Wang Chuyi

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The Life of Wang Chuyi ( 王處一 Wang Chuyi ) (1142-1217)

Wang Chuyi's alternate name was Yu Yangzi (it is also said he was named Yu Yang, with his assumed name as Quan Yangzi or Hua Yangzi). He was from Ninghai (present-day Muping, Shangdong Province). In the 7th year of Dading in the Jin Dynasty (1168 AD), he acknowledged Wang Chongyang as his master, lived in seclusion for a long time in the Yanxia Cave of Mt. Kunyu, and refined his bodily life for nine years. At the time he was called 'Iron Foot Gentleman'. In the 28th year of Dading (1188 AD), he accepted the call of the first Emperor Shizong of the Jin Dynasty, and went to the royal palace to host the ritual offerings of the Wanchun Festival ( 萬春節 Wanchun Jie ). In his life, Wang founded the Yushan Sect of the Complete Perfection Tradition ( 全真道 Quanzhen Dao ), and after his death the emperor conferred him the title 'Jade Sun Perfect Man Who Realizes Mystery and Universal Salvation ( 玉陽體玄廣度真人 Yuyang Tixuan Guangdu Zhenren ). 18. He was one of the Seven Perfect Ones of the North ( 北七真 Beiqizhen ), and served as the Head Daoist on imperial order.

His thought on Inner Alchemy

Following Wang Chongyang's thought, Wang Chuyi tried to preserve the concepts of Non-Interference ( 無為 Wuwei ) and the original comprehension of Dao as the essence of Daoism. He stressed that a real Daoist should utterly abandon earthly and physical desires, and cultivate the inner mind and spiritual essence, which he called 'cultivate spiritual nature and accumulate the spirit into one Vital Breath ( 氣 Qi )'. He thought cultivation of Dao required 'absolute sincerity', that is, perfect nature, perfect skills, and perfect practice of Dao.

His Works

  1. Essays of Clouds and Light ( 雲光集 Yunguang Ji )
  2. Essays of Purity and Perfection ( 清真集 Qingzhen Ji )
  3. Records of Mt. Hua, the Sacred Mount of the West ( 西獄華山志 Xiyue Huashan Zhi )


Wang Chuyi had a number of disciples. It was said on a tablet that 'his disciples were from more than six sects, and there were not less than sixty thousand of them.' The names of some of his disciples (Xie Daoshu, Zhu Jingyi, etc) could be found on the tablets.