- introducing „the path of the empress“ by Christine Li and Ulja Krautwald:
to the Imperial Reader
Every woman can be an empress if she is prepared to take control of her own life. At the moment of her birth, every woman is unique and complete. Everything she needs lies within her, as in the seed of a plant.
If she succeeds in developing her hidden potential and living it out, she will become empress in her own empire, no matter how large or small that empire may be. Once she has freed herself from conventional views of how a woman should be, then pleasure and power, beauty and wisdom lie in her hands alone.
It is up to each individual woman to choose the imperial path for herself.
But beware: the life of an empress isn’t easy. Instead of basing her life on predetermined models, an empress is independent and free. There are no conventions and well-worn paths for her to cling to. Each stage of her life presents problems and questions to which she must find her own solutions and answers. She follows her own visions, instincts and dreams, and thus realises her inner goals.
She must roll out the red carpet for herself.
An Imperial Book
The path of the empress is a book for Empresses.
Empresses choose their own path, so the book contains no ready answers or sure-fire tips. The ten chapters reflect ten important stages of development in a woman’s life, with their typical challenges and life-tasks. Exercises and magical herbal elixirs will help open up the mind and soul to new insights and solutions. But the book begins to take effect even as it’s being read, without the reader having to do very much about it. In the same way large portions of the book virtually took shape with almost no help from us. We simply held our knowledge and experience at the ready, like a set of tools, and pooled our thoughts. In a mysterious way we then began to encounter people and situations that shed light on our theme. The Chinese call this Wu Wei, when the Unknown moves of its own accord. This is how this book came about. This is how the words of the Empress came to us.
The Empress in question is the Empress Wu, who ruled China in the seventh century, according to the Western calendar, and whose impact extends even to us and our time. Wu Zhao was a country girl, a simple concubine, who all by herself took on the whole of Chinese society and battled her way right to the top. She was the only woman who ever officially ruled in China. She was the mother of several children, a passionate lover, an artist and a scholar.
Wu followed her path without compromise. Conventions and traditional mores meant nothing to her. In an age that was hostile to women she created new and better laws; she loved her friends devotedly, particularly her female relatives, and pursued her enemies mercilessly.
Wu’s special interest was medicine. She ensured that the ancient knowledge of sexual magic and medicine was preserved, and she fostered the great magician and doctor, Sun Simiao, who is honoured as the “God of Medicine” in China to this day. Because she continued to have young artists and Daoist monks as her lovers until she reached a ripe old age, later Confucian historiographers regarded her as a sex-obsessed monster and “unfeminine woman”.
We have taken the life story of Empress Wu as a model demonstrating how a woman can achieve an independent lifestyle. The various stages of Wu’s life bring ancient lore, Chinese medicine and strategic action vividly to life for us.
At the beginning of each chapter we recount part of the Empress’s life-story, then we apply the issue in question to the life situation of a modern woman. Regardless of what stage of life she has reached and what problem she faces, an empress reads the signs and signals of her body like a book and uses them to develop her feminine power to the full and deploy it on her own terms.
Body and soul are one.For this reason most chapters discuss disorders that are nowadays regarded as medical problems: “women’s troubles” such as lovesickness, menstruation, Pre-Menstrual Syndrome, irritability, depression, listlessness, exhaustion, the menopause and so on, which arise when feminine power is not allowed to develop and instead works against the woman herself. In many of these situations it’s a good idea first of all to release the blocked energy through the systematic use of herbs or specific foodstuffs. The improvement in well-being will lead to new insights and impulses.
The recipes and strategies in this book are all based on the original writings of Sun Simiao and other ancient Chinese scholars and sages. We have adapted them to the needs of the modern empress and have tested them over many years in our own practice.
However, lasting relief can’t be achieved without determination and personal expansion. Such changes may not always be kindly received by those around the empress. An empress isn’t everybody’s darling. In many situations things are exactly the same today as they were in the time of Empress Wu.
Being an empress isn’t easy – but it’s enormously exciting!
This book contains many tips and recipes from ancient times. However, it’s not a guidebook; it takes effect of its own accord as it’s being read.
The imperial reader sits back, opens her eyes and sees.
The essentials hold true throughout our lives, Sun Simiao once said to the Empress. The essentials never change.
Thus real wisdom retains its truth and validity. For more than a thousand years. The secrets that paved Wu’s path from concubine to Empress can also help the modern woman follow the Path of the Empress. The imperial reader will discover how these secrets can be acquired and utilised. Word by word, sentence by sentence, the ancient wisdom will take effect and permeate the imperial reader.
This book strengthens the empress in every woman. She may be affected in other ways also. There may be changes in the life of the imperial reader. She may notice that the more she reads and the more she sees, the more uncompromising and empress-like she becomes. It’s impossible to predict how far this may go. It may concern her lover or her home, perhaps her work or her marriage. Every empress follows her own individual path, known only to her.
After she has read the book, a great deal will have changed. It may even be that nothing remains as it was.