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  2. What are you listening to?

    Here is a different 'take' on rain (in Indonesia ) . Golden Rain - I did a gamalan workshop years back and got to play in one , the guy that directed the workshop ( the head of the gamalan orchestra of Sydney Uni ) was very proud of this piece , it was written by his teacher and won acclaim . However we never tried to play it ! Phew ! The beginner piece we did was complex enough for me . Each part for the individual isnt that complex , but when it comes together .... WOW ! ( I chose the two largest gongs to play .... being more of a bass/ rhythm/beat type )
  3. John Chang - Jesus

    I totally agree with you that for the bible to 'work' for you , you do need to 'put your intellect aside ' . I have noticed that many many people who believe in and use the bible have been successful in this .
  4. John Chang - Jesus

    We never had a bible , nor where encouraged to read it . Even in 'religion' a subject we had every day . back then, I dont know about now. the Catholic School didnt teach from bibles, nor did we personally have one . It was ' the catholic catechism ' - basically a highly censored version of extracts . I am sure YOU can guess why . Reading the bible yourself will get you into ;trouble' without the 'leraned' there to explain it all to you But apparently , reading the bible is also a great inspiration for some
  5. Today
  6. Mathew 4 : 19 ? I dont think there is any consensus on where the actual border is between Pisces and Aquarius . The constellational maps we use now are fairly modern and in some cases, very strange ( eg . a border runs along the side of an asterism , shoots out at 90 deg , goes around one remote star and comes back again to continue up the side of the asterism , ) In older times they use stars as markers . Also constellation got changed , 'they' cut off Scorpio's claws making it heaps smaller and gave them to part of Libra which made Libra comparatively enormous. One problem here is The Astrological Ages are astrological but the idea of constellations and the EP moving through them is an astronomical process. So astrologers need to make their own constellational systems . Your astrologer friend, mostly using the Sun , perhaps does it by ignoring the above and working on angular relationships ( and maybe star markers ) . I know of some astrologers that ignore just about everything except the angles the planets make with each other in relation to the Sun . Others judge it by looking at the asterism of Aquarius and considering its furthest stars as the boundary . Even looking up the difference between these two is confusing , as the source material is confused ; Constellation of Aquarius; Asterism of Aquarius ;
  7. Non dual Buddhism

    I appreciate the response. I'm not very familiar with the traditional Buddhist path I don't question or criticize the gradual, progressive path at all. My comment was more meant to point out the inseparability of the kayas which I believe is an important point, regardless of which path we take. I highly recommend the preliminaries to everyone, as do the Bön teachers I know. That said, I suspect that the preliminaries are less effective for Westerners due largely to cultural differences and due to the way most engage with them compared to the traditional approaches in the East. And a relatively small number of Westerners actually complete them, from what I understand. I think some of the Bön lamas are a bit more flexible now than in the "old days" for this reason. Many of us in the West are in desperate need of practices that can help with our challenges. Few have the patience, commitment, or access to work through the entirety of the sutric path, even fewer the tantric path. Dzogchen is an ideal practice for the Western lifestyle in many ways but, as you accurately point out, there are many pitfalls. I believe the decision to open up such teachings comes from a place of compassion and I also think it has been relatively successful when you look at the number of people engaged in the practices and the feedback they provide. These practitioners may never reach the level of accomplishment that might be possible had they moved through the formal and traditional process. At the end of the day, they will never be lineage holders or monastics, nor do they need or want to be. But if their lives benefit from access to the teachings, it's probably a good thing. In the Bön community there are differences of opinion on all of this.
  8. Non dual Buddhism

    Now we're Dharma shaming?
  9. Yeah , or waaaay back in the past - an astrological 'Great Year' is nearly 26.000 Earth years long . We will have to ask Mark .... as I dont know what he is on about . Oi Mark ! What you on about ?
  10. Circle around Center

    oh this man, what a snake oil seller he is
  11. Haiku Chain

    Warm up the sa-ké! But do not imbibe its warmth A clear mind is truth
  12. Howdy from Yoda!

    OMG -- can´t believe you´re here again Yoda. Welcome back!
  13. Howdy from Yoda!

    Great to hear from you. For an original member like you I'm not even gonna cut and paste the usual stuff. Nice to have you onboard and online again. Cam's been missing in action for a couple years. Maybe your presence will draw him out. Yours thelerner
  14. Non dual Buddhism

    Simpler is better. Actually I wasn't trying to complicate - just making notes of what I was thinking about - but of course as you make notes it tends to get more wordy.
  15. Non dual Buddhism

    Fair enough. Naked observation sounds a bit kinky tho'
  16. Howdy from Yoda!

    Been about 10 years! I couldn't sign in as Yoda so created this Yoda AZ name. Moved to AZ and tried to look up Cam recently but no luck with an old aol email address. His family has a store down the road from me, so I'll check there next. Anyone here in the Phoenix area?
  17. John Chang Died February 5th 2020

    I just saw this now. That is very sad news. He was a real living legend and an inspiration to many due to his amazing accomplishments and abilities in neigong and related. His age was listed as 85 years old.
  18. An opinion or observation of madness

    It's true but let's be clear, this is the longstanding orientation of the US foreign policy establishment, both Democrats and Republicans. The US support for the Afghan Mujaheddin under Carter and Reagan laid the groundwork for the Taliban and Al Qaeda, and a combination of clumsiness, willful blindness, and cynicism on the part of US intelligence played a big role in allowing 9/11 to happen. Bush of course knew full well about Saudi involvement in the plot but nonetheless clung as tightly to them as ever. It's worth remembering that on 9/11 Al Qaeda was a network of a few hundred guys spread around the globe; 19 years later their affiliates field small armies in several countries. So the War on Terror has been a complete failure through both the Bush and Obama years. Of course this is assuming the actual purpose on the War on Terror was to fight terrorism and not just boost profits for the MIC and provide a thin excuse for the US to project its power all over the world. Bush's invasion of Iraq and Obama's destabilizing of Libya and Syria were enormous gifts to jihadist organizations, many of whom in Syria were directly funded, armed, and trained by the US despite having the same basic ideology and goals as Al Qaeda. In fact many of these guys simply ended up being absorbed by Al Qaeda's Syria branch, HTS. All through this, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States continued to have enormous influence in US politics in both parties. If there is a difference, it might be that Obama's administration was a bit friendlier to Qatar than to Saudi Arabia (they have their differences, though both remain thoroughly horrible) So condemn Trump, by all means. There is much to condemn. My problem is when these criticisms of Trump carry an assumption that the previous consensus was sane, which it was clearly not.
  19. Master Zhou Ting Jue

    With Covid-19, they may have shut down his studio in the last couple of months, like many other businesses. I visited LA several years ago and went to see Master Zhou once each day for about 5 days, to try his healing sessions and to learn his level 1 qigong. At that time he had a Chinese women who spoke English, who was there every day, who answered the phone and emails and made appointments for Master Zhou, and translated for him when necessary. Master Zhou only speaks a little English. I don't remember the exact cost for the healing sessions and Level 1 qigong, but the costs were reasonable. Your best bet is to try the email address and contact phone number listed on their website: Email: zhoutingjue (at) Phone: 310-478-1798 Master Zhou should be pretty old now however. He's probably in his 80's now. He was still very energetic 4 or 5 years ago when I was there however. Not sure if he is still actively offering the same services now, but he may be. I could really feel a lot of heat coming from that pad he uses in his healing sessions. I didn't notice any really major noticeable differences after trying his healing sessions, but I only tried about 5 sessions to see what it felt like. His Level 1 qigong is what you might expect from a Level 1 qigong course. Basic movements and stances. He also teaches various tai chi and related martial arts sets, or at least he used to.
  20. Ven Tenzin Choedon, more prominently known as Ani Tenzin, was a resident of Kollegal Tibetan settlement who had spent over 44 years in meditation retreat at the holy caves of Guru Padmasambhava. Her body was found in the state of Thukdam with floral fragrance all around.
  21. Non dual Buddhism

    Thanks, Steve. In some regards, the view presented is acceptable, and I would agree with the general premise, but taking into consideration that Lamrim is the recommended approach by all the main Tibetan Buddhist traditions for developing a wholesome practice and practitioner, it makes sense to avoid potential confusion by delineating all the yanas and Kayas as an expedient step to allow for understanding and clarity. The Lamrim path is an exhaustive system that offers exhaustive and meticulous guidance to any serious practitioner on the path to buddhahood. One who resonates with this graduated path can avoid certain pitfalls that tend to beset those who choose to throw caution to the wind and dive head first into this proverbial deep end, which is actually not deep and not really shallow either - a certain degree of affinity determines where one finds oneself once the commitment is made to burn the bridges. This bridge-burning is a common enough occurrence with those fairly new to tantra who then get enthused & charmed by the allures of Dzogchen. Finding oneself in such a precarious, heavily invested position is not entirely without merit as there is a sort of default assumption that whomsoever takes up Vajrayana will have already been informed of the perilous nature of this theoretically swifter path; therefore, Dzogchen as a follow-on naturally presents its own unique set of challenges which affect individual practitioners differently, depending on various karmic factors. To reiterate, while the eventual practice of Dzogchen may indeed be simple, to grasp its essence without first understanding the priors may prove tricky, which is the reason why some of the great Tibetan Buddhist masters understood the impracticality of leaving the preliminaries out, and for that reason, Lamrim was introduced. Perhaps Bon Dzogchen feel this to be an unnecessary burden to lay on students and practitioners. This is quite possible, as some Tibetan Dzogchen masters have that same attitude too. One of the better links for anyone keen to understand Lamrim and its benefits.
  22. Lost motivation

    You are describing a world of complexity, it is what it is, often difficult and ugly. Good luck to anyone going by these stages (and anyone with sensibility will). I think most people leaning towards spirituality, meditation are people that have to deal with existential question and or suffering, that's why we need it sometimes as answer, sometimes as an help and sometimes like a life mellower or better like an life enhancer. You may be suffering depression right now which makes everything harder. Good news are that meditation is a great cure and passing through that, when that will pass (because it will !) you will appreciate life even better Two other operational proposition : join a group of practice. The group carries the practitioners, opportunities to practice differently from what you used to do and similar minded contacts also help. start downhill longboarding
  23. Being in the present moment?

    The way that worked for me very nicely is to describe/define who I am, without thinking
  24. Non dual Buddhism

    I'll differ a bit with this CT. Maybe I'm just misunderstanding your comments. From the dzogchen perspective, at least from the teachings I've received, if one connects to the Nature of Mind one is connected to all 3 kayas. There is never any separation, no connecting with one but then needing somehow to develop others. We can approach them through different doors - body, speech, and mind, but once we rest into our fundamental essence there is no distinction or differentiation. There is no practice of perfecting paramitas as they are already spontaneously perfected in the Natural State. This is the major difference between tantra and dzogchen. In tantra, one continues to practice generating bodicitta. In dzogchen, one simply rests in the Nature with the certainty that bodhicitta is already perfected and will manifest when needed.
  25. An opinion or observation of madness

    As I experience it. Those with the least integrity, the least empathy, and the most desperate psychotic tendencies with a craving for power, will do, or say anything to achieve and keep influence and power. There are no limits to what is acceptable to them, for above all, they must be in control. So when a person of integrity settles into a position of power. It will incessantly be challenged. And inevitably, by process of attrition, eventually they'll be winnowed down, pushed out and replaced. Not being willing to do and say anything to maintain their influence, those with integrity will eventually be pushed, cajoled, lied or harmed out of power and we end up with the power structure of... what we live with now... a system where those with the most self interest, wield the most influence and are those with the most intensely honed psychotic behavioral tendencies and the least moral reflectiveness. It seems unavoidable to my mind at this point, this systemic human process of governance. So I go myopic. Turn within mostly and keep my focus on the locus of my tiny sphere of influence. edit to add: I still vote. My myopic focus is not complete withdrawal.
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