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Taoist Meditation and Longevity Techniques (Michigan Monographs in Chinese Studies) Paperback – January 1, 1989

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Livia Kohn is professor emerita of religion and East Asian studies at Boston University.
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Product Details

  • Series: Michigan Monographs in Chinese Studies (Book 61)
  • Paperback: 398 pages
  • Publisher: U OF M CENTER FOR CHINESE STUDIES (January 1, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892640855
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892640850
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,313,023 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By John C. Marshell Jr. on July 3, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book is a good collection of essays from an academic publisher (University of Michigan) edited by Livia Kohn, a recognized expert in the field of Taoist studies. While it makes no effort to be a "how-to" book on Taoist meditation, the book possesses a wealth of information that could be useful to any serious student of meditation, traditional Chinese medicine, or Chinese religion. The essays are filled with clear and defining discussions on a wide variety of topics by experts in the field, including Livia Kohn and the Isabelle Robinet.

A careful reading of the book yields information on alchemy, the Chinese understanding of mind-body relations, human anthropology, cosmology, esoteric and exoteric textual analysis, ethics and self-cultivation. Several essays include diagrams and translations of important texts, and though the reader will find Chinese characters throughout the book, paranthetical translations or inclusive explanations aid the general reader in deciphering technical information and unfamiliar concepts. Though academic in its character and style, the reader does not need to be an expert in the field to gain insights from this book. I used much of the information from the essays to open additional venues for research. A good index and reference sections for further reading accompany each essay.

I include here the table of contents:
1. Yoshinobu Sakade: "Longevity Techniques in Japan: Ancient Sources and Contemporary Studies"

2. Hidemi Ishida: "Body and Mind: The Chinese Perspective"

3. Akira Akahori: "Drug Taking and Immortality"

4. Toshiaki Yamada: "Longevity Techniques and the Compilation of the 'Lingbao wufuxu'"

5. Livia Kohn: "Gaurding the One: Concentrative Meditation in Taoism"

6.
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Format: Paperback
I was disappointed because I expected to actually learn some technique. Instead it seems to be a long list of the sources of some technique, which is not described in detail. So I am still in a fog about my longevity. Sorry to be negative. Perhaps I can find another more fulfilling book?
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