Taoist Techniques


Zen philosopher
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Hi Everyone!

Does anyone know of a Taoist meditation method that is similar to seated zazen practice? I have read and practiced Small/Grand Circulation and standing meditation such as Embrace Tree in TaiChiChaun but I am still wondering if there is anything less esoteric than these practices. I guess I just want to know if there is anything in the Taoist tradition that is as simple and straightforward as zazen is in the Zen tradition.


Namaste Tony,

Zazen is a word which simply means "seated meditation" within the Ch'an/Zen tradition one can find both Samatha and Vipassana meditational praxis... it really depends on the school that one practices more than anything else.

here's a bit from another thread:

the Secret of the Golden Flower, is a lay Buddhist and Taoist practice manual and, as such, dispenses with some of the more esoteric symbolism that is normally found in taoist alchemical literature, though there is still a fair amount that the reader may find unfamiliar.

Because of the warmth of my cinnabar heart to liberate the world, I do not refrain from talking a lot. Buddha also pointed directly to life and death for a great cause, and this is truly worthwhile. Lao-tzu also lamented the existence of the egotistic self and transmitted the teaching of the open spirit, but people did not discern. Now I give a general explanation of finding the road of truth:

The pervasive principle of the center
Bears universal change;

The very being of true poise
Is the mysterious pass.

Midnight, noon, and in between,
If you can stabilize breathing,

The light returns to the primal opening,
So all psychic functions are calm.

There emerges the unified energy
Of the river source that produces the medicine.

It passes through the screen
and transmutes, with golden light;

The single disk of the red sun
Shines with constant brilliance.

People of the world misconstrue
The vitalities water and fire;

Conveying them from heart and genitals,
Thus producing seperation.

How can the human way
Meet the celestial mind?

If in accord with the celestial,
The way is naturally met.

Put down all objects, so nothing comes to mind;
This is the true infinity of the primal.

Cosmic space is silent,
Signs are gone;

At the pass of existence and life,
You forget conceptual consciousness.

After conceptual consciousness is forgotten,
You see basic reality.

The water-clarifying pearl appears,
Mysterious and unfathomable:

The screen of beginningless afflictions
Is voided all at once.

The jade capital sends down
A team of nine dragons;

Walking in the sky,
You climb the gateway of heaven:

Controlling wind and lightning,
You make the thunder rumble.

Freezing the spirit and steadying the breath are for beginners;
Retreating to hide in secrecy is eternal calm.


another one of interest may be:



Namaste Vajradhara,

I appreciate your insight concerning my question. I will certainly read The Secret of the Golden Flower in earnest. I find much of the Taoist tradition during my exploration into Zen. These two paths definitely intertwine.

I have read Taoist Meditation by Thomas Cleary but that seems to be less about techniques and methods and more about preparation for meditation. I enjoyed this poem. It relates to my path in many ways.

I sense the Tao within you. Or more precisely, you are the Tao.

with loving-kindness