Principles of Wudang Qigong
The first step is to move the inner breath in the small heavenly circle; this is also known as the first gate and is called refining the energy and transforming the breath. Together energy, breath, and spirit become spirit breath.
The second step is to move the inner breath in the large heavenly circle; this is also known as the second gate and is called refining the breath and transforming the spirit. Together spirit and breath become spirit.
The third step is combining ten thousand things into an integral whole; this is also known as refining the spirit and returning to emptiness. Recover and return to emptiness, understand the heart; see the character, make the body stronger, and prolong the years.
The Eight Requirements for practice are:
- When the heart is calm, the spirit is tranquil,
- When the spirit is tranquil, the heart is set at ease,
- When the heart is set at ease, it is full and still,
- When there is fullness and stillness, there are no disturbances,
- When there are no disturbances, the breath can circulate,
- When the breath can circulate, one can disregard appearances,
- When one disregards appearances, one discovers clear understanding
- When one discovers clear understanding, then the spirit and the breath will be joined together, and ten thousand things will return to their root.
The Principles of Practice
Laozi’s Dao Te Jing in the third chapter says “Empty the mind, fill the belly. Weaken the ambition, strengthen the character.” So then, this is the motto for practicing China’s Wudang Daoist Qigong. To study each method, each method must be understood, the energy processed must be understood.
If there is one type of practice Daoist qigong method not mastered, temporarily don’t practice other training methods. If one type of movement has not been mastered, concentrate on that posture, do not study or practice other postures. Do not reach too high, must empty the mind, have patience, cultivate both inside and outside, step-by-step achieve an abdomen relaxed inside and breath ascending correctly, so then cultivate the breath continuously, and you will not contract illness.
When the dan tian is full and sufficient, the inner breath is unimpeded and not obstructed. breath and strength are sent out from the spine, following that which the mind desires. Strive for the substantial, don’t let practice become lax, maintain it so it will be lasting; abide by the regulations, follow the rules; refine the breath, cultivate the body; cultivate the mind, develop the character; thus seek emptiness and stillness, complete emptiness, and long life.