Men who cultivate the jing in a conscious way become physically more radiant.
Does this sound far-fetched? First of all, let’s establish that the idea of “personal glow” is one that people already accept, without really thinking about it. It’s in our language, going way back to the Proto-Indo-European roots of English; and it’s very deeply embedded in our culture.
We say that a couples that have just fallen in love have “that glow.” Or that a woman who’s getting properly sexed at home “has a glow about her.” When someone gets good news, he’s “positively glowing,” we say. A happy bride on her wedding day is called “radiant.”
You can tell when someone is full of radiant energy, even when he is sitting still (i.e. the clues don’t just come from how energetically his body moves). This is all non-controversial, hopefully. Ever run into a friend who used to smoke and drink too much who had recently cleaned up his act? You can just tell he’s healthier without always being able to put your finger on it.
Many of the aspects of personal radiance are obvious, however, and they’re right on the surface. Healthier-looking skin is one of them. A radiant person has a healthier color in his face, but there’s often also a bright glow to it. Different than shininess or oiliness, this glowing skin is hard to define but nevertheless unmistakeable. Another aspect is livelier eyes, eyes that seem brighter. Whether a person has light-colored eyes or dark-colored eyes, when that person has “the glow” it’s almost as if the surrounding light were reflecting more brightly off the surface of the iris, giving the eyes a shining appearance.
Beyond the physical, there is a bright aura that surrounds “shining people.” At the times when I’ve been most steadily energetic and focused, I’ve been able to see fleeting glimpses of white shining light above the heads of particularly brilliant people (mostly women, but a few men as well). The light appears like rays, emanating from space a few inches above the crown. The “empty” air between the head and where the white rays begin appears almost like a vacuum to me, but in a positive way. Obviously it’s a hard thing to describe if you’ve not seen it. I also presume that everyone who can see such things sees them a bit differently (though maybe not; I don’t know actually).
The concept of auras is easy to laugh at (I used to laugh at it too until I experienced it), but it goes way, way back. Where do you think the concept of a halo comes from?
In Christian art, halos denote saints and holy figures.
The idea is that someone particularly saintly gives off an actual glow that is visible. This may be an artistic convention, but it did not come about by sheer chance.
I’ll write more in the future about the Christian tradition of celibacy and continence. It really deserves its own post (because it’s been grossly misunderstood in the last 50 years or so; and no, I’m not a Christian but yes, I am somebody who gets annoyed with gross misunderstandings of noble traditions). For now, I’ll just note that the concept of sexual chastity as a component of spiritual accomplishment goes way, way back in the Christian church, all the way back to its pre-Christian roots in Mithraism, Platonism, etc. The radiance that pours off of the Christian saints in paintings is just a little hint of what was really going on.
Of course, the Christians didn’t invent halos. They just observed them and put their own, Jesus-believing spin on them. Westerners are most familiar with the Christian version of the halo. But check these out.
Egyptian (the halos denote gods):
Roman (emperors gave themselves god-halos on their own coins):
Chinese (some Daoist saints who were definitely cultivating the jing!):
Hindu and Buddhist icons (from India and elsewhere, but based in the same original Vedic philosophy):
And finally, some modern interpretations/mashups:
I’ll also add that many poetic and religious written sources reference the radiance and glow of the “best” characters in the book. For example, Achilles is the mightiest warrior in the Iliad, and he is constantly described as “radiant Achilles,” “bright Achilles,” “shining Achilles,” and his hair is always called “fiery” (and not just for color but for its glowing quality), and his armor and helmet are always “gleaming”, and he’s described as a burning meteor or shooting star shining brightly as he hurtles across the fields of Troy spilling bodies left and right.
How to Get a Halo
In Chinese form-based metaphysics — Daoism, essentially — the body contains three kinds of vital energy, each more subtle than the one before. The grossest energy is the jing. Jing is not exactly the same thing as semen, but when you lose semen, you lose jing. Women have jing too, so you can see it’s not the same thing as semen. But Jing is related to the physcial vitality of the gross body (blood, bones, skin, muscles, organs, etc). It contains within it the essence of more life, i.e. reproduction — hence the relationship between jing and both the semen (in men) and the menses (in women). If you want a shorthand for what the jing is, just call it the semen plus the basic hormones produced in the pituitary and hypothalamus: the most subtle and potent distillations that your body can create.
Jing that “builds up” over time is transmuted into qi. Qi (or “ch’i” or “chi” or even “ki” in some transliterations of the Chinese) is the most famous of these three energies, and though it’s difficult to translate, “life force” is a pretty good approximation.
[I put “builds up” in quotes in reference to the jing, because I really hate the totally incorrect idea we have in the West that if you don’t release your semen, it builds up like water behind a dam and sooner or later the dam will burst. This is the “hydraulic model” of sex popularized by the Freudians, and it’s horribly inaccurate and has caused a lot of retardedness in the last 100 years.]
“Cultivate” is a better term for what happens when you store the jing and it transmutes into qi. All living beings have qi flowing through their bodies at all times. The more qi you have, and the more “full” and flowing that qi is, the more life is in you. Without qi, you’d be paralyzed. Qi is the difference between a dead body and a living one. There are many ways to cultivate you qi, but one of the most straightforward ways is by cultivating the jing and transmuting it into qi.
You have to cultivate. It’s not enough to just grit your teeth and “NoFap”. It’s also not going to work if you are fucking girls and pinching it off and giving yourself blue balls. That’s just non-jizzing on a technicality. If you do that, you’re going to cause yourself a lot of pain and frustration, with nothing good to show for it. The reason some people think NoFap is insane is because they use the teeth-gritting method, which is insane.
Cultivating can mean different things, but most people (including myself) say it basically means meditation. With body-centered meditation (I practice breath-centered vipassana meditation), your subtle mind gradually works through the kinks in your body energy. I have lots more to say on this — lots more. But for now, that’s the basic idea. Refrain from jizzing and practice steady meditation to transform the body fluid energy into life force in your body. This is something anyone can do. Within a very few days you will start to notice some amazing results.
With real dedication (which I’ve only applied a few times in my life), you can turn the jing into qi and then the qi into shen. Shen is the most subtle energy of all that still centers in the body (anything more subtle than shen would have to be pure bodiless, self-less void or maybe God or nirvana or whatever… I haven’t got that far yet). Shen is essentially spiritual energy. Jing is the body essence, qi is the life force, shen is the force of the spirit or soul. Those saints with halos, those Buddhas with glowing heads — they are radiating shen into the world.
Shen is not totally beyond the senses. It accounts for that strange calming and gladdening effect that good people have. But basically it’s invisible to most people most of the time. Two people with radiant shen can often recognize each other, however, such as when I was most dedicated to my practice and began to see radiance above the heads of a select few others.
[Incidentally, just as you can “do stuff” with jing (make babies, mostly), and you can “do stuff” with qi (direct your body energy in martial arts or sex, for example), you can also “do stuff” with shen. The stuff you can do with shen is pretty fucking cool — most of it falls under stuff that’s considered impossible, but actually isn’t, such as subtle reading of others thoughts, subtle telepathy (getting people to think of you), mind/body projection, etc; other shen-stuff that’s not as controversial is still pretty awesome, like lucid dreaming and synaesthetic senses.]
Young people are overflowing with jing, and therefore they are overflowing with qi. We see this in the natural radiance, goofiness, exuberance, tight skin, bright eyes, healthy hair, nice smell and enlivening presence of young people. The ones who are “touched” or saintly or otherwise “special” can sometimes have overwhelming shen, too, but this is rare, and such kids and youth often come across as slightly alien or otherworldly.
As people grow older, their total store of jing goes down (no matter what), but qi and shen can actually increase if you cultivate correctly. An old person with full qi can move around and project force much better than a young person in some cases — think of the example of the 55-year-old gong fu master blowing over a strong 25-year-old man with a single tap to the chest. That’s qi.
And the old person with glowing shen is of course a very old theme — the wise old king, the radiant grandmother working in her garden, the magical hermit living in the forest. Many very old people give off incredible radiance and glow even though their skin is saggy and their bodies are weak. That’s shen.
[I cringe to imagine what the next generation of old people will look like. There have always been some old people in every generation who have no vitality, no shen, of course, but the next couple of generations are going to be 99% lifeless, grey, and dull, because nobody believes in cultivating the spirit anymore, and hardly anyone has even considered the sexual component of health and vitality, let alone has the balls (heh) to go through with it. Our future wise men will be weak-souled idiots, our future grandmothers vapid and dull narcissists.]
The good news is that you don’t have to be a holy-roller saint or an awakened buddha to increase your qi or your shen. Retaining the jing and meditating will naturally increase your shen somewhat. So even if you aren’t interested in giving off auras — if, for example, you think that’s all a bunch of hooey — you can still make yourself more radiant and attractive just by retaining the jing (NoFap) and practicing a bit of love- or concentration-based breath meditation (or both). Try 15 minutes a day to start.
Even if you don’t believe in auras, I guarantee you that if you cultivate the jing for just 15 days, you will get people looking at you funny and smiling and saying things like, “You seem different… did you get taller?” And people — yes, that includes hot girls — will just want to be around you more. If you have the discipline to maintain this for 30 days or more, you will be astonished at the results.
I’ve recently (a couple weeks ago) been not following my own principles, though I am back to practicing them again over the last several days. Part of my motivation in writing this post is to spell out for myself once again what I believe and what I’ve learned in the past. Practicing these principles is quite easy once you’re in the proper mindset. But when you fall out of the mindset, the daily grind and the constant desire for sex can make you forget how awesome it used to feel when you dominated your own sexual instinct instead of the other way around. So good luck to you, and good luck to me.
EDIT: Follow-up just for fun.
(h/t: White Innovations)