Cultivation has many levels, and as an individual progresses in their cultivation they gain access to higher realms of existence.
Cultivation[edit | edit source]
The mortal realm is also known as the Physical Realm. Progression through the mortal realm involves absorbing greater amounts of spiritual energy (Qi) into the body. As an individual's spiritual energy increases it becomes denser and changes form. Their cultivation "deepens" upon a successful change in form. Changes in form are incredibly difficult and often require assistance from medicines, tools, or spiritual pills.
|Mortals||100 years||Most of this realms inhabitants are mortals. They have relatively short lifespans. Mortals may have physical prowess that sets them above their peers. They may use Martial Arts to gain strength. Through trickery such as poison they may defeat cultivators. Mortals do not need cultivators and may : "The lives lead by mortals differed greatly from those lead by cultivators. Mortals lives were brimming with joys and sorrows, where the old withered and life was born anew."|
|1||Qi Condensation||100 years||The starting stage of cultivation. Those in this stage cannot be called cultivators, but merely practitioners. The lifespan of Individuals does not change, and are considered enhanced mortals. The mortal body starts to absorb natural energy from the world and gather spiritual energy (Qi) inside the body. To progress, an individual must collect and condense more spiritual energy. In this stage, the spiritual energy is visually depicted as forming clouds. As time goes on, this stage varies in length and power.|
|2||Foundation Establishment||200 years||Upon successfully collecting and condensing spiritual energy into a liquid, an individual enters the Foundation Establishment stage of cultivation. At this stage, individuals have greater power that further enhances their magic abilities. Skills, Cultivation Arts, and Tools that were difficult to use at Qi Refinement become easier to use. Within the foundation establishment level there is a wide variance in power divided into 3 groups: Early, Middle, and Late.
A late foundation establishment cultivator has power that dwarfs a middle foundation establishment cultivator. The same applies between Middle and Early cultivators within this stage. As such, individuals within this stage take great care when interacting with peers at this stage. Progression through Foundation Establishment involves absorbing spiritual energy at increasingly greater rates.
|3||Core Formation||300 ~ 600 years||An individual enters the Core Formation stage when they collect and further condense their spiritual energy into a solid "core" - often depicted as an Orb. At this stage individuals increase the lifespan of their mortal bodies by hundreds of years, and have greater power that dwarfs Late Foundation Establishment cultivators.: "The magic battle between the core formation cultivators of Saber Transformation Dock and the Controlling Spirit Sect had shattered the heavensand earth and swept back and forth over several kilometers."
Cultivators at this stage are considered elders within middle level sects, and are often used as a measurement of strength between Sects. Loss of a sect's Core Formation cultivator represents a major loss in a sect's strength.
Within the Core Formation level there is again 3 groups - Early, Middle, and Late Core Formation cultivators. The difference between the three groups is larger with a Late Core Formation cultivator being able to effortlessly kill many Early and Middle Core Formation cultivators. Progression through Core Formation involves absorbing even greater amounts of spiritual energy and making their "core" even denser. The power of the "core" and the way strength is gauged in this stage changes over time.
|4||Nascent Soul||800 ~ 2,000 years||Once a "core" has reached sufficient density, it can be forcefully collapsed and molded to form a "Nascent Soul". A cultivator reaches the Nascent Soul stage upon successful formation of a Nascent Soul. Under rare circumstances, an individual may form more than one Nascent Soul. Progression through the Nascent Soul stage involves absorbing spiritual energy to refine the Nascent Soul. Like the previous stages, there are 3 groups: Early, Middle and Late Nascent Soul Cultivators.There is the exception of those one step into Nascent Soul who may be able to release a power roughly around that of a Nascent Soul cultivator.
One ability of this stage is to separate Nascent Soul from a cultivators mortal body. As a nascent soul is refined, it reduces it's dependency on the Mortal body. In later stages of Nascent Soul, the mortal body can be destroyed while the cultivator survives through their Nascent Soul. However, destruction of the mortal body (cultivation vessel) prevents further growth. It is possible to possess another body should it be given to them or they forcefully take over a new body. However, doing so will weaken the Nascent Soul, and future growth is still limited.
Cultivators at this stage are considered ancestors or grand elders within sects, and can live up to a thousand years at most, more should they use special methods. Nascent Soul cultivators form the basis and majority of strength within a middle level sect. Loss of Nascent Soul ancestors can result in extinction of a sect. A single ancestor can single-handedly wipe out an enemy sect without a Nascent Soul ancestor. War between sects or factions with Nascent Soul cultivators rarely result in battle between cultivators of this stage.
Nascent Soul cultivators are mostly motivated by self-interest. They will not involve themselves in conflict unless there are rewards.
|5||Deity Transformation||2,000 ~ 5,000 years||The fifth stage of cultivation. The Nascent Soul has reached its pinnacle, and can no longer progress. Thus, the Nascent Soul will then begin to interact with the higher energies of Heaven and Earth. A chance of death is present as a tribulation occurs to enter this stage. Should the Nascent Soul succeed in becoming half immortal soul, one will have the power to manipulate the energies of the world to fight, or cut open space to travel a thousand miles in one leap or instantly approach the enemy. Can be called first-rate or powerhouse in second-rate sects, and first-rate expert in first-rate sects or factions.|
|1||Spatial Tempering||Unlimited lifespan (but usually die due to heavenly tribulation)||The sixth and final stage of cultivation before attempting to truly become a Immortal. The Nascent Soul has reached a point of no return in terms of power, and is only a small part away from becoming a immortal soul, however, the power of the void or space has not been infused, and many pieces of one's mortal shackles are still in place. In this stage, only a piece of emotion should be kept, and the Nascent Soul shall eventually become a immortal soul. There is a high chance of death if attempting to enter this stage. Can be seen as the pinnacle figures of the Spirit Realm.
|Heaven's Tribulation||Instant death or continued life.||Intermission between Void Refinement and Integration/Synthesis. One will either die or succeed.|
|2||Body Integration||Unlimited lifespan (but usually die due to heavenly tribulation)||At this stage, one has officially stepped beyond the mortal world, and can travel into boundless space with no issues. At this stage, one will no longer use heaven and earth energy, but natural essence energy, far superior and more powerful. At this level, the immortal soul is true in strength and form, and one has officially gained one piece of immortality. A tribulation will accompany every breakthrough. This is considered to be the highest stage of cultivation in the Spirit Realm. The Three Human Sovereigns are at this level.|
|3||Grand Ascension||Unlimited lifespan (but usually die due to heavenly tribulation)||A realm equal to a Demon Ancestor in the demon race. It is incredibly scarce in the Spirit Realm, much less in the lower mortal world. 99% of cultivators will die before entering this stage. However, entering this stage will not grant access to the Immortal World. Those that achieved this stage are often stuck in the Spirit Realm as becoming a True Immortal is too hard.|
|4||Loose Immortal||1000 ~ 5000 years||A realm that exists once someone fails to become a True Immortal. This is the realm one enters should they somehow survive their failed tribulation. Their lifespan is decreased enormously, however, their power is nonetheless able to dominate all under the True Immortal level. There is little hope for those in this level. In the spiritual world, a Loose Immortal will commonly go on a rampage once their life is coming to an end, causing damage to all around them. However, it is possible to have minor breakthroughs in this realm. There are also differences in the strengths of Loose Immortals. This realm is not mentioned much in the novel itself, if not at all. The stage is mostly implied.
Highest attainable cultivation boundary below True Immortal.
|1||Real/True Immortal||Unlimited lifespan (but usually die due to Tribulation of Three Declines)||The last and final realm in the mortal spiritual world, also the beginning of the Immortal World. Not much is known besides that this stage can directly flip over a mortal spiritual world. It has been shown that the demon race fear this level to their bones. The presence of a True Immortal is enough to send the demon race into a frenzy just from the thought of one.
At this stage, one can use immortal spirit energy to cultivate and open immortal aperture, posseses endless lifespan. However, they will also have to face Tribulation of Three Declines. First Decline, is Immortal Decline, within the body immortal spirit strength is drained for no reason, cultivation base is damaged greatly, until realm drops. Second Decline, is Body Decline, the mortal body gradually falls apart, the body and spirit weakens, finally is unable to accept immortal spirit energy, until the body exploded and perished. Third Decline, is Aperture Decline, after aperture deteriorates, will spread, invades more than 30 immortal aperture that True Immortal cultivator opens laboriously, causing it to be completely decayed. Once all immortal aperture rot, the body of True Immortal will then deteriorates, immortal spirit strength diverges all, all cultivation loses, finally degenerates into the disabled person thoroughly, the opportunity of staging a comeback did not have.
|2||Golden Immortal||Unlimited lifespan (but usually die due to Tribulation of Five Declines)|
|3||Supreme Unity Jade Immortal||Unlimited lifespan|
|4||Great Encompassing||Unlimited lifespan|
|5||Dao Ancestor||Unlimited lifespan|