Han Xian-zi quan-z^uan, cap. 2-4

"The complete story of" (p. xv) Han Xian-zi


pp. 25-37 – 2. "Seeking Escape from Samsara; Discussing Astrology & Physiognomy"

pp. 27-28 redincarnation of crane-boy




"The crane boy ... had no choice but to swallow the golden elixir pill, which transformed him into an immortality peach. ...

Han Hui’s wife, Mme. Zheng ... dreamt that as the sun rose in the east like a precious mirror in the sky, an immortal crane came flying down; in its beak it carried an immortality peach, which it let fall into her womb. Beside her there appeared in a flash


of light a Daoist wearing a green headcloth and a cotton gown and carrying a precious sword on his shoulder. In a loud voice he called out, "Mme. Zheng, wife of Han Hui, I am Master Two Mouths. ["A pun on Master Lu: surname ... which is written in Chinese with two kou ("mouth" ...) characters, one on top of the other." (p. 459, n. 2:1)] I have received an imperial decree to give you this immortality peach for a son. ... I send you a son ..., ... later he will ride the wind to the Nine Heavens.""

p. 26 this manifestation was to the "Han family of Changli County of Yongping Prefecture."

p. 29 bodily proportions of son of Han Hui & Mme. Z^en

his __



were so long that they touched his shoulders"


reached further than his knees"

pp. 29-30 song sung by Daoist master Lu: on a fisher drum ["The "fisher drum" (yugu ...) is long and fairly narrow bamboo tube, covered with leather at its ends" (p. 459, n. 2:2)] to the tune of "Cassia Fragrance"




"Crane Boy, ... I delivered you to Changli last year ... .


... Later you will ascend to the Purple Empyrean,


And your name will be engraved in the Grotto Court of Heaven. ...


Originally you were a guest in Great Veil Heaven,


From whose jade-paved streets you descended".

pp. 31-32 prognostication by a Daoist chanter (master Lu:)




" "You will pass sixteen uneventful years before you look for me in the Zhongnan Mountains. When your merit is full, you will ascend to the Jade Emperor’s capital, and assist your family below. ...

People call me Master Two Mouths, and that’s my name. ..." ...


From behind the screen, Mme. Zheng whispered to Han Hui, "Could this Master Two Mouths be the divine immortal from the dream?" ...


But the Daoist spread out his sleeves and vanished in a ray of golden light. He left behind the fisher drum, which stood up straight on the floor. ...


On its bottom, lustrous as jade, was written "Master Chunyang."" ["Chunyang (Pure yang) is another name of the immortal Lu: Dongbin." (p. 460, n. 2:3)]

p. 34 description by a fortune-teller (master Lu:)


"Gengshen is the position of the white monkey sitting on the immortality peach tree.


Jimao denotes the jade rabbit returning to the Penglai Isles of the Immortals.


Xinyou means the golden chicken entering the Sun Palace.


Jiawu is the simurgh flying to the Jade Palace."


"By the age of twenty, he will have had his name entered in the Purple Office and at the Jasper Pool;

all of his relatives will achieve perfection, and

the whole family will attain divine status."


"Currently the owner of these eight characters is undergoing the effects of a ‘tomb store’ fate constellation;

as a result ... his tongue mute".

p. 34 degrees (ranking) of immortals

"celestial immortals,

terrestrial immortals,

divine immortals,

ghost immortals, and

-- at the lowest rank – the so-called obtuse immortals.

[" "Obtuse immortals" (wanxian ...)" are mentioned in, e.g., "a work on calligraphy from the Tang dynasty, the Fashu yaolu" (p. 460, n. 2:9).]

How could there be a mute immortal?"

{[Skt.] /muni/ (e.g., S`akya-muni) is a "mute immortal"}

p. 35 description by a physiognomist (master Z^on)

"His earlobes hang down to his shoulders;

purple mist coils around him.

His hands extend below his knees;

a golden light is manifest.

... he will certainly become an immortal of the Penglai Isles."

p. 37 instructions by the 2 masters

" "Here is a pill. Tomorrow at the fifth watch, have the young gentleman take it with some ‘rootless water’. [" "Rootless water" (wugenshui ...)" (p. 460, n. 2:12)] He will then be able to speak." ...

Into Xiangzi’s ear they whispered ... :

"... Crane Boy, ... you will be sure to ascend to the Isles of the Immortals soon.""

p. 37 a poe:m

"a wind will convey you to the Pavilion of King Teng,

"Wang Bo ... (649-76) in his famous prose piece "Preface to the Pavilion of King Teng"" (p. 460, n. 2:13)]

But ... lightning will destroy the Stele of Recommended Blessings."

["a famous stele at Jianfu (Recommended Blessings) Monastery ..., ... the stele was destroyed by lightning." (p. 460, n. 2:14)]


pp. 38-48 – 3. "Name on Tigre Placard; Wedding-Cup in Nuptial Chambre"

p. 38 similes for honors


simile for it

"Riches and rank

are like dew on a twig,

Success in the examinations

like a bubble on water.

Gold at your girdle and robes of purple

-- these are as halters for a horse,

And a rope through your nose

won’t be far behind."

p. 40 the 1st public speech (after renouncing voluntary muteness) by Xian-zi

"Ever since I swallowed the Daoist’s pill {cf. holy communion},

I’ve understood the shrinking and growing of yin and yang,

the waxing and waning of sun and moon,

the prosperity and decay of ages,

the successes and defeats of ancient and present times.

... blessed places and grotto-heavens are right in front of me.

... one should aim ... to become a divine immortal. ...

One day I will master the arts of the divine immortals;

Then you too will believe in the perfection of the numinous elixir."

p. 41 powers of the erudite

"The learned man ... eats roasted phoenix and boiled dragon ... .

He has only to shout and the waters of the Yellow River will flow upstream.

He has only to laugh and the flowers ... will overflow and fill the forests."

p. 44 diviners’ almanacs

Shortcuts to the Almanac

Encyclopaedia for Choosing Days

Marriage Charts of the 9 Heavens

Universal Marriage Kalendar

Yin-Yan Charts

Expose’ of the Hidden Jia

Scripture of Marriage

Yellow Registre Litourgy

p. 45 benefits in properly-selected date for marriage (of son)

"The joy of Heaven will arrive at the gate, and a precious star will illuminate the household. Prospects for official honors and the blessed virtue of the Purple Empyrean all come together on this day. After the completion of this wedding, your son will certainly be adorned with the precious jade ornaments of officialdom, ascend the phoenix pavilions and dragon towers of the high ministers, amass riches greater than mountains of copper and seas of pearls."

p. 46 metaphors for a married couple

"pair-eyed fish"

"trees whose branches interlock"

"mandarin ducks sleep with their necks entwined"

"jian birds combine their wings to fly."


pp. 49-64 – 4. "On Gold Sprinkle Bridge; on Sleeping Tigre Mountain"

p. 49 isles of Pen-lai

"The Three isles of Penglai are my home; ... there are revealed to me

Ten thousand miles of misty clouds ... jasper grasses and extraordinary petals. ...

And in my grotto appears the white deer with a flower in its mouth."

pp. 49, 51 the 2 immortals at Gold Sprinkle Bridge

p. 49 at eastern side of bridge, a Daoist

"with a leopard-like head ...,

a back like a tiger’s,

a torso like a bear’s ... .

This hair was parted in a yin-yang fashion, and

he wore a gown of black silk.

In his hands he held a steel flute."

p. 51 a Daoist on western side of bridge

"On his head he had a Nine Yang cloth and

he wore a yellow gown trimmed with crane feathers."

pp. 51-52 self-descriptions by the 2 immortals at Gold Sprinkle Bridge

p. 51 by Z^on-li Quan, immortal at east side of bridge

p. 52 by "Master Two Mouths", immortal at west side of bridge

"I resigned by duties and withdrew into seclusion in the Zhongnan Mountain, where I studied the Dao with the imperial Lord of eastern Florescence until I gained entry to the ranks of the immortals."

"I met my future teacher Zhongli under a weeping willow at the Yellow Flower Store, ... outside the city of Handan. ... So he transformed a coarse rush mat into the underworld, complete with the Ten Great Yama Kings, who placed my luminous perfect nature inside a bottle gourd."

p. 56 one’s achievements in the process of attaining immortality

"You will learn how to spit out the impure and take in the pure,

how to feed on clouds and swallow pneuma.

You will ascend to Heaven into broad daylight and

proceed to the peach immortality banquet.

White hair will become black again; lost teeth will grow back.

You will dwell together with the sun and moon, and

live forever without aging."

p. 56 poe:m on concentrating one’s spirit

"ordinary mortals should ask me

About immortality peaches, clouds and mists and rosy hazes.

I ... speak ... of the fire phase hidden behind the brow;

... of the golden lotus planted in my hand. ...

On a dragon I travel afar to the Three Isles."

p. 57 qualities of categories of immortals

"__ Immortals"

are those __


"whose yin-spirit is most numinous and who have no form".


"who live in the human world without disease or aging."


"who do not suffer thirst or hunger, are unaffected by heat or cold, roam the Three Isles, and live forever without dying."


"who fly through the sky and walk on the mists, journey thorough regions beyond this world, are here one moment and gone the next, and engage in countless transformations."


"whose spirit and form are equally marvelous, who exist in harmonious perfection with the Dao, walk under sun and moon without throwing a shadow, go through metal and rock without hindrance, have many transformations, and are hard to grasp, whether hidden or manifest; they appear sometimes as old, sometimes as young. They are the most sacred and divine, unknowable to ghost immortals, unfathomable by milfoil and tortoise shell divination."

pp. 58-59 cultivating perfection during the 5 watches of the night






"The Dragon coils round the Golden Tripod;

The Tiger blocks the Gate of the Yellow Court".



"Once the Young Boy and the Lovely Maid reach the Yellow Matron,

Naturally they form a pair".



"The Dragon and Snake at the bottom of the sea

Will naturally come to coil around each other".



"The Child is in the Womb,

And a rosy light shines then thousand fathoms high.


In this position is created the Mysterious Pearl."



"The golden rooster crows in its cage.

The weary youth claps his hands and laughs out loud."

pp. 59-60 cultivating perfection during the 5 watches of the night, according to the "lyric to the tune "Parasol Tree""






"The mind monkey and will horse must be firmly tied up. ...

Open the Gate of Heaven, while the Door of Earth is closed."



"Throughout the universe,

A ray of numinous light gradually penetrates.

Dragon and Tiger first unite in copulation".



"the Gold Tripod comes to join the Jade Tripod.

You refine True Mercury and Lead;

Wu and ji unite in Primordial Redness.

In the Tripod the Golden Flower reverberates."



"The moon stands in the sky,

A jade mirror suspended on high, reflecting every place equally.

Reflected in it, you see the reddening of the Eastern Sea.

As you fetch water beyond the mountain, there is great noise".



"Everywhere the jasper flowers form, ...

Red snow falls from the primordial mists".

pp. 63-64 "lyric to the tune "Golden Oriole""




"He tightly binds up the mind monkey,

Lets his pneuma revolve through the Three Passes,


And delves into the Yellow Court Scripture. ...

Suddenly he sees that ox charging,

It nose reared towards Heaven,

Giving a load roar. ...


In the realm of the Elixir field,

Make sure the grain blossoms."


Yang Erzeng (trans. by Philip Clart) : The Story of Han Xiangzi. U of WA Pr, Seattle, 2007.