Hell’s Paradise along itself with various mythological and spiritual principles, to better define the beings and the functionality of the mysterious island Shinsenkyo. The island is inhabited and ruled by a set of ascended beings who are known as Lord Tensen, and they are able to use this ancient Chinese philosophy of Tao, where they merge with the natural elements to understand the flow of energy and to manipulate it as well.
What is Tao in Hell’s Paradise’s Shinsenkyo?
Hell’s Paradise explains the philosophy of Tao as ‘life energy‘. It is the alignment of one’s spiritual energy with that of nature, to govern and manipulate the flow of energy itself. The universe of Hell’s Paradise is governed by this idea, particularly on the island of Shinsenkyo. It is derived from the Chinese philosophy of Wuxing- The Five Phases, which states that the flow of Tao is governed by the interaction of the elemental forces of nature- Fire, Wood, Earth, Metal, and Water.
Characters of Hell’s Paradise discover that their Tao has an elemental affinity and also an elemental boon or bane. While it is not clearly stated in the series, it is possible that this is similar to the idea of alchemy as well. Tao governs a being’s ascension into immortality, and the five elemental ideas define the five paths to immortality.
What are the five training methods of Tao in Hell’s Paradise?
The five training methods of Tao in Hell’s Paradise are placed and practised in accordance with the elemental principles as well. These are as follows –
- Do’in – Do’in is practically physical training and is possible of the wood element. This training is to create harmony between the body and the mind and it is to attain physical mastery of Tao.
- Taisoku – Taisoku is the training through breathing techniques and is possible of the fire element. Taisoku is the art of breathing like an embryo, with a particular focus on the lower abdomen. This is to create a centre of all life force within the being, where the concentration of Tao energy is the highest.
- Shu’itsu – It is training through meditation, and it aims to create stillness and calm within the user. It is possibly related to the element of Earth and it focuses on the attainment of a grounded state.
- Shuten – It is the training associated with the understanding of the body’s natural pathways and organs. Its main focus is the flow of energy within the body and the need to understand it to attain immortality.
- Bochu Jutsu – Bochu Jutsu is the most crucial and complex training of Tao which involves sexual intercourse. It is the training of Tao through the fusion of the Yin and the Yang and results in the transfer of a sexual energy called the Jing. It is the bridge between heaven and earth, and the practice of Bochu Jutsu is extremely rare as it requires two complementary elements to involve with each other.
Will any character in Hell’s Paradise reach the level of Lord Tensen?
Sagiri and Gabimaru are two of the prospective masters of Tao, who constitute as much Tao as Lord Tensen. They do not immediately master the practice of Tao and the flow of it, but they gradually get a hang of it and eventually become as powerful as Lord Tensen.
Apart from them, there are other characters like Shion, who is able to defeat Lord Tensen by mastering Tao with their inherent senses and their ability to grasp the practice rather than the concept. The ability to be practically aware of Tao is much more important than just understanding the theory of the concept of it.
Tao in Hell’s Paradise is the life energy or the force of the immortal being. It is the central concept around which everything revolves in the story. The use of Tao and the mastery of it are both central to a being’s elemental knowledge and composition. Therefore, we see that characters like Sagiri, Shion, and Gabimaru are able to replicate those of Lord Tensen, and it seems that they eventually will be able to overpower Lord Tensen.