Daoist Magical Transformation Skills

II. Projection – 6-12.


II.6. (pp. 123-5) Imagination Techniques

pp. 123-5 visualizations "used by sorcerers from many magical traditions"






"imagines ... walking through this magical door."



"is lying down on the floor of a dry well. ... .



... feels water slowly rising upward from under the Earth, lifting his or her body towards and through the opening of the well."



"lying at the bottom of a pool. ... . ... he or she is reaching upward ... and extending upward, ... to enter the sky."



"lying down on a magical cloud, in a deep valley, surrounded by high cliffs.



... . ... feels the magical cloud move starting to move upwards to the top of the cliffs".



"lying down and ... there is a staircase next to his or her bed that leads upward into the Heavens."



"standing in from of a huge energetic mountain ..., climbing this magical mountain, ascending its slope".



"floating in the middle of the ocean."



"seeing his or her spirit leaving the physical body".



"an energetic cord reaching down from the Heavens ... .



... feels his or her energetic arms reaching upward and grabbing this energetic cord."



"his or her celestial guides or spirit helpers descending from the Celestial Realm ... . ... these spirit guides to assist in removing his or her spirit body from the physical body".


II.7. (pp. 126-8) Respiration Techniques

p. 126b, 128 shifting one’s consciousness into a ball of white light

p. 126b

"10 breath counts".

p. 128a

"Daoist disciples ... when first learning to Soul Project, ... are encouraged to focus on shifting their consciousness into the projected Ball of White Light."

p. 128b

"feels himself or herself being drawn into an energetic ball of white light that is positioned about three to five feet away from his or her physical body."


II.8. (pp. 129-30) Mantra Techniques

p. 129a functions of mantra-s

"the magical Mantras are constantly repeated for the purpose of increasing intuition, remembering dreams, Spirit Travel, and Soul Projection. Therefore, when practicing Soul Projection, the sorcerers are required to lie down using the Hibernation Posture (Figure 1.117 {supine, same as "Corpse" Posture in yoga}) ..., repeating these mantras".

p. 129b orange column of light {cf. Manikhaian "Column of Glory"}

"his or her body being covered with an orange column of light that is flowing over, down, and through his or her tissues. This light flows from the Heavenly Transpersonal Point (located above the head), through the body, towards the Earthly Transpersonal Point (located below the feet)."

p. 129b instance of a mantra

"La Ra Ss"

{This may be the name of the Sumerian city /LARSa/.}


II.9. (pp. 131-9a) Miscellaneous Techniques [those on pp. 131-5 are "used by sorcerers from many magical traditions"]

p. 131a conditioning the mind

"leaves papers all over the house, with notes that specifically address out-of-body projection (i.e., place notes on the ceiling, ... etc.)."

{These notes would be intended to be read by deities, to impress them with the piety of the note-writer.}

"reads accounts of other mystics’ experiences in order to inspire ... and further enhance the experience of Soul Projection."

{The deities would thereby by inspired with enhanced admiration for the reader.}

"When awake, ... will ask him or herself if he or she is awake or dreaming. ... If ... dreams of having an out-of-body experience it indicates that he or she is about to have one and it should happen within a few days."

{Asking that would induce dream-deities to send that sort of a dream. If when such dream is experienced the experiencer will express appreciation for it, then the same will be sent while awake.}

p. 132a step-counting

"he or she counts the number of steps from the bed to the front door, associating each step with a specific item of observation. ... These associations are used to create an anchor for the mind".

{Each step is thus assigned to a deity; these associations are intended to provide temporary residences for deities who thereby become anchored in the specific items, so that they can assist the projecting.}

"continues to imprint, until ... up to 15 or 20 associated steps".

{It may be possible to imprint the mind of those many deities with such.}

"On the front door, ... will place a big sign with a written phase used to awaken ... (i.e., within the projected spirit body)."

{The deities within one’s projected spirit-body (controlling its spiritual physiology)are "Awakened Ones" – viz., Buddha-s.}

pp. 133b-134a manipulating the pulsation of qi




"begins with "Pulling Down the Heaven," ... into his nor her center core Taiji Pole.


... releasing any and all Turbid Qi ... into the Earth.


... performs the "One Through Ten Meditations" and the "Three Invocations."


... emits Qi from his or her Taiji Pole, and extends it outside his or her body, shining through every pore ..., completely filling the room. At this point, ... will begin to establish a rhythmic energy pulse, filling the entire room with vibrating waves of divine light.


... begins pulsating Qi and light from his or her feet to the top of the head.


Slowly and gradually, ... will increase the speed of the energetic pulse flowing back and forth between the head and feet. ... .


... now concentrates on the front ... Gate, located at the Yin Tang area (Third Eye).


... he or she absorbs the surrounding Qi and light into his or her Yin Tang area.


... he or she releases the Qi and light out of the body through the Upper Gate, located at the Baihui area (GV-20). ... .


... his or her spirit body (supported by the energetic body), is eparating from his or her physical body, leaving its shell through the Upper ... Gate".

p. 134b unanswerable quaestion; denying all doctrines

"This particular technique focuses on projecting the Eternal Soul ... . ... To perform this exercise ... will ask a question that doesn’t have an answer [viz., a metaphysical quaestion]."

"Denying All Things : In this meditation, ... begins to discredit and disown all information that he has been taught or has experienced while in the physical realm."

p. 135 meditation employing mirror-reflection




"begins from a sitting posture, in a chair three or four feet from a mirror.


... can observe the reflection of him or herself ... within the image of the mirror. ... he or she should begin to repeat ..., ... "Am I here or there?" over and over. ... . ... closes his or her eyes, he or she ... feeling the spirit body leave the shell of the physical body. {Once, I dreamt of departing out of the body – not, however, into space but through the rock (end of cave).} As the spirit body leaves the physical body, it will tend to rotate in space and directly turn to face the sorcerer. As the sorcerer’s projected consciousness awakens while hovering above its physical body, he or she will be staring at his or her physical body that is currently lying in bed".

p. 136 magical portals

p. 136a

p. 136

"Yang (Active) Water Portals : This type of energetic portal can be accessed using the active movements of a rushing waterfall in order to enter the spirit realm ... .

[p. 136a] "Yin (Quiescent) Water Portals : This type of energetic portal can be accessed using the quiescent movements of a still pool of water ... in order to enter into the spirit realm ... .

In order to enter this type of energetic portal, ... first stares at the base of the waterfall ... . ...

In order to open this type of energetic portal, ... first stares at his or her reflection in the water ... . ... .

Once the ... eyes reach the top of the waterfall, the surrounding rocks and foliage immediately fold inward, revealing the energetic portal through which to enter into the spirit realm.

[p. 136b] ... quickly looks upwards into the sky and begins to observed ... silver swirling patterns of energy. ... As the bigger energetic swirls begin to cover the smaller energetic swirls, an energetic portal is suddenly created.

The Daoist sorcerer then recites a magical incantation and Soul Projects into the spirit realm."

At this point, the sorcerer then recites a magical incantation and Soul Projects into the spirit realm."

{Xuar (in Ecuador) shamans also employ waterfalls.}

p. 137a finding sought-for objects

"if ... lost a particular object, it is very easy to find it when he or she is traveling outside of his or her physical body. ... think about the item and his or her body will immediately begin to project towards it. ... .

... to send ... a personal gift. This gift would be ... imbued with ... own personal Qi and Shen. Once ... placed ... the ... gift within his or her household, ... would then have immediate access into the ... dwelling place." {This would be a guru’s mode of maintaining communication with a distant cela (disciple).}

pp. 137b-8a advanced shape-shifting techniques




"In Advanced Soul Projection, the sorcerer’s Qi and Shen is further animated through the creation {actually, not this is created but is already existent in the spirit-world, and is conditionally lent for temporary occupancy by a mortal visitor} of an energetic vehicle for the mystic’s spirit body to travel in. ... . ... a body of light, or an energetic form of an animal {[Aztec] nagual} are frequently used by advanced sorcerers."


"After traveling inside the spirit body, the sorcerer must consciously reabsorb the experiences imprinted within the energetic body back into his or her physical body in order to retain a clearer memory of the experiences."


"A large luminous orb surrounded by a sphere of light is projected from the Yin Tang area to gather psychic impressions via a long energetic cord attached to the Upper Dantian. As the "eye" returns, its energetic form is absorbed back into the sorcerer’s Dantian. These gathered images are then analyzed and the information is assimilated before the energy is dispersed into the ... Lower Dantian."

p. 138b-9a warning & contraindications of soul-projection

p. 138b

"the sorcerer has ... created {actually, hath summoned from the divine world} a protective field of divine light to surround his or her physical body before projecting."

p. 139a

"When a temporary misalignment between the physical body and the returning projected spirit body occurs, the sorcerer may experience a temporary numbness or tingling within the partially misaligned ... area."


"Certain schools of magic warn their disciples not to practice Soul Projection just before or during thunderstorms." {This is because such time ought to be devoted, instead, to worshipping and glorifying the lightning-deities.}


II.10. (pp. 139b-41a) Projection of the Aeternal Soul

p. 139b in dan-tian; soul as casing

"Divine Consciousness is sometimes experienced a golden light, which

Similarly, the spirit body

is attached to and resides within the Upper Dantian

is attached to and resides within the Middle Dantian

of the spirit body.

of the physical body."

p. 139b the 4 bodies


physical body


energetic body


spirit body


soul body (aeternal soul)

140-1a golden cord & silvern cord




"Direct Projection : In this type of projection, the emotions are left behind and the divine


mind of the soul body is projected from the ... physical body ... . In this type of projection, although the soul body is directly projected away from the physical ..., it is still connected to the physical and energetic bodies via a "golden cord"".


"Double or Indirect Projection : In this type of Advanced Soul Projection, the soul body is projected out of the spirit body through a "golden cord." This type of projection is performed while the spirit body is being projected out of the physical body. In this type of projection, it is more difficult to consciously recall information experienced ... . ...


As the gathered information passes down from the soul body to the physical body, it is often lost in the translation. In order to perform this second state of Soul Projection, a sorcerer must pull the Eternal Soul away from the energetic casing of the spirit body ... . When this happens, the entire spirit body shrinks and becomes an energetic particle (sometimes called the "permanent atom because it contains the current characteristics of the individual’s present personality) folding and entering inside the Eternal Soul like a microfilm. Whenever ... lowers the vibrations of the Eternal Soul, the spirit body immediately unfolds".

pp. 140b-1a the 2 magical bridges







connecteth the __

soul body

spirit body

to the __

spirit body

physical body

via the __ cord




II.11. (pp. 141-4a) Communicating in the Spirit World

p. 141 bubble of luminous energy




"While traveling in the spirit body, the sorcerer can encounter ... ghosts existing in the before-birth and after-death spiritual states. {Antarabhava is that realm : the before-birth status is gandharva; the after-death status is yaks.a. But if these beings are not noticeably engaged in the actual process of traveling between death and life, then they ought not to be arbitrarily assumed to be dead mortals; for they may instead be permanent officials of that realm, i.e. deities who praeside over mortals’ incarnational (re-linking) process.} While in this spirit realm, if the sorcerer desires to have an exchange with another spirit entity, he or she can create private sanctuary in which to


interact. For example, the sorcerer and the spirit entity can both project their soul consciousness and create a bubble of luminous energy. This energetic bubble acts as a private sanctuary that the sorcerer and spirit entity can enter into and within which they can exchange secret knowledge".

p. 142a telepathic (energetic) communication

"Beginning Telepathic Communication : This type of communication is "spoken" within the mind, and it occurs within the specific language spoken by each individual. ...

Advanced Telepathic Communication : This type of communication is also "spoken" within the mind, but it is not limited to the words or symbols of a language."

pp. 142b-3a encountring deities




"The beings who dwell within the celestial realms are so extremely ... energetically powerful, that they are ... viewed as "gods." ...


For example, while in the spirit realm {viz., dream / svapna / rmi-lam}, a sorcerer who is spirit traveling may encounter an ... entity who appears to them in the form of a specific religious icon. {such as, according to Carlos Castan~eda, a cone or a sphaire, which are the shapes of Pythagorean deities}


The spirit entity may inform the Soul Projector that he or she is "God" the Creator (or a messenger from god) and may give them a specific mantra (incantation) to speak {this is usual in North American Indian (where these incantations are often in the form of songs) and other shamanries} in order to facilitate the Soul Projector’s spiritual practice." {When encountring a deity, to traduce (insult) any such (by, e.g., accusing such deity of being merely "a Yogi or Daoist sorcerer in disguise") would be in very bad taste, and likely entail some severe poenalty. In Carlos Castan~eda’s book (The Art of Dreaming) on encountring deities in the dream-world’s tunnels, no such accusation is ever even contemplated. To follow literally (without demur) some of the sorts of advice given by the author of this book would be truly calamitous (the calamitous result arriving after death).}

p. 144a performing shamanic services on behalf of mortal beings

"while outside the physical body, the sorcerer is able to perform healing work on patients by treating the energetic form of the patient’s projected spirit body as the patient sleeps.

The sorcerer who is Soul Projecting can also be guided to work with individuals who have died ... and deed to pass on [to the proper worlds for souls of the dead to wait in, between incarnations]. In this type of "work," the sorcerer assists as a spiritual guide ... .

Additionally, while outside the physical body, a sorcerer can sometimes assist another individual in having an out of body experience. ... .

... a sorcerer who is Soul Projecting can observe the spirit body of an animal hovering above its physical tissues as it sleeps. ... an animal can Soul Project."


II.12. (pp. 144b-51) Stages of Spiritual Development

pp. 144b-5a possessing-entities in spirit-mediumship




"his or her physical body can still be possessed and controlled by ... an ... entity (known as "demon possession")."

{To insult thusly the great deities who speak through the mouths of inspired prophets surely will result in severe punishment.}


"An individual who is constantly being influenced ... is viewed as being either oppressed or possessed by an evil spirit such as a Nature Spirit, Elemental".

{According to Siberian shamanism any such "oppression" is well-deserved, a result of needless obstinate resistance to the divine will of the divine possessing –entity. To characterize Nature-Spirits and Elemental-Spirits as "evil" will surely result in being severely punished (either now or after death).}

p. 146a spirit-guides; thought-forms

"At this stage, the individual can carry on ... as a Spirit Guide/Helper." {"Spirit-guides" / "spirit-helpers" are typically immortal deities, which no mortal human can become.}

"free of the influences of psychic attacks initiated from thought forms". {The only "psychic attacks" which can ever occur of those which are richly deserved by the victim of them. Human "thought-forms" do not tend to have any such effect, the "attacks" being initiated by deities (who have been apprised of the circumstances involved) instead.}

pp. 150b-1a various allegations

p. 150b

"Death of the Physical Body : ... After separating from the physical body, an individual feels as if he or she is living within a dream state."

{Would "feels" imply an awareness having the nature of a "lucid dream"?}


"Death of the Energetic Body : ... It is during this death that the deceased individual must release all energetic and emotional attachments to the people, places, or things that were significant to him or her during that specific incarnation."

{If those "people, places, or things" were saints, sacred sites, and sacred objects, what is the energetic and emotional attachment to be released?}

p. 151a

"During the "third and final death," the eternal soul discards the spirit body."

{Can one exist formlessly?}


Jerry Alan Johnson : Daoist Magical Transformation Skills : Training in Daoist Magic from the Zheng Yi School. Temple of the Celestial Cloud, Pacific Grove (CA), 2006.

N.B. Anyone initiated into any oriental religion will be assigned a name in that religion’s language, with instruction to use it in every context regarding that religion. The author’s reluctance to mention any such name can perhaps be assigned to an intransigent resistance to it; which resistance (looking very much like deep contempt, especially when taking into account the author’s frequent general disparagement of the great deities of the religion which he allegeth to be upholding) may well be due to dope-addiction or the like (rather than to any deliberate ill-will). Or is it all a stylized mode of artificial literary affectation?