Chinese Legends: Immortal Li Zhenduo

Tai Ping, Ed

PureInsight | August 18, 2003

[] This is a fable about Li Zhenduo, a woman who cultivated and obtained the Tao. She is said to have had supernormal abilities, lived for hundreds of years and never grew old. Li Zhenduo was the younger sister of Li Tuo, an immortal who cultivated the Tao at the Long Qiao Peak, Jin Tang Mountain in Western Shu (today's Sichuan Province). The people of Sichuan saw Li Tuo for many dynasties, over a span of some eight hundred years so Li Tuo was, hence, known as Li Babai. [Note: babai means eight hundred in Chinese.]

Li Babai

During the reign of Emperor Mu (1001 to 946 B.C.) during the Zhou Dynasty (1122 to 255 B.C.), Li Babai moved to Xi Xuan Mountain in Guanghan. After successfully producing an elixir called the Jiu Hua pill of immortality, Li Babai wandered about major mountains in China for about two hundred years. One day at the sea, Li Babai met Fei Yangjun, who imparted to him the doctrine of water and wood. Li Baibai returned to the mountain upon the completion of the education. After he succeeded in refining another elixir, Li Babai left the mountain again for several hundred years. He would sometimes make himself invisible when traveling or at leisure, in the cities or in the rural regions. Later he returned to the Long Qiao Peak and spent eight hundred years producing another elixir called the Jiu Ding Jin pill of immortality. Because Li Babai cultivated the Tao at this mountain three times, the mountain became known as the San Xue Mountain (or Mountain of Three Learning). Long Qiao Peak was also known as Xian Mountain (or Virtuous Mountain) probably as a remembrance of Li Babai.

After Li Babai successfully produced the last version of the elixir, he wanted to test it out, so he smeared the elixir on the rocks of the precipice. The coarse rocks turned into beautiful jade with radiance and crystal clarity. The location where the test was carried out still exists today. People have tried to take the jade out of the rock, but each attempt was aborted by a gale that followed immediately.

Li Zhenduo

Li Zhenduo was born with immortal countenance and admired profound cultivation methods. Li Zhenduo followed her brother in cultivation and lived at Mian Zhu on Fu Mountain, also known as Zhenduo Transformation. The historic site of Li Zhenduo's cultivation still exists. Li Babai taught her the important formula of a cultivation method known as Chao Yuan Mo Zhen, in which she cultivated for a few hundred years. After several hundred years Li Zhenduo still appeared to be a twenty year-old maiden. Her spirit and manner were graceful and solemn. She had the spiritual strength and magnificence of a hero, which differentiated her from those vulnerable willowy maids. When people sometimes saw her, they would not dare to look her in the eyes.

Later, famous immortals such as Tai Shang Lao Jun and Xuan Gu San Shi descended to lead and guide her. They taught her how to levitate. Li Zhenduo actually soared into the sky in broad daylight before Li Babai. There is a pool at Zhenduo Transformation (Fu Mountain). The water there is always red in color. It was believed that the red water was an original ingredient for the elixir. On Fu Mountain, also known as Wan An Shan (Mountain of Absolute Tranquility), there was a well known as the Er Shi Well (or Well of Two Masters). It is alleged that drinking water from that well cures illnesses. The well has been renamed Zhenduo Well in memory of Li Zhenduo.

Translated from:

Add new comment