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Opening the Dragon Gate: The Making of a Modern Taoist Wizard [Kindle Edition]

Chen Kaiguo , Zheng Shunchao , Thomas Cleary
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This authorized biography of the contemporary Taoist expert Wang Liping (1949 -) tells the true story of his apprenticeship in Taoist wizardry, as well as Taoist principles and secrets of inner transformation.

The 18th-generation transmitter of Dragon Gate Taoism, Wang Liping is heir to a tradition of esoteric knowledge and practice accumulated and refined over eleven centuries. This is the first English translation by noted writer Thomas Cleary of the authorized biography by two longtime disciples of this living master of the Dragon Gate branch of the Complete Reality school of Taoism, which integrated Buddhism and Confucianism into a comprehensive new form of Taoism.

Product Description


This text presents a biograpy of Wang Liping, the 18th generation transmitter of Dragon Gate Taoism, heir to a tradition of esoteric knowledge and practice accumulated and refined over 11 centuries.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
One of the few books you can get that is a translation of a contemory Chinese book about daoism. As such, it is worth reading. It will give you a good background into what daoists 'get up to', or at least what the average Chinese person thinks they get up to. Wang Liping is a real person. A lot of people think he is genuine daoist master, on the other hand the newspapers in China have criticised him as been a fake. Make up your own mind.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Opening the Dragon Gate 27 Dec. 2005
The story line of this book centres completely on the training of a modern day Tao Wizard. It covers the period during the Little Red Book Revolution. If anyone is in doubt about the continuation of Taoism or even wishes to learn the philosophy relating to the Tao this book will certainly steer you in the right direction.
The book has many eye opening situations, clearly explained which definitely holds the readers attention. It is a book that can be read and re-read and one that will not collect dust on your library shelf.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A life lived differently.. 26 April 2015
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
amazing story..
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 16 Sept. 2014
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  28 reviews
83 of 86 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite a good tale... 20 Aug. 2002
By Zentao - Published on
This is a similar book to Deng Ming Dao's "Wandering Daoist" only the story of Wang Liping's training is not embellished in the manner of Saihung. Although I'm sure the average western practitioner of Qigong will likely shake his/her head regarding some of the 'training' methods used by the three old masters it is a good reminder of what one used to have to (and perhaps still should?) undergo before getting into serious practice. It is interesting how, right from the start, Wang Liping demonstrated many qualities essential to following the Tao including great patience and humility.
The book follows his initial training including stints in a hole in the ground and under a large cast-iron kettle. It then follows his journery with his masters into the mountains just as the Cultural Revolution began to sweep across China. Along the way many lessons are imparted including some interesting methods of cultivating with trees. The main portion of the story ends with Wang Liping's return to his village and subsequent marriage (!) as his masters admonish him to carry on the way in a form suitable for the new age.
The book finishes with some commentary on Wang Liping's present activities including some stories from his group training sessions - some of the first held in China as strict controls on Qigong began to be lifted.
I enjoyed the story as well as the information contained in here. There are some great views on meditation, including the aforementioned tree style, in addition to the overview of his training. There are also some very interesting tidbits about the location of the lower Dantien shifting in relation to the cultivator's distance from the equator. There is also an interesting comment that there are meridians within the body that are not terminated - that is, they are open to the universe.
73 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Personal Experience 15 May 2001
By A Customer - Published on
After reading this book, I had the fortune to meet a long time student of Wang LiPing and to study with this student for two years. He taught many of the techniques spoken of in the book and demonstrated a number of them. My teacher is now studying with a Buddhist master and has no vested interest in supporting Wang LiPing, however he vouched that Wang LiPing in fact demonstrated to him and many other students in china many of the techniques discussed in the book such as the weather changing, dream control and so forth. There were also a number of other things not discussed in the book. At any rate, based on my experiences with the techniques and based on my teacher's abilities and his stories of studying with Wang LiPing, this book is a true account of what Wang LiPing went through.
As for the way it is written, I found it to be mostly fascinating but it doesnt have the prose that Deng Ming Dao's books have and so it is difficult reading in certain places. On the other hand, this account is a true story, unlike Deng Ming Dao's trilogy and so if you are truly interested in Taoism this book is a must.
82 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When you are ready, this book will appear on your shelf ... 2 Nov. 2000
By Dan Ai - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is not the how-to book that some are looking for. It's a book of signs pointing the way, or should I say, The Way. I noticed that some of the reviewers couldn't get past the paint on the sign, checking the spelling and doubting the distances. The story of Wang, Li-ping opens the realm of possbilities inherent in traditional Taoist study to those who have not gotten there because of lack of opportunity or other personal reasons. It is therefore an inspiration for anyone who believes that there is no ceiling in the realm of human accomplishment and no end to the Tao. There IS solid information here on Taoist practice and it has elevated me personally to new levels. (I also thought it was entertaining and beautifully written -- there is some descriptive writing which is on the level of poetry). I consider this book a gift from the authors and I thank them.
34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, eccentric 21 Dec. 2000
By Angus - Published on
If you're intertested in Taoism this is worth a look. It purports to be a tale of four accomplished Taoists on the road during the Cultural Revolution, and is more fun in part because of its claims to truth. I would give it three stars, but for some reason can't change it from five - has Wang Liping co-opted my computer through his mastery of distant Chi transmission (hmmm...)?
35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will augment your present understanding of Taoism 29 Sept. 1999
By A Customer - Published on
This is the story of Wang Liping, a young boy who was taken on by three Taoist wizards as the transmitter of the Dragon Gate sect of the Complete Reality school of Taoism. This depicts the training that Wang Liping must complete to become the next transmitter of the Way. I can not attest to the veracity of all the claims made in the book. Some will surely think they are too fanciful to be true. I don't really care to get caught up in that argument. The real beauty of the book can be found in the way it brings the highest principles of Taoism to life with the use of anecdotes from the adventures and trials of Wang Liping and the three Taoist wizards. Although this book can be read and even understood without a solid background in Taoism, it can really only be fully appreciated by someone who has already delved deeply into Taoism. Even if one is not a Taoist or particularly interested in Taoism, this book is still a fascinating way to learn more than a little about Chinese history and traditional Chinese culture. One of the few books that I actually read from cover to cover.
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