A Directory for a Day

 

The Classic of the Directory for a Day

Jeh Yung Ching

[An ancient Taoist text written by Anonymus. See http://www.sacred-texts.com/tao/sbe40/index.htm]

1. As to what should be done in a day, when the eating and drinking has been arranged, let one sit straight with his mouth shut, and not allow a single thought to arise in his mind. Let him forget everything, and keep his spirit with settled purpose. Let his lips be glued together, and his teeth be firmly pressed against one another. Let him not look at anything with his eyes, nor listen to a single sound with his ears. Let him with all his mind watch over his inward feelings. Let him draw long breaths, and gradually emit them, without a break, now seeming to breathe, and now not. In this way any excitement of the mind will naturally disappear, the water from the kidneys will rise up, the saliva will be produced in the mouth, and the real efficaciousness becomes attached to the body. It is thus that one acquires the way of prolonging life.

2. During the twelve hours of the day let one's thoughts be constantly fixed on absolute Purity. Where one thought (of a contrary kind) does not arise, we have what we call Purity; where nothing (of a contrary kind) enters the Tower of Intelligence (= the mind), we have what we call the Undefiled. The body is the house of the breath; the mind is the lodging of the spirit. As the thoughts move, the spirit moves; as the spirit moves, the breath is distributed. As the thoughts rest, the spirit rests; when the spirit rests, the breath is collected.

The true powers of the five elements unite and form the boat-like cup of jade, (after partaking of which), the body seems to be full of delicious harmony. This spreads like the unguent of the chrismal rite on the head. Walking, resting, sitting, sleeping, the man feels his body flexible as the wind, and in his belly a sound like that of thunder. His ears hear the songs of the Immortals; that need no aid from any instrument; vocal without words, and resounding without the drum. The spirit and the breath effect a union and the bloom of childhood returns. The man beholds scenes unfolded within him; Spirits of themselves speak to him; he sees the things of vacuity, and finds himself dwelling with the Immortals. He makes the Great Elixir, and his spirit goes out and in at its pleasure. He has the longevity of heaven and earth, and the brightness of the sun and moon. He has escaped from the toils of life and death.

3. Do not allow any relaxation of your efforts. During all the hours of the day strive always to be pure and undefiled. The spirit is the child of the breath; the breath is the mother of the spirit.

As a fowl embraces its eggs, do you preserve the spirit and nourish the breath. Can you do this without intermission? Wonderful! Wonderful! The mystery becomes still deeper!

In the body there are seven precious organs, which serve to enrich the state, to give rest to the people, and to make the vital force of the system full to overflowing. Hence we have the heart, the kidneys, the breath, the blood, the brains, the semen, and the marrow. These are the seven precious organs. They are not dispersed when the body returns (to the dust). Refined by the use of the Great Medicine, the myriad spirits all ascend among the Immortals.