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  1. 11 points
    As per the title. Just needed to get that off my chest.
  2. 11 points
  3. 10 points
    Thank you my friends... i am sorry I stoped posting. honestly, I was tired of the arguing. i simply have focused my life on the way of Taoist Practice - and now for the past 9 years actively teaching in Japan. I feel the main point overlooked by those exploring Taoist Methods is the process of refining and purifying the Heart. Too much focus is put on the fascination of Qi Powers, Technique, and also Political Ranking. Purify and Simplify the Heart -- uncover your original state of sincerity. this is an important foundation for making Internal Progress... all my best, dao zhen
  4. 9 points
    Qi Gong practiced properly is everything Indian Yoga is (as opposed to Western "Yoga"). The quality of the teacher and the practice is not nearly as important as the approach to it. If it is for personal power and health - the quality of the teacher and the practice are minor items - personal power and health are relatively easy things to come forward with in even the most mundane of these practices. If you think reading and studying will take you far - they will - they will at some point take you to the understanding that you need to put the books on the shelf and begin practice. In practice you will find that you misunderstood everything you read - but you will begin to see a glint of the real teaching. Hopefully you will not forget that you misunderstood a great deal initially - and begin to see that holding on to ones "understanding" is not helpful - it is willfulness. Initially it is difficult to fathom "years of practice" and hard to see an extra 2-4 hours to be found in ones day. Yet when you have tasted the way - time will lose its way with you. "years" are a projection There is no miraculous recounting of what is possible that is remotely capable of transmitting what IS - all the books on earth are simply a door mat that says Welcome.
  5. 9 points
    So, the temporary enlightenment experience I was having faded away, after a long period where it got quite dark in my head. I am now back, within new limits. Hello again everyone
  6. 9 points
  7. 8 points
    I am posting the following portion of a PM from Limahong at his request and with his permission: Hi All, Thank you very much for your very kind words. I 'left' TDB in the sense that I had deactivated myself and I had sounded out my last TDB post. I am doing it again ~ differently now... I am still a TDB member but on a silent wu-wei mode. I am definitely going to enjoy myself as a silent spectator at TDB. For instance I am now seeing Daemon in a different delightful light. I am still with TDB in spirit ~ humming this... [Legend : True Love = Love for Taoism, Loch Lomond = TDB] I am taking the low road in search of my "wu-wei 101" - through death and rebirth. Take good care - One + All. - Anand
  8. 8 points
    imagine a movie of the sun, with its rays shining outward imagine that movie played backwards, with the rays returning to the sun now place that movie at the niwan, and run it on loop inhale, light returns exhale, light returns do not flex the niwan, keep this light and shiny
  9. 8 points
    It was so interesting back in the day when Daobums met up at the Kunlun seminars. The one I went to had maybe 8 bums there (most of who have left the forum now)...really interesting to meet such a diverse group, who were all very friendly and cool. I think sometimes on the forum, our perceptions can be a bit skewed since we're debating with some words on a screen...the anonymity of the internet changes how we behave as compared to dealing with human faces. In real life it's much more enjoyable and I think never unpleasant, or at least it was back then!
  10. 7 points
    I don't remember where I ran into this but its cool and seemingly unique information (at least to me and at least if you believe the OP). It seems authentic to me and I like it a lot so I thought I'd share it here to help any friends I could. Here's the original thread on the forum and the breakdown I did of it in Word. http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread999026/pg1 "I just got back from a 1.5 month trek thru India, visiting various holy sites, solitude, intuition, practice, and trying to get to what a friend told me was a fully enlightened Buddha who was teaching at the foothills of the Himalayas, and I found him, here's what he had to say: Quite simple. He said no matter the path, it boils down to the 3 Dan Tien’s. The 3 energetic gateways to Consciousness, Truth, Enlightenment. Upper Dan Tien is Pure Subjectivity, but also simultaneously Pure Consciousness. There is both a center point or the pure light of cognition/attention, but also it is a spacious field and is what creates the halo of light around the head you see in pictures of Saints. Think Buddha, Christ, Various Sikh Masters, etc. Middle Dan Tien is the Source of Conscious, the Soul, the Portal for the head-based Consciousness to reach its Source, like a drop of water entering the Ocean, an Ocean of Infinite Light, Infinite Bliss, the Multi-Faceted Diamond, the Inner Spark of Life, existence, Consciousness. The Zero point of Non-duality it is the centerless center. At this point as well, is the Light of Consciousness which begins to flood and change the body. Eventually one reaches the Light Body via a flooding of and living off this light of consciousness. Lower Dan Tian is the point at the very bottom of the breath, when you breath deep, it is the small crack between the end of exhalation, the beginning of inhalation. This point is the Source of Vitality, the Source of Beingness, the Unborn Emptiness prior to all things including Consciousness. The void the precedes everything and anything. It is the point where Buddha reached Enlightenment, where emptiness is form, and form is emptiness. Eventually The upper DT merges with the middle, the middle then merges with the lower, and all 3 become one. Additionally, kundalini occurs eventually in the path, opens all channels & chakras. He spoke of the Solar Plexus Chakra which when opened, unlocks the rib cage and unlocks breathing. He spoke of an unlocking of the Lower Dan Tian where breathing becomes alive and deepens naturally and becomes extremely slow, all on its own, sometime leading to extremely long periods of no breathing at all for days. He also said something very interesting. Speaking of the hundreds of thousands of tiny meridians like channels that flow through the body, all become unblocked with stagnant life force, to be replaced by emptiness, consciousness, and light of consciousness, a process he had undergone and now had access to attainment of rainbow body, but saw in his karma he needed to teach a bit before "leaving that way." Even so, he only sees a few people a week and is very much hidden, saying that only those who are supposed to find him by sheer grace and luck are the one's he speaks with. Other interesting things he said were that the conscious mind and subconscious mind where directly linked to the middle Dan Tian & Source of Consciousness. So those who use mantra and attention, are getting to middle DT via the channel that the subconscious arises through upon waking in the morning, and falls away to when falling asleep at night. He also said he has the ability for him as pure consciousness to leave the body at will and see/visit heaven and hell realms of various sorts as well as who is and isn't awakened to a high degree, because you can see their light of Consciousness shining from space and affecting the reality around them like a rock thrown in a pond making waves. Surprisingly, he mentioned the Eastern Orthodox Monks of Christianity as being highly developed and many who are also fully Enlightened. So too are Sufi masters, a large number of Yogi's around the world, some Sikhs, and Masters of various Paths including some new agers who use a conglomerate of techniques to penetrate into the inner mysteries. He said entering middle Dan Tian via mantra/attention, feeling your way into there, was the front door, whereas activating the upper Dan Tian and then surrendering so it drops down the spine into Middle Dan Tian was the back door. That surrender with minute level of will was the absolute master key, however that to find the channel where Consciousness can return to its source at the front of the spine was something akin to entering a huge completely dark warehouse and trying to feel your way around with your hands in order to locate a single strand of a spider's web. Only that the warehouse was the size of your head, and there are ways to turn on the lights, breathing exercises that can be done to activate the spine, and a number of other things. I got a transmission from him and it was like everything began to open up. The "strand" he spoke of, I can clearly feel just at the front of the spine and felt exactly how it linked from the center of subjectivity, to middle Dan Tian, to Lower Dan Tian. It was the most amazing thing ever to get this transmission. I could see this guy completely covered in light, like his whole body was a halo. And from a distance, I can see clearly his field of energy was massive, like a giant warehouse of energy around him, it looked like the mirage you see in the street on a hot summer's day. The transmission he said he had to do lightly and just enough for you to get a hint of where everything is at because you have to do the rest of the work yourself and plus a few transmissions he did, he literally blew fuses in people and they needed weeks/months to recover, so he doesn't know yet how to greatly control his transmissions other to then give very subtle ones. He's very reluctant to teach. I found him through word of mouth from a friend who is in India on a year- long pilgrimage, who has access to an area of the Himalayas where there are caves with Masters meditating in them, being brought food & water by an ancient order/organization of people from small villages who have been donating to those seeking Enlightenment in the caves for over a thousand years now. Some refuse to see or teach people. Others have asked to be completely shored up in the caves with rocks/bricks and not to be brought food or water anymore, only to emerge a decade or two later still alive and full Enlightened. I only saw this one guy, but my buddy who is there for a year now, said the others he met, he's received transmission from just from being around them, like third eye permanently open, kundalini activation, heart flowering open & the complete disappearance of the I-Self reference structure. The guy I saw, it took a good three weeks of me being there in the crappiest conditions ever to make it work. It was sort of like a test. My rooms had no heat, thin blankets, food was scarce and sometimes there was no dinner to be had, roaches, him never showing up because the trek he had to make was completely covered in so much fog you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face. My guide who was taking me to the meeting place there fell ill. The guy who replaced him got us lost twice. I finally gave up at the end of week three and booked a driver to take me back out of the deep mountains. And it was that day that the original guide came and said we can go and try one last time. And so I saw him once, and it has changed me forever. I was already figuring this all out experientially myself via a vast number of mystical experiences via mystical Christianity and a dropping away of the ego and into source of conscious via a zen koan and some Advaita study that says there is no you. So he confirmed my signature thread, but said that I need to add the lower Dan Tien which is access to Pure Being/Isness/Emptiness/Unmanifested/Unborn/Vitality. There are a few people spouting the "there is no you," seer, seen, and seeing are one", "drop the seeking and that is you," crowd and asked him about this. He said that while it is a legitimate path, it only takes you so far. There is still work in spring cleaning to do of dropping the remaining mental/subconscious dross & remnants, as well as kundalini, assisting the chakra openings, the meridian channels to open and become free flowing & unblocked, and surrender was one of the most vital tools to breakthrough into Being/Lower Dan Tian. We both agreed that what happens is the neo-Advaita crowd gets to a certain "non-dual state", and that is it for them, being under a false and illusory impression that they are at the end of the road and there is no more to do. But it’s so much more to it and staying at non-dual is a trap. The correct Enlightenment is Nondual, Dual, Both & None, Kundalini, all chakras open, all meridians transformed, all emotions and thoughts silence & returned to their source so they never arise, and access to leaving the body at will, all being permanent and the deepening and changes of all these things never ends. Why would a Buddhist on the Indian side of the Himalayas be using Taoist terminology? He wasn't traditional by any means. Mentioned the need to be a rebel & non-conformist on the path in order to break-through and see through dogma & blocks. He was using yoga, advaita, Taoism, Buddhism, various mystical texts, meditations in caves, basically a conglomerate of paths and wasn't from there. Was only there now because that's where one of his teachers lived before him and that area is conducive to being left alone to practice while still being supplied food/water. In my notes according to his description it’s more like this: Upper Dan Tian = Pure Awareness, the Light of Cognition, pure subjectivity, but also spacious consciousness that with the light of cognition make up the head halo eventually. According to him, the "observer" was a very limited and miniscule aspect of all of this and was more so like an extension of pure cognition. What you want to find is prior to even the Observer. Middle Dan Tian - Center of the Heart, The Soul, the source of thought, subconscious, source of awareness, portal into nondual oneness, God consciousness, it is prior to Awareness, to any observer to all head- based consciousness and it is its source. It is the Gateway to God/Soul/Union/Oneness. Lower Dan Tian - The very bottom of the breath when you breathe deeply into the belly, at the junction where exhalation ends, and inhalation begins. This is a portal to pure Isness, Emptiness, Beingness, Source of Life, Vitality, Source of existence. It is Absolute and prior to anything and everything. Nothing can trump this. It is like the foundation stone for all of existence and it is prior to the Nondual state that all the nondualists dogmatically preach is the end all. I did not name the teacher. Do you need his name? It was something like "I have no name" in Vedic interestingly enough. It’s funny how you are dividing everything into a kind of dogmatic do not mix purist fashion. He was really big on non-conformity and rebellion, saying the times he spent at Buddhist monastery was very stagnated. Whereas on his own and in the company of a number of teachers, he flew like an eagle. However, he is claiming the same as Buddha's enlightenment, saying the portal to reach it is in the lower Dan Tian. Quite simple. The guy is well guarded, filtered, obscured and I think so far only about 20+ have accessed him, which he likes due to some remaining reluctance and fate matters. I wanted to mention, he said quite of the few others he's seen were 20-35 year vipassana, Mahayana, and various other branch practitioners who were so absolutely stagnated on the path, that it was sad for him to see so much time wasted. He was really big in honoring time, as it is like gold, whatever you have here you have to make the most of it. So, he was saying how they wasted decades and if anything got to a somewhat intermediate level of concentration or observer detached from mind, but that's about it. The dogma, attachment to unquestioned purity, watering down and not being able to argue, debate, question has created like this watered-down death as he called it. And the whole "I have been in X Path for 40 years with these X transmissions" meant completely nothing to him. I answered with my own awakenings and how many years of practice and he would always just ask, "...and what is your current permanent state now?" Everything from the notes is included in the OP, via a condensed description. I've since found links that describe in more detail all the stuff this fellow was discussing, and it'd more relevant to post those than my notes. Here you go: These two here have a lot of the details that the Cave Dweller from my OP was discussing, these links having TONS more details then my notes: meditationexpert.com/ damo-qigong.net/ The central channel that I experienced opening up upon getting a transmission from him, is also spoken of in those links above, and here is also a new age site that speaks of this central channel: soul1.org/CentralChannel.htm Here's a Tai Chi site discussing the central channel with the dan tians: taijiwuxigong.com/spiritual_development.htm Also I have a buddy who reached a very deep and permanent state of Enlightenment (though it is just one aspect of many) via a method known as Mahasi Style Noting. I asked the cave dweller about this, and he said it is a legitimate technique to access Enlightenment. So this thread still holds its weight: Enlightenment in 15-30 days, an EXTREMELY fast method. Mahasi Style Noting Perhaps 1 thing I left off which he mentioned, was the importance of lengthy time in practice via solitude, retreats, or just setting up your life perhaps with a part time job, or save enough, where you can take lengthy time off to really go into deep and disciplined practice. On the meditationexpert.com/, something I found that the author posts there, which is similar to what the Cave Dweller, as I call him, were adamant about, was about cultivation of deep emptiness meditation as far as detachment from body and mind as not you. This really seems to speed up the process and help open all the meridians/chakras as well. All the links explain it all better then I could based on my notes."
  11. 7 points
    Yes These teachings and my experiences are very precious and I'm not inclined to offer them up for examination and denigration. I've shared enough for now. Peace
  12. 7 points
  13. 7 points
  14. 7 points
    ~~~ ADMIN NOTICE ~~~ Lima... you tend to unload a lot of meme pictures and it has generated too many reports that cause staff time to have to look at so many. I have hidden them here to keep the thread on topic. Please discern when a pic or two in an appropriate thread makes sense.. not all threads are they appropriate. If you are unable to discern it, staff will simply just take action on the post and posting status. Everyone likes some light humor but it begins to feel like spam at some point.
  15. 7 points
    I was at a meeting with one of my communities which was mostly Akashic and Psion lineage people and others from various practices in Qigong, yogas, and healing modalities, and a few curious lurkers and lovable weirdos in a cafe yesterday on the outskirts of Manila. What happened as we entered into a discussion of a serious topic about how to institutionalize and to embody a concept we discussed made me realize that the idiosyncrasies of all the individuals gathered, different values, and practices was what I see TDB as: eclectic and funny, and enlivening. We had someone who began the topic on the issue (she posted a new thread in TDB!), and we took turns sharing our views on it from our individual perspectives and referring to our individual practices. Some jumped off of each other's statements and the conversation grew, others went into tangents. One individual reminded me of someone here who jumps into topics because he spoke for fifteen minutes and seemed to veer off topic to the point it seemed like he was no longer talking about what our initial conversation was. Were TDB what that day was, "Bong" our verbose friend would have had a pat on the back and shoulder with a kind of "Come on, friend, let's wrap up and get back to topic" in a playful and affectionate manner (mod reminder). As some people veered into making the topic about themselves and how they felt nobody understood them, a few of us again pat them on the shoulders and said we'll chat with them privately because if they feel triggered or reminded of something going on in their lives, there has to be a point where they are contributing as much as they are asking of others, but we promised to get back to them privately. If they didn't want to keep it private or stay on topic, they found themselves lower on the priority for who would be chosen to speak next (people putting them on ignore in TDB and mods telling them to stay on topic). An actual point raised there is something I raised here in TDB as well, which was that there's a way to discuss things civilly but in this age of social media and a concept I really disagree with called "post-truth", to disagree with someone is to make them feel invalidated and they in turn seek to invalidate you by challenging you in hopes of winning arguments that can never be won due to the psychology of the Backfire Effect and the nature of the beast that is the Internet. It is thus a necessity as I referred to in an older thread on the Tao of Controversy that this is both an exercises in cultivation and a test to see if you will jump into those arguments or walk away. Another participant jumped in and said that this is a battle for relevance: people focus on calling out and shaming rather than a practice I prefer that is calling people in to help preserve dignity and save face. But we ended with a statement I added that I learned when I was acting in Hollywood many years ago: "When I was 20, I worried about what others thought about me. When I was 30, I did not give a crap about what others thought about me. When I was 40, I realized nobody was thinking about me. They were wondering about what people thought about them." I've also had conversations offline with many members here and find them to all be exceptionally pleasant, but conclude that there are too many limitations to using only words, especially as many of us have different ages, nationalities, life experiences, values, and systems of practice. It is as though by our own desire to seek to go beyond our level of knowing and understanding and the exposure here that we can grow, just as we discussed in our community meeting yesterday afternoon. That is why I am overjoyed being in this forum more often than not.
  16. 7 points
    Welcome Back Mate! Lately I have this recurring sense arise spontaneously of having just returned home when I haven't gone anywhere... and when traveling about there is the feeling of never having left... There is a familiarity to all places... even the strange ones and no matter where I go, there I am again. Such familiarity and comfort arising everywhere and tied to nowhere. The center is everywhere. Good to see you back old friend... it's like you never left.
  17. 7 points
    This statement could make for a good debate but I don't want to derail the thread. I'll bite - I think one of the more straightforward paths one can follow is Dzogchen. The basis of Dzogchen is that there is nothing to be done to achieve realization, you are already there, you're just distracted. It is simply a matter of resting body, speech, and mind enough to recognize the truth; and then stabilizing that realization so that it can be a part of every waking, sleeping, and dying moment. It's not at all easy, it's not for everyone, but it is very straightforward.
  18. 7 points
    Hang on a minute there ..... 'sharing' is to and fro ... what have you offered us , so far you have asked for an awful lot, but I dont recall you ever offering to share anything . Most of the time you won't even engage or answer a question . Then you just keep putting up thread after thread on the same subject, not fully examining or responding to the dialogues already initiated . This does have an advantage ; it is indicative and a warning for you on our future path, that you have a tendency to get shallow and superficial, dart here and there, clutch what you seek and never really get deeply into a thing and track it and hunt its truth down. I realise however that it is a trend nowadays - not to be able to focus a lot on any given thing and to expect immediate gratification, Fortunately at this early stage, you can address this, before it beds in too much . I could talk a lot about the subjects you mentioned, but why bother, it may be glossed over like in the other threads. There you still have opportunity to chase up such lines of enquiry, instead of abandoning them and starting yet another one up again. But, I will forgive you .... and share 'The Secret ' !
  19. 7 points
    There are some excellent answers above, so I will just focus on your bonus questions... What people call Kundalini is really subconscious energy flows. And rather than people noticing the energy flows themselves, they more notice the energy “hitting” and breaking up stored energy structures of issues and fears (karma). So a major Kundalini event is also about dealing with some major subconscious issue. This is a necessary part of all spiritual advancement, but some people feel it as energy and some more as increasing mental clarity (quiet mind). 1. The connection between the third eye and crown do not need to be opened before kundalini effects. Additionally, someone actually having their crown open is unbelievably rare. That being more like “divine” energy now flowing in. 2. There is a vast difference in the range of openings at the 3rd eye. Maybe think of it more like a layer of consciousness, than an eye that opens. That layer is like a window of higher mind activity with very broad function. Sort of like the local minds view into what could be called universal consciousness. That universal aspect is basically infinite, so there is a lot to always keep opening more.
  20. 7 points
    Are you asking people to teach you how to be evil or how to simply be cruel? Be very careful. An evil or cruel person might respond and you could easily become their plaything. I suggest that before you seek power, seek wisdom.
  21. 7 points
  22. 7 points
    The very desire to want to control will impede such abilities.
  23. 7 points
  24. 7 points
    I live off-grid, very remote, up in the Selkirks. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selkirk_Mountains Here is a picture of our cabin:
  25. 7 points
    The light is awareness and attention which is nearly always turned outward towards the "outside" world. Turning that light around means to focus our awareness and attention inward.
  26. 6 points
    The direct process to detachment is not one of learning more skills from which to hone and thus ‘cultivate’ an understanding from per se, rather it is the stripping away of or continual loss of what was once thought to be known. Detachment happens not because we force, supress, reject or attempt to get rid of desire, rather it is through increasing insight and experiential embodiment of profound understandings that we come to realize the true impracticality and futility of desire. When the courage to know the truth becomes the actual experience of embodying those truths, then true understanding results in a profound harmonious indifference- one that recognizes the unity already inherent in all things and thus requires no desire to fulfill, as well as the simultaneous non-existence of things from which there is nothing to fulfill. The best practices are rooted in the foundation of a self-sincerity in courage to know truth. Mustering the strength to bear an idea or concept of what you think is truthful is not necessarily the condition I am pointing to. Real courage and real truth, is a resolved understanding in experience- it has no resistance, takes no effort, relinquishes striving and effort, and is afforded through absolute willingness in faith to witness. The best beginning practice that prepares us for this is meditation. Though meditation as a practice is foundationaly healthful for all in most any regard, not all meditations are the same. Thus, understanding and practicing a method of meditation that through diligence and focus can instill stillness in silence, this is the meditation best suited to realizing detachment. And one of the most useful lifestyle methods I could suggest to accompany this practice in still silence, is to strip yourself of all concepts, ideas and even things. Thus be mindful of all forms of consumption; reduce and remove as many as forms of consumption as possible. Purify your body, your mind, your heart, your home and environment; in short, leave little left to be pondered. Look, see, feel and experience without prior idea, without words, without concepts. When you can do this- when you can witness without even a sound of movement in your system, you will begin to know what belies form. You will begin to touch into what is formless. In the light of nothing, detachment becomes the vital state to profound peace.
  27. 6 points
    Buddha was an expert in many systems of meditations and jhanas and so on. He studied hard and long. But it didn't work. One day he sat under a tree, and plop Enlightenment. So .... the poor guy, he feels really good, wants to share it with everyone, and he reveals all to his Old Friends. And the Old Friends say : OF : "Siddhartha that's really cool man, so how did you do it ?" B : "Haven't the foggiest mate. I went through university did all the practices attained all the jhanas, smoked behind the bike sheds, everything - I did everything. And it still didn't work. Then one day I had absolutely had it, sat down under this stupid tree and plop. Realisation". OF : "Wow man far out, you really should teach !!!" B : "Teach ! What the f*** am I going to teach ? Sitting under a tree ?" OF : "No common man, nobody is going to listen to you if you teach tree sitting .... make it sound good, at some numbers, 8 is a good number 8 something, a 4 something else. People love this shit. .... and you know what just being next to you feels funky, maybe something will happen." B : "Yeah, hmm, I don't know doesn't seem very honest. But I suppose I could teach you some of the stuff I learnt in the past that didn't really work. I don't know maybe it worked a bit, who knows." OF : "Okay Siddhartha, you do that, and I will be your first student. But just make sure you have lots of number 8, 4, 5 is quite good as well. 4 shalt though not count !!!!"
  28. 6 points
    Shakyamuni Buddha like many teachers once he attained liberation was extremely happy and initially he taught that he was emptiness, nothing was real, nothing was to be done and so on, and this is what the heart sutra says. But the Lotus sutra is from later in his life, there is addresses a vast group of monks, bodhisattvas, and other realised entities. There he says that realised being come through diligent long-term practice to their tradition, and that they work patiently and tirelessly. So I see the heart sutra as being from somebody who has not matured in his understanding, but with a beautiful spirit seeks to say something beautiful which the heart sutra is. I believe that most teachers including Jesus, Osho, Krishnamurit, and many others, they go through the same phase of jubilation after liberation, but later as they mature they understand things better, for instance they start to understand that people are not "all free" and cannot "just wake up" and that they are not god. If you are going to treat it like a devotional path then I suggest that when you chant it you throw yourself into the Sun, and try to do long hours of it and believe in it. The development of a sincere intelligence, like the intelligence of a child or farmer, is one of the most critical factors. And you must use this intelligence on the path. If you try the devotional approach give it 100% commitment, and then after some time ask if it works. Buddha says that realised beings come through many paths but whichever path full long-term commitment was given. Although I am not a Buddhist scholar and find the material quite difficult to read because 90% of it is bragging about the million billion eons kalappas bodhisattvas .... and it is quite tiresome to extract his actual understanding and instructions. My understanding is Soto Zen is the best path that is generally available. Spiritual knowledge has to be conveyed slowly carefully by excellent teachers sitting very close to you. It is not easy to write anything useful on a forum. But, as Buddha says in the Lotus Sutra, faith is critically important, faith that you are Real. D.O and such philosophies come from a deep distrust of life, and wishing to be told that suicide intellectual or otherwise is just fine. It is not fine. You are real and part of a miracle that we call life. Living on the coarse culture of Earth we are prey to terrible darkness and harshness, it is a difficult world. Nevertheless you are Real, and can become a Buddha. One must try to become, to become, to become. When feeling the inner states, it can be of exceptional relief, and one might think that one is empty or has died or is God .... and that is okay, just continue and fall deeper into the mystery. Practice diligently with faith, and precision. Do not stop. What I have seen is that in many traditions people have a vision of not existing, and of course this becomes an excuse to not practice to not check to not use intelligence, after all what for if you are dead. Non-existence is the wrong word. We find an existence at a deeper level that takes over our being. Our old self fades away like a bad memory, and we emerge into the Light. For the first time we have a real existence on the light-soul-spirit. And Buddha says in the Lotus Sutra that ... "young" seekers need to be pressured and pushed into their practices because they do not really comprehend their suffering and danger. Probably when people read that they think .... "oh I am beyond that". But are you ? Maybe you still need pressure and pushing, maybe you should seek that out, maybe your should willingly look for a situation of pressure because maybe you don't really understand the danger either. And finally, in every sutra, Buddha says "and here is the final new and improved teaching". 5 years later he says the same thing in a new sutra, and again and again. This reminds me of software development where you make many versions of software; you learn quickly not to use names like "NEW". Because in 5 months time you will have yet another new version. It is better to use Version 2, Version 3, and so on. The Lotus Sutra is meant I believe for seekers who have gone deep into the path but need a wider more universal vision to free themselves more.
  29. 6 points
    If I`m remembering correctly, both Taomeow and Brian left in the wake of conflicts with fellow Bums over on the Trump Talk thread. Others feel differently I know, but I humbly suggest that Off Grid political conversation does the board more harm than good. I miss them too and would gladly forego all the Trump talk in the world for more Taomeow and Brian talk. (Edit to add that yes, I`m someone who often posts in the very thread I`m objecting to here. As one of my best friends often says, "we live in contradiction.")
  30. 6 points
    I have never seen this quoted and certainly doesn't appear in my transmission. I think you have to be specific in your questioning and quote from a translation directly, giving the translator and verse number, therefore the discussion can be valid.
  31. 6 points
    It is brave (or foolhardy) for people to come forward to talk about there system and open it up for questions. It doesn't take many to devolve a discussion. And that's too bad, because a good (or great) teacher is gold. Some experienced teachers can be thorny as hell, and do not suffer (in there eyes) fools disagreement or criticisms lightly. For better or worse, they have decades of experience under there belt and simply don't feel they should put up with (in their view) uninformed posts. Some great teachers have gone down in flame wars because of this. Others simply left (I'm looking at you Dhao Zhen) because they didn't like the boards contentiousness. A possible solution is simply to treat this section: 'Teachers and Systems' with a little more deference, take it or leave it, kind of attitude. Ask questions, but don't challenge. If its not your thing, you disagree with it, state your truth (nicely), and walk away. This is a platform for someone to discuss there system. If a person wants a formal indepth debate they should start a separate thread, so as not to derail a teacher discussing there art.
  32. 6 points
    Fair question. I'll be as honest as possible. No, most time I avoid serious conversations - world events, politics, etc. This is because it all too often leads to disagreements and then defenses go up - a wall is built. I normally try to be as non-offensive as possible. And this is because I want to depart from the other without them hold any negative feelings about our encounter. But sure, it could be considered a form of defense. But then, I could simply ignore other people and the result would be empty. But I know that there are a lot of people out there who need to have their existence recognized by someone. I try to be that someone whenever possible.
  33. 6 points
    Sin is a concept used mostly by religions for controlling the people. There are no sins outside the mind of man.
  34. 6 points
    The Laughing Heart by Charles Bukowski your life is your life don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission. be on the watch. there are ways out. there is light somewhere. it may not be much light but it beats the darkness. be on the watch. the gods will offer you chances. know them. take them. you can’t beat death but you can beat death in life, sometimes. and the more often you learn to do it, the more light there will be. your life is your life. know it while you have it. you are marvelous the gods wait to delight in you.
  35. 6 points
    Not so much as I'm speaking of the concept, but I guess, if applied to forms in animals and most organisms yea that does seem to be the case. My intended meaning is more experiential... awareness and beingness based though. The universe of form reflects from micro to macro. The curvature of my ear is the same ratio as the spiral of galaxy arms and the seed patterns in sunflowers. To gain access to the great mysteries of the external... do I need to travel to the other galaxies? Or does the same tao/anchor/source reside within my own form as well? In my experience yes, definitely. So for me, the most direct access point to the mystery of the experience of the Unity of All... lies right here within. *thumps chest* As I experience what lies within 'me', my awareness, that which seems to lie outside of 'me' is reflected continually and brings deeper understanding experience of the unity, reflected nature and connectedness of all forms to each other, which results in a living awareness, a living experiential beingness of unity with all that is and all that is not. Whether this fits the bill of enlightenment I have no idea. Lately that word has pretty much lost its usefulness for me, too many layered and subjective/personal meanings to be used effectively any longer. Like that other term God... ugh, how to ever know what someone else means when they speak it? But for me, unity and connectedness seem to convey that which I understand as enlightenment or awakening. Among the non form, the reflection is even more direct and simple to observe... emptiness is emptiness on every level that I have encountered . Lately I experience my process of internal awareness exploration as an unfolding. Or like an onion, unpeeling. Unpeeling layers of illusory beliefs, assumptions, monkey mind, subjective notions of should and should not... When peeling the last layer, what is revealed at the center of an onion? Emptiness is revealed. This emptiness within, is reflected everywhere in the previously seeming 'without'. Unity consciousness flows in through this experience, awareness of the profound inter=connectedness resonates with unified awareness and bliss. The experience of it is vivid, clear and vital. But is still readily fogged over by lesser detailed side paths of monkey mind and life in the human shaped world. So far it's not full abiding, but it's a nice window that often opens when I'm quiet inside... and the view is spectacular.
  36. 6 points
    You really need to choose a practice and diligently work at it. There is no magic pill, teacher or practice that will suddenly give you all you seek. You must peel away the layers of yourself that obscures what you are innately capable of. Everyone has gifts, find yours, embrace them for a moment and move on to the next and then the next mile marker if your journey.
  37. 6 points
    In Jewish philosophy there is the Evil inclination and the Good Inclination. Evil inclination (yetzer Harah) is selfishness, only thinking of oneself. The good inclination (Yetzer Tov) is toward selflessness, helping and caring for others. While mankind would certainly benefit from more Yetzer Tov, the evil inclination is not without some merit, ie ambition comes from it. Separating from your parents and building a new family and career and house is also partly driven by selfishness. Thus we need a need some Yetzer Hara. Most of Mussar philosophy, Jewish improvement, tends to be exploring the positive and negative areas within a trait, seeing clearly where one is at, and deep reflection leading to action on where one should move in that area.
  38. 6 points
    I always thought wrought iron would be a fun thing to play with but I never got a round tuit. I worked with steel instead of iron, and used steel flat bars and angle iron to assemble what was required. I welded them all together so they were one piece, and then ground off all the welds so no welds were visible, then did a lot of rounding off of corners and edges. I used half inch thick steel for the doors and it was a real grind rounding off all the corners and edges. Some of the doors were gold plated with 24K gold so it really did look like big pieces of jewelry. All the other door makers used flimsy thin metal with sharp edges and square corners and were floppy rattletraps. When you closed my doors it sounded like closing a safe. My doors also included air valves to control the fire and an air wash, like modern wood stoves had, to keep the glass clean. Maybe some day I'll get a forge, an anvil, and a big hammer and try wrought iron out. I also made custom knives. This was made out of a single piece of quarter inch thick 440 Stainless Steel, cut out with a laser. Then it took weeks of grinding and polishing to make the blade cross section into a smooth airfoil shape (rather than the slab sided common stuff), because 440 is so hard it is difficult to grind and polish. You can see it was a big knife by the size of the handle. I also made the gift box and gave it to my tai chi teacher.
  39. 6 points
    In my experience the golden flower is not a method and can not be practiced. When I experienced the verification I did not intentional sit down to meditate. I was out side and simply sat down in a nice spot I entered a meditative state at first I did hear talking and chanting it was like hearing monks on the mountain thousands of miles away reciting scripture (that was my own mind thoughts). Yes internally there was light and outside was hazy. I also felt like I had no earth power like a weakness this was ascending upward. This state of being was experienced for over a week and during going to work and play. I had special abilities as someone at work said I know everything your thinking with no words. This experience at 20 years old and full into Internal martial arts from 16 years of age.Just happened. It literally took me years of research of all modalities western and eastern to make some sense of what had happened to me. Years latter I read the secret of the golden flower and finally had my answer and verification. If I had been with a Taoist master he or she could have directed me to high levels at a very young age. To this day because of this experience and after reading the golden flower I trained very hard with skilled authenticate teachers and now I am a linage holder of Dragon Gate Long Men Pei of Wudang mountain.
  40. 6 points
    Hi everyone! I joined here in hopes of finding a community of somewhat likeminded people, I couldn't find any thorough description of the forum, but it looks like it might be a good place for me. I've always been a bit of a loner and I've grown up in a family that wouldn't talk religion or philosophy, therefore I developed all my beliefs and thoughts pretty much on my own. I would call myself an atheist (which I am) and ignore the other thoughts since talking about those would give me weird looks. I didn't know what to call or how to explain my beliefs up until a year ago when I came across Tao Te Ching and realised that the Tao lined up perfectly with everything I've thought of and in the core believe in. I still can't explain it, but it feels so right and I'm so happy I picked up that book. It has made me question my life in several ways, I'm not really sure how to deal with it all, but that's not material for an introduction thread. I'm not very good at talking (or writing for that matter, as you may notice). I think a lot and deep, but my words never give them justice, for that reason I don't think I could ever have an in depth conversations without sounding a bit like a child discussing heavy matters, but I hope that is okay. I am alone in this where I'm at now. I was never bothered by being alone before, but knowing there are others potentially like me out there makes me feel like I belong elsewhere. I hope this forum will lend me the company I feel I need Thank you for reading, if you did, any advice on how to move on from here is very welcome! Also, what are "tags"? (sorry if that's a silly question, I didn't know what to put in that field)
  41. 6 points
    Asking for the most powerful school is one of the fallacies of beginners because they are interested in personal power rather than development of character. Lust for power is a sign of poor character and most masters won't even acknowledge the existence of individuals like this. Looking at a way to be a better person and serve others regardless of your power or lack thereof is one approach that shows virtuous humility, or te, which is essential since lust for power poisons and blinds us when having energetic experiences. This is all I am going to say on the matter because to say nothing is to allow something that shouldn't grow to take root. To say something is to give someone ample caution and then allow free will to let them decide what they will do. I didn't choose systems at a certain point, I chose teachers, and I later found power because I wasn't interested in being the best, I was interested in being happy and free and serving. As a result of that, the more profound skills and systems appeared. Find a teacher who you are interested in character development with and the alchemical techniques will come in a few years if you are ready and worthy. Until then, those energetic practices aren't always a good idea because they can fuel the bad habits and monkey mind without guidance, even though others find with a good system that they can work through their issues themselves.
  42. 6 points
    The humming birds above was painted by Martin Johnson Heade. This is by Frederick Edwin Church. Both were painters of the Hudson River School.
  43. 6 points
    A chi master as you put it would not be interested to influence, control, impress or dominate someone. Using energy in this way is against the way and has ill effects. There are a lot of actual fighting systems that are very effective with....... eye plucking. It would be funny if Osho originaly wrote this in Braille
  44. 6 points
  45. 6 points
    Yeah the Sami people have been in those lands far longer than the Germanic people. Probably soon after the last ice age. I think they come from both Europe and from the east. What I find interesting is their shamanic beliefs. They had a lot of gods, very similar to the Norse gods and they worshipped nature and their ancestors. I wonder if they influenced the Vikings in their beliefs or vice versa.
  46. 6 points
    Nice post; I've read them and I agree! I'm actually a very peaceful person by preference. That said - Threaten me physically and you'll wish you hadn't. Threaten my family - and no one will find what remains of you. And here's a toast to the jovial side!!
  47. 6 points
  48. 6 points
  49. 6 points
    There were two famous painters in ancient Greece, Zeuxis and Parrhasios. Each was at the pinnacle of his abilities, no one knew how to choose between them. They, however, decided to resolve the issue for once and for all, with a “painting duel” held under strictly controlled conditions. They assigned themselves two areas of a wall, each invisible from the other so that they might work in private. Each artist was to paint a mural, a fresco of pigment in wet plaster. A carefully assembled audience-jury was to view both paintings and award one the prize, ending forever the tedious and insoluble rivalry. Zeuxis was actually thought to have the edge in this contest. While his paintings were not ultimately judged better than Parrhasios's, they always had a strong initial effect. They could “knock your eyes out,” as they say, by using the tricks of trompe-l'oeil, or super-realism. Parrhasios knew the same tricks but was more subtle. You got to like his paintings because of their time-release effects, which sometimes made them less likable in the beginning. Parrhasios, subtler and probably more talented because his works took time and endured, was ironically less likely to win out over Zeuxis, who was a master of initial surprise. The contest was really about Parrhasios's ability to think his way through this dilemma. When it came time to judge the freshly completed paintings, the audience of select critics assembled, and, behind them, a large crowd of onlookers. Zeuxis was outwardly calm and confident. He had produced, he seemed to think, his best work for this crucial occasion. Behind the curtain (it was important to reveal the work all at once) was his life's masterpiece. The spokesman for the jury asked Zeuxis to draw the curtain. When he did, the crowd and jury gasped to see a bowl of fruit, plaintive and simple. How could a great painter be content, in a situation such as this, to paint a bowl of fruit? It was admittedly a finely painted still-life. The glint of light off the pale green surface of the pears made them seem moist and firm. You could practically taste the pomegranates. After a long period of silence, a bird flew down from its vantage point on the top of the wall, straight into the painted bowl of fruit, from which it had hoped to steal a grape. Hitting the wall with a smack, the bird fell to the ground, a victim of illusion. Without a doubt, this proved what the jury and audience could scarcely conclude: that the realism of the painting had made it escape its limits, as artificial; the real judge had been the bird, whom no one could accuse of favoritism. When the gasps of the crowd died away, Zeuxis was sure he had won, no matter what Parrhasios's entry. For what better demonstration could he have hoped? Zeuxis's confidence now caused him to straighten up, breathe deeply, and radiate a newfound humanity, which he turned on to Parrhasios who was standing at the edge of the open circle of onlookers. “Now, let's take a look at the undoubtedly excellent work of Parrhasios. “Now, let's take a look at the undoubtedly excellent work of my esteemed colleague” he suggested, with a tone that suggested he would be magnanimous in his victory, always sending a bit of work Parrhasios's way if his own studio got too busy. Parrhasios feigned or honestly exhibited (one could not say which) a meek but genial tone. Slightly bowed, he did not speak but turned slightly towards the area where his mural was to be revealed. The crowd shuffled and murmured. Zeuxis by now had become their leader. Now standing around Parrhasios's wall, the crowd grew impatient. Even the curtain began to look a bit dowdy. Zeuxis, not wishing to over-embarrass his rival, came forward after a longish interval and directly addressed the painter. “I think,” he said, “it is time to see what you may have done. Would you honor us by drawing the curtain?”“ Can't be done,” Parrhasios replied. The jury, audience, and Zeuxis thought that Parrhasios was at the breaking point, that he was emotionally crushed by the nearness of defeat. “Surely,” Zeuxis put in, trying to soften the blow of the inevitable, “we would be very happy to see your work, but we're getting a bit impatient standing in the hot sun. Just show us the painting.” After a pause, Parrhasios replied, “You're looking at it.” The onlookers focused more carefully on the wall, realizing at last that they were looking at a painting of a curtain.
  50. 6 points
    You live according to your means. If you have little money then you adjust your lifestyle. Maybe this means you have roommates. Maybe this means you move to a less expensive area. When I was just starting out in life I had no skills to earn money, at least not enough money to become independent. I chose to join the military. I indentured myself to the government for four years. During that time my liberty was severely curtailed, but in return I learned a skill, was provided with housing and food, and was able to travel the world. Being a Taoist means being able to recognize change and adapt to it instead of fighting it. Sometimes you need to make difficult choices.