Doctrines Of Taoist Alchemy

Doctrines Of Taoist Alchemy Cover In order to transcend space and time -- the two main features of the cosmos -- the alchemist should take care of their Correspondences to the work he performs. Space is delimited and protected by talismans (fu), and the laboratory (danwu, lit. "chamber of the elixirs") and instruments are properly oriented. According to some texts, the heating of the elixir must conform to minutely defined time cycles. This system, known as "fire times" (huohou), allows an adept to perform in a relatively short time the same work that Nature would achieve in thousands of years -- in other words, to accelerate the rhythms of Nature. Bringing time to its end, or tracing it back to its beginning, is equivalent. In either case time is transcended, and the alchemist gains access to timelessness. The same is with space: its centre, where the alchemist places himself and his work, is a point devoid of dimension. From this spaceless and timeless point he is able to move along the axis that connects the higher and lower levels of being. Among a variety of procedures that the sources describe in an often allusive way, and in a language rich in metaphors and secret names, two stand out for their recurrence and importance. The first is based on lead (Yin) and mercury (Yang). In external alchemy, these two substances are refined and joined in a compound whose properties are compared to the condition of original Oneness. In internal alchemy, lead refers to the knowledge of the Dao (Pure Yang, chunyang) with which each being is fundamentally endowed, but is obscured (i.e., transmuted into Yin) in the conditioned state. Mercury, on the other hand, represents the individual mind. The second most important method, which is proper only to external alchemy, is centered on cinnabar (Yang). The mercury contained within cinnabar (representing the Yin principle contained within Yang) is extracted and newly added to sulphur (Yang). This process, typically performed nine times, finally yields an elixir embodying the luminous qualities of Pure Yang. This Yang is not the complementary opposite of Yin, but, again, represents the One before its separation into the two complementary principles. The final object of external and internal alchemy is represented as the preparation of an elixir often defined as huandan (lit., "Reverted Elixir"). This expression, recurring in the whole literature, originally denotes an elixir obtained by bringing the ingredients back to their original condition through repeated cyclical operations -- an Operation comparable to the process that the adept performs within himself with the support of the Alchemical practice. The word dan ("elixir") also denotes cinnabar, suggesting that the process begins and ends on two corresponding points along an ascensional spiral. This synonymy also shows the role of cinnabar as a central symbol in external alchemy. In internal alchemy, the central role of cinnabar is taken up by lead, which represents original Oneness, and in this sense is a synonym of "gold" (jin).

Free eBooks (Can Be Downloaded):

Anonymous - Protection Of Space
Paracelsus - The Treasure Of Treasures For Alchemists
Roger Bacon - The Mirror Of Alchemy
Arthur Edward Waite - What Is Alchemy
Eliphas Levi - The Doctrine Of Transcendental Magic