The Three Stages in Meditation

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Posted by True Buddha ( on October 30, 2000 at 00:21:33:

By the time you have no thought ever arising in your meditation,
all of your affinity and causation have completely disappeared.
You can not even know where you are yourself. This is a first
stage in meditation. It is called "the Heaven entering the Earth", or
"everything returning to its root". The responses both in body and
in mind come and go alternately, sometimes rising and sometimes
falling, like in the void, your boundless body ascending to Heaven.
Sometimes you feel that you are surrounded by thousands of
layers of clouds. In the dark, you come and go without a trace,
even your shadow nowhere to be found.

The Taoists would say that this is "true air stream going up to the
brow point". When your spiritual lights gather at the top, right at
the brow point, you naturally feel triumphant and complacent.
This is the kind of state you are in during the first stage of
meditation, which comes by itself. This is a great liberation of the
body and mind--which is, in fact, "initial quietitude" of
"concentrated spirit entering the air stream". The longer you stay
at this stage, the more spiritual lights go to Huang Ting (three
centers of mind, heart and spleen) as nourishment, the more the
invisible lights accumulate. Gradually, the practitioner can go into
"initial quietituded" as soon as he sits straight. As far as I know,
the Taoist "initial quietitude" is roughly identical with the Fourth
Dhyana Heaven in Buddhism.

When you have cultivated well enough in the first stage, you enter
the second "absolute quietitude". By now, as an enormous amount
of the spiritual lights has accumulated, they can move, which is
called "the self-motion of spiritual lights" or "self-motion of brow
point". The self-motion, however, is different from self-motion
after death.

Their difference is:

Practitioner>>spiritual lights>>motion when alive>>living
spirit>>go to Heaven

Ordinary people>>soul>>motion when dead>>dead soul>> go to

For people who practice meditation and who have realized the
spiritual lights beginning to move when they are still alive; this is
living original spirit. Original spirits with self-mastery certainly will
go to Heaven. For ordinary people, the souls are dead when they
are alive, and start moving when they die. So they are not masters
of themselves and will certainly go to Hell. Such is the essential
difference between practitioners and laymen. This is also what I
meant when I said "Without cultivation, one remains a ghost." in
the Preface.

During the second stage, in the state of "self-motion of the brow
point", you can understand what Lao Tzu meant by "doing
without action". Since the brow point moves by itself,not by any
action, it is self-motion without action, or "motion without
intention". Doing without action" by Lao Tzu is not intelligible to
ordinary people.

When you reach that state, however, understanding comes by
itself--the brow point lights start moving without our asking them
to do so, so it it intent without intention, "doing without action". I
believe my readers understand by now. This motion is the cream
of the 5000 Word Moral Text by Lao Tzu. No one can understand
it without meditation.

When the spiritual lights at the brow point move, your whole body
is luminous. Even if you sit meditating in the darkest room at
night, it will be bright as day. The Taoist teachings describe it by
"Direct the eyes to the palace of water to receive the best from the
Sun." At this point, without your intent, the spiritual lights dazzle
everything--the sun and the moon can be reversed, time is turned
backward--you can see your previous lives. You acquire the five
transcendental faculties of a Buddha--the ability to know the
former lives of yourself and others, the Divine Eye, capable of
seeing anything at a distance, the Divine Ear, capable of hearing
any sound at any distance, the ability to know others thoughts, the
ability to go anywhere at will and to transform oneself of objects
into anything at will. There is nothing strange about the appearing
of these five transcendental faculties. Some monks try to find
faulets with transcendental powers. Ther is nothing wrong with
transcendental powers, for they are generated by themselves in
meditation when the spiritual lights at the brow point start moving.
They are "doings without action", "intent without intention" by
self-motion of the spiritual lights. Some monks criticize them for
two reasons:

One, they are afraid that laymen will cultivate these powers,
"putting the cart before the horse".

Two, these monks are unqualified monks who know nothing about
transcendental powers as they have not reached this stage.

I tell my readers honestly that the Buddha says: "The mind is
generated when it is free from any thought of attachment." That
means "doing without action". "The mind is generated when it is
free from any thought of attachment." is an important teaching in
the Diamond Sutra, which means the same thing as "the
self-motion of spiritual lights at the brow point". By now, my
readers probably have understood everything.

I am not foul-mouthed by nature; much less do I want to curse
monks, since they represent the Buddha, one of the Three Jewels.
They are also said to represent "cleanness". I should not use
abusive language about them in any event. However, there are
times when I could not curtail myself and I do let loose a torrent of
abuse. I am not going to curse the high-ranking monks or true
Taoist priests; I respect them and prostrate before them. It is the
secular monks and heretic priests that I want to curse. There are
unpromising monks who also practice sorcery and play dirty tricks.
I simply cannot stand that, because they are defecating on the
Buddha's head! My comments on and curses of them are not
sinful, but meritorious!

These secular monks and heretic priests should read this book. If
there is anything they don't understand, they should come and ask
me. They should cultivate sincerely and honestly. They should not
go round asking for huge sums of money, alms-book in hand, just
on account fo their bald head, instead of on account of the merit
of their practice. They are only interested in building temples, or
concerned with business from morning til night. They renounced
home life, but don't keep the precepts. All this is infuriating! The
secular monks should be pushed down on the floor before the
patriarchs and given a sound beating of 500 planks, naked. It
makes one sick to see these sanctimonious monks running wild

There are also cross-eyed heretics, such as Lin Yun and Cai
Cao-qi and the like, and offsprings of masters and demons with
some supernatural tricks, who should read this book as they are
totally ignorant of meditation for luminosity. They should cleanse
their heart, repent and stop fooling people with witchcraft and
sorcery. They should wake up, stop harming people, and start
practicing genuine teachings to avoid karmic retributions. My
reprimand stems from my profound loving kindness. If you
stubbornly cling to your evil practice, you are unworthy of my
repeated persuasion with good intentions to save suffering beings.
If you have any questions, please contact me by correspondence,
and I will certainly give you detailed instructions to guide you to

Honestly, I don't want to use such abusive language to them, and I
could have let them go in the endless cycle of life and deathhhhh.
But a Bodhisattva has the aspiration for supreme enlightenment for
the welfare of all. If I don't succour them from the karmic cycle,
who will? This is our meditation for luminosity, a doctrine for
salvaging the dead and protecting the living. If I don't teach them,
or don't save them, my Bodhicitta will never be at ease. Is this my
selfishness? If I concealed the doctrine today, I would not be a
Bodhisattva! I used bad language, at the risk of my life, in order to
save them.

Going further for "self-motion of the brow point" and "doing
without action", you reach the third stage of meditation: the
"amalgamation of Heaven and Man". At this stage, your mind is
attached to nothing; it is called "brow point bathing". "Bathing"
here is wondrous, meaning that the individual is completely
merged with Heaven and Earth, realizing all Dharmas. By now all
your karmic hindrances are expelled by the illumination of
Heavenly lights, and as a result, you attain full enlightenment. This
is the ultimate revelation from meditation. This chapter tells
practitioners everything about "meditation for luminosity".
Whether it is the Taoist "ultimate void", the "correct thought" of
the Pure Land Sect or the "spiritual lights" of the Esoteric school,
they are all realized without exception. I have disclosed the secret
of secrets. If sentient beings do not wake up after this, there will
be nothing else that can cure them.

I make the following distinctions once again:

Stage I: Initial tranquility, when the spirit is concentrated at the
brow point.

Stage II: Absolute tranquility, the brow point moves by
itself--doing without action

Stage III: Amalgamation, the brow point bathes and everything is

By Stage II, you begin to have transcendental powers. By Stage
III, when all karmic hindrances are eradicated, you begin to have
the ability to destroy all evil passions. Now you are a fully
qualified Buddha, never to return to the six lower states of

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