Chapter 1982: Nine Stages of the Blade Dao
Zhao Hai didn’t know how long he practiced. After practicing one movement, he didn’t stop. Instead, he practiced the next movement on the list. He continued to use his own method of practice. He didn’t stop for a moment.
A month passed as Zhao Hai forgot the passage of time. While Zhao Hai practiced, the Yin Yang Elders didn’t come and disturb him. Instead, they ordered Lin Ling and Xiang Ying to make sure that Zhao Hai doesn’t get disturbed.
Zhao Hai completely immersed himself in practice. He constantly felt the consciousness of the blade movements, which fascinated him.
After practicing the basic moves, Zhao Hai moved on to other items on the jade slip.
On the final part in the jade slip that the Yin Elder gave Zhao Hai, there were combination styles that weren’t too complicated. All of the combinations were using the basic movements that were listed prior. These combination moves were included to make the cultivator more familiar with the basic movements. At the same time, it tests the performance of the cultivator. If he practiced the movements well, then they would find it easy to use the combinations.
Zhao Hai was now doing the combination exercises. He also wanted to see if the combination also had its own thinking.
It didn’t take long before Zhao Hai was given an answer. Although the combination moves were composed of multiple basic movements, they also have their own thinking. Each combination was a whole new movement.
As Zhao Hai practiced the combination moves, he carefully communicated with the thinking of the movements. Previously, he could feel the thinking of the movements when he executed them perfectly. This allowed him to follow the process to achieve perfection. This time, he only needed to communicate with the blade movement involved in the combination move to communicate with the whole.
This was very important for Zhao Hai. This meant that he was able to immediately feel the thoughts of the blade movements. The rest of the process was very simple. He practiced the combination movements in perfection as he communicated with it. And when he got in contact with the thoughts of the combination movement, his progress was further pushed into perfection. When he completely communicated with the combination movements, this meant that he had mastered the process.
Since the blade combination movements were very simple, it didn’t take long before Zhao Hai perfected them. At the same time, as he communicated with the blade movements, the more intoxicated Zhao Hai became.
Combination upon combination were practiced until Zhao Hai found that he already perfected every instruction inside the jade slip. Finally, Zhao Hai let out a long breath and reigned in his thoughts. During this entire process, Zhao Hai actually got stronger. What surprised him the most was the fact that the golden spiritual force inside his body has increased a bit. Moreover, the rate that it increased was much faster compared to before.
Zhao Hai was stunned by this result. He didn’t know why this happened. Does practicing the blade actually improve the golden spiritual force? Zhao Hai was a bit confused.
At this time, Laura’s voice was heard, “Brother Hai, Brother Hai, can you hear me?”
Zhao Hai stared, this was because she could feel that Laura’s voice was higher then normal. It was as if she was feeling anxious. Zhao Hai quickly entered the Space using his spiritual force and asked, “I can hear you. Did something happen? You seemed anxious.”
Upon hearing Zhao Hai, Laura and the others relaxed. Then Laura said, “Brother Hai, you might not know, but it’s been a year since we began calling you. We called you a few times, but you seem to be unable to hear us. We didn’t try to call you too loudly or we might disturb your practice. Fortunately, you’re fine now.”
Hearing Laura, Zhao Hai was stunned, “I’ve been practicing for more than a year? I was out for a long time?”
Laura nodded, “To be exact, you’ve been practicing for one year, 3 months, and 13 days. We didn’t expect you to be out for so long. Next time you practice, tell us in advance. We were worried that you had gone mad.”
Zhao Hai couldn’t help but get embarrassed. He apologized, “I’m sorry. I made you worry. Don’t worry, I’ll make sure to inform you in the future. I was experimenting, but I didn’t expect the experiment to be successful. I was fascinated by it. I don’t know when I will be able to feel something like it again.”
Laura shook her head and said, “It’s fine. As long as you’re alright. Take a rest first.”
Zhao Hai smiled bitterly and said, “What rest? I’ve been practicing for over a year. Masters only let me practice for a month. I have to go and see them immediately. I’ll come back to accompany you after a while.”
Laura and the others understood and nodded. Zhao Hai opened his eyes and then received his blade. Just as he was heading outside, he heard a knock on his gate.
Zhao Hai immediately walked out and opened his gate to see the Yin Yang Elders waiting for him along with Lin Ling and Xiang Ying.
Zhao Hai quickly cupped his fist and said, “Masters, Senior Brother Lin, Senior Brother Xiang, you’re here. Please come in.”
The group nodded without saying anything. They entered Zhao Hai’s courtyard and then sat down in the living room. As he looked at the Yin Yang Elders, he smiled bitterly and said, “I’ve been unfair to Masters. I didn’t expect to practice for a very long time. I’m deeply sorry.”
The Yin Elder waved his hand and said, “Don’t say these useless things. I’m aware of your situation. You have entered a state of enlightenment. Instead of being angry, we’re happy for you. Getting into a state of enlightenment is very rare for cultivators. It will be very beneficial for your future progress. Alright, perform everything in the jade slip and let us see what you have comprehended.”
The Yang Elder also gave Zhao Hai a satisfied nod. Just like what the Yin Elder said, a state of enlightenment was very beneficial to a cultivator, especially those who practice martial skills. Whenever someone entered a state of enlightenment, they would usually reap a huge harvest.
Meanwhile, Lin Ling and Xiang Ying were looking at Zhao Hai with envy. They were also well aware of the advantages brought by enlightenment. But they could only look at Zhao Hai with envy. It wasn’t something that everyone can have.
The Yang Elder smiled at Zhao Hai and said, “I only heard of people entering a state of enlightenment while practicing advanced blade techniques. I didn’t expect you to do the same thing with basic blade movements. Now I really want to see how much comprehension you gained from practicing basic movements.”
Zhao Hai cupped his first towards the Yin Yang Elders and said, “Yes, Masters.” Then he took out his own blade. He didn’t exit the room and instead stood in place. Before long, he made a simple slash with his blade.
Although Zhao Hai’s action was very simple, the four other people in the room felt different. It must be known that those present were experts of the blade, especially the Yin Yang Elders. If it were ordinary people, they wouldn’t have felt anything from Zhao Hai’s move. But for the four people, they felt that the blade had become Zhao Hai’s arm. It has melded completely with his body. The blade was his body and his body was the blade. There were no flaws between the connection of the two.
This caused the four people to be surprised. They didn’t expect Zhao Hai to reach this level. At this time, Zhao Hai slashed the blade sideways and performed a combination move.
Seeing Zhao Hai’s successive actions, the Yin Yang Elders as well as Lin Ling and Xiang Ying were shocked. This was because Zhao Hai’s blade felt like it was alive. It seems like the blade wasn’t a mere weapon, but a living being.
With the blade being alive, its movements were also more dynamic. The combination movements have completely removed Zhao Hai’s presence. In other words Zhao Hai and the blade movement has achieved a perfect fusion.
When the Yin Yang Elders saw this, they were immediately shaken, then they felt immense happiness. There was nothing special about the blade movements. It can even be said that there was no strength behind it. This was because the movements were merely there to test the basic foundations of those who practice the blade.
Even so, Zhao Hai was able to turn this set of moves into something else. This was completely out of their expectations. This not only represented Zhao Hai’s talent in the blade, this also showed Zhao Hai’s solid grasp of the basics. This was the reason why the Yin Yang Elders were so happy.
As the saying goes, skyscrapers could only be so tall because they have a very solid foundation. These extremely common movements composed the foundation of all blade techniques. If these movements weren’t practiced well, then it would affect a cultivator’s practice of higher level blade techniques. The more solid one’s basics were, the higher they would be able to reach in the future.
The blade only has nine basic movements, and Zhao Hai reached an incomparable level in all of them. When he used the movements, it seemed like he was doing it effortlessly. In no time, Zhao Hai was able to finish all of the movements described on the jade slip. After he was done with his demonstration, Zhao Hai withdrew his blade, he also dissipated the blade spirit in his heart.
The blade spirit that Zhao Hai dissipated wasn’t a real deity. Instead, it was the spirit and essence of the blade movements. When using the movements, Zhao Hai will unconsciously incorporate the essence of the blade into them. After he finished using his blade technique, he would disperse it to return to his normal form.
After dissipating the blade spirit in his heart, Zhao Hai turned and cupped his fist towards the Yin Yang Elders and said, “Masters, disciple is done.”
The Yin Yang Elders recovered, and then they looked at each other. At the same time, they laughed. Their laughter caused Lin Ling and Xiang Ying to recover. The two were completely immersed in Zhao Hai’s movements. Just by looking at Zhao Hai’s actions, they were able to comprehend the difficult parts of their foundational knowledge. It can be said that their harvest was quite good.
When they recovered, the two couldn’t help but show a discontented look at the Yin Yang Elders. They blamed the two elders for being too loud and awakening them from their thoughts. Otherwise, they would have comprehended more. Naturally, they wouldn’t dare voice it out loud. Now, as they looked at Zhao Hai, their gazes were completely different. In their eyes, Zhao Hai has turned into a mountain of gold. Their eyes were shining with desire, causing Zhao Hai to be a bit uncomfortable. He felt that his back was being stared at by two ferocious beasts. His heart couldn’t help but shake.
After some time, the Yin Yang Elders stopped laughing. They had huge smiles as they looked at Zhao Hai. Then the Yin Elder said, “Alright, Little Hai. You didn’t spend the entire year in vain. This enlightenment is completely worth the time. Very good. You performed better than what we imagined. We’re more than satisfied.”
Zhao Hai cupped his fist and said, “Thank you very much, Master. The jade slip you gave me is very detailed. It gave me a lot of help. I was able to reach this point because I followed it.”
The Yang Elder waved his hand and said, “There’s no need to be modest. The jade slip I gave you is the same jade slip the sect gives to beginners. Everyone received the same. You didn’t get a special one. But even after so many years, nobody was able to reach a state of enlightenment from reading the jade slip. You’re the first person in the history of the Tyrant Blade Sect to reach a state of enlightenment and reach the highest level of comprehension regarding the blade’s basic movements.”
The Yin Elder looked at Zhao Hai with a puzzled expression. Then he smiled faintly and said, “Blade practice is divided into nine stages. The stages are initial mastery, minor mastery, major mastery, completion, minor perfection, major perfection, rebirth, unity, and the grand dao. For basic blade techniques, there are only eight stages, which are the first eight. There was no final stage of enlightenment. This was because practicing the final stage using the basic blade technique is akin to mastering the entire dao of the blade. You have reached the stage of unity. It is already considered as the highest achievement. Even in the sect, including the elders, none of them were able to practice the basics to the major perfection stage. A lot of people would stop practicing the basics once they reach the boundary to perfection.”
The Yang Elder nodded, “What Senior Brother said is correct. In fact, there are people who think that there’s no perfection stage in the basic movements. They say that reaching the boundary to the minor perfection stage is already the peak. To be honest, I also didn’t believe that the basics could be practiced to unity. But now my eyes have been opened.”