For example, Chapter 1, within the circa 3rd century BCE "Inner Chapters", has two portrayals. Lieh Tzu could ride the wind and go soaring around with cool and breezy skill, but after fifteen days he came back to earth.As far as the search for good fortune went, he didn't fret and worry.Things will live naturally end of themselves." Cloud Chief said, "The Heavenly Master has favored me with this Virtue, instructed me in this Silence.All my life I have been looking for it, and now at last I have it!"But when they have drunk too much, Their deportment becomes light and frivolous—They leave their seats, and [遷] go elsewhere, They keep [僊僊] dancing and capering." (tr.
This section chronologically reviews how Chinese texts describe xian "immortals; transcendents".Wu and Davis (194) suggested the source was jinn, or jinni "genie" (from Arabic جني jinnī)."The marvelous powers of the Hsien are so like those of the jinni of the Arabian Nights that one wonders whether the Arabic word, jinn, may not be derived from the Chinese Hsien." Axel Schuessler's etymological dictionary (207) suggests a Sino-Tibetan connection between xiān (Old Chinese *san or *sen) "'An immortal' ...Xian (仙) occurs in the Chunqiu Fanlu, Fengsu Tongyi, Qian fu lun, Fayan, and Shenjian; xian (僊) occurs in the Caizhong langji, Fengsu Tongyi, Guanzi, and Shenjian. Undo the mind, slough off spirit, be blank and soulless, and the ten thousand things one by one will return to the root—return to the root and not know why.Two circa 3rd century BCE "Outer Chapters" of the Zhuangzi (莊子 "[Book of] Master Zhuang") use the archaic character xian 僊. Dark and undifferentiated chaos—to the end of life none will depart from it.men and women who attain supernatural abilities; after death they become immortals and deities who can fly through the air" and Tibetan gšen The word xiān is written with three characters 僊, 仙, or 仚, which combine the logographic "radical" rén (人 or 亻 "person; human") with two "phonetic" elements (see Chinese character classification).The oldest recorded xiān character 僊 has a xiān ("rise up; ascend") phonetic supposedly because immortals could "ascend into the heavens".Paper (19) writes, "the function of the term xian in a line describing dancing may be to denote the height of the leaps.Since, "to live for a long time" has no etymological relation to xian, it may be a later accretion." The 121 CE Shuowen Jiezi, the first important dictionary of Chinese characters, does not enter 仙 except in the definition for 偓佺 (Wò Quán "name of an ancient immortal").While the early Zhuangzi, Chuci, and Liezi texts allegorically used xian immortals and magic islands to describe spiritual immortality, later ones like the Shenxian zhuan and Baopuzi took immortality literally and described esoteric Chinese alchemical techniques for physical longevity.On one the hand, neidan (內丹 "internal alchemy") techniques included taixi (胎息 "embryo respiration") breath control, meditation, visualization, sexual training, and Tao Yin exercises (which later evolved into Qigong and T'ai chi ch'uan).