Jing, Qi, Shen (精, 氣, 神) are often mentioned in Chinese Medics, Chi Kung and Taoism. They could be alike, but it is not always completely the same. Here I will present you Pure Taoism, Tin Yat Lineage Taoism’s prespective on Jing Qi Shen. Before I start to explain what they are and why you need to know about these things, we must first tell you that Jing Qi Shen are three things, and “Jing Qi, Shen, are all Mandarin. In Cantonese, it is “Jing”, “Hey”, “Sun”. They sound totally different, but yes we know they are the same thing.
What is Jing, Qi, Shen?
Although there is no English words that can directly translate these words into what they meant, we will try our best to put it simple and direct for you to understand. Again, this is Tin Yat Lineage Taoism, the Pure Taoism, and we do not speak for any other sects.
Jing 精 – Essence
Jing, the essence, which are like nutrition, other things you can consume and the body produce this vital essence which fuel your body up and make you alive and active. Essence or Jing can be visible or non-visible form, and they generate Qi / Chi.
Qi / Chi / Hey 氣 – Energy
Qi, the energy, which is non-visible by the naked eye, but it is in your body and surrounding our body. Qi, the energy, is very important for us for keeping us alive. There are Pre-Heaven Chi 先天炁 and Post-Heaven Chi 後天氣, which both blends together to form what we call “Real Chi 真氣”, which is the chi inside and surrounding our body all the time. Chi can be visible with cultivations in Taoism! This diagram below will illustrate you the relationship of Chi:
With Jing and Qi, Shen is generated, or vitalized. Shen is the spirit, which is an abstract word for a person’s mental state and health condition. When one is tired and sick, the Shen is described to be dim and weak. When one is alive, awake and active, we describe their shen to be bright and vivid. It is not physical, but it is visible by the symptoms shown on the physical body. The best way to see if one have “Shen” is to look at their eyes. Sleepy eyes are often the symptoms of lacking energy, therefore, Shen is dim and weak.
How Jing Qi Shen Work in Taoism?
Jing Qi Shen is essential for a human being, and we cannot live without one of them. Traditional Chinese Medicine and Chi Kung look heavily on preserving and improving the three to improve life, but not many know how these are related to Taoism. Even the Taoist sects that talk about these three things are relating to the Chinese Medicine and Chi Kung theories only, and not many know about how it is related to Taoism and Taoist magic cultivation. Here I will present the Jing Qi Shen of Taoism and the theory in Tin Yat Lineage, Pure Taoism:
First of all, you must know the definition of the three as mentioned above, which is common knowledge shared among Chinese Medicine and Chi Kung. We agree to them 100%, but we just got a bit more to say on top of that.
Jing Qi Shen are not only essential for a human being to stay alive and healthy, but also serve as the foundation of a Taoist’s magical power and defense power too! Now that is something you want to know about!
Jing Qi Shen in Tin Yat Lineage
In Taoism, Tin Yat Lineage, we talk about the three souls 三魂 (Soul-Mental, Soul-Phyiscal, and Soul-Celestial) and the seven spirits 七魄 that a human being possess. The Jing Qi Shen is the essential for the body to stay healthy, and so it serve the purpose of strengthening the organs. When the organs are strong, they generate stronger energy (Qi) and fuel up the 7 spirits energy that surrounds you body. Therefore, Jing Qi Shen serve as the gasoline that fuel system to strengthen the 7 layers of energies that surround and radiates from your body – the 7 spirits. This will lead to a natural defense ability that protects your body from the intrusion of “ECP” or even other forms of energy pollution.
With Jing and Qi, your Shen gets stronger. But at the same time, Shen is a reflection of your three souls. The three souls will brighten up and have higher density when your Shen is bright and strong. Which means it is much harder for any evil spirits to knock your souls out and possess you. This also means that evil magic attack will have less chance of knocking your souls out and take away your life too!
Yet, Jing Qi Shen are mostly post-heaven elements, but they do directly affect the pre-heaven three souls and seven spirits too. Therefore, Tin Yat Lineage Taoism strongly encourage people to live a better life, and a healthier life, by eating well, living well and cultivating things to strengthen your body as well as preserving health. We agree with Chinese Medicine, Chi Kung, Kung Fu and the way of healthy eating. That is really the way to go. But we do not agree with vegetarian diets, fasting, or doing stupid things to injure your body for any reasons.
If one want to improve and advance in Taoist magic, they must also know the importance of Jing Qi Shen, which are the foundation for your magic power to grow. If you do not sleep enough, your Shen is weaker and dimmer, and so your three souls are floaty and shaky. No matter how much magic power you were beamed from the celestial realm, your souls cannot take it and it will flood out. Just pouring a gallon of water into a small cup, or a leaking tank, or a shaking mug, it will not be what you want to see. Right? Remember, as a Tin Yat Lineage Taoist, you must always treasure your health and live your life well. That is the basic of a Taoist or even as a human being. Any religions that promotes the opposite, we call them “Evil Cults”.