Eternal Life - Chapter 1: The Ten Layers of the Mortal Body Realm
Great Desolate Dynasty, Dragon Abyss Province.
Within the largest aristocratic family, the Fang Clan’s “Myriad Forms Garden”, the early morning fog had yet to disperse. A group of Fang Clan juniors had started their early morning practice and martial arts training.
The Fang Clan Patriarch was also the Dragon Abyss Province Governor. The founder of the Fang Clan was once a member of the Ascension Sect hundreds of years ago, one of the Ten Great Immortal Dao Sects, who then followed the Founding Martial Emperor and conquered every part of this land.
The Dragon Abyss Province, which was rumored to have an actual dragon hidden underneath, originally was the capital of the former dynasty. After the founding of the Great Desolate Dynasty, the capital was originally set to be here, but because of the huge amounts of fog in the Dragon Abyss, the Emperor finally gave up the idea.
The Great Desolate Dynasty was a dynasty blessed by flames. But since the water element naturally restrains fire, it was unsuitable for the capital to be located near the Dragon Abyss territory, so it was moved to the South and to what was now called the “Desolate Capital”.
However, the Imperial Court handed over the ancient capital of the former dynasty to the Fang Clan, which shows the Imperial Court’s trust in the Family.
Because of this, the Fang Clan became prominent, and their current mansion covered an area of a thousand acres. There were many courtyards and gardens bustling with people constantly going in and out. It was said If one were to find themselves lost inside, they may never be able to find their way out.
From this, one could discern its name “Myriad Forms Garden” which meant all-inclusive.
Peng! Peng! Peng! Peng!
The sound of fists whistling through the wind was heard, causing the air to shudder.
These children used vigorous movements, like a tiger seeking prey, a fierce lion attacking a bull, an eagle hunting a rabbit, or a crane standing atop a tree’s canopy. Their movement was in perfect unity, agile and fierce.
Especially their limbs and spine, alternating between movement and static, like five fully drawn bows, their punches were like arrows, piercing through the wind and showing their solid foundation.
But at this time, a pair of eyes, in the distant group of dark rocks, secretly watched their various movements.
Unexpectedly, someone was secretly learning their martial arts.
This pair of eyes belonged to a 15 or16-year-old boy with delicate facial features and was wearing grey-colored clothes. He appeared to be a slave.
“I found a sewer hole a month ago, which actually directly leads right underneath the Inner Courtyard’s rock mountains. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to enter the Inner Courtyard and secretly learn martial arts. If someone finds out that I sneaked in here, I won’t be able to escape my death, but I, Fang Han, refuse to be a slave forever.”
Fang Han carefully observed the movements of these Fang Clan juniors. Every gesture and movement was ingrained into his mind.
There was no mistake, he really was secretly learning martial arts!
Fang Han was a slave of the Fang Clan.
His father was originally a slave of the Fang Clan, so when he was born, he was destined to be one too, even his children and grandchildren would have to serve the Fang Clan for generations.
To think that a lowly slave would actually sneak into the Inner Courtyard to learn his master’s martial arts, this kind of action could only be described as reckless and dangerous.
In Fang Han’s eyes, he saw a middle-aged man wearing a long purple robe appearing on the distant training ground.
This man was six feet tall and walked very proudly and arrogantly. His back was straight like a sword or spear and emitted huge pressure like a tall mountain. Although far apart, Fang Han felt so oppressed that he almost stopped breathing.
This was an expert of the Fang Clan, “Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong! With an outstanding status and renown in both the north and south, he teaches the Fang Clan disciples martial arts.
“If you want to become a government official, you first need to know that there are nine ranks and eighteen levels! The first and highest rank is Prime Minister, and the ninth rank is a local inspector! When we are cultivating, our cultivation is divided into ten layers! The First Layer Cultivating Vitality, Second layer Body Forging, Third layer Movement, Fourth Layer Hard & Soft, Fifth Layer Divine Strength, Sixth Layer Qi Accumulation, Seventh Layer Internal Force, Eighth Layer Divine Valor, Ninth Layer Spirit Passage, Tenth Layer Divine Transformation!”
As soon as the “Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong, who was wearing long purple robes, appeared, all the Fang Clan disciples in the training group suddenly stopped their actions and stood upright, listening to his lecture.
Fang Han also pointed his ears and listened carefully.
“If one trains their body to the Tenth Layer, Divine Transformation, even five horses wouldn’t be able to tear their bodies apart! Back then, an ancestor of our Fang Clan was captured by the enemy. They tried to execute him with the cruel method of five horse dismemberment. But he exerted his whole body strength, flung the horses into the air, and rushed away. This is the power of one’s Mortal Body if they achieve the Tenth Layer Divine Transformation!”
“Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong’s words were delivered with great force, conveying the intensity of that situation, and Fang Han’s eardrums were aching as if they were about to burst.
“Five horses couldn’t divide his body! How powerful was that man’s strength? Can the physical body really reach such a level?” Fang Han was shocked.
“However! Don’t go thinking that the Ten Layers of the Mortal Body Realm is the limit, it is only the beginning. Our Fang Clan’s founder was taught by an Ascension Sect immortal, so we’re different from other clans, and know that beyond the Mortal Body Realm, there’s the Divine Mysteries Realm! Only by breaking off the shackles of the Mortal Body and stepping into the Divine Mysteries Realm, could you truly laugh at the world, behaving like a king. You should strive for our Fang Clan, and bring glory to our ancestors.”
“The Mortal Body Realm, and the Divine Mysteries Realm!”
Hearing these words, Fang Han felt as if he had opened a door to a new world. He peeked at them practicing Martial Arts here every morning. But he had never heard this before. The Ten Layers uttered by “Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong’s mouth unfolded them clearly one by one, lighting his path ahead.
“What is the Divine Mysteries Realm?” asked a Fang Clan junior.
“The so-called Divine Ability is to break the rules of this world that are known by ordinary people!”
“Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong revealed a trace of solemnity across his eyes as he spoke: “For example, if one trains their Mortal Body to the limit, they can tear apart tigers, split leopards, and lift cauldrons that weigh a thousand pounds. But can you lift yourself up by using only your own hair?”
“Pull yourself up using your hair? How can that be possible? It’s obviously unfeasible and goes against common sense.” Another disciple quickly added.
“It’s impossible. No matter how great one’s power is, it’s too far-fetched,” Fang Han said silently.
“Doing the impossible, that’s the so-called Divine Ability! Otherwise, why would it be called Divine Ability?” The voice of the middle-aged purple-robed man was like a slap to the face!
“Shattering the truths that everyone knows. This is Divine Ability! Bring yourself up, this is a dividing line! Apart from this, there are all kinds of Divine Abilities, such as spitting fire and water, walking across the sky, controlling thunder and lightning, killing people with a flying sword, and much more… This is the means of the Divine Mysteries Realm.”
“Then Uncle Tong, has your cultivation reached the Divine Mysteries Realm?” a Fang Family disciple asked.
“The Divine Mysteries Realm is nothing trivial. The practitioners who can step into the Divine Mysteries Realm are all extremely talented people. My cultivation base only reached the Mortal Body Realm’s Eighth Layer, Divine Valor. If you can achieve the Divine Mysteries Realm, then I can say with certainty that the position of Fang Clan Patriarch is yours! Even the Imperial Court would certainly give you a very high title to win you over!”
“However, crossing the line from the Mortal Body Realm to the Divine Mysteries Realm is harder than ascending the sky! If any of you can achieve the cultivation base of the Fifth Layer Divine Strength within three years, and manage to draw a thousand-pound bow, run as fast as a horse, and possess with the power of an ox, it would already be a happy event for our Fang Clan. Anyways, these legendary things I told you today are to give you a burst of confidence and knowledge on matters of cultivation! It would let you understand the infinite power and wealth you would be able to obtain!”
The “Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong yelled, “Now, start training! This Pine Crane Longevity Fist is an upper-body refining technique bestowed upon our Fang Family’s Ancestor from the Ascension Sect! You have to understand its true meaning and artistic conception, which I will also explain to you step by step! Remember, you must cultivate your Mortal Body to the limit before you can step into the Divine Mysteries Realm. My Fang Clan’s Ancestor stated that Divine Ability is a power that originates from the brain, called Magic Force, the so-called Magic Force is vast and boundless! It can only be produced when the Mortal Body is strengthened to the limit, causing the heart to deliver huge amounts of blood nutrients to the brain. From which Magic Force is generated. If the physical body is weak, there will be no Divine Ability to speak of.”
“Pine Crane Longevity Fist!” Fang Han resisted the excitement in his heart and watched carefully.
Within the next half an hour, Fang Han listened to Fang Tong’s explanation, and immediately integrated it with his past month of secretly learning martial arts, understanding it completely along with principles of the Mortal Body Realm.
Mortal Body cultivation was divided into ten steps, which corresponded to the Ten Layers.
The First Layer, Cultivating Vitality, was to keep the body energetic through regular exercise, a good diet, sleep, and other self-cultivation.
The Second Layer, Body Forging, was gathering power by exercising with countless techniques, such as running, lifting weights, jumping, hitting sandbags, kicking, squatting, somersaults, balance training, etc., as well as training one’s limbs and waist muscles to obtain strength and flexibility. This layer already greatly surpassed the powers of ordinary people.
The Third Layer, Movement would be achieved through practicing a variety of techniques, connecting the strengths of the limbs, waist, and abdomen, while also aligning the bones, and adjusting one’s Qi to form a perfect harmonization of one’s whole body.
The Fourth Layer, Hard & Soft. The entire body, the waist, leg bones, back shoulders, elbows, and wrist would be connected as one, the Blood and Qi unite. If one wanted to be soft, one’s body would be soft. If one wanted it to be hard, then the body could turn hard, firm yet gentle at the same time. Flexibility and coordination would reach their peak at this stage, one would rise like the wind, fall swiftly like an arrow, and be as flexible as a cat.
The Fifth Layer, Divine Strength. After the whole body’s concept of Hardness & Softness was further integrated, one’s body would become stronger and stronger with further training. With the strength of a thousand pounds, the whole body would act like a well-trained army, moving vigorously and with bones roaring like thunder.
If one’s cultivation continued to the level of Divine Strength, they would immediately be considered an expert.
As for the following levels, Qi Accumulation, Inner Force, Divine Valor, Spirit Passage, and Divine Transformation.
“Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong did not elaborate, but Fang Han was not in a hurry. He has been eavesdropping for a whole month, so he basically already knew the basic principles of training the Mortal Body. He could start cultivating by himself.
I‘ve mastered the steps and know how to cultivate. I’ll work hard in secret, and one day, I will make a big splash, and break out of slavery! Fang Han knew that he had taken a big risk, and finally seized a chance to change his destiny.
“Oops! I forgot that this morning, the second miss was going hunting on horseback! I’m the one raising her Thousand Miles Snow Horse.” As he was eavesdropping, Fang Han was suddenly startled and remembered something important.
Thinking of this, Fang Han no longer thought about eavesdropping anymore, and quietly crawled into the drainage hole from the darkness of the rockery, leaving the inner courtyard. Fortunately, he was not discovered.
This was also because the “Giant Spirit Hand” Fang Tong hadn’t cultivated into the Mortal Body Realm Ninth Layer, the Spirit Passage Realm, otherwise he would have a subtle reaction to any gaze directed towards him, and Fang Han would not have been able to escape his senses.
Translated by: James1kd2
Edited by: Summit