The Three Treasures (sometimes called the Three Jewels) – Shen, Chi, and Jing – are energies developed through the discipline of Tantric Qigong (Chi Gong, Chi Kung), Tibetan disciplines, certain Tibetan and Yoga practices. Jing (Ching), and T’ai Chi. Shen, Chi (Qi), and Jing can be also referred to as Spirit, Vitality, and Essence respectively.
A practitioner of Tantric Qigong learns certain methods to convert Jing into Chi and then into Shen (the road to transmutation) – and also to transform Shen into Chi and Jing – (the way of manifestation or generation). The Three Treasures also can be considered as the three wavelengths of a common energy. Inner Alchemy of Tantric Qigong (Neigong or Neidan) practitioners are trained to transform and control the frequency of their consciousness and energy along this spectrum – selecting the wave length they need as we might select a specific radio or TV station.
In Chinese medicine, Jing is the most densely or most concentrated vibrating energy. Of the Three Treasures, Jing is perhaps the one most closely associated with our physical body. It is believed to be housed in the Kidney organ system (sometimes called kidney essence) or in the Tan Tien (lower dantian) and partially expresses itself as the reproductive energy of the ova and sperm. The kidneys house the Jing which is known as the most primordial energy inside the body (Shen and Chi are increasingly more refined or “lighter” in their vibration). By nature, the orientation of Jing is yin, which implies it is cooling and nourishing to the body. Jing is known to be the basis for our physical bodies and is also believed to be the vessel of our heredity – a principle similar that of DNA.
It also known that Jing is the root of our vital energy, the physical material out of which our life develops. Jing can be analogous to a wire through which the electricity of Chi is sent. Jing can also be thought of as being similar to a computer’s hardware – the physical groundwork of an operating system. Metaphorically speaking, Shen is the information that appears on your monitor and Chi would be the electricity.
Jing is constantly depleted by anxiety, pain, fear, too much sex, substance abuse, illness, stress, the activities of everyday life, etc. Aside from the practice of T’ai Chi and Qigong, Jing can be balanced through acupuncture in Cleveland and replenished through herbal and dietary supplements.
The Jing in women can be exhausted through pregnancy and inordinately heavy menstruation. There are Taoist bloodlines that advocate exercises to reduce menstruation, recycling and reserving the energy that would be lost through the menstrual blood. For men, there are corresponding Tantric and Taoist exercises to replenish Jing.
Production and replacement of semen in men that were spent through too much sexual activity resulting in ejaculation can play a huge role in the depletion of Jing. There are ancient documents that actually refer to Jing (the Tantra Yoga version is Ojas) as semen, although this figure of speech is not quite precise. Semen is energized by and contains Jing energy, although Jing can also be expressed as bone marrow, sexual energy in general, and ova. Moreover, through the technique of Taoist sexology and certain Tantric Kundalini techniques, the Jing or Ojas can be withdrawn from the semen, preventing its depletion.
Most ancient masters consider Jing to be the raw material of Qi (Chi), though some believe that Jing is an expression of Chi. Sexual energy and vitality are obviously closely related, therefore, it may be a bit fussy to argue which came first, chicken or egg, life force or sex. Even in the tradition of Tantra Yoga, these lower chakra energies are so closely wired together and extremely related to each other that contrived distinctions are usually not that significantly important.