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Taoist Yoga: Alchemy & Immortality Paperback – January 1, 1999

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Product Details

  • Series: Weiser Classics
  • Paperback: 206 pages
  • Publisher: Red Wheel/Weiser; New edition edition (January 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0877280673
  • ISBN-13: 978-0877280675
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #218,035 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

101 of 102 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 15, 1998
Format: Paperback
"Taoist Yoga," by Charles Luk, will greatly aid those Americans who are confused by the point of "eastern" meditation, etc. The author makes very clear exactly what should be done in order to perfect one's human existence. The terminology is easily understood and practically oriented. Those with a background in meditation and spiritual transformation will relish this book. The book is not for the pure beginner as it is too practical and "hands on;" one needs to convince oneself that spiritual elevation and self-control are required.But it must be read by any Eastern Studies scholar. The text also puts to rest many notions about sex and the true value of sexual desire, called in the text "the generative force." It should be studied carefully for this reason. The book has many clear illustrations and copious footnotes all of which are useful. The book does not mention diet specifically but it does show how all ailments can be healed or prevented.There are very few references to the typical "folk" oriented five element theory which prevents the scientifically oriented American from being "put off." In short, it is amazingly simple, concise and understandable. Definitely recommended for the serious practioner as, although written in a terse style, it has sufficient common sense to be of use to Americans.
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127 of 133 people found the following review helpful By richard hunn on April 3, 2002
Format: Paperback
The 'yoga' teaching in this book never was easily accessible - nor ever meant to be. It is the highest rung on the Taoist ladder,and often, its practitioners lived on remote mountain peaks - disinterested in the 'numbers game' or winning converts. To find a Taoist master - of Chao Pi Chen's calibre would have taken years, many hardships. Loathe to set their teachings down in words, texts such as this are therefore precious. Even for a native Chinese, the idioms in this text are incomprehensible, minus access to the inner tradition. Luckily, Lu K'uan Yu knew the real (practical) meaning of these idioms - and therefore translates not just a text, but the practical nuance. This text opens up a remarkable world - one the West has yet to tap into,as regards our knowledge of the paraphysical energies underpinning the life of bodies and cells, vital centres etc. Before the Communist revolution, elderly people practicing this yoga, found their greying hair turning black again. This is not immortality 'Hollywood style,' but a by-product of the Yoga. When I took this practice seriously - in a retreat, I could actually hear little 'electronic' bleeps - as the 'microcosmic circuit' became energised. It happens naturally - you can't force it to happen. This Taoist yoga makes sense of the saying 'the kingdom of heaven is within you.' It is!
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 20, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Highly recomended for sincere practitioners with a meditative understanding.

Read the Preface first, and pay particular attention to the first chapter. While not said in these words, what is unusual about this practice teaching is that it starts off with emphasizing a degree of stability in non-dual awareness (ch1) and emphasies its importance for any hope of success. This is what is lacking in so many watered down teachings, with people spinning around in the practices for years with little solid benefit from a higher viewpoint.

The english translation is not the most fluent, and terms such as 'the need to not be mindful of the process is absolutley necessary for success', is spot on in its original intent, but lost a bit in translation. In this instance what is refered to is an anchoring beyond the thinking mind and its ambitions, limited conceptualizations, which crowds the space so that the underlying light is not noticed and cultivated. It does not refer to an abandonment of awareness, rather a deepening of it.
There are a number of simular areas in the book, including things like a disaste for sexual relationships, etc; but if you get past the immeadiate words and undertand the essence of what is being said in the containement and how the underlying flows are qualified (or more so are not qualified into a dualistic energy), then this is the original true meaning.

While the feminine side is an inherent aspect of the internal landscape for anyone proceeding with this practice, nevertheless this book gives it no outward attention and its male mode of presentation might be a little difficult for female practitioners to sort through and integrate the teaching in a way meaningful for them.

The above comments are not meant to discourage anyone who loves meditative practice away from this book. It is truly one of the best and most rare books in a caliber far above most of what is offered.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Gerr on January 30, 2008
Format: Paperback
Many years before almost any Taoist Yoga, Chi Gung books were available. Long before Mantak Chia great works that break it down in physical simple terms and Dr. Yang's Hallmark extremely detailed must read The Root of Chinese Qigong; this was the only book out there.
It allowed me to get started years ahead of what I would have been able to do otherwise.
This book is a must read because it was the first out there and gives some detail that is availble no where else.
The descriptions used here help much with being able to imagine, then really feel and subsequently control and manipulate "vital breath" (a form a chi energy) to eventually open psychic centers and transform jing to higher forms of chi (shen), and thus nourishing and evolving those centers.
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