Notes on Taoist Practices
Taoist Meditation


The word meditation comes from Latin and it means "to think about" or "thoughtful contemplation." The term meditation as known in the West, differs slightly in the Taoist system.

Master Chuang Tse called meditation as "mental fasting," to which simply the Chinese call it "to seat quiet without doing nothing," as physical fasting purifies the essences of the body, in the same way mental fasting or meditation purifies the mind and restores the original powers of the spirit, eliminating all the thoughts and the emotions that distract and disturb the mind.


Thus Master Tien calls meditation, "To clean the dust of the mirror of the mind, so that reflects back like the first day."

In physical and mental fasting, the processes of cleansing and purification are automatic, but the necessary condition to activate this process of regaining youth, is to empty the body and the mind during certain number of minutes a day.

To seat in silence in a clean and tranquil room, with straight back, stopping all mental activity to preserve the spiritual energy and to stop thought.

Eyes slightly closed, but allowing some light to attract the Yang energy (with closed eyes would be the Yin energy.) With the sight towards the nose, (the eyes watch the nose, the nose watches the Heart and the Heart watches the Tan Tien.)

Concentrating the spirit in the interior without paying attention to outer noises.

Place the tip of the tong pressing on the palate to unite the Control and Function channels.

To place hands in the Taoist position (see figure) the tip of the right thumb must press the left palm and the left thumb the right palm; the right hand grabs the left thumb, and the left hand takes the right hand to unite the channels of the Yin and the Yang; the hands form the symbol of the Yin and the Yang. This hand position is for the man, for the woman the left hand grabs the right thumb and the right hand takes to the left. Yin and Yang channels in man are opposite to those of the woman.

From here breathe with the Dan Tien very slowly and feel the breathing but not like a sensation, but like a feeling.

Keep this state at least 20 minutes--although the Master recommends at least two hours.

Why do hands positions are opposite between man and woman in the Taoist meditation?

Man is Yang, and woman is Yin. The left hand of man is Yang and the right hand of woman is Yang. The Yang surrounds the Yin. The Yang is on the outside and the Yin in the inside. For that reasons the left hand of man surrounds the right hand and the reverse in woman.

Ma Tan-yang and Sun Pu-erh asked Wang Chung-yang on meditation and he said:

In meditation thought must stop. When the ego is dead, the spirit emerges. When you feel like it, seat on a cushion. Loosen your clothes. In the Tzu hour [11:00 p.m. - 01:00 a.m.] cross your legs smoothly and seat facing the east. Hands together put them in front of the body. The back must be straight. Tighten the teeth and swallow saliva. Place the tong on palate. You must listen in alert, but without being united to the sounds. Let the eyelids fall, but do not close your eyes. Concentrate in the light that you see in front of you and in the lower Tantien. In meditation it is very important not to think. If thoughts arise, the spirit will not be pure and your efforts to cultivate will not take to anything. In addition, leave aside all feelings. As soon as feelings arise, the heart is not calm and is impossible to profit from the Tao. Seat in a cushion and you could seat for a long time without feeling tired.

Wang Chung-yang went on:

Loose your clothes so that the movement of the internal energy is not limited. The hour of Tzu is when the first ray of Yang appears. You must face the east because the breath of the life flows from the east at the hour of first Yang. With hands united in the Tai-Chi symbol, because it symbolizes the vacuity of the form. Seat with the straight back, because only with a vertical spine can the energy ascend to the head. Close the mouth and place the tong on palate so that the internal energy does not dissipate. The ear is related to the generative energy. If connected the sound, you dissipate that energy. I do not close your eyes, because the light that enters shines in your spirit. If you close the eyes, the spirit will be grown dark. If you open them too much, the spirit will escape. Therefore, you must lower the eyelids, but without closing them. Concentrate in the Tantien as if it reflected the light of your eyes in him, because here it is the mystery of all the things. Reduce speech, because there the vital energy is preserved. Give rest to your ears, because the generating energy is preserved. Dissolve the thoughts to preserve the spiritual energy. When all these energies no longer dissipate, you will reach immortality.

Ma Tan-yang and Sun Pu-erh thanked Wang Chung-yang for the instructions and he added:

To remain in the way of the Tao requires discipline. It is necessary to take this serious knowledge and practice it at any time. Otherwise, although you know what to do, you will obtain nothing.






Class DescriptionThe Movements of Taoist Self-massage