Daoist Qigong - Daoist School of Thought

By Grandmaster Shou-Yu Liang and Master Wen-Ching Wu

Daoist School of Thought included everything from philosophy, to government, to science, to technology. It is a way of life and a path towards the ultimate Truth. It has lasted the test of time and continues to be treasured by its followers. The fundamental texts used in the Daoist School of Thought and Daoist religious teachings are based on the legendary Four Classics of the Yellow Emperor, Daodejing (Tao Teh Ching), and Zhuangzi (Chuang Tzu).

The Four Classics of the Yellow Emperor are the legendary work of the Yellow Emperor (2697-2597 B.C.), the father of Chinese civilization. Today little is known about the Four Classics of the Yellow Emperor, with only fragmented evidence indicating its existence in ancient China. Legend has it that the Yellow Emperor and some other talented people of his time invented clothing, crowns, palaces, boats, bow and arrows, compasses, astrology, calendars, musical notations, etc. According to Chinese Historical Records, the Yellow Emperor was a superhuman. He accomplished many incredible tasks; he went everywhere to search for immortals and the Dao, for the proper ways to govern his kingdom. At the end of his physical life, he "rode the dragon to the heavens" and became an immortal. Similar to many other Chinese social or religious groups, whether or not the Yellow Emperor had any direct influence on the Daoist School of Thought, they give credit to the Yellow Emperor as the founder, to honor the father of Chinese civilization.

The Daodejing is a philosophical text written by Laozi (Lao Tzu). It is regarded as one of the most influential books ever written in the history of human civilization. According to Chinese Historical Records, Laozi was born during the Spring-Autumn (722-480 B.C.) period in China. Laozi is the honorary name given to Li Er. Lao literally means old. Zi in this case means a person of high virtue and accomplishment. That is, Laozi is more than just a name for Li Er. It is a title given to one of the most respected people in Chinese history.

The popular versions of the Daodejing today are presented in two sections. The first section introduces Dao; the second section introduces De. Therefore, Laozi's book was later named Daodejing; with Jing meaning a classic or cannon. Many of the teachings in the Daodejing are used as the theoretical foundation for attaining longevity and immortality.

The essence of the Daodejing is about being natural. Because of this, the Daodejing has also been referred to as the philosophy of being natural. Being natural refers to letting the course of events happen, as it would, without any added external human influence. The profound nature of the Daodejing immortalized Laozi. This immortalization gradually led to the formation of the Daoist Religion in the Later Han Dynasty, by combining the philosophy of the Daoist School of Thought with ancient Chinese religious beliefs.

Zhuangzi is the title of a book written by Zhuan Zhou. It is also the honorary name given to Zhuan Zhou. Zhuan Zhou was a follower of Laozi's philosophy and a prominent representative of the Daoist School of Thought. He lived during the Warring Kingdom (403-221 B.C.) period in China. The book Zhuangzi is a sequel to the Daodejing. There are many stories in this book about the Dao, the Yellow Emperor, Laozi, and the cultivation of longevity. This book is a work about the wisdom of being natural.

Smooth the Qi Flow in the Back of the Body

Zhuangzi believed, "humans need to be aware that their own existence is an integral part of limitless time and the universe. They are constantly interacting. Humans must use nature to observe everything. Don't use other's standards as a standard for yourself, don't use the past and future as a division for the present, don't use death as a division for life, and don't use infinity as a division for finites. This way humans will be able to go beyond their bondage and attain freedom". Zhuangzi realized, "the root of human problems stem from their lack of freedom. Humans are not free because of their over dependency. Humans depend too much on materials, emotions, knowledge, art, spiritual leaders, gods,... for their well-being and daily life. These dependencies sink humans into a self-created pit of bondage. To gain liberation, humans will have to clear away their dependency."

Zhuangzi's philosophy is the philosophy of freedom. It is a philosophy that places life in infinite time and space to gain experience. People today tend to dissect the frog to understand its body and functions, where as, Zhuangzi wanted to experience the living quality of the frog. Many people like the shape and color of a flower; where as, Zhuangzi liked the life of the flower itself. Zhuanzi wrote, "The human life span is limited. Knowledge is unlimited. It is very dangerous to use a limited life span to seek limitless knowledge. It is even more dangerous when you know that it is dangerous, yet still think that knowledge makes you smart."

Smooth the Qi Flow in the Back of the Body

Movement: The same movement as in Smooth the Qi in the Front of the Body, but without touching your tongue on the palate of your mouth. Repeat 21 times.

Intention: Breath naturally during the inhalation. During the exhalation, lead qi from your baihui down the back of your head, down your Governing Vessel, to your huiyin, down the Yin Activation Vessel, then to your yongquan (Drawing 2-6).