Mahavairocana Buddha seated on a golden lotus flower , by Unkei, 13th C, Japan

6. Signs of Verification of Turning Around the Light

1. Master Lu (Dongbin) said, there are many signs of verification. These signs cannot appear if one only works for oneself; one must have a desire to help other people to reach the other shore. One cannot receive these signs if one does not have a high valuation, does not relinquish arrogance and does not practice the teaching.

2. When there is uninterrupted continuity in quietude, a sense of joy appears as if one is intoxicated or freshly bathed. This is a sign that yang energy is harmonious in the whole body; then the Golden Flower begins to bud. Once the ten-thousand flutes are all silent, and the bright moon is in mid sky, one has the feeling that this great earth is a world of light and brightness. This is a sign that the heart is open and the Golden Flower is blooming.

3. Furthermore, the whole body feels strong and firm so that it fears neither storm nor frost. Situations that for other people are just commonplace moments, make my vital spirit shine even brighter, when I meet them. This is like a house built of yellow gold with a terrace of white jade. Mortal things in this world become alive again with my one breath of true energy. Red blood becomes milk. The seven foot-tall physical body is like a pure golden treasure. That is a sign that the Golden Flower is crystallized.

4. The first stage of verification corresponds to the signs mentioned in the Amitayurdhyana Sutra (The Contemplation sutra), which include the setting sun, the great body of water, and the trees in rows. The setting of the sun means that in chaos (non-polarized condition - 「无极 wu-chi」) the foundation is set up. Highest good is like water, pure and spotless. It is the ruler of the great polarity (太极 tai-chi) the emperor emerging from the East (the direction of the trigram Zhen ☳ - Thunder). Zhen is also symbolized by wood, so the sutra represents it with the image of a row of trees. A sevenfold row of trees represents the light of the seven apertures.

5. The second stage means setting up the foundation on this. The whole earth becomes a jewel ground of ice crystals; the light gradually solidifies. Therefore a great terrace arises and then the Buddha appears upon it. When the golden essence appears who is it but the Buddha? For the Buddha is the golden immortal of great awakening. This is a verification of the second stage.            

6. Now there are three signs of verification that can be tested. The first is that, when one has entered the state of meditation, it is like one`s spirit is in a valley. When one hears someone else talking, it is as if one hears it from about half a kilometer away, yet clearly. It sounds like an echo in a valley. One definitely hears it and yet it is not oneself that hears it. This is the state of the spirit in the valley. One can verify this at any time.

7. At times the following can be experienced: in the state of quietness, one`s vision becomes hazy, because of too much brightness. It`s like opening one’s eyes while being in a cloud and one doesn`t see one`s body any more. This is called: the empty chamber produces white (light). Inside and outside, are permeated with light. This is a very favorable sign.

8. The third experience is when in the state of quietness, the energy of the physical body becomes soft and pure like silk or jade. It feels as though one is floating upward and cannot stay sitting. This is the spirit returning to heaven above. Eventually, after a long time, one is able to ascend there.                  

9. Although these three experiences can be verified now, it is not possible to explain them completely. Each person has his own particular verifications according to his faculties and capacities. This is what the Buddhist text Stopping and Observing calls the emerging manifestations of good roots.  Verifying these things is like when drinking water, only oneself knows whether the water is warm or cold. In the same way one can only rely on oneself to see the truth of these experiences.  

10. If you have verified the prenatal energy from your own experience, you gain this energy, and then the elixir, which is also called the real millet pearl immediately crystalizes. One pill returns, and then another pill, going from vagueness to clarity. There is prenatal energy in every moment, which is called a pill, and there is also the general prenatal energy, which extends from one pill to infinity. One pill has it`s own power. Above all, it relies on a strong will.