People come to life in the body because they are equipped with primordial qi of Heaven and Earth. Every time they swallow and breathe in or out, interior qi mingles with external qi, and the qi from the Ocean of Qi naturally follows the exhalation and rises all the way into the throat. What you have to do is wait until the very end of the exhalation, then abruptly close the mouth, drum [pulse] the abdomen, and swallow the qi back down. This causes a gurgling sound like water dripping. In men, the qi descends on the left side of the body, in women on the right. It passes the twenty-four articulations [of the esophagus], going drip-drip like water.
[14b] If you can hear this clearly, the internal and external qi look after each other perfectly and will separate as appropriate. Use your intention to send the qi along and with your hand massage its passageways, making it go quickly into the Ocean of Qi. The Ocean of Qi is located three inches beneath the navel: the elixir field.
When you first begin your practice of qi-absorption, the upper heater may not yet be open. In that case, use your hands to massage its area and thereby make the qi descend all the faster. Once it flows through nicely, there is no more need for the massage. Instead, you may get to a point where you just close your eyes and swallow the qi three times consecutively. One rinsing of the mouth and swallowing of qi as it is mixed with the saliva in the mouth is called “rain activity.” When you first begin to absorb qi, and the qi is not flowing quite through yet, practice every swallow separately and do not try to do three consecutive swallowings.
Wait until the qi is open and clear, and only then very gradually add to it until you get to a small level of attainment. After about one year it will be open and clear, and in three years you will reach complete attainment.
- Stand up straight against a wall and hold the breath. Guide the qi from head to feet, then stop. This cures ulcers and scabs, great wind, one-sided paralysis, and other kinds of ailments. Some also say that you can guide the qi from feet to head for this practice. [15a]
- Lie on your back, close your mouth, pulse the jaw and the belly, and make the qi fill the mouth so you can swallow it. At the time, create an intention that moves the qi toward the back. It is most wondrous to do this every morning and evening.
- Squat on the ground leaning against a wall. Hug your knees with both arms, bend the head forward, and hold the breath out for the count of nine. This cures neck pain and problems in the hips and legs. Some say it also helps with fatigue.
- Stretch both arms to the right and left. Hold the breath out for the count of nine. This cures fatigue in the arms and prevents mental qi from getting out through the nodes.
- Sit or kneel upright, look up to the sky, and exhale deeply to expel all qi from being drunk on wine and satiated with food so that you can again be hungry and sober. This is best done in the summer months. It causes people’s body temperature to be moderated evenly.
- Sit or kneel upright, expand your nostrils, take in qi, and guide it internally to below the navel. Since the opening is small, regulate it very slowly. Hold the breath to eliminate all knots and tensions. It is best done when you are joyful and during the hot summer months. [15b]
- Slightly incline the head, breathe softly, interlace the hands, and move the arms right and left. Hold the breath for twelve. This helps digestion, makes you feel light, and increases essence. Spirit should match the qi and not be activated. Also: To practice exercises and qi-absorption, and to properly guide the qi, slightly incline the head and squat down to hug your knees. With a rope tie yourself up to keep the head down. Hold the breath for the count of ten. This aids digestion and makes the body feel light.
- Raise both hands as if lifting a thousand-pound rock, right and left moving well together. Doing this regularly, the entire body will be free from disease.
- Place both hands on the ground, contract the body, and bend the spine, then lift up. Repeat this move three times. Doing this exercise every day will tonify and increase qi and extend your years. The best time to do it is when there is no one around. It also involves holding the breath in, then absorbing it once and exhaling so softly that the ears cannot hear it. If you are exhausted or fatigued, use si to exhale. [16a] If you have cold-based troubles in the organs, use chui. If you have a heat-based condition, use hu.
- Hold the breath in while lying on your back. Then rise, squat, and face the dominant direction. In this pose, hold the breath out. If you eat little, this will create pervasion and openness, and help you absorb qi as your main nourishment. Then saliva will flow as a sweet juice, emerging like a spring and safely stored for the winter. The jade juice in the Flowery Pond is sweet like candy. Diligently practice this and never have a single doubt. This will allow you to be active in spring, lubricated in summer, and harmonious in winter. For your inner organs, close your eyes and see a light in front of them that then revolves within.
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