ENCYCLOPEDIA OF TAOISM (FLESH ON THE BONES NOTES): Liànxíng 鍊形 refining the form

lianxing

Yes, the picture above has nothing to do with a topic, it is supposed to be fun and more or less good to jump from the material body (tĭ 體) to the more transcendent things.

“Early Taoist texts and sources related to classical cosmology represent form (xíng) as a threshold between the Dao and objects, as an ontological and cosmogonic stage situated between “images” (xiang) and matter (zhì 質), and as a lodging for spirit (shen).” — Fabrizio Pregadio (the editor) begins this article in the Encyclopedia of Taoism and it looks and it is a philosophical one.

To follow all details and facts and texts of the author is quite a challenge, but I remember my goal to rethink all difficulties in the way I could keep my everyday routine calm and smooth to flow. Lets take an example from where I feel myself comfortable, daoyin exercises and Taiji quan form (37th, to be accurate). So I must do some exact movements belonging to daoyin and Taiji quan schools (not all of them but basic). Five years, ten, then fifteen, then more and of course the same movements will be the same and not the same, they will be just so much better, easier, and natural for the whole body. Why not to call it ‘refining the form’ or at least the best place to start ‘to refine the form’. When time is passing and your body and mind are becoming more mature the next big step will begin when you will not be feeling the end and the beginning of time of your exercises, your 24/7 life will bring you the feeling of one flow and it will be the natural part of the flow of the planet. I do like feel earth under my feet and I do like to breath air every minute regardless how sunny or rainy or windy it looks outside. 

Another line from F. Pregadio: “Underlying these different trends of thought and religious practice is the view that achieving transcendence requires going beyond one’s own body. “Form” provides the necessary mediation in this task. As often occurs, neidan in this instance inherits and develops ideas and customs that originated in various contexts—specifically, Taoist thoughts, early cosmology, Han-Six Dynasties religious traditions, and meditation practices.”

Making selection of quotes gives us an opportunity to express our inner side a little bit, but spending time in writing thoughts down and pondering over it is like the texts become the flesh on our own bones. Is that wonderful (instead of reading news about politicians whose real goal is to make the lives of others miserable and dependable from their own decisions which are not always right at all)? Right?

That’s the blog:)))

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