Oral Instructions for Retrieving the Heart-Mind and Refining the Self
“The Heart-Monkey and the Mind-Horse are running wild,
galloping and leaping East, West, North and South,
not even stopping for a moment.
Have you seen a horse sleeping?”
This is the method of ‘the Refinement and Elimination of Thoughts’.
One is commencing the cultivation of truth, the cultivation of the Dao, the cultivation of stillness. Cultivators of sitting meditation and internal alchemists always regard the refinement of the heart-mind as priority:
“Life is in the Now,
the past is not existing,
tomorrow morning is yet to come.
One says a word and it already belongs to the past.”
Focus on witnessing when a thought arises and persevere in the real awakening to the truth. Before that everything is an delusion, an imagination, stop immediately. Do not follow along with the thoughts. Do not wander off with one’s thoughts. One will not know how to stop otherwise. Let distracting and disorderly thoughts be swept away and take refuge. One thought carries ten thousand thoughts along with it. One must focus on the tip of the nose, on the Cinnabar Field, on the internal organs, on the breath, on the heartbeat. One thought replaces all other thoughts. Regardless of what the thought is:
“Thoughts about birth-old age-illness-death;
Longevity, eternal life, immortality;
Realization of the Dao, awakening to the Dao;
the thought of unification with the higher self;
Abandon all of them!”
Utmost stillness is its chief aim. Return to the void and enter concentration and deep meditation. Wipe out the three heart-minds: the past, the present and the future altogether. Extinguish completely the four appearances: birth-old age- illness and death, the fate of humankind and the four miseries in human life.
After having waited for the heart-mind ‘s character to be tranquil and one’s nature being clear and cool, unrestrained, and comfortable, pure and tranquil, clear and still like the heavens, concentrate the Spirit and enter deep meditation. Be absorbed in absent-mindedness long term, not interrupted for one instant. One heart-mind replaces the ten thousand thoughts, count own breath, follow the frequency of the breath exiting and entering, one opening- one closing, one ascending- one descending,
It is exactly the mechanism of one inhale and one exhale.
The Spirit is preserved and gathered the Qi-Point, visualise and imagine the inhale and exhale of Qi as if preserving non-existence and safeguarding existence:
“Follow the Du-Mai upwards,
as if a red sun ascends to the Peak of Qian,
to the Hundred meetings, to the Mud Pill.
It is as if a great and bright moon follows the Ren-Mai to
descend to the Kun Furnace.”
One number remembers ten numbers, ten numbers remember one hundred numbers, ten million numbers have no shortcomings. Do not miscount.
There are must not be confusion or chaos; it must be the true number.
How many times are you breathing in one day?
How many times is your heart beating in one day?
Have you ever counted your breaths or your heartbeat?
Gather your heart-mind in the number. Tie up the thoughts on the number. One must command the thoughts not to disperse, the intent not to be disorderly. The heart-mind and the intent depend on each other and move in unison. The sun rises and the moon descends.
This is the heart monkey locked up in prison and the mind horse tied up tightly.
The ancient people said:
“The True Intent comes and goes, ceaselessly flowing and cycling.
The sun rises and the moon sets un-interrupted and un-forcefully.
Knowing and not safeguarding is Gong.
Spirit and breath are inter-dependent.
The breath and the thoughts are unified.
The intent must not be intermittent.
One must neither get attached to thoughts,
nor through non-action falling into emptiness;
a state where nothing is being left.
Going past and beyond the centre is incorrect.
Going left or right of the centre is wrong.
From the existence of a heart-mind change into the non-existence of a heart-mind, from the existence of a heart-mind transform into the non-existence of a heart-mind.
Cause the heart-mind and body to be empty and void, hollow and spiritual.
This is being without life and without the extinction of life. This is being without life and without death.
Strive and be willing to eradicate the abstruse thoughts. At first grasp the real awakening to the truth. Naturally there will be no thoughts. Through the long term practice it becomes a habit and matures into proficiency, enabling one to be being without dreams.
The thoughts are already gone. Evil forces and demons, tests and trial, carnal desires and worldly passions usually appear in dreams.
The Daoist Family says:
“Sages have no dreams.”
Without dreams then the heart-mind is dead and the Spirit is alive.
When the heart of the human dies, the heart of the Dao opens and the Spirit will find the path of eternal life and immortality.
This is a major event of the Now, right in front of one’s eyes, a very important occurrence.
Because the heart-mind is not refined, the spirit is not settled and un-stable. Consequently one’s thoughts will run about disorderly. The luminescence of one’s character, the whiteness within the blackness, is agitated and the power of life is consumed and dispersed. When the intent, thoughts and desires are not extinguished and not refined, then the emotions are un-dying, therefore the root of life-destiny root is not firm. It could be compared to a small and flimsy tree whose roots are shaken.
How can it continue living?
What is shaking it?
Un-eliminated passions, un-eradicated cravings of the flesh and un-removed selfish desires make the tree tremble.
One must completely extinguish the heart-mind’s fire, one’s thoughts and desires.
One must completely eliminate the boundless desires at any given moment –always.
One truth constantly safeguarded on the inside, twenty-four hours every moment of the day, every second, every minute.
Everywhere the ten thousand affinities and relations are empty and in vain, consequently the innate character is heavenly clear and cool. The internal organs are at peace, only then does one not act out of joyful delusions. One is unaffected by outside interferences and disturbances. None of the seven emotions exist anymore, no more sentiments and affections. The biological field is not thrown into disorder by the thoughts anymore.
This is ‘the Gong of the Refinement of the Self’.
One must become a mentalist, a moron and lunatic for this level.
Patriarch Lü said:
“Only being insane, one can become an immortal.”
The ancients said:
“The reverted elixir not yet refined,
first one must refine the Self.
Refine the self to purity and maturity and later return to the elixir.
In order to retrieve and bring back, one must forsake one’s desires.
Permanently putting it into practice,
how could there be non-existence?
How could one not reach the state of being a void spirit
and within empty hollowness?
A wise Daoist said:
“Refine the Self in the ‘Red Dust’ of the secular world.
Nourish Qi in the deep mountains.
Sublimate in remoteness.
Pass the Mysterious Barrier in seclusion.”
The hardest stage in the cultivation of the Dao is the refinement of the Self. Every day one is fighting oneself. One is totally alone and by oneself on this mission. Giving up one’s material and immaterial joys, likings and addictions is a process of suffering.
That is why it cannot be reiterated too many times:
It takes time, maybe twenty years, thirty years or fifty years.
People’s karma, evil forces and formless aspects differ and therefore their time frame varies greatly. People’s Pre-Heaven make-up and inner qualities and people’s Post-Heaven self-cultivation and accomplishments are not identical; as a result people are divided according to fast and slow progress.
This content therefore originates from Patriarch Zheng Yang’s research, advanced studies and cultivation. He physically verified it step by step.