Monday, March 06, 2006

Climb up Heaven’s ladder

Lu Yen better known as Lu Dongbin has left behind a guide of twenty verses with a sum total of hundred characters or words to neidan cultivators on how to attain immortality.

Professor Lu-sheng Chong has provided the Chinese verses, his Pinyin and English translations of the Hundred Character Stele written by Lu Dongbin together with a brief history of the famous immortal in his website, Chinese Cultural Learning Series. (Resources Link) A link to the Hundred Character Stele at his website is also provided under the Recommended Sites section.

Thanks to the professor, those familiar with Lu’s Secret of the Golden Flower and the Circulation of the Light meditation will find Lu’s hundred characters useful to further their learning. Heavenly immortals nowadays still use similar prose when they speak through the planchette.

As usual I attempt to translate and understand what Lu Dongbin had wanted to say in his guide comprised of twenty verses. Except for the few verses highlighted with asterisks, the bulk of my translation falls in line with that of Professor Chong’s:

Nourish Qi forget thoughts*

Settle heart through non action (stillness)*

Quiet move knows clan ancestor,

Look no further for whom!

True eternal must respond to things

Response to things, important not to obsess

Not obsessed, human nature (Xing) dwells within*

Human nature dwells, Qi returns within*

Qi returns, Elixir forms within

Middle of jug dispenses Kan and Li (water and fire)

Yin yang produces transmutations (forms and emptiness)*

Universal transformation one sound thunder

White clouds rise towards head (Ding) top

Sweet dew sprinkle on Xumi (a Celestial Mountain)

Self drink longevity wine

Wandering; who could know!*

Sitting, listen to no string tune (songs of immortals*)

Understand clearly Mother Nature’s secrets*

All this come in twenty verses

Final aim, climb up Heaven’s ladder.


Allan said...

I had gone through my rendition of the hundred characters of Lu Dongbin with my Daoist friend today. He had to search for his copy of the treatise and notes from his files to have a meaningful discussion. The rendition seems fine to him.

His further remark was that although people may understand what has been said, it is the practice that counts. Not unlike to what one had written in previous entries. For without the necessary practice one cannot experience what ancient sages and the wise indicated.

loganus said...

Hi Allan im also study confucianism and taoism ... i cant find your email as i wanted to ask you a few things on taoism liu yi mings texts and learning investigtion of things .

Thank you

loganus said...

email address