call Qi, or change itself, or movement.

 

These are levels of comprehension. Learning a higher level will allow you to produce effects on the lower ones, but it will also require an expanded state of consciousness.

 

So, when people say "you need to gather Qi into your dantien" they could mean gathering this substance, gathering the force of change, or gathering the esoteric movement.

 

Usually it is the first, as many physical effects have to do with that and the chinese have always loathed things which do not produce results in many levels of existence.

 

So far you have Primordial Qi, Existing Qi and Material Qi.

 

The first is "movement", the second is "change" and the third is a "thing".

 

Now let's talk about our bodies.

 

Once we look into our bodies, we can classify the things in it through this idea of "Yin", "Yang" and "Qi".

 

Yin would be the more material things in the body, like your blood, bones and organs - because the "Primordial Yin" has to do with those things and it is the basys of "existence", and material bodies are what are more closely related to "existence" we have.

 

Yang would be the more immaterial things in the body, like your consciousness, your reactviness and so on.

 

And Qi would be the things that make changes occur between one another.

 

So, if something you eat makes your consciousness hazzy, that means the Qi (thing in between mater and spirit) in that thing has affected your Souls (as are called the Yang-most things in the body).

 

And just like Yin, Yang and Qi are part of a cycle in the more esoteric term of things, also in the body there's a cycle of those things (between things like your consciousness, flesh, and the things in the middle).

 

It's all references and correlations.

 

There are many forms of Qi (things between mater and spirit). They come from various sources and can do a number of things to your body.

 

From those forms we further divide this "Qi" (as in the "things between mater and spirit") into different substances.


So you'll have, for instance, Yuan Qi - which is a "thing" which causes certain effects in the body when stimulated.

 

We will have Ying Qi, which is a form of Qi which heats, warms and nourishes the body

 

And so on.

 

Jing is the name we give to the form of "thing between mater and spirit" that's more closely related to mater itself, while we call the things more closely related to Spirit "Yang Qi" and  the things in-between Yin Qi, Xue (spiritual blood) and other such things.

 

Jing is found in your organs, bones, marrow, brain and so on. It controls your aging processes and the general "reserves of energy" you have in your body. It is also very difficult to deal with, because although we can store Jing into very deep places in us when we are babies (like our Kidneys), it is very difficult to reach these places when we are older.

 

So, we further divide Jing into Pre-Heaven Jing (the Jing you have from before birth) and Post-Heaven Jing (the Jing you have from after birth). The first is located deeply into your body, while the second is located all through it, stored in certain places we call "Extraordinary Vessels".

 

So, summing up:

 

People have accessed a very deep level of understanding of the Universe, and didn't had good words to describe it. Some of the things they wanted to describe would even be impossible to describe. "Qi" in its most primordial state is one of those things. Then, people started to notice "Qi" into other things, such as between mater and spirit, and considered that, as long as the content of "primordial Qi" in something that Exists is high enough, we could call that Qi.

 

Others would use "Qi" as a metaphor for something in-between mater and spirit, or in-between stillness and the forces that produce movement. Or movement itself (like how we place Velocity in-between physical forces such as Work and the body of Mater that has been put through Work).

 

And so the word has many meanings.

 

In TCM, you'll find "Qi" as a description of a certain form of "energy" between mater and spirit. This is futher divided into many forms of energy (since people needed these classifications to know what were they dealing with) and used that.

 

Jing, Xue, Jin Ye, Qi and Soul are seen as the "five substances" of the human body, which is to say they are all things that are either very closely related to mater but not mater yet, or plainly have nothing to do with mater.

 

Jing is a form of energy that's very pure, regulates aging and vigour, and is specially loved by neigong practioneers, as it can be easily turned into mater or higher forms of energy.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like the "if you can't explain it to a 5 year old then you don't really understand it principle." 

 

But it has its limits.

 

There really are things that you can't explain to a 5 year old, and some which you shouldn't try explaining to a 5 year old. A few of both of these sorts of things:

 

Orgasms. Being drunk/high. First love. First heart break. Mourning. Welcoming a new life into the world (shit, I'm far from being 5 but I haven't done this and still, whenever my friends who have get that gooey gleam in their eyes and start raving about what it's like to see your own newborn child it's like they're speaking Chinese to me, so to speak...). Hatred. Regret. The development of wisdom. The awe of beholding a masterpiece. The awe of creating a masterpiece. Despair. A small taste of enlightenment. A small taste of insanity. A brush with death. Saving a life. The trauma of being victimized. The guilt (or thrill?) of victimizing another. Et cetera. 

 

While all of the posts about qi above have value (especially for cultivators, but also for curious 5 year olds), I think qi ultimately belongs in the category of "that which cannot be explained to a little kid." If you practice, then when the time is right, you will come to know it, subjectively, just like all of the things I just listed above. Then all of the theories you have read might help you make sense of an explain your experience. But then again, they might not, and they might even get in the way. 

 

Of course one can crack open an infinitude of Chinese medicine textbooks, martial arts books, qigong manuals, speculative quasi-scientific texts (qi is quantum butt foam!!), and so forth which offer all manner of theory on this topic. But such study is, at the very most, never more than 50% of the Daoist path. The other 50%+ must come from the experience of one's own body-mind as one allows the path to unfold via practice. There is simply no way to convey experience to another person, just as I cannot explain to you the taste of an apple you have not bitten.

 

It is admirable to seek to gain a theoretical footing in Daoism, because the theory is at once indispensable and confusing. But the seeker must also know that s/he will never find an explanation of qi that is anything more than a pile of words, no matter who is doing the writing. 

 

I hope this does not seem like a cop out. It is in fact a call to actual practice, as well as a reminder that nobody need worry too much about trying to wrap the mind around these things. In fact, it is generally more problematic to have a sense of surety about the theory than a sense of uncertainty. After all [cue first chapter of the Daodejing...]

  • Like 5
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Taomeow said:

So then, jing is the basis, foundation, prerequisites for the transformation; qi, the process of transformation; shen, the expenditures of this process.  Hence two types of practices, the easy one that goes with the flow, in the direction things go anyway (from concentration to dissipation, from potential to actualization) and the difficult one that goes against the flow.  It is easy to cook rice.  It is easy for the steam to escape.  One can speed up this process by increasing the fire.  One can get more shen faster by spending jing and transforming it into qi, and qi into shen more actively.  The opposite, which is taoist proper, is about capturing the steam that escaped, putting it back in the pot, cooling off the water, uncooking the cooked rice!!  Reversing the "natural" flow of the order of things.  Or, as another taoist metaphor put it, "putting the oak tree back into the acorn." 

 

Now that's tricky.  Which is why you will encounter many instructions as to how to get what will happen anyway to happen at will -- jing to qi to shen transformations -- toward leaving the "material world," the pot and the rice and the water -- the body -- behind, toward a "lighter," "immaterial" existence as pure spirit.  While the opposite process entails seeking out older, immortalist-taoist alchemical reversal practices aimed at preserving and rejuvenating, possibly indefinitely, the material body in the material world -- or at least slowing down the process of its "immaterialization" and gaining longevity.  Capturing dissipated ling (an aspect of shen that I've heard translated as "supernatural intelligence"), finding a way for the steam to condense and drop back into the pot...  But that's probably for a six-year-old, a five-year-old is not ready yet. :D 

 

Are you saying that the path Jing to Qi, Qi to Shen, Shen to Void is not Daoist proper?

What do you mean by "jing to qi to shen transformations will happen anyway"?

Also you say that you want to uncook the cooked rice, does this mean you must go through the "jing to qi to shen transformations" before you start the "opposite process"?

 

Ling is related to Yin, right?

 

thanks

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/3/2019 at 7:26 AM, KuroShiro said:

 

Are you saying that the path Jing to Qi, Qi to Shen, Shen to Void is not Daoist proper?

What do you mean by "jing to qi to shen transformations will happen anyway"?

 

 

At least far as I've been able to discern.  Taoist subtle anatomy and physiology got influenced by other systems (primarily Buddhism which in its turn was a recipient of many Hindu concepts), and that's where "void," e.g., comes from.  There's no "void" in early taoism.  There's a two-way process, of coming into existence and going out of existence.  The non-being whence being comes is not a "void."  It is a pretty organized system of perfectly balanced energies of the world in a state of supreme equilibrium, and therefore immobility and lack of manifestations.  The "nothing" is merely the "everything that doesn't interact with anything."  Returning to this state is the natural and, in the absence of cultivation, inevitable state for all live things of the manifest world.  The opposite process is also thought of as natural and inevitable -- non-being reverts back to being.  It is something happening "always" and it does not require any measures toward "accomplishing." 

 

On 11/3/2019 at 7:26 AM, KuroShiro said:

Also you say that you want to uncook the cooked rice, does this mean you must go through the "jing to qi to shen transformations" before you start the "opposite process"?

 

         

Definitely for a modern (in the broad sense -- the last bunch of thousand of years) human, it is not so much necessary as inevitable, I don't know what the situation with the "sages of old" may have been.  To "uncook" the cooked rice requires a deliberate decision and access to the know-how.  That's the domain of shen.  If it stayed put ("the sages of old had spirit but didn't exploit it"), it would just attend to the immediate needs of maintaining and relishing aliveness.  It wouldn't get "creative."  So, we the creative have to stop creating and start uncreating in order to reverse the process.  So, zuowang with both all of its sources and all of its offshots (like zen meditation, e.g.) is really an attempt at doing just that, getting one's shen to stop dissipating, putting a brake on the process.  But that's only the prerequisite, not the actual "uncooking." 

 

On 11/3/2019 at 7:26 AM, KuroShiro said:

 

Ling is related to Yin, right?

 

        

No, to yang.  Almost pure yang.  Yin is the direction, the vector of where you want to reverse and return it -- from a dispersed state, "all over the place," "out there," "spread out throughout the space and time of your life" to the concentrated, condensed "in here," "inside your very own body" "now and from now on."     

Edited by Taomeow
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/2/2019 at 6:53 PM, mitzy said:

 

Without diverting the topic, hoping all will get a better understanding, WHO has the intention to speed up the fire, go with the flow, reverse the process ?  The mind?  Shen itself ?  

 

Thank you again. :)

 

 

:) Intent is definitely of shen, but not necessarily of the mind in the sense "in the head" or even not always "the human mind."  In taoist subtle physiology it originates in the Kidneys -- it's the shen of the Kidneys known as Zhi.  While its yang aspect usually sets immediate or long-term goals based on its communication with other shens, the mind "in the head" or "in the heart," the environment, etc., and forms intent based on that (an impulse, drive, or conscious decision), its yin aspect is more tricky.  This is hidden intent that can communicate with the intent of one's destiny, and set goals toward fulfilling that destiny in a very indirect, roundabout manner.  So the person driven by that kind of intent can usually appreciate what was accomplished and why only in hind sight.  Yin zhi somehow knows the ultimate outcomes it desires, hopes for, or "reads in the stars," and can subtly direct one's decisions toward those outcomes throughout one's life.  When a person whose yin zhi is after a particular goal encounters a system, a practice, a teaching, a belief, a master, etc., something resonates -- sometimes almost imperceptibly, and sometimes it can feel like an imperative, a eureka, "that's what I've been looking for all my life" kind of feeling.  

 

But of course there's simpler cases too -- e.g. of accidental (or familial, traditional, opportunistic, etc.) indoctrination.  I guess one's mileage may vary depending on what the driving force behind a particular intent is.             

  • Thanks 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, Taomeow said:

 

:) Intent is definitely of shen, but not necessarily of the mind in the sense "in the head" or even not always "the human mind."  In taoist subtle physiology it originates in the Kidneys -- it's the shen of the Kidneys known as Zhi.  While its yang aspect usually sets immediate or long-term goals based on its communication with other shens, the mind "in the head" or "in the heart," the environment, etc., and forms intent based on that (an impulse, drive, or conscious decision), its yin aspect is more tricky.  This is hidden intent that can communicate with the intent of one's destiny, and set goals toward fulfilling that destiny in a very indirect, roundabout manner.  So the person driven by that kind of intent can usually appreciate what was accomplished and why only in hind sight.  Yin zhi somehow knows the ultimate outcomes it desires, hopes for, or "reads in the stars," and can subtly direct one's decisions toward those outcomes throughout one's life.  When a person whose yin zhi is after a particular goal encounters a system, a practice, a teaching, a belief, a master, etc., something resonates -- sometimes almost imperceptibly, and sometimes it can feel like an imperative, a eureka, "that's what I've been looking for all my life" kind of feeling.  

            

 

It¬īs reassuring just to know there¬īs such a thing as yin intent capable of subtly steering me towards my destiny.¬† I imagine that aligning with that hidden intent takes a bit of internal work (or perhaps luck? karma?) but the mechanism is there, part of being human.¬† Thanks for the reminder.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The Chinese think that the world is composed of qi,  in fact, the Chinese culture, before the incoming of Buddhism , can be said to be a unique culture of qi as both Taoism and Confucianism speak about  it  . They argue that qi is  the foundamental source and power of this world , true for  both the spiritual and material ones.
 
Note that although all things come from qi, it is  only living things that  get jing and shen ( spirit ) . Jing is a delicate substance arises from qi  under certain circumstances ( now we know that it is a belt of area with right distance from the Sun(s) , the main Yang, of any solar system where temperature is suitable  and water exists) . Although  only high intelligent  beings get self-concious type of shen emerged from jing ,  capable of reflecting and  separating themselves from their environment , other living things also  develope their respective ways ( socalled biological algorithms) of living , adapting and reproducing in this universe.  So,  shen  can appear to us as various  forms and levels of intelligence that always perplex  us : white cells identify and  kill incoming virus, desert ants find their routes back home from long distance away , octopus capable of changing their skin colors for their environment..etc
 
Edited by exorcist_1699
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, exorcist_1699 said:
Note that although all things come from qi, it is  only living things that  get jing and shen ( spirit ) .

 

I believe in early taoism, just as in shamanism, the world was full of spirit-shen, and nothing was thought of as non-living.  Today's science seems to push the boundaries between "living" and "non-living" back and forth -- e.g. there's no consensus regarding whether viruses are alive, and some crystals actually meet about as many requirements that define "aliveness" as, e.g., mules (and even have one of the basic characteristics of aliveness over the latter -- mules can't reproduce by making copies of themselves, crystals can.)  It's more like a spectrum. 

 

Perhaps one thing that only living things have is jin (not jing)...  which is why it's no fun to practice push-hands with an inanimate object.  (I don't mean to offend anyone but can't help sharing an empirical observation:  subjectively, to the feeling ting hand of taiji, pushing someone who has no taiji feels somewhere on the spectrum between pushing a piece of furniture and pushing someone with taiji skill -- but closer to the piece of furniture. :D ) 

 

On second thought, strike that.  Push-hands with the ocean reveals that an ocean wave has jin aplenty. :) 

 

On third thought, strike that too.  The ocean is a living thing. ^_^

 

 

Edited by Taomeow
  • Like 5
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
45 minutes ago, Taomeow said:

 

I believe in early taoism, just as in shamanism, the world was full of spirit-shen, and nothing was thought of as non-living.  Today's science seems to push the boundaries between "living" and "non-living" back and forth -- e.g. there's no consensus regarding whether viruses are alive, and some crystals actually meet about as many requirements that define "aliveness" as, e.g., mules (and even have one of the basic characteristics of aliveness over the latter -- mules can't reproduce by making copies of themselves, crystals can.)  It's more like a spectrum. 

 

Perhaps one thing that only living things have is jin (not jing)...  which is why it's no fun to practice push-hands with an inanimate object.  (I don't mean to offend anyone but can't help sharing an empirical observation:  subjectively, to the feeling ting hand of taiji, pushing someone who has no taiji feels somewhere on the spectrum between pushing a piece of furniture and pushing someone with taiji skill -- but closer to the piece of furniture. :D ) 

 

On second thought, strike that.  Push-hands with the ocean reveals that an ocean wave has jin aplenty. :) 

 

On third thought, strike that too.  The ocean is a living thing. ^_^

 

 


I can agree with the ocean part when doing Yi Quan practices in the water...

and how that made me stronger against humans after.

Edited by Earl Grey
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Taomeow said:

I believe in early taoism, just as in shamanism, the world was full of spirit-shen, and nothing was thought of as non-living.

 

That’s the world where our souls live, now an impoverished place due to too much focus on the intellect. It’s a world that is felt from the heart, an ineffable world that words can only ever hint at. Qi can never be understood through the intellect. We simply kill its reality my making it into a concept. It's an experiential thing. That’s what Walker has well explained in his excellent post above. 

 

For me, learning shiatsu helped me enormously to feel my way into experiencing life as a living world of qi flows.  

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Yueya said:

 

That’s the world where our souls live, now an impoverished place due to too much focus on the intellect. It’s a world that is felt from the heart, an ineffable world that words can only ever hint at. Qi can never be understood through the intellect. We simply kill its reality my making it into a concept. It's an experiential thing. That’s what Walker has well explained in his excellent post above. 

 

For me, learning shiatsu helped me enormously to feel my way into experiencing life as a living world of qi flows.  

Taijiquan was my introduction

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites