PTTP Ch. 3.1: Talisman

Translator: Dj22031

Editor: Dj22031

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I might be a fool.

After being looked at by Xie Lingya with caring eyes, He Zun also realized, bah, what kind of brain did he have!

The sweeping monk in the Taoist temple, monk?? Could a normal person say something so heartless?!

Xie Lingya understood that he might be frightened to the point of losing his IQ, and said, “You’d better go and have a rest first. I don’t think you would want to go out. Do you want to squeeze in with me?”

He Zun nodded fiercely.

Xie Lingya took He Zun into Baoyang Temple for one night. Before going to bed, He Zun felt it was a pity when Xie Lingya said that the Taoist priests of Baoyang Temple were not here for the time being (in fact, there were none at all). He was still full of questions, and Xie Lingya had no answers.

When Xie Lingya got up the next morning, he saw that He Zun was still sleeping soundly, as if he didn’t seem to have anything on his mind at all. He was speechless for a moment, but he didn’t wake He Zun up.

Xie Lingya got up early and sat outside typing notes. He found a talisman in one book, which was from his uncle’s early practice. He didn’t know how much time had passed since it was made, but the crooked runes written in cinnabar were still bright red and clear.

Xie Lingya looked at it and felt something in his heart. He had been interested in these things before, but now his goals had changed, however he didn’t think there was anything wrong with playing around with them on the side.

Firstly, he would have to help his uncle find apprentices in the future, so he couldn’t not understand these matters. Secondly, what happened just now made him realize that it was a good thing to have more skills. He now more or less represented the face of Baoyang Temple. If there was no Taoist priest, how would he introduce people to the Temple every day?

Therefore, after Xie Lingya looked at it for a while, he simply found yellow paper, a brush and cinnabar, and prepared to copy the talisman.

He practiced first, using a scratch pad and ink. At first he was a little sluggish when he started drawing, but after drawing once, he started to feel a sense of ease. After drawing it two or three more times, he switched to cinnabar.

Drawing symbols with cinnabar seemed to be smoother than using ink for him. It was very noisy outside at this time. So, Xie Lingya put on his headphones and played the song “Little Jumping Frog” to eliminate external interference. He became instantly focused and his writing flowed smoothly.

This talisman was almost the same as the one drawn by his uncle, and the copying seemed to be quite successful.

Xie Lingya drew a set of True Forms of the Five Marchmounts talismans[1], which were similar to the one drawn by his uncle. He dried them and put them away. Still not finished, he flipped through his notes and found a set of talismans that looked quite simple, so he copied them as well.

After finishing the practice, Xie Lingya took a look at the annotation and casually wrote in cursive: Liujia Talisman.

Well, the name sounded simple too.

Xie Lingya was drying up the talisman, when He Zun came out of the room, stretching. Seeing him drawing the talisman, he came over to look at it curiously and said with itch, “You can also draw talismans.”

Xie Lingya said very reservedly: “Actually, I have only just started.”

Well, almost thirty minutes ago.

He Zun looked at it a few more times and said: “By the way, Master, thank you and Master Lingguan too. I want to donate some sesame oil money. To be honest, I don’t understand this. Are there any rules?”

“There are no rules, you can give it as you like.” Xie Lingya was a little surprised when he heard it. After all, He Zun was a student and seemed a little bit naive. This was his first income from sesame oil.

He Zun searched his pockets, and finally took out three hundred and twenty-seven dollars and fifty cents, held it in his hands and said, “Where to put it?”

Xie Lingya: “…”

There were still some parts of this, so Xie Lingya pointed at the merit box.

He Zun left some taxi fare for himself, and donated the rest of the money, then eagerly said: “Can you give me a few of those talismans?”

Xie Lingya thought to himself, holy shit, I really haven’t started for a long time. Would it be good to give talismans of this level away to someone else?

He Zun misunderstood, took out his mobile phone and said, “Can I buy it? But I really have no cash. Can I pay via WeChat?”

“Forget it, I’ll give it to you.” No matter how thick-skinned Xie Lingya was, he was too embarrassed to accept the money, so he gave him the talisman, “Well, I’m really just getting started…”

They even refused to accept money. Are they not being humble? Are they really just learning? Thinking this, He Zun said with a little disappointment: “Okay.”

He Zun offered incense to Wang Lingguan again before leaving Baoyang Temple.


After returning to school, He Zun told his roommates about last night’s adventure, which made everyone freak out at first. As his words became more and more mysterious, everyone began to ask him if he was drunk last night.

Not only did his classmates not believe him, when He Zun called his family and told them, they also suspected that he had misbehaved with others in school and had taken some illegal drugs which caused hallucinations. He Zun couldn’t explain it, but he knew in his heart that what happened last night could never be an illusion.

After returning home, He Zun also searched the Internet, trying to find out what kind of situation he encountered. He found a Taoist knowledge website and browsed there for a long time, but he couldn’t make a judgment.

There was some knowledge about talismans in it, specifically about drawing talismans. He Zun thought of the talismans given by Xie Lingya and unfolded them to take a look.

[Drawing talisman is not as simple as what is shown in the TV series. The person who draws the talisman needs to bathe and burn incense, lay out the law, and recite prayers. Only in a pure environment and with a pure heart can he draw the talisman well! No matter how advanced your cultivation is, you cannot skip the ritual, and you will still consume a lot of energy and even collapse after drawing the talisman!]

He Zun thought to himself, that was a bit embarrassing. He even pestered Xie Lingya to give him a talisman. Although Xie Lingya said he had just started, it turned out that drawing talisman was so hard, and he would be even so tired when he just started.

In the past, if he saw similar content, he might have thought that the author had gone crazy, but now he had to believe it and closed the website with respect.

——Of course, if he had scrolled down at that time, he would have seen a comment refuting:

[Haha, wrong! A little spiritual aura can be used to draw a talisman, otherwise you are wasting ink and paper! Theoretically speaking, if it is difficult for you to draw, it only means that you are not Taoist material!]

A few nights later, He Zun went to watch a movie premiere with his roommates. It was already after one o’clock when they came out. Everyone was going to cross to another street, where it was easier to take a taxi.

He Zun thought of his last experience and said quickly: “Let’s go to the other side. I hit a ghost there last time. Damn it.”

It had only been a few days, but he still had lingering fears. He didn’t want to go out at night, and he wouldn’t have if it wasn’t for his roommates.

The three roommates laughed at He Zun, but it was late at night and even though they thought he was a weirdo, they still agreed to go to the other side.

This road was slightly wider, but there were basically no people on the street, making it seem particularly quiet.

Next to this road was a site under construction. He Zun was talking dryly about the plot of the movie to avoid revealing his fearful emotions. Roommate A suddenly patted him and said, “Look, is there a woman in the building upstairs?”

He Zun was startled and raised his head!


The other roommates pushed the man and said, “Damn it, you scared me too. How can there be anyone at the construction site at night?”

Roommate A chuckled, “I wanted to scare Lao He, isn’t he afraid of this? You are afraid too.”

He Zun was about to curse, but his expression changed because he found a gust of wind blowing out of nowhere, chilling his bones. It was exactly the same as the feeling that night.

The other roommates also felt it, and their faces turned pale for a moment, “Why, why is it so cold suddenly?”

In fact, they had the answer in their minds. Last time, He Zun didn’t just say that he was trying to break a wall nearby.

He Zun turned on the flashlight of his mobile phone, but it couldn’t even illuminate half a meter, as if it was swallowed by darkness. For a moment, he felt that peeping feeling again, and his face suddenly turned pale.

“Damn it, are you going to run or not?”

“My legs have gone weak!”

At this time, a gust of wind blew over and fell on He Zun, who was trying to drag his roommate away!

He was so excited that he felt as if his body was getting warm, and then he suddenly became enlightened.

The surroundings were no longer silent, the laughter of late returnees in the distance reached his ears, and the road under his feet could be seen clearly again.

This turn of events was so sudden that the other three looked confused. They were all wondering if they should run in the direction of the Taoist temple.

He Zun was stunned for a moment, and suddenly thought of something. He took out the talisman he was carrying close to his body from his pocket, opened it and took a look. He was shocked to find that the originally clear and bright cinnabar color had become extremely dull and much older.


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[1] Ge Hong has stated: “Having the Album of the True Forms of the Five Marchmounts in your home enables you to deflect violent assault and repulse those who wish to do you harm; they themselves will suffer the calamity they seek to visit upon you.”

Daoists later created talismans (charms) which displayed these charts. A talisman was more easily carried on the person and provided protection for seekers of the Dao as they journeyed into these mountainous areas.

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