meditation golden flowerTaoism includes a number of meditative and contemplative traditions (described in the I Ching, Tao Te Ching, Chuang Tzu and Tao Tsang among other texts). The multitude of schools relating to Qigong, Neigong, Internal alchemy, Daoyin and Zhan zhuang is a large, diverse array of breath-training practices in aid of meditation. Taiji Quan is often referred to as “meditation in motion”.

  • Neigong: also spelled Nei Kung, neigung, or nae gong, is any of a set of Chinese breathing, meditation and spiritual practice disciplines associated with Daoism and especially the Chinese martial arts. Neigong practice is normally associated with the so called “soft style”, “internal” or nèijiā 內家 ( )
  • Neidan: also known as internal alchemy or spiritual alchemy (內丹術 – nèi dān shù Traditional Chinese, 內丹术 – Simplified Chinese) is a concept in Taoist Chinese alchemy. It is a series of physical, mental, and spiritual disciplines intended to prolong the life of the body and create an immortal spiritual body that would survive after death.

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  • Daoyin: “guiding and pulling” typically represented by the Eight Length of Brocade and the Five Animal Plays, and other types of moving or dynamic Qi Gong. In practice, the entire body moves from one posture to another, or a posture is held while the four limbs move through various positions in correlation with certain breathing methods, and special meditative techniques, designed to dispatch negative energies and enhance positive energies. (Qigong Fever. David A. Palmer)
  • Zhan zhuang: (Chinese: 站桩, lit. “standing like a post” , sometimes called “standing like a tree”, “post standing” or “pile standing”) is a method of training in many Chinese martial arts in which static postures are used for physical training, to develop efficiency of movement, perfection of structural alignment; and hence maximal strength, for martial applications. It is most often practiced among the internal Chinese styles such as tai chi chuan. Possibly the most well-known example of zhan zhuang training is the “horse stance” or ma bu 馬步. ( )