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By Thomas Cleary

Here's an advent to the paranormal and mystical realm of Taoism via biographical and old sketches of Taoist adepts over thousand years. This panoramic view of the numerous faces of Taoism and its intimate reference to chinese language tradition and society contains interesting bills of the Taoist mystery societies that conducted mystical workouts and strong consciousness-altering concepts, together with sensory deprivation, incantation, visualization, and concentration.

This choice of sketches, compiled by way of Zhang Tianyu, a Taoist priest within the fourteenth century, and translated by way of popular translator Thomas Cleary, portrays a couple of hundred extraordinary members from the 11th century B.C.E. to the 13th century C.E. It introduces us to a extensive and interesting variety of personalities together with philosophers and students, magicians and mediums, alchemists and physicians, seers and soothsayers, and artists and poets, between many others.

Cleary’s specialist translation and informative footnotes make this assortment a full of life and available learn.

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Extra resources for Alchemists, Mediums, and Magicians: Stories of Taoist Mystics

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1992). 4 Porcelain clays at Ching-te-chen (+1982) to show the range of colours 12 PART 1: SETTING THE SCENE PART I: SETTING THE SCENE statistical and chemical analyses indicated their common source as being Wu-chheng, Chiangsi province:fO The fact that good-quality, high-fired, glazed ceramics were traded from one centre of production to sites as far afield as Chengchou in northern China, indicates the value attached to such products. inside decorated in red ... but 33 states would not submit to him ...

Who invoked the image of potters' poverty in verse criticising social disparity and inequality:9+ . 111 The Potter (+1036) Pots cover every inch of space before (he door But there's not ,1. single tile on the roof. \Vhereas lhe mansions of those who wouldn· t soil their lingers with clay Bear tiles overlapping tightly like the scales of a fish ch. 6, p. 17a. Dubs (1938), va!. 2, p. 63. cl1 IQ. a, p. 950}, p. 122. til LUll, elL r, p, 3;;1. 193 1), p. 9· '):! po-u ,. ye\"er, e'·en ill these cases the employment 01 a seal rather than a signature suggests a hIgh level of llIneracy.

PART I: SETTING THE SCENE 2I choice of subject-matters. The originality may perhaps be explained by Sung's conventionally apologetic remarks in the preface, where he laments his lack offunds and opportunity to discuss the text with other scholars: 100 The result, therefore, is that the book has been written entirely out of what I have carried in my own head, based on inadequate observations and scanty knowledge. Ba-"liffil~~Ili1, ~c1:E'L\Jt ~1:E*a;L, @£tilE~1:fl'~z~. nesses of agriculture, and then with a range of products including ceramics, castmgs, pape~, weapons, pearls and gems.

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