Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The concept of Dual Cultivation in Taoist practice

Dual cultivation (性命雙修) is an important, if not the most important, concept in Taoist meditation (Taoist yoga, or Neidan). The concept is complex because Dual cultivation can be (and has been) applied to different areas as taught by the Masters over the ages. It is based on Tao Te Ching’s Tao concept of combining opposites into an integrated whole, since opposites have different manifestations and so has the resultant wholes. It is further complicated by the possibility, and indeed necessity, of having endless upgrades of one "wholeness" to the next level of "wholeness".

In Tao Te Ching, the key dual cultivation is morality versus inner spiritual-chi practice. The process (as with other manifestation of dual practice) is always like this, schematically:

Morality1 – Spirituality1 – Wholeness1 – Morality2 – Spiritual2 – Wholeness2 ….etc.

Another key dual practice manifestation is personal development versus good ruler behaviour, again schematically it is like this:

Personal1 – Society1 – Wholeness1 – Personal1 – Society2 – Wholeness2…..etc,

In Hui Ming Jing, the key dual cultivation (focusing on Spirituality practice) is Wisdom (consciousness) versus Chi (unconscious impulses).

Schematically, it is like this:

Wisdom1– Chi1– Wholeness1 – Wisdom2 – Chi2 – Wholeness 2,…..etc.

Another key dual practice manifestation is Mind versus Body, again schematically it is like this:

Mind1 – Body1 – Wholeness1 – Mind2 – Body2 – Wholeness2,……etc.

Dual Practice is Tao-in-practice Par Excellence, and can be applied creatively in daily lives, by people who understand Tao.

PS: This post only sketches the basic structure of Dual Cultivation. Details to be filled in at appropriate posts and time. Stay tuned....


  1. This Paul was the comment for a post about being overweight and appreciation-a pat in the back from society..but the post isnt there anymore..Anyway I'l leave the comment here..

    We need validation from the outside world all the time. But sometimes..we have to stop and ask ourselves why? The real validation comes from within..not from someone outside who doesnt even know us. I feel satisfied good if I do something that 'is good' and the satisfaction it gives me inside is the mental pat I guess. But yes love from our near and dear ones is great too.

  2. Sorry for that...I was making some structural change to my posts - getting a bit "schizo" from thinking in too many angles :):)

    I agree with you. I believe modern man has been tipping more to getting recognition from outside rather than inside. A more balanced personality is definitely needed. BTW, it was Joe Wong (a Chinese stand-up comedian who made himself famous in US made the number gag recently during CNY).


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