Consider the opening lines to Chapter Sixteen to the Tao-te Ching :..
- Returning to the Root
Entering utter stillness, I guard a deep sense of peace. All the ten-thousand things are created while I watch their rise and fall…
All things flourish, each one returning to its root. Returning to the root they are at peace, this means they return to life; returning to life they are eternal.
This could be seen as philosophical….but it is not just: as other chapters explain it describes an intimate, personal experience – cultivated through a technique of softening the breathing in and out through the nose and mouth. They had discovered the psycho-somatic effects of deep relaxation, and autonomic self-regulation. (Sometimes this was called ’embryonic breathing’). Literally they had learn, through deep Yoga, to control (viz.self-control) their own body bio-chemistry – to heal themselves and perpetuate life. No mean feat. My translation of the Tao-te Ching reveals it as a manual on qigong practice, i.e. the regulation of breath, mind and body, as a unity – as one vehicle, for life.
As an example follow this link, to a new page giving Chapter Sixteen in its entirety, or find it through the drop-down Menu above. Here on this site you will find an opportunity to download the whole of this work, The Book of the Way and Its Power (Tao-te Ching) as an e-book.
Here’s is one I put together earlier!
Babe’s Breathing – Instruction Booklet
An Old Taoist Stretch Download the eBook below for £3.99. Payment secure through Paypal. Contact me if you have questions. Thank you.
Preview this exercise on YouTube below, recorded on Chesil Beach, Dorset – an endumbragation of pebbles in Southern Britain. The earlier title of this kit-exercise was ‘The Old Man’s Breathing’ or tonggong: