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  1. 8 points
    I want one of those cute raccoon prizes so I guess I better dig deep and come up with another story. Many years ago, I attended a three month silent vipassana retreat. (No, that´s not the weird part.) We were instructed not to talk to each other at all except for necessary communication during daily chores. We could, however, anonymously give each other little treats, usually chocolate, by placing things on someone´s meditation cushion when they weren´t there. Someone gave me a teddy bear -- I had no idea who -- and I decided to regift it. There were about 100 of us there at the retreat and by amazing coincidence (or weird karma?) I ended up giving the teddy bear right back to the person who gave it to me. We talked at the end of the retreat and it turned out that he´d regretted giving up the teddy bear as it was personally meaningful to him, so he was especially pleased and surprised to get it back.
  2. 8 points
    I learned abdominal breathing at the age of 15 from a billboard in the park in the beatiful little spa town of Druskininkai in Lithuania where I was on vacation with my parents. I had no idea what that weird billboard was about and why it suggested you breathe in a weird way. It weirded me out so I decided to experiment with following the instructions. I liked the weirdness of that experiment so much that I kept breathing like that, almost every night before going to sleep, for the next 5 years or so. It would be years before I encountered this weirdness again, in a taoist context. I wonder who erected that billboard and why. My parents, as well as my uncle and aunt and cousin who were on vacation there with us, never noticed it. I'm not aware of anyone ever noticing it in the month that we were there. So I'm wondering if it may have been my future self that put it there.
  3. 8 points
    As a gay man, I´d much rather date the guy from 1947. Why do you think we like old movies? At the same time, I think I see what Sean finds offensive in the meme and feel the same way. So I guess you could say I both (not-so-secretly) agree with the sentiment of the meme and find it offputting at the same time. Life´s complicated. So is humor. Most things wouldn´t be funny if there wasn´t at least an eensy-beensy potential to offend. I think both Apech and Sean have the best of intentions here. That´s not very funny but it´s true.
  4. 8 points
    I think I might have joined this group years ago, but I might have just looked at it. Anyway, I saw someone mention it today and I thought I might look at it again. One of my practices is "cloudwalking". This is a practice where a Daoist initiate leaves his home temple and wanders around investigating and studying other Temples, teachers, and, traditions---both in and outside of Daoism. So I thought I'd cloudwalk over to the Dao bums again. I've been consciously practicing daoism for about 40 years. Before that, I got introduced into "spiritual stuff" by a guy without a label that I met in a bar and who gave me a rapid initiation into mystical practices. Later on, misters Moy and Moi at the Fung Loy Kok Temple in Toronto initiated me into their lineage before I really understood what I was getting into. I left that group a couple years later, but the initiation "stuck" and I've been hooked on the specifically Daoist tradition ever since---even though through cloudwalking I've studied with Unitarians, various flavours of Buddhism, Jesuits, a Catholic hermit, and, a Benedictine nun, and quite a few others. I've pursued lots of different practices besides cloudwalking. That included sitting and forgetting, ritual practice, chanting, etc. Right now most of my practice involves taijiquan (I do open hand, sword, sabre, and, spear forms---not very well) and "holding onto the One" . I also have a Masters in Philosophy from a Canadian comprehensive university and try to amalgamate Daoism with Western understanding---including science and rational analysis. I've also spent a lot of my life involved in environmental activism and Green politics. I currently write a news blog for my local community and have published a couple books. One is on Environmentalism informed by my spiritual worldview: Walking the Talk: Engaging the Public to Build a Sustainable World. The other is about how an ordinary person can live a life in the modern world informed by the teachings of Daoism: Digging Your Own Well: Daoism as a Practical Philosophy. I'm currently retired and live in a small city in Ontario, Canada.
  5. 7 points
    I think it was Geronimo that said that. I took the Casteneda books seriously some years back. In the books, the nagual Mateus would tell Carlos that Death is your Advisor, repeatedly. I never quite knew what that meant. I took it to mean that we should cherish every day we have, but that didn't quite fit. It wasn't until tonight when I was listening to a Robbie Robinson CD where he sang "it is a good day to Die" (a great song, by the way) it struck me that it's about Courage. I think I will use that as my mantra. If one accustoms their mind and body to that phrase, then there is absolutely nothing left to fear, once the idea of death has been normalized. I would think this would lead us into courageous living, whether physical, mental, or spiritual. I think I understand it now. It feels right.
  6. 7 points
    Oh boy! With this question you`re really opening the proverbial can of tuna. Opinions on diet here on the forum range as widely as in the so-called real world. You`re sure to hear from the vegetarian/vegan crowd. I favor a more paleo-esque approach myself -- eliminating grains, sugar, and vegetable oils like corn and canola. I believe fatty meat is a nutrient-dense food that most people need and not the culinary bogeyman it`s often made out to be. There`s good information about this approach here: https://marksdailyapple.com/blog/. @Taomeow recently suggested the idea of simply eating foods made by human beings and avoiding foods made by corporations. I think most people would drastically improve their diets by following this one rule -- whether they otherwise gravitate toward tomatoes or rib-eyes.
  7. 7 points
    Of course, we live in the age of the global triumph of black magicians and occult forces, whose servants have been implanted on every earthly throne. Few shamans remain, after millennia of massacres, who are still trying to resist the diabolical tide against overwhelming odds. The occultists don't take them lightly though. It took road blocks and 40 armed members of the special forces to surround and kidnap the Siberian shaman Alexander Gabyshev who was walking from Buryatia, Siberia, toward Moscow, covering 1,7000 miles on foot so far, with the goal of performing a ritual to banish Putin from the Kremlin. Here's a bit in English on the event that took place on September 19th, as presented by The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/19/siberian-shaman-arrested-on-trek-to-exorcise-vladimir-putin
  8. 7 points
    What made me laugh yesterday and again today when I re-read it on FB: the story a Russian opera singer, Maria Ostroukhova, told the press about being mugged in Venice, Italy, and losing her wallet and her passport to the thief. She didn't speak any Italian except for the opera roles she had learned by heart, so she had to scramble for Italian opera phrases to explain to the police what happened and urgently ask for help. She hit the astounded cops with approximately the following speech: "I implore you, kind lords, bring justice to this cruel world! What am I going to do without a passport? (She managed to substitute "passaporto" for "Eurydice" of the original.) Oh where can I go without a passport? My fate is dark peril and devastation!" So, the cops understood her (sort of) and showed her some mugshots of the known or suspected pickpockets. She recognized a young woman who "accidentally" bumped into her earlier on some bridge, and exclaimed with great operatic emotion, "There she is, that accursed woman! I swear I will dismember her!!" The cops were beginning to feel a bit uneasy, but then the happy ending arrived, in the form of a boy who came in bringing the goodies he'd just found -- Maria's wallet, emptied of cash but still containing the credit cards, and her passport, which the mugger discarded in the vicinity of some public restroom. The cops handed them to Maria who then proclaimed, "Oh noble knights, may the almighty reward you for your exemplary virtue!" Seeing her off, one of the cops said, with much respect, "Your Italian is truly exquisite." Here's what she looks like:
  9. 6 points
    My copy of The Way of the Living Ghost arrived today. 👻 Stoked to dive into this one. ✨ Sean
  10. 6 points
    So let me get this straight, you’re a scholar who walks around and feels physical “Qi/heat” emanating from women within 60 cm of you. Ok........ welcome to DaoBums, you’ll fit right in here. If the heat doesn’t happen looking at men or grandmas then I would venture to say it’s your own (sexual) heat you are feeling, not theirs projected to you, although it might appear that way... just a thought ! That’s what the previous poster meant I think. With that, I’ll leave you to enjoy your scholarly walk.
  11. 6 points
    It is not an abnormal function of the Liver to produce anger in response to adequate stimuli -- on the contrary, it is one of its normal functions. A major task of the Liver is to deal with toxins. A normal amount of anger is like a normal amount of liver enzymes -- something you produce in order to be able to metabolize, deactivate, and/or remove from the body any toxins thrown your way. Per my assessment of the amount of toxic feelings and emotions (coupled with a drastic deficiency of the nurturing and beneficial ones) we are exposed to from the start and then every day of our lives, excessive anger is not the outcome of a faulty Liver -- on the contrary, a faulty Liver is the outcome of too many emotional toxins thrown its way. Excessive anger is produced when it has to process excessive toxins beyond capacity. Just like elevated liver enzymes, elevated cholesterol, etc., elevated anger starts out as a coping mechanism. I would think twice before fixing that mechanism. Instead of removing anger you might end up somatizing it, i.e. you will hurt your own body for someone else's transgressions -- not the best outcome. Somatized anger will manifest (among other things) as elevated levels of stress hormones that can damage all organs and functions. Unless of course it's so out of control that it will produce additional problems for yourself and others should you express it full force, just relax and get angry. Trust yourself not to get an "anger diarrhea" -- control it when expressing too much of it can realistically hurt or endanger others or yourself -- but don't make it your task to control it always for all purposes in all circumstances. Don't delegitimize your anger. In many cases it's legit. I think the art of anger is accessible via Sun Tzu, just something to master like any high level skill. Addressing it via qigong is not likely to be either enough or the right method. Neigong, maybe. But not even that unless your level is unimaginably high. Immortals and gods and bodhisattvas get angry. (Yes, even the merciful Quan Yin, to say nothing of Bu Dong.) I wouldn't try to outholy the holy ones, it seldom comes out as intended, and never-angry passive aggressive types is one outcome I have seen often and cared about little. Besides, I find the scenario shown below to be pretty realistic.
  12. 6 points
    You left out some very telling comments on this page... that its a blurry line where Qigong and Neigong differ; That like Yin and Yang, the two are impossible to separate... but the distinction is likely to say one is a higher art of the other. He also mentions in that chapter how the two teachings brought to Shaolin by Bodhidharma were Qigong methods (Yi Gin Ching) and Neigong methods (Shi Sui Ching), claiming the latter was mostly lost among kung fu lineages. That may be generally true but it was not lost among all lineages. The first [western] Medical Qigong master I studied under had done marrow cleaning and iron shirt. So clearly certain neigong methods are not even lost today for westerners. MP is not based on Shaolin, or is it? (I guess that is my first question. Just not sure why the book wants to mention this as I don't really think it is complete accurate.) Daoist more modern neigong uses Ming and Xing or dual cultivation. So no secret was lost among those lineages. But these are more transmutation of energy methods and not what MP is about. Just saying there are other lineages using neigong. I've read of someone who studied under Jim that the Qigong methods used in MP are widely known among lineages because they are basically meditation methods for the LDT. I tend to agree. I did some of this under the second Medical Qigong studies but was more MCO, 'rolling the drum', etc. Building up the energy in the LDT is rather basic or foundational to many energy arts. So, it seems well established that MP L1-3 are Qigong. As your group only has a handed down version of L1-3, it would be good to openly and directly talk to that. Meaning, you did not learn directly from Chang, nor tested by him, nor corrected by him... which might make some achievements or progress harder to gauge. But it doesn't mean you shouldn't do what you want to do... but for example: Chang's abilities are cited as at least including: Pyrokinesis Telekinesis Ability to Heal people western medicine can’t Rudimentary Levitation Communicating with a Kris (a type of dagger imbued with a person’s spirit) Communicating with Spirits Electrogenesis Astral Travelling Which of these can one do if they truly get through L1-3? For your group, how many can do any of the above? For yourself, how many of the above? Other lineages/systems can lead to these as well because they also grasp Yin energy as something to work with. This was so fundamental to my Medical Qigong training that I assumed this was wide-spread knowledge. I would say that for myself, I might say I've some level of experience with four but not suggesting to be exactly what Chang does as I didn't learn from him. Why not start with talking about L1: Isn't it essentially meditation... and no 'movements' ? Meaning it is 100% sitting? I read someone wrote: Within your group, I've read: And the same have mentioned: Why not write-up the FAQ in terms of sections with similar questions in 'chapters'... this would seem to work better in a MS Word file. But it seems fundamental would be: "What is Level 1 Practice"... your group seems to confirm and share this as I note above. My outsider perspective is it is Meditation focused on the LDT to build up energy and the time spent in 'deep trance' state. What time of the day is best to perform this?
  13. 6 points
    I collectively direct this message to everyone. You keep discussing stupid shit instead of practising : ) There are two major branches to the approach of spiritual cultivation, be it under the umbrella of Daoism or any other culture. The first is through a direct connection to a Shen and is how it all began. Here the work is primarily Wu Wei. The second is learning through books or from a living master. Here the work is primarily You Wei. In Wu Wei systems like Xiantian Dao Yin Shu, we don't have to study theory before practice, because Hu Fa Shen directs every movement of energy in the body, be it the physical body, the subtle energy body or the human/divine consciousness. Think about all the things you need to take into consideration working on your own; Does the energy need to move into this meridian or that? How do I make sure it doesn't go into the wrong path? When does it have to do it exactly? How much should we push inside? Should the pressure be light or strong? Where do we pause the movement along the path? Does the force have to synchronise with the breath? How long do we keep it there? Do we bring it all back or divert some of it somewhere else? What time during the day/night/year should we do it? Should we use the imagination for this one or should we wait for our spirit to act spontaneously? How deep should we inhale? How deep should we exhale? Should we pause the breath on inhale or exhale? For how long? In which direction do we lift the sphincters and at which of the pauses do we do it? Where is our attention at this time? etc Ad infinitum. Knowing all the technical details is something that can be mutually exclusive from executing all the technical details during the practice of DYS. There are times when we have to voluntarily apply pressure in order to increase the force with which energy is moving in a meridian, but the direction is still administered by the Hu Fa Shen. It is like if you have a car. You wash it. You change the oil. You change the fuel. You take it for regular check-ups. Maybe change the colour sometimes or buy some cool accessories etc. Inviting Hu Fa Shen is like someone taking the driver's seat in your car, while you relax in the passengers seat (most of the time). You don't even have to help navigate with a map, because Hu Fa Shen knows the way to his home by heart, but the trip is long, so the condition of the car is important. The tires have to be pumped, tank regularly topped up and you need to have tools to fix anything that needs maintenance or gets broken. Thankfully, HFS is also a professional mechanic : ) Don't get me wrong though. DYS practice doesn't always feel like you're just a feather being taken by a gentle current. We're dealing with a lot of pure energy here that steps down into the system and stars harmonising, and this can cause a great deal of physical reactions when energy starts flowing and stagnated pockets of energy are cleared. You may experience strong gyrating movements and vibrations, spontaneous crying, screaming, yelling, whaling, grunts, snarls, blowing of air in specific sounds, burning sensations, extreme and near unbearable gravity at specific acupuncture points (particularly when they are activated with primordial qi). Honestly the variety of ways in which a persons individual practice can unfold is an endless list that can be compared in its vastness only to the uncountable multitude of individual consciousnesses that inhabit the Dao. Nevertheless, all development by the Shen is direct along the Divine curriculum of our school, which serves to develop the consciousness of the Dao Yu in a manner that will facilitate its resonance with the dimension of the Dao within which the collective consciousness of Tai Shang Laojun and all the Shen in the role of Hu Fa reside. Things just "happen" when you practice XTDYS - and yes, those "things" match up with the things you read in the modern books and the classics, but you don't HAVE to know them, in order for them to happen. In fact, the less you know the better, as your mind's expectations of what it has never experienced or a place it has never been to, ironically enough, tends to cause resistance. Those that make the fastest progress in DYS are those that are most ignorant of the methodologies of internal alchemy. This is the FUNDAMENTAL reason why our tradition as a whole is not particularly popular in literature and by extension in public, because along the course of its history, there was never any pressing reason to communicate or record anything for future disciples to reference. Either you were initiated and therefore could cultivate under the administration of a Shen or you weren't, in which case you needed oral or written instructions from another school. It's really that simple. Li Shifu was just a teenager when an old man came to him and took him as his disciple. He would go to the forest to meet him there. After he inherited Dao Yin Shu and had his own family, he transmitted it to them. The art was transmitted very selectively since the beginning of time. Our Shifu was granted authority to share it openly. Today, DYS has been inherited by over 140,000 Daoists, including government ministers, nobility and priests of the major Daoist sects in prominent temples and organisations around the world. We really don't have anything to prove at this point. We're long past that and at a point where it speaks for itself. In fact, if anything, we should be asking for people to prove to us why they think they deserve to inherit Dao Yin Shu. I always find this misunderstanding quite amusing when I come across it, since forms of early shamanistic practice and Daoist thought were already prevalent thousands of years before the time of Laozi; which is what people tend to consider traditional Daoism. Chinese spiritual practice doesn't start with Laozi or even Huang Di. The consciousness of our celestial headmaster, Tai Shang Laojun, and of others, such as the aforementioned, Huang Di, have been presiding over the development of the earth and supporting the evolution of individual beings since the very early beginnings of this planet, when the most basic forms of energy were still in the early stages of coagulating to form the material organism that could facilitate the growth of consciousness through the process of incarnation ie; the crossing of the bridge between Wuji and Taiji. It reminds me of responses I often receive from persons when I'm discussing something like the Huangdi Neijing, Neijingtu, Cantongqi or the Wuzhen Pian. They say, look at this non-traditional new age stuff Anyway. I'm just thinking out loud so please don't take anything personally - It is just that most people's history doesn't go back far enough to realise that often, their idea of "traditional" IS actually, in many cases, the new-age stuff they are referring to. Nevertheless, I am only making this statement to raise to view the dichotomy of this perspective. In reality, Daoism is an evolving one and during the course of time the Shen have also made adjustments to accommodate and harmonise with the cultural and technological development of human civilisation. They don't just stick to one thing unintelligently. Daoism isn't just what we can read in texts. It's happening right now, everywhere, and if you continue to look back to the past you will miss what is taking place right in front of you. All the masters whose texts you read and methods you practice to call yourself a Daoist, are alive, still teaching and among us always as disembodied consciousness who enter and exit Taiji to help us draw ourselves closer to them by the condition of our consciousness., in so doing, going deeper into the subtle dimensions of the Dao. The Shen follow the heartbeat of the Dao and support us all in our evolution. In fact, they are the heartbeat of the Dao. And I'll tell you something funny, many of the Shen do not look upon their texts and produced works with the same religiousity and drunken reverence that we often do. Some even have said, hmm, I could probably have written that a little better and I'd probably explain that in a different way to the humans of today! Search for the Dao in the present moment which is the most current culmination of all wisdom. It is not in the past. Do you remember when Confucius went to meet Laozi all dressed up fancy with elaborate robes, wanting to have a discussion about etiquette and ceremonial customs; citing those from the past and Laozi cut him off abruptly and told him, all the masters you speak of are dead in their graves, you cannot learn wisdom from the ancients and a swan does not need to bathe daily to remain white. There are some interesting lessons worth contemplating there. There's no such thing as a Shen only system or a Jing Qi Shen only system. This is an outrageous proposition and I don't know why people say this. The 3 Bao are interconnected and interdependent within the complex of the human body. Any event that causes some form of partial disconnection, or better yet put, disharmony between them, in any form, while the heart is still beating, are states of disease, unwell, near death or physical death. In Xiao Yao Pai, which I take it you're incorrectly referring to as a Shen only system, the SOURCE of transformation is primordial qi from Wuji, which is received from beyond the differentiated state brought about by the separation of Yin and Yang from the divine one. This is where the Shen reside and when they interact with us during practice, they help to temporarily bridge this energy into our body so it can be absorbed by it. Then, the Shen feeds the Qi and the Qi feeds the Jing, but instead of doing this from a source of turbid energy (the body), it uses the purest energy from the subtle realm and steps it down so you have a clean flow. The energy cannot be absorbed directly initially, because the human consciousness is still weak, the difference in vibration will simply shock the fuck out of it and even damage it or worse. So, Hu Fa Shen bridges it by entering Taiji to a vibration that is safely digestible. By practising Tai Shang Shen Gong within Dao Yin Shu, we eventually create our own internal bridge, or in order words, with time the consciousness adapts certain qualitative parameters that allow it to process the energy internally without. Hu Fa Shen needing to bridge it constantly. So we gradually become more and more independent and this allows us to be able to pull in energy from Wuji to transform our consciousness more efficiently and more independently. Because we start from the top and move down, again, due to the SOURCE of energy (this is our primary difference), our skills also develop first within the subtle dimension. In other words, the skills we develop initially can be used on a vibration level that is strictly above Qi or Jing, so it cannot affect the subtle energy or physical body at the early stage, but it can directly manipulate the energy of someones consciousness. Some of these are skills inherited, some of these are developed. In order for us to shift that skill into the physical dimension we need to practice Tai Shang Shen Gong, which moves down the system and begins to develop physical power and subtle power. This is essentially our system of Neigong (we don't have Waigong), because it moves from Shen to Qi to Jing and by the time it gets to Jing the internal energy is already at a very strong level of development. With Houtian Xiulian Gong, you can either work on Neigong first, or Waigong - then lead the energy inwards to develop Neigong and from Neigong move to Neidan. Yes, he has observed it, because I invited him. Maybe its me, but the way you wrote that makes it seem like he came to spy and therefore discovered something we were trying to hide. No. He was openly and lovingly invited. Every consciousness is individual and independent from one another. We influence each other, but are individual and our individuality remains always. One consciousness cannot possess another. I do not condone the use of the word possession even if you are employing it in its positive connotation of mutually agreed control, because that still implies that you're handing over control for whatever period of time, which is not how DYS works. Handing over complete control is a direct violation of free will and a violation of the highest law, which even God-Dao does not violate. What happens is not control, but guidance, you're "guided" (that's why our art is called The Divine Guidance Art) to move or do something at which point you can either follow it or reject it, because you're always in control. During practice you have to develop your sensitivity to the Shen's energy and feel it when he/she guides you. You should be able to distinguish your Hu Fa Shen's guiding energy from your own will and no matter the instruction, you can always move in the opposite direction if you wish. There are no installations, chains, attachments, chip implants or whatever other metaphorical expressions exist : ) It is simply one consciousness helping another consciousness, no bonds are necessary for this. The only one that owns anyone and is superior to everyone is the primordial Dao; for we all exist within its body and enrich it. No, there isn't a way to know before initiation. You will need to become initiated and cultivate to see it for yourself. Third parties outside of Xiao Yao Pai, don't always see Hu Fa Shen directly. Very often what they experience is their shadow in Taiji because most people can't detect Hu Fa Shen directly in their raw formless state of light. They show themselves only when they wish to be seen and to who they wish to see them. You can have a group of Shen in the room before initiation and nobody will see them until the moment they are initiated, while others won't see them at all (yet) : ) A Shen and a Xian are both a consciousness outside of a physical body. A Human is a consciousness inside a physical body. Both a Shen and a Human can help another Human, teach him, educate him, energise him, heal his energy etc - and in both instances, no bonding is necessary. What is it about the lack of a physical body that suddenly makes you think that consciousness must bond with you? It is just mere energetic interaction. You go to your patients' home and do your Wai Qi Liao Fa and then you go home. Hu Fa Shen comes to your home and does his work and goes home too. No strings attached. Moreover, if anybody wants to leave the school, they just face Tai Shang, make a formal request and dissolve the apprenticeship, then they will be stricken off the heavenly register until next life, when they can apply again. Heaven doesn't like time wasters and unserious people, so if you don't appreciate the value after you receive it, then you'll have to wait for your next life, if you're lucky enough to find us. I do not always share everything about everything, so if I explained something in the past, it doesn't mean that is all the information regarding the subject. The mutually beneficial exchange I speak of is not about collecting coins in a purse. The Shen that have merged with the Dao embody its qualities, power, will and divine directive the deeper they go into the core. The benefit for such a Shen is in its ability to conduct the evolution of souls within Taiji (The physical universe), using the power of the Dao to do so (or however much of this power it has managed to inherit as a result of the condition of its own consciousness as determined by its resonance with the core values of the Dao). All the Shen desire to do is give themselves. That is what Love is. Giving yourself endlessly. The Dao gives itself endlessly to all of its creations in supporting their life and evolution. The Shen who have drawn themselves closer to the Dao and have merged with it to become one consciousness; and who therefore act both as its body and as their individual identities, also give themselves endlessly. They are incessantly among us here in one form or another, either influencing life directly from Wuji or entering Taiji to more directly direct us in our development. The benefit to you is your own growth in the direction of the Shen and the Dao through the refinement of your negative personality traits, your turbulent emotions and the density of your consciousness to make it light and soft, but also strong so it does not break or diffuse. This is the Yuan Shen that is both Yin and Yang and must be crystallised through proper cultivation. The benefit is love, peace, calm, happiness, compassion, bliss and freedom from turmoil and incarnation - the same benefits that the subtlest Shen enjoy. I do not understand the point you're trying to make here at all. Even the Dao is expanding. With every consciousness that merges into the primordial it too is enriched. With every unique experience we have in Taiji within the physical body; the Dao is too is enriched. Every Shen that has merged into the subtlest dimension of the Dao. Into is core, becomes the Dao. It is like a drop jumping in the sea, it becomes the sea and the sea becomes it. In that sense they have attained the highest perfection of oneness, but even within this perfection, there is life and continued involvement with the evolution of the collective consciousness. It is empty but not void (Kong). Ok, and what are you expecting exactly? You have to sit down and practice. That's it. Most of those experiences in the beginning serve to convince and assure the disciple that what he is experiencing is genuine. After that, things calm down as the work moves into the cultivation of consciousness. Sitting in OBLIVION. Sitting and FORGETTING. SILENT sitting. CONSCIOUSNESS. Only the most subtle thing in all of existence, but you want what? Drum and Base playing every time you sit down to meditate? Or you want to be woken up by unicorns every time your alarm rings? Some people cant even feel their own physical bodies. Others can't feel their Qi or believe it exists. But you're complaining that consciousness isn't perceptible? : ) I will tell you EXACTLY why, the people who didn't experience lasting results failed, because as with everything else, they simply failed to persist, thinking that since all the bells and whistles have stopped singing now, things must be finished - no, when the bells and whistles stop, is when you're moving into the cultivation of consciousness. It's a boring exercise meditation. Sitting still and being quiet inside and out. Do amazing mind blowing things happen. Oh hell yes, but if you keep expecting things with your mind, you will always fail. Moreover, I think most people are too spoilt nowadays. You can be initiated into a system where a Shen comes to teach you personally, to which you can speak to and receive messages and direction, see it, hear it, touch it. But people still want more I can't help those ones which will not help themselves : ) Speaking! Is my testimony too inconvenient or must it come from someone who was a complete virgin in internal cultivation to please you? : ) What?! - Why the hell not? Are you implying I can't distinguish between when I started practising one system and stopped another and to which I can attribute specific achievements? Of course I can. How can anybody not! It is not a matter that demands much to be intellectualised! What a surprise. Consciousness, the most subtle energy in the Dao, is subtle... Common guys, is this even a serious conversation : ))) You expect to cultivate your consciousness and everything to keep on feeling physical? Then you're just cultivating your Taiji energy, which will disperse with the body after death and not your consciousness. Every Hu Fa Shen can read your mind and will treat you according to your stubbornness, arrogance, ignorance, wisdom, ethics, expectations and so forth. They have an endless ways to test you. Keep looking for palpable experiences and your Hu Fa Shen will make certain that even while you're being refined intensely, you don't get any. Maybe you'll quit, maybe you'll surmount your ego and on the other side of the hill is a paradise of experiences. Every Hu Fa Shen will target your weakness for it is that which needs to be refined. Dao Yin Shu isn't only about energetic cultivation. It's about ethical cultivation, wisdom cultivation, love cultivation, compassion cultivation, power and skill cultivation and it is about emotional and psychological cultivation. You will be hit on every single one of those levels and you are the only thing that determines if you fail or succeed : ) Anybody who thinks that all parts of this practice are easy, just don't bother coming at all. Better stay at home. Seriously : ) NO! For crying out loud. This is absolute horse kaka. We have Dao Yu who didn't even know what meditation was before they got initiated and they are making fantastic progress! NO, stop trying to OBSERVE and UNDERSTAND whats going on. This is the crux of the problem. You're trying to use information that your mind has accumulated within the span of a lifetime to fathom the unfathomable infinity of the Dao. It is an inconceivably stupefying attempt of the mind of a frog trying to comprehend the mind of the whole ocean, from within a WELL. It is always doomed to failure. Yes, it is definitely different, because we are under the guidance of Shen, so they direct us. Our understanding comes through the act of doing, but we needn't know beforehand what to do or how to do it. It simply burdens the mind with anxiety. No, no, Ashino. Many of those who have very successful practice came with no knowledge of alchemy, frail bodies, often sick or weak in some way. It is not the quality of the body that is the most important thing when dealing with Shen, but the quality of the heart-mind which always takes precedence. ALWAYS. They function in a way which facilitates the continued reunification of the spirit within the primordial qi, linking together the water element in the kidneys and the fire element in the heart so the true yang and true yin can invert their places to bring bout the primordial state of being signified by Qian and Kun in their right positions. Then the water of the primordial qi stops flowing down and out and the fire spirit stops flaring up. Once these are inverted and fire is under water, the steam is constantly produced by their union which settles in the yellow court around the Zhong Dantien, from here consciousness starts to expand beyond the chest and physical body and grow in size without limit. You can always determine someones level of cultivation by the size of their consciousness, which can grow to the size of rooms, buildings, neighbourhoods, cities, countries, the planet and up to the size of the Dao which it attains after it dissolves into it completely at the sage of Kong (emptiness; our tradition's highest goal). Once the primordial qi is flowing through these meridians it enables this entire process of refinement, helping the consciousness crystalise into one solid being. Theses functions are not activated by Houtian Qi flowing through the body meridians which are mostly a product of food, drink and environmental Qi. From the moment we are initiated we are directly absorbing primordial qi into the body which feeds the Xia Dantien and speeds up the whole process of work, which would otherwise have to be performed solely with ones own energy. It's kind of like we plug-in and download the blueprint and the blueprint itself starts to recallibrate us form the inside, while Hu Fa Shen, the engineers, implements and administers the integration of the divine blueprint into the subtle energy and consciousness in a way that allows a steady gradual reversal of the post-natal state (ni). When we move the primordial qi from the Xian Dantien, unlike in Houtian, where we cycle it, we instead move it up the Ren and up the Du simultaneously, this is around the time the MDT and LDT start to relink together which you will feel sometimes like a stream or a line connecting between them with something like an amorphous ball passing up and down between them. In all our Xiantian Qigong (which is the equivalent of the Houtian Neidan) we only focus on the Xiao Zhou Tian (Micro-CO) - we don't focus on the other Qi Jing Mai (Liu/Six). Our whole work takes place in the torso between the LDT, MDT, UDT and outside of the physical body. Signs, I've already included above, but the movement of the primordial qi in the LDT standa out for me, which is like a sudden spontaneous resuscitation of live energy. It is like the manifestation of Hun-tun within the body. Something is suddenly born. It feels like you are pregnant with a child that is moving, yet its a kind of weaving, waving, nebulous and serpentine energy, that is wanting to move and do and transform. We also clear the 3 passes going up Du as well. So we share a lot of similarities with Houtian Xiulian and also have divergences in different areas. Even though there is crossover, it goes something like this: - Xiantian Tai Shang Shen Gong: helps us bridge primordial qi from wuji down into taiji to be used by the body. - Xiantian Qigong: Our Neidan and our Neigong practice - both of which involve energy work, so we call it Qigong; energy work. - Xiantian Jing Zuo: here we primarily refine out consciousness to become more subtle by absorbing primordial qi, while increasing its crystalisation so it becomes Yang. Various methods of working with energy, absorbing energy from the sun and moon, spiritual combat and finger weaving, working on converting the spiritual energy into physical to ground it into the body for neigong power, projecting the spirit outside of the body, learning to move the consciousness more flexibly, learning to dissolve into the consciousness of other things, material or immaterial, moving energy consciously in the body. Alrighty then, there you are : ) No they didn't. It is not your choice. There is a directive beyond your preferences. They just accommodated your arrogance with a lolly-pop so you would shut your ego up. Now you are just practising the same thing, thinking it is something else and It's kind of funny, but that is what you deserve : ) Our school has its own system, its own methodology, its own curriculum, its own heirarchy of Shen that act as its executors and its own organisational rules in heaven as on earth. It is for all intents and purposes like a traditional school in any one of our societies. One student cannot come and change the system; this is hubris in its worst form, for a human to think he can send away a God and ask for another like some child who is unsatisfied with his toys, or to imply that he is so special that he cannot be taught in a "common" way and to imply that the school has no alchemy owing to your own limited understanding. A Shen can reject a student, a student can't reject a Shen. I feel dirtied by the self-conceited egocentrism of this sentiment just by reading and replying to it. Nobody looses the connection to their mandated Hu Fa Shen, providing they wish to cultivate. The Shen under Xiao Yao Pai are not volunteers, they are on formal duty and it is their duty to use a way particular to their apprentice's consciousness and ego to advance them. The assessment of one's "ripeness" is carried out during initiation, when the candidate Hu Fa Shen appear in the room to pick their students, and it is done on a soul level. If one is rejected due to having a malevolent heart. They are rejected on the spot, no dilly-dallying. The apprenticeship is dissolved only when you dissolve it formally and after death, not before. So rare in fact that when it is under your nose you do not see it. Physical immortality doesn't exist. There can only be an extension of physical life through healthy living and good internal work, but all things that are born must die. There are no living physical immortals. Every Daoist and Buddhist school on the planet today that claims they have a lineage of physical immortals, have all buried their former masters in graves, or their founders would still be alive. When you ask them if their masters were buried or not, they all suddenly get very sensitive around this topic. Please refer to my above replies to the former posters regarding some of the phases of Neidan in Xiao Yao Pai, which you're clearly ignorant of. You first need to enrich your understanding of the word Dan in Daoism as well as Primordial Qi. Most of your misunderstandings are due to very basic misconceptions in both order of and meaning of things in Neidan. FYI: the process Houtian Xiulian in Neidan is what takes place in many parts of our Xiantian Qigong, after it advances to a phase you obviously haven't reached yet, which is fine of its own, but It is not very respectable to jump to conclusions based on that lack of experience and then go on public forums saying, it doesn't exist because I didn't reach it yet. We cultivate the highest Dan of the Dao and the primordial qi into which our consciousness settles and disperses during Xiantian Qigong and Xiantian Jingzuo practice and we also have Neigong. And before you start saying again that you had a very long 15 minute conversation with one of our Masters, let me just remind you that I've been practising Dao Yin Shu and have been receiving education in this system of work for over 6 years now. Damn, we dodged a bullet there. Such a thing as "shen alone" does not exist and any "real" alchemist or TCM Practitioner for that matter, would spit their coffee out reading that. Best wishes.
  14. 6 points
    "Taoist" is something you become if you do what taoists do. If you are initiated and do what taoists do, you are a taoist. If you are initiated but don't do what taoists do, you are not a taoist. If you are not initiated and do what taoists do, you are maybe a taoist. If you are not initiated and don't do what taoists do, you are most definitely not a taoist. What do taoists do? There's a number of ways to go about it. E.g.: First, they do what their teacher tells them to do. Later, they do what they tell their disciples to do. Only much better. Or: First, they learn a procedure, an art, a practice, and do that. They don't compete but they shoot for perfection for its own sake in whatever they do -- how else can they embody tao? Next, they find they've been transformed by that practice so that now they embody tao and don't have to do shit. Or: You're born that way. Masters and teachers come to you in your sleep and transmit the tao directly. You wake up and hey presto, you are Neo and you announce, to everybody's surprise and your own, "I know kung fu." And project your chi right through the wall and then have to turn some lead into gold to pay for the repairs. Or... Bottom line is, taoists do stuff. Don't believe them when they tell you that they do nothing, want nothing, and are at peace with everything. They may or may not be all these things, but it matters little. What matters is, they do things. Weird things.
  15. 6 points
    Occultism is way older, not particularly Western in its origins, and, like shamanism (which is much older), almost universal -- but at a different stage of our history. Shamanism ends with the city-state phase of social innovation, as tribal and nomadic life gets gradually or abruptly, and in most cases thoroughly and irreversibly, replaced by the agricultural Sun-King empires. From there the sun of occultism rises, heralding the dawn of modern history. From there it unfolds its "tales of power." Shamanism is not concerned with power for the sake of power -- whether for an individual as occultism does with its king, priest, sorcerer, or a group whose interests coincide on the goal of a power grab explicitly toward, or else invariably leading to, its abuse. In fact, these are the two consecutive main currents through our history: the natural human collective, i.e. a tribe, versus an individual (or an individual heading a group of minions toward the same power-grabbing goals) climbing on top of the natural human collective and reshaping, intermixing or dissolving, demolishing or abolishing, converting by force or by cunning, this natural group into something else: slaves. Sheeple. With the shepherd on top. This is the core difference between shamanism and occultism -- despite a bunch of similarities between them and despite a bunch of widely dissimilar practices and methods within each. Siberian shamanism and African shamanism, on the surface, are quite different, and by the same token occult Voodoo sorcery and occult Jesuit secret societies may seem very dissimilar. Yet at the core of the first two is the shaman as the intermediary between the tribe and the spirit world, serving the tribe -- in the second two cases, the sorcerer, priest, General serving themselves and their own power-amassing goals. I have this in my notes, from an article I liked and lost: (to be continued when time allows )
  16. 6 points
    I . One of my first public readings at the market ( I had done them before , but the first at this market , in the area where I still reside-) I did it for years and I stopped years back ) . The weird guy that had been camped in our orchid sees me and the cards ; ' Do read cards , I'll have a go . " Oh dear ! Okay, do you have a question ? < thinks ... then in serious confidence > 'When I see dogs , ya know, walking around and stuff , I want to have sex with them. Its kinda weird, I know, but I think, right then, I want to have sex with them . " " In public ? " " Yeah, right then, on the spot, there . " "Okey dokey < lays out some cards > " ... the cards are telling me you should urgently seek professional help. It seems a psychological problem, I'd say, see a psychologist, go to the general doctor and tell him what you told me and ask him for a referral ." II . 'Dan' , the dickhead ( and later revealed ' kiddy fiddler' ) is a super cool new age guy and peeps adore him (but not me, I can tell instinctively he is an arsehole ) . All of a sudden one Saturday at the markets I have got no readings, not even any regulars , whatever . I go for a stroll and here is Dan the Dickhead with a set up little tarot table doing readings , he has make up on, is touting himself as a 'magician', has a homemade cape on and a very tall pointed hat with moons and stars on it and a huge glitter plastic wand thingo that he is prancing around with. And there is a fucking line up of people waiting for a reading . After that I had virtually no clients for weeks , a regular returned and said they felt uneasy about tarot now. I asked why and , yep, they went to Dan for a reading and according to them 'Said the weirdest shit ' . I asked them what it was and effen hell, - psycho . But the thing is , he 'looked' good ( to them ) [ One of the most dangerous things for the normal on the path of magic is ( also relationships, and many things in life ) ; glamour ... glamour (countable and uncountable, plural glamours) (countable) An item, motif, person, image that by association improves appearance. Witchcraft; magic charm; a spell affecting the eye, making objects appear different from what they really are. quotations ▼ A kind of haze in the air, causing things to appear different from what they really are. (Can we add an example for this sense?) Any artificial interest in, or association with, an object, or person, through which it or they appear delusively magnified or glorified. (uncountable) Alluring beauty or charm (often with sex appeal). ] III . One time, its busy I look up and people are lined up . So I disperse them ( for privacy of current reading ) and tell them to come back later and allocate times . I tell the first couple to come back in an hour, but they look confused . They come back and I ask if they want a reading together or separate , they look confused again and go for separate. They have similar cards and dynamics in their readings but one asked 'Why would we want a reading together' " Some couples want that, some dont . " I responded . " But we aren't a couple ! I was just standing behind him on the line . " ' Oh ! Oooops . " - well, I dont know why but they did seem like a couple, then there was the similar readings, but I had not told them that, individual readings are private . Then later I saw them talking . A few days later having coffee. Hmmmm . The come back at a latter market ( apart ) and I asked " Are you sure you are not a couple ? " No, they where just talking about how I mistook them for a couple . Hmmm .... then they are both getting 'interesting readings' ... and I am seeing them more together . After a while, she is obviously pregnant ... now they have a baby together They had stopped coming for readings some time before that . Then as time goes on I see 'tarot baby' growing up . - big person now . Tarot baby is an adult now ...... cant help wondering ; if I had never made that 'mistake ' that day ...... ? - or maybe we have little choice in such matters ? and just for fun IV . many cards and positions indicate fertility and this one comes up for 'immediate future' and I am compelled to say " Dont get pregnant ." Well, I received a tirade back ; how stupid, what a thing to say, I would not be that stupid, I dont even have sex, etc etc . Then she gets pregnant and the the word is out (wait for it ) " Dont get a tarot reading off him, you'll get pregnant ! " - Now thats a rumour that could be interpreted in MORE THAN ONE WAY ! Outside ; Inside :
  17. 6 points
    There's a fellow that lives close by whose name is Kevin Millis. He and Glen Morris get together often, I believe Glen is Kevin's student, or was at one time. I met Kevin and his wife through walking the dogs. They invited me into the house, and at one point Kevin started showing me some Bujinkan Ninja movement. We had no discussion prior to that about the DDJ, Buddhism, Daoism, or anything. But when Kevin started moving, it was the DDJ personified! And I recognized it immediately. I asked Kevin "Are you familiar with the Daodejing?" And he replied, oh yes - it's the basis for martial arts movement. I didn't know that at the time. All I knew is that Kevin demonstrated an economy of movement that was incredible - and every single principle of the DDJ seemed to be exposed underneath. And sure enough, it was.
  18. 6 points
  19. 5 points
  20. 5 points
    Animals. Every dog and every cat, squirrel, raccoon, possum, snake in your neighborhood wants to come up and say hi. Hawks circle over your head. White egrets and blue herons show up and gift you with their feathers. Hummingbirds zip in and out of your path. Dolphins, seals, and an occasional shark might join you if you go swimming. Pelicans will land in close proximity, you can even stroke one. You may spot a mountain lion, a coyote, or even the exceedingly rare ring-tailed cat (an animal that is not actually a cat but, rather, related to raccoons.)
  21. 5 points
    My grandfather died this year. 93 or 95 years old, 6 children, a fully lived life... and he wanted more. This is still enigmatic to me... but it happened. When I was maybe 5 or 6 years old, as I was curious of it he took a stapler... and to show me someone can handle pain he stapled his own hand! I got scared and I ran to my mom. But... the lesson remains today. *** There was also this time in India. I found in a guesthouse a book (The alchemist, Paulo Coelho) that I was reading and I was listening at the same time to some music. As the word mektoub popped up and intrigued me. To my surprise as I turned the page I had the pleasure to read : « Mektoub, dit finalement le Marchand. – Qu’est-ce que c’est que ça? – Il faudrait que tu sois né arabe pour comprendre. Mais la traduction doit être quelque chose comme “ c’est écrit ”. » "Maktub," the merchant said, finally. "What does that mean?" "You would have to have been born an Arab to understand," he answered. "But in your language it would be something like 'It is written.' "
  22. 5 points
    With you on the too fastness, in virtually every hatha class I ever attended, they were too fast for my rhythm for sure, but also too fast/manic speed is reflected in so many aspects of life. of my life. In the last few years, I find a growing tendency to 'take a pause' in many aspects of life. Between actions, a desire to just let life settle for a moment. And when this arises more and more, I lean into this desireand enjoy a pause. I first recall it when getting into my car, before putting the keys in and starting the engine, or when I'd arrived somewhere, after I shut the engine off, instead of getting right to it and grabbing my stuff and exiting, I began to spontaneously close my eyes and just settle empty for a few moments, usually just a few breaths. It's expanding to other areas, when I enter the door of my home, or stepping out of the shower before drying off, often now instead of just pushing in and 'getting on with it', I'll settle where i am a moment, let the shoulders drop into place, resettle my feet, and take a few breaths, letting it all settle itself to its own rhythm.
  23. 5 points
    Oh snap! I wear lavender like... e v e r y d a y !!!!!!!! Or patchouli.... Hmm... I feel like everything about myself is weird so picking ONE weird thing is just.... hmmm..... Oh ok I got it. When I was in 5th grade they had a contest on halloween to see who had the scariest costume. All the other kids were dressed like witches and ghouls and ghosts etc. I showed up in a suit and tie with a little briefcase and glasses. When I walked across the stage the audience was laughing and confused, when the principle asked me what I was I said "The IRS". LOLLL
  24. 5 points
    Puts me in mind of a quote by Rilke, my wife texted me out of the blue yesterday. "Sadness is the soul recognizing change." Time to revisit this old friend.
  25. 5 points
    I get that you probably said that tongue-in-cheek and you're not trying to start a fight by saying that... and I also appreciate that you deigned to "discuss stupid shit instead of practicing" your own good self... But don't you think it's a little ripe for older practitioners who spent years (decades?) of their lives reading, discussing, and contemplating their spiritual options before finding their paths to make comments that make younger, newer seekers feel like they're making a mistake by seeking to get something of a lay of the land? Also, discussion is arguably part of "the practice." I don't think that the dichotomy you propose here is accurate at all. The first "branch" you identify above is not the only type of wuwei teaching I've encountered in Daoism, because I have met multiple teachers who teach wuwei that certainly does not involve "direct connection to a Shen." The second "branch" also does not really make sense, because wuwei practice can be and very often is taught by living masters. There is much more that could be said about this, but suffice to say that what I have encountered in the Daoist world does not match up with your thesis. Have you read Li Daochun's Book of Balance and Harmony (《中和集》)? This book--which was important in its time and remains a useful read today--revolves around a way of practice that is not youwei in the sense of the long list of considerations you wrote above, nor based upon having a hufa work upon/with the student as you suggest. This important thread of Quanzhen teachings remains very much alive today and I have been exposed to aspects of this teaching by more than one living teacher in three countries. Well, I see no reason to doubt that this is the case... Nor believe it haha. But, if that's truly what's going on, sounds great. I see no reason to doubt that either, but, people who practice "normal" zifagong also report similar things. Er, good for you guys, but does this even matter... like at all? Every crackpot religion worth a dime claims government ministers and nobility in its ranks. And does anybody even like/respect "nobility," what with their castles and yachts and hemophilia? And anyway, I've met plenty of Daoist priests who barely know their ass from their elbow. So, if you've got nothing to prove, what's with the "rich and famous and powerful and priestly guys hang out with us?" Not saying, just saying, namsayin? Doesn't that kinda disagree with: Well, we'll just have to take your word for that one... Which ascended Daoists who wrote books have said that to you? Except swans do bathe daily... like... literally. And Laozi wrote a book for posterity that has helped countless people develop their wisdom, like, literarily. I don't know if you appreciate that you have kind of created the questions that you're getting here by posting lots of "spiritual fireworks" testimonials over the years. You talk about people suddenly hearing voices and even seeing spiritual beings the very moment your initiation ritual is conducted, and you've offered lots of stories about various highly intense reactions to your school's practice. Given that you've shared so much information of this sort, it does seem a bit discordant to now be saying that nobody should look for/expect/want any of that in instead expect to have an XYP practice that is so subtle that they cannot, in fact, feel anything at all. Er, again, you've shared a lot of stories that do anything but say to the reader "XYP is a boring practice." Also, you might be right about why people didn't experience lasting results, but blaming the practitioner like this... Well, we can agree on that one... but maybe that just means we're getting old Anshino was talking about people who don't even feel that. Which again, is a very gross manifestation, not subtle at all. Also, when Anshino raised the experience of the long-term practitioner of Zhinenggong who was initiated into XYP, I think he had a fair point. Somebody who has done Zhinenggong for even half a year is likely to have developed quite a bit of qi and sensitivity (I used some of this school's techniques for a couple of months); ten years of practice would almost certainly create substantial changes and lead to lots of sensitivity. I honestly do think it's a bit weird that this person would feel essentially nothing, and I find an explanation that amounts to "he didn't work hard enough" or "he had too many expectations" unsatisfying. Of course, who knows, maybe you're 100% right, but I think the questions are fair. As well as important. Why? Because there are a lot of deluded people walking around who are sure they're getting direct transmissions from spirits and deities who are also happy to "initiate" disciples. It is a good thing for people to have open, honest conversations about this phenomena--this way they're more likely to walk into a real school than a charlatan's or deluded fool's. So cultivation that involves pre-heaven energies will not create tangible changes in the post-heaven body? Well that's annoying haha. He seems to me more like a sincere seeker who is trying to get a handle on the arcane lingo and habits of the vast gallimaufry (ah, I got to use that word today, today was a good day) of weirdos who share a single moniker, "Daoist." Sure, perhaps a bit too much "brain," but I don't sense that this is a person who never wishes to practice. And surely a bit of thinking and questioning is better than none. Remember that you spent years doing your fair share and ended up in a place where you find yourself very happy. This is interesting--the idea that it needs to be "downloaded." Other Daoist teachers I have met suggest that it is innate in the human being by virtue of the human being's very existence... nothing needs to be added, merely revealed. Sincere question: how do you know? I thought he walks away from initiation with a spiritual guide/friend who he can potentially quite literally talk to, and who chose him. If he's saying he was able to talk to his spirit guide, why does he need you to interpret the conversation for him, and to tell him his interpretation is wrong? How do you know that his spirit guide didn't plainly and straightforwardly "approve" of his request? The reason I ask is because it seems like the premise of XYP is "you come here once, you get your guide, you go home and you practice, you never need to meet us again." But your comments here sound very "religious," in the sense of the many religions where there are those who claim special ability to "know" what the heavens really intended, and who like to tell off "commoners" and remind them how they could never know what that so-to-speak Brahmans know... Luckily the real cannot be sullied. You sound more like the Confucius than the Laozi of the story you mentioned above I've certainly never seen evidence to suggest that it does. What evidence have you seen to prove that it does not? That's simply not true. Of course, the lore and hagiographies of various Daoist schools is unverifiable, but I know lots of Daoists who, if asked this sort of question, will start rattling off the names of various men and women in Daoist history who flew up into the sky when they left the world, vanished into nothingness, turned into light, etc. They don't get sensitive at all. Ditto for Buddhists who believe that Padmasambhava simply teleported to the land of ogres to continue spreading the Dharma and that Shakyamuni left a corpse on purpose to reduce people's attachment to the body. Finally, as these people have it, their ancestral are indeed still alive (beyond birth and death might be a more accurate attempt to word what they think about this) and do indeed appear, physically, to those who have the fate to meet them. Including, for instance, Tai Shang Lao Jun. Lolol, I thought you said less knowledge was better???? I feel like I'm talking to Gerard in two posts at once... You too.
  26. 5 points
    Hi Anshino, thanks for your thoughts (and for your interest in mine!) I do think your second paragraph nails it. A lot of foods commonly designated as "beneficial" are beneficial only in that they offset (to an extent) the detrimental effects of eating a lot of "those other" foods. Some vitamins we are told are "essential," i.e. we purportedly need to get them from our food, cease being essential on keto/zerocarb -- notably vitamin C. In carb eaters, it is a huge player in carbs metabolism and its role is similar to that of insulin. Traditional meat/fat/dairy eaters (from nomadic Mongols to Innuits to Masai) don't get it in their diet and don't get scurvy or any type of "deficiency." This is true of many other "good nutrients" which are only good due to giving a helping metabolic hand to carb eaters. Looks like only humans who are carb eaters turn into obligatory omnivores -- i.e. there's no one food they can survive on, no grain, legume, vegetable or fruit -- while meat/fat eaters don't. They can, and historically did, thrive on a monodiet of fatty meat for hundreds of thousands of years. Native Americans had a term for the conditions when that became scarce and they had to resort to eating lean meats (e.g. rabbit) instead: "rabbit starvation." "Longevity" and "performance" are indeed, in the majority of cases, outcomes competing against each other. Perhaps with some rare exceptions where "performance" is to be credited to a stellar genetic lottery win rather than strenuous effort. But we would probably have to define "performance" and determine the parameters. Record setters, competition winners, performance-for-hire folks are not known for their longevity as a group. The traditional taoist view, incidentally, favors conserving subtle energies (jing, qi, shen) rather than squandering them toward performance. This conservation does not mean "doing nothing" of course -- but, rather, avoiding excessive exertion. "The sage has spirit but does not make it labor." So, again, it's hard to tell how HG and other growth-promoting factors would affect someone in the state of healthy homeostasis. Growth is energy- and resources-consuming. Unnecessary growth may be consuming necessary energy and necessary resources, taking them away from a simpler yet loftier goal. And the illustration with mice is simply sad. What can be learned from abusing an animal who never eats a high protein diet in nature by feeding it abnormal amounts of what it wouldn't normally eat? Of course it will get sick. This whole "animal studies" "culture" is animal sacrifice (they do use this word in scientific papers to this day) on an unprecedented scale and I find it profoundly disturbing for many reasons which I will omit here. Best of luck with your dissertation.
  27. 5 points
    Yeah, it's quite fascinating. The premise is that many of us living humans are effectively already ghosts. It then proceeds with a kind of haunted version of the Daodejing, a Daodejing written by a hungry ghost , the "Dao of the Living Ghost" 生命鬼道. Ticking a lot of boxes for me because I love Daoism, ghosts and horror. 😄 Was also pleasantly surprised to see my late teacher Liu Ming mentioned as a source in the first chapter. Sean
  28. 5 points
    That is actually a real qigong practice. It's about letting the qi tell you how to move. I've seen a couple of Masters doing it. Sounds like you had a bit of an "experience". They are fairly common, but rarely talked about because it is so easy to get tripped up by them. Oh wow! Is that ever the wrong way to frame the question. It's not supposed "to be" anything. It is what it is, and it's up to you to make sense of it on your own. It is tremendously important to look at an experience as it is without trying to shoehorn it into some sort of cultural language, or preconceived notion about what it's "supposed to be". Think of this as a time when you need to aspire to being the "uncarved block". The piece of wood is your life, and the carving is how your culture tells you how you should understand it. Take all the phrases like "cinnabar field", "qi", "dan dien", etc, and throw them away if they get in between you and what you really experienced. I'd suggest instead that you just describe exactly and objectively what happened to you instead of trying to fit the experience into a preconceived cultural framework. One last thing. IMHO, the really important stuff is the kung fu that you are following, not the fancy experiences you have when doing it. Think about this: the goal of meditation is meditation---not enlightenment. Consider it a koan. Think about it this way. In my sitting and forgetting practice I had many different experiences. I had intense pain for a long time, so much so that I wept buckets while meditating. It went away. I kept falling asleep. It went away. I got distracted by my chattering monkey mind. It went away. It's easy to see that these were all attempts by my "ego" to fight against stilling the waters. I also had experiences where I saw visions. They went away. I had experiences where I was able to predict events before hand. It went away. And I had experiences where strangers would walk up to me and tell me that I was a "holy man". It went away. I am of the opinion that these last three phenomenon were also attempts by my "ego" to fight against stilling the waters. Wisdom, again in IMHO---but I think I'm right, should be the only thing that a Daoist should be pursuing. Everything else is at best a sideline (good health is a useful thing) and at worst a blind alley.
  29. 5 points
    Thanks for sharing your perspective on breathing Freeform... I found it very interesting. Would you mind describing the 5 stages in more detail I can add a little more detail - but there are still layers (on the Shen level) that I've not achieved myself, so I'll only talk about the aspects that I have achieved. That post that explains the method, in brief, is the method used to achieve these qualities - you can't achieve them through 'trying to do them' - because then it won't have the transformative effect, and you'd be fooling yourself. You have to let these qualities come by themselves. When I first started, my breathing would get very deep - but also quite loud and a bit too fast. I was really frustrated, so I tried to subtly quieten down my breathing... needless to say, my teacher noticed and gave me a disapproving look So I had to back off and carry on with the loud breathing - within a couple of sessions it completely changed and the quality of Quiet began to manifest on its own. 1. Quiet This means that the breathing is physically quiet. Someone would have to come right up to your nose to hear your breath. The Qi also moves 'quietly'. The quality on the Qi level can be understood if you think about what causes your breath to be loud... it's the movement of air that hits impediments along the way and causes turbulence - it's the turbulence that causes the noise. So on the Qi level, it doesn't mean that there are no impediments - it just the Qi flows smoothly without causing turbulence. Most people can't feel Qi directly (even if they think they can) - so it's best not to 'search' for this quality of Qi. At the stage of Slow, when your Qi starts to interact with your physical body, then you can feel (the effect of) Qi much more strongly. 2. Deep This means that the breath is sinking to the depth of the Lower Dantien (by itself!). So you can see/feel the Qi Hai point moving up and down. When you normally breathe with your belly you'll notice there is a certain area that 'leads' - for me it used to be above the belly button, close to the diaphragm - it would 'bulge' out with every breath. That means my breath didn't have the quality of Deep. Again - it needs to happen by itself - if you make your belly expand and collapse, that is not the quality of Deep! Once you achieve this quality in your breathing practice, it happens by itself - both during practice and unconsciously in day to day life (although at an early stage it will still vary a lot - if you start thinking or being emotional your Depth will be lost) On the Qi level, it feels as if there's a very large volume of Qi starting to move... like a tide under the ocean. 3. At Ease This is the quality that would benefit everybody. Whether you do Internal Cultivation or not, the quality of At Ease can really improve one's life. Internally your breathing becomes anchored to the LDT. Whereas at the stage of Deep, your breathing is tentatively coming from the LDT - at the stage of At Ease, it is anchored there - meaning that when thoughts or emotions come up, instead of them affecting your breathing, your breathing affects them... Your breath becomes a way to reach a deep inner comfort and Sung. On the Qi level, your Qi itself becomes habitually 'sunk' and anchored to the LDT. This is very useful for Internal Arts practitioners! When you stand or do any forms, (assuming you're practising correctly) your Qi will naturally start to sink to your LDT (which is a lot harder than some claim). 4. Slow Breathing starts to slow down. 2 breaths a minute is common. Meaning 15 seconds for inhale, 15 seconds for exhale. Again - not to be contrived!! At this stage your Qi starts to affect your physical body. As the Qi moves gently like the tides, it begins to touch the soft tissues and allow them to 'release' or Sung at a deeper level. You might not feel Qi, but you will certainly feel these waves of deep physical release move through your body. 5. Cotton This is achieved by regularly sitting and allowing the previous qualities to transform you more deeply. At the stage of Cotton, your tissues have been loosened and transformed by regular practice at the Slow stage. Your tissues will feel like soft, smooth layers of cotton moving and sliding over one another with each breath. Your insides feel completely Sung - there is no hardness or holding. Your Qi has fully penetrated and anchored to the physical 'tissues' of your body. With Qi Gong (and Yi Jing Jin) practice this softness is later transformed into elasticity and eventually into what feels like very strong steel cables under high tension (I haven't reached this stage).
  30. 5 points
  31. 5 points
    Yes, though probably not to the greater or lesser extents intended by those who shared their thoughts/advices The main takeaway was guilt. Reading personal stories from people on this site as well as those from day to day life and my own personal 1st/2nd hand experiences. I felt a guilt that I was depriving those connected with my experience of something I couldnt quite quantify, and I also felt a guilt from not achieving my primary goal which was to contribute something positive and/or constructive to the greater collective- which is kind of a funny goal when you dig deep enough into the sentiment Ultimately it took action from me on the mental/physical plane to begin to create a decisive shift. I have no doubts that rereading posts from this thread and other more constructive material, making steady changes to my overall mental diet, contributed to helping turn the tide. I had to take Action I dont think I'm out of the woods quite yet as far as revamping my life, because im still encountering echoes of that dark period in day to day interactions due to my increasing energy level/'expanding' awareness now that I've began to practice once more It is somewhat difficult to relive that period now that the post has been bumped and I've read through it again, being in a better place though carrying subtle hues of the former- life is like that I think. I hope that this thread can serve someone else in a therapeutic way
  32. 5 points
    Hey everyone, Not sure where to begin. Seems like anywhere I do will imply a false priority from me. I guess chronologically is the best. I grew up in a Christian home. Heavily studied the Bible from a young age, and competed in competitions. I tended to ask a lot of uncomfortable questions that the adults and leaders around me couldn't answer and that sent me off looking for answers. This was pre "everything is at your fingertips" online, so I mostly had to scavenge book stores and garage sales. I got scraps of the Dao De Jing, loose writings about the trigrams, some speeches from the Buddha and occasionally some things about alchemy but that was it as far as esoteric knowledge went. I turned to medicine, math, science, business and music (but mostly relationships) for years until I had a very complicated multi year falling out with a girl who I was certain was my soul mate that concluded during my junior year of college while I was pre medicine. I fell into a really bad depression where I was sleeping 20 hours a day that finally concluded with me starting off on a journey of more obscure sources that could answer my questions. I dropped out of medicine and finished a different degree that I could do without much effort so I could spend time studying. I also could order more obscure books online but I didn't know what I was looking for or where to go. I started with Plato and the I Ching and just jumped off to whatever was tangential. I didn't know where I was going, I just followed wherever I felt a fulfillment studying. I studied multiple languages, art, physics, math, history, etc. 99% of my studying was related to the liberal arts and my profession with only occasional forays into cursory Daoism or Buddhism, followed by a massive revelation and more liberal arts studying with a new perspective. This cycle repeated for years, where I felt a creeping existential dread overtake me the more I studied, but I continued anyway. This culminated about a year ago where I had a total breakdown. I'm still not even sure what I had a breakdown about. I drank socially because I have social anxiety and it eases my nerves in crowds. But my social drinking had been escalating for months. I made a complete fool of myself and after a series of events that night, spent the night sobbing on my friend's couch, incapable of answering their questions of why I was so distraught. This occurred again just weeks later. This was all extremely out of character for as I've always been a quiet withdrawn introvert. I was also the one who had it all put together and was counsel to my friends. After these 2 episodes I dove headlong into studying philosophy, theology and mysticism. But particularly metaphysics and epistemology and trying to marry all the natural philosophy I'd studied for years and "knew" to be true with these rediscovered questions I had about the unknown. I don't know why, it just seemed to be where I was pulled to. I also began regularly meditating. Over the last few months, I've been having what feel like divine revelations about the world. I've attempted to explain them to my friends but they don't follow what I'm saying as evidenced by their inability to repeat back what I'm saying with clarity. This has lead me to believe that unlike the philosophy I used to share with them, the insights I'm having now are beyond words. I've never felt so alone because of this, feeling almost "trapped" in my own head. So I've taken up art in an attempt to express what I've learned, and circumvent reason's inability to grasp what I feel is the paradoxical nature of metaphysics. I've found solace in the work of men like Jung or Leibniz who I feel are attempting to express the same thing I think I've found. But I'm not sure. I came here because I've hit a point where I have questions and I don't know what to google or what books to read. So I was hoping that could find answers from people here as teachers and fellows on a similar journey. I apologize for the long winded story
  33. 5 points
    Some basic questions: What is Mo Pai? Who are the current lineage holders? What schools currently practice? How does Mo Pai compare with other traditions and practices? Can Mo Pai be practiced without a teacher or group? Sean
  34. 5 points
    Phoenix3 quoted a post of mine from before (see above) where I touched upon that a bit. I might add that I don't see eating some fruit as a problem for most people -- of course those who do need to watch their sugar, weight, or yeast infestation problems more closely, or those who need to go way stricter with their "zerocarb" eating, might not qualify as fruit eaters with impunity. E.g. Mikhalia Peterson, whose lectures and interviews are on youtube and IMO worth giving a listen to (regardless of what one thinks of her dad's politics -- incidentally she got him to follow the same zerocarb protocol, and then her mom.) She had severe autoimmune problems since early childhood, got juvenile arthritis while at it and had two of her joints, hip and ankle, replaced because of that by age 17 -- the list goes on and on -- she fixed all of her health issues (dozens, each of them by itself enough to make it a losing bet that she would see her 25th birthday) with zerocarb, got super healthy, got married, had a child, founded two companies, yada yada. She's one of the people who are better off not taking any chances. https://www.youtube.com/user/mikhailapeterson1 But for most, I don't think it's necessary to exclude fruit. When one keeps one's carb intake low though, it becomes quite obvious to the senses how excessively sweet and "flat" modern fruit is. More often than not a lot of it tastes like sugar water to me. Whereas the real thing... but don't let me get myself into another food-nostalgic diatribe. So, if you can seek out what is not overly sweet, not overly sprayed, and not ripened by gassing (like bananas), I don't think it's a big issue. Fruit trees are sprayed extremely aggressively. Do you ever see wormholes in any fruit where you live? Here, I never do... whereas in any non-factory-farm-style garden it's a seal of approval for anything real and good -- worms understand about nutritious and delicious and safe to eat... I used to always check for the wormhole and at least half the time it was there for me to cut out -- easy peasy. I don't think I've seen one in years and years. And so what is labeled "organic" is probably also... but don't let me digress again. I think we did eat some plant food even when the oceans were frozen to the bottom and the surface of the earth covered with ice 3 kilometers thick (which is to say, for most of our developmental history as a species). I judge by the fact that in the tundra, they do get a handful of very sour, very frost-resistant berries and incorporate them, in small amounts, in the diet to this day. Wild cranberry, not the commercial variety, is very small, very bright red, thin skin, juicy inside, and sour to the unimaginable extent. I believe it may have served to tenderize meat, the way we use some acidic media for the carne asada or shish kabob today. Of the other frost-tolerant berries, I only had a few -- who knows, there may have been more in prehistory. I had cloudberry as a sour fermented drink, could be made alcoholic too. Lingonberry, native to the Arctic, also small, on the sour side, but I just had it as a preserve with sugar so don't know what fresh is like. Honeysuckle (not the flower, a variety of berries in Siberia), sea buckhorn. None of these could be a staple food, of course, but our ancestors are likely to have eaten some. They are all very, very low in sugar in their natural state.
  35. 5 points
    You might be the first Bum in history to state that Taomeow hasn´t "done enough research" on any subject. Just sayin´.
  36. 5 points
    I think you could try to plan your food budget around what you can afford toward some more options, and I would favor (if you have access to it) some inexpensive fish over cheese as a staple. Of course "inexpensive fish" is another item to hunt down. Where do you shop? Trader Joe's has inexpensive frozen fish, and for fresh, I'd try to discover an Asian supermarket if they exist in your area, they typically have a large choice. Cheese I don't find particularly economical if it's good -- in fact, really good is quite unreasonably expensive, and really cheap may have stuff on the label you don't want in your body. Also, you don't need huge portions of meat if you keep your saturated fat intake high (a prerequisite for success with low carb diets, otherwise you will be hungry and craving carbs). And don't overlook organ meats if you can find them. Chicken livers are very cheap, e.g., and could be a nice addition to your food plan. Bones for broth -- a bone broth goes a long way. And I make real Native American pemmican out of the marrow. And then add it to my eggs. It is a pain to prepare but then it lasts forever.
  37. 5 points
    May I suggest a self-education course. https://www.reddit.com/r/zerocarb/ I don't eat like that though, and didn't say I did. I might experiment with it someday, or not. I'm pretty satisfied with a close-to-paleo but not always strict regimen of my own, the outcome of a lifetime of explorations and a whole bookcase dedicated to the subject of nutrition, from various epochs and continents. My current thing is, and has been for years, high fat, moderate protein, low carbs, and mostly no grains, no legumes and no starchy vegetables. Absolutely no junk food, unless you count an occasional Haagen-Dazs butter pecan ice cream. I do eat fruits (avoiding the sweetest among them) and berries, non-starchy veggies (often fermented -- kimchi, raw sauerkraut, homemade pickles), and put a spoonful of sugar in my coffee. I don't avoid alcohol either, nor tea, nor an occasional bit of chocolate. This is sort of average for me, it can go to either extreme from there and occasionally does -- to very strict when I'm in the position and in the mood to do thorough planning (if you're going to do strict paleo, you can't just grab "whatever" at the store, you have to plan the hunt and the gathering and the storage, and then hunt and gather and store -- and cook like a machine!!) -- or to very lax (e.g. when traveling, eating out, going to a party, and then typically dealing with the aftermath of being dragged after the wagon for a while after having fallen off it. )
  38. 5 points
    Neither a moratorium nor a private dedicated area are gonna happen, for reasons already mentioned. So we can just put those ideas aside for now. A FAQ is not a fix, but I think it's hard to argue that it would not help? Isn't this a third best option? Houses concise responses to all common questions/criticisms in your own voice in a single location Locked so no worry that it will turn into hundreds of pages Helps other members make up their mind, regardless of any past trolling and misinformation Saves your labor of combing topics and responding to every perceived inaccuracy Assuages a primary frustration/criticism, that you're being disingenuous about why you never respond to anything I think not wanting to do a FAQ kinda hurts your stated case. Active or passive, what's the material difference? You are here on the forum and you are recruiting. Sean
  39. 5 points
    Ahh. You caught my post before my last edit, in which I tried to soften a bit and moved the transphobia piece to another topic. OK. I'll trust your intention. I'm sorry if I'm being knee-jerk about this topic and caused you any stress. 🙏 Sean
  40. 5 points
    I'm similar in the sense that I don't use the ignore button when I can just skip over something when I want. Here is my perspective on the MP history here. It was amicable enough at the start with interesting conversations on the system, levels and western experiences of a few who studied directly under Chang. Its an intriguing system with surprising results (Chang is at some level around 40 out of 72?). The western students who could study directly under Chang seemed to have gotten as far as L3 (?), but seems not without some misunderstandings themselves despite the direct training. And some of those teachings 'leaked' to others in the west (aka: secret teachings were taught to outsiders). Some 'outsiders' to the secret lineage system were then practicing those levels and discussing them here. Along came Indonesian practitioners who joined the Bums to say that there is no such thing as "Western Mo Pai" (WMP) and it is an indigenous system that must be practiced directly with the lineage to claim to be Mo Pai. They asked if folks here couldn't refrain from claiming Mo Pai practice when they were already not following the tradition of direct participation with the lineage system to get proper training. This started about 8 years ago. WMP mentioning practices they claimed they were not allowed to share (not sure why because they were not under any secret oath to the official lineage nor any official master of the practice)... and the Indonesian students would come back over the years when the WMP commented, and would ask them to stop claiming to be a part of the lineage system. Over this course, several on the Bums felt there was a kind of spamming, elitist sense of WMP who claimed everyone else's practices were stupid (other colorful words used as well) and meaningless and only their's was a path of true demonstrated power... which over 8 years they would repeat and refuse any explanation, demonstration, or talk on their actual practice. They would repeat the attacks, victim sense, and inability to get the forum to ban all talk on MP... which mostly they were doing with a kind of hijacking way of posting. Here was the problem as I saw it, over the years. I've never been inclined to ban a particular discussion of a system. I just replace that system with another and would I ban it? No. Then I would not ban the first one. Folks come here and ask a question like, "What is this Mo Pai system I hear about on the internet"... Some discussion may start with folks here but the WMP suddenly show up singularly or in numbers and start to dismember any discussion on it. Its a weird vulture like stance that anyone is simply watching the board for a topic to then come swoop down and interject 8 years of the same repetitive, somewhat programmed, comments. It did very much become an 'us' (WMP) vs the rest of the world; but also an 'us' (Bums) vs the WMP. And it was dubbed, The MP Wars ... because of the similarities to the previous fights with the Buddhist elitist topics (Buddhist Wars). Maybe the Bums like a good war. There was the Lomax Wars too, let's not forget. And also, Jeff Light Wars if we wanted to be fair about how the 'us' vs 'others' seems to recycle itself here. I would hope this previous part would put in perspective there is something much bigger than MP Wars but if one were to look at each War, they would see a vast different in the 'fight method'. Those who had a very strong practice and ability to back it up were never on the attack (Lomax and Light), while those who couldn't were usually more aggressive (or passive aggressive, Buddhist and MP) in putting other systems down. It seems a funny choice to say: Should the topic be banned or the members be banned? I've followed the idea that any topic is allowed till it crosses the rules... very few topics have been banned but we're talking like serious and sick topics (child pornography or pizza-gate). To ban discussion on an energetic system and put it in the category of serious and sick topics always seemed odd to me. So I've let discussion occur and just view member participate as following the rules or not. I don't have a horse in this. If the rules changed on banning such topics, so be it. I'll not lose any sleep, not claim any relief, not need to worry the outcome. It would have no influence on me today or tomorrow. But I do see there are some where there is great anticipation for some outcome that will rescue their own anxiety over the issue. And I thought 'practice makes perfect' Peace.
  41. 4 points
    I spent years doing various things and believed in the idea of qi. I felt it flow through my body, I studied the esoteric map of the human body that was found at the White Cloud Temple. I even chanted the Jade Emperor sutra and regularly offered incense to an altar. At the same time that I did all of this I was an avid reader of popular science and more (I have a Master's in Philosophy.) I came to the conclusion that most of the experiences that I was having could be explained in better ways using modern scientific theory. The feelings that I had of "qi" going through my body and the various abilities that was able to manifest could be explained better through neuroplasticity than through some mysterious substance. At the same time, I enjoyed watching the feats of various "qi" masters both in person and through video. In most cases it was obvious that what was being done had nothing at all to do with Qi and were just demonstrations of basic physical principles. Others looked to me to be not much more than stage magic (and often not very good stage magic.) At the same time, I played around a bit with the ability to project the image of being a "wise and groovy master", and found out that it is profoundly easy to convince some people that you are some sort of wizard simply be knowing a few things that they do not. I also learned how seductive it is to cultivate this persona as it gives you a degree of unhealthy control over other people. (This is why I cultivate an persona of being "punk and plain", I never want anyone to put me on a pedestal again!) I have had a few experiences that are hard to explain given modern theory. But I don't believe that Daoist energetics are any better than they at explaining them. So I choose to leave them as "mysteries" instead of trying to explain them. One thing I will say, however, is that none of them had any real value to my or anyone else's life. And one thing that I have decided is that the only thing worth spending your time cultivating is wisdom. Don't assume that because I'm not a fan of qi, it's because I dismissed it out of hand---.
  42. 4 points
    My mom knits a mean scarf, but ya, other than that women are inferior to men in every conceivable domain. Fortunately, chivalry is not dead and many men take the time to explain things to the fairer sex that they might not otherwise understand. We also open doors. When needed (not in your case, ilumairen) some of us throw protective punches. These kind avuncular types are colloquially known as "manplainers" and even in our modern day, when kindness so often seems on the wane, we´re on hand to answer questions. You´re welcome. LL
  43. 4 points
    Good suggestion ilumairen. You could even make that into a great opener. “Hey, you don’t know me, but I was seated next to you in the bus earlier... and I felt waves of heat come out from your body. You were on my left side, and I felt like my left side was on fire... yeah. And I was wondering if you wanted to talk about it. Because I study Daoism and was wondering what it is about the female form or body that emits waves of heat. Is it a polarity thing you think ? It’s weird, cause you should be more Yin and cooler as a female (and hence lose at all competitive sports when facing men) but somehow I’m getting heat from you... What does this mean ? Do you have the hots for me or something ? Could you actually beat me at ping pong ?
  44. 4 points
    I have a close friend who studied TCM in China, practiced internal martial arts, went on vipassana retreats and maintained a long term meditation practice, and is also an observing Jew who prays daily and regularly attends services. He has quite a bit of affinity for Daoism and visited a holy mountain with me, so he had no shortage of friends to share bits and pieces of Daoist thinking and practices with him over the years. There was sincerity in his approach, so his study and practice added depth to his life, but he never found anything along the path that gave him what he needed to break his porn and masturbation addiction. Finally in real despair (he was at risk of ruining his marriage and the mood swings his masturbation apparently caused were leading him to fly into rages with his small children) he Googled his problem and came upon SLAA. He has been "sober" with them for a few years now, and he tells me that due to the nature of his addiction he needed to find people who knew the specific "medicine" for his disease (it is he, not I, who stresses that addiction is a disease). Most interestingly, in addition to helping him break his addiction, the 12 step program has also very clearly deepened his religious and spiritual life. After seeing similar processes unfold in two other addicts I know (one was an alcoholic who, like this friend, pursued a TCM education, meditation, and martial arts), I read the AA Big Book. I would say it is something that anybody with spare time and interest in spirituality should read. One need not be an addict to glean insight from this text. 12 step programs are not a magic bullet and they do not work for everybody, but my friend tried Daoism + Buddhism + Judaism + TCM + internal martial arts to no avail, while SLAA's teachings and community clearly worked.
  45. 4 points
    Ahem ..... Doctor Bacon ! But those days are long gone , I am 'Bacon retired' . From now on, its up to my relatives; Francis Bacon ... and Francis Bacon .... the XXVII th . Oh goody ! I'll give it a go <warms up fingers > and a one and a two and a ... NO WAY ! Now ... Its a spiritual forum ... LEFT ! Kilgore Trout yoghurt ... and Hat bandana Graham cracker jackhammer In a nail file suit your self service man The world's my oyster soup kitchen floor wax museum Autographed pictures of Shakespeare fishing gear Head phone Madison Square garden hose The world's my oyster soup kitchen floor wax museum Cannibal dog house plan B happy As a lark's tongue in cheek bone china doll The world's my oyster soup kitchen floor wax museum Don't ask Y2 cake and eat it too Nothing lasts for evergreen thumbscrew The world's my oyster soup kitchen door frame by frame See the first comment ^ We dont have racoons here . ... ? what ! Wrong spelling ??? lets see Racoon < right > Racoons ... wrong ! ? Raccoons ... right . What ! Hmmm ... anyway , we do have 'ringies' (ring tail possum ) ... and they will take off with ... We had a 'do here' people from the city are sitting on my verandah about to cut a cake and eat it . Possum appears and they are all ; "Oh, look at the cute little possum, look how tame he is ... gosh he is coming right up to us ..." < pause .... nabs cake and legs it > " Oi ! "
  46. 4 points
    I cry a lot - movies, thoughts about my kids, the state of our compassion and community in my country, animals being hurt or dead on the road, whatever. It’s not a depressing cry, it’s a releasing and a realization of the inseparability of joy and sorrow.
  47. 4 points
    As I shared a few years ago about Falun Gong, famous Kung Fu master George Xu brought out an almost identical form before Falun Gong was made public. He learned it from an old master in Shanghai. He calls it Wu Wei. I had it tested by Eric Isen and Wu Wei tested as more powerful and beneficial than Falun Gong. He saw that it also results in an energy wheel being installed but it is shaped slightly different than the wheel from Falun Gong but the wheel is more powerful from Wu Wei. The only thing I did not care for when I was doing Wu Wei was the eerie music that plays during the form.
  48. 4 points
    I'm sure that's true to an extent, though this latest episode was simply me ignoring my intuition and what the world was telling me to the point of paralysis/self-destruction. There was little to no working through accumulated neuroses or ingrained behaviors, rather I was wilfully reconstructing and creating new ones of the same hue that I had for the most part transcended/made peace with. I am creating a new life Thank you
  49. 4 points
    May I suggest an eye-opening book.
  50. 4 points
    Hey Bums Recently I've been thinking about the power of spiritual affinity, and its real-life effects. Let me begin by showcasing what I mean by "effects". It is said that Saint Francis developed stigmata in his hands and feet because he was so connected to the image of Jesus on the cross that his physical body was imprinted with the information. It is also said that one famous counterfeit painter that had a deep affinity with DaVinci re-created his paintings and they were almost as good as the originals, at least to the untrained eye. When he was caught and asked how he could do work so exquisite and precise, he just said he imagined he was the Master Painter when he was drawing them. He was mostly uneducated and didn't have access to advanced tools, but he was sincere when he pretended to be DaVinci. And his sincerity somehow led to perfect forgeries. These two examples are for inspiration, so please don't take them at face value, although these stories have been passed down. But they illustrate the point I'm trying to make - namely, the power of "spiritual affinity" between two people. A less fantastical example would be someone I know that sincerely connected to her Master, and then found herself waking up at 3:30 am in the morning for no reason. She only knew later that this was the time that the Master used to rise. Anyways, I could go and on. But it might be more helpful for you to gain a feel for this. So let's do a small exercise. Think of all the Masters and people that are very close to you in your life. And then think about the times were you caught yourself speaking like them, imitating them, or behaving like them. You might be surprised. You might say you respect such and such, yet you never caught yourself acting like them. But every time you read a certain author, maybe a scholar or a columnist you enjoy, you might notice that their energy carries into your day-to-day and you might use the same words or style of writing as them later in the day. This is what I mean by spiritual resonance. In other words, effortless transmission of energy between two actors that are somehow closely linked, yet could be miles or times apart. I still can't pin-point what this is, maybe it's karma related I don't know. But it seems people have it or they don't. And what I know is that it opens a huge door for spiritual development if the person you have affinity with is achieved spiritually. Personally the person I resonate with most is someone I met around when I first joined DaoBums and who guided me briefly. It's not an intellectual conclusion, weighing all the qualities of that person and then making an informed decision. No nothing shallow like that. It's just an objective observation. I notice that when I connect to this person even briefly, I find I speak like him, I write like him, I think like him, I organize my day like him, even without knowing what his day looks like. Basically, these things are "taught" or revealed to me by the energy, which has a life of its own. I easily learn new things from it. Somehow the door for transmission is completely open, like for that fellow that was learning from DaVinci as he was counterfeiting the paintings. Anyways, sorry to get "new agey" with this observation, but I thought I would share as it may have some value for you. Think about all the people that you resonate with in your life, and see how much of them are in you, or "are you". This might be the path you need to focus on, even if your intellect is reluctant. And maybe the spiritual game is not only a matter of choosing the most powerful Master like Buddha or Jesus or Medicine Buddha, but finding the one you resonate with most. And being sincere to that Master like the DaVinci painter, who also evidently admired him. These things usually go hand in hand. Anyways, I'm rambling. Do any of you guys resonate with certain people or have any stories to share ? Thanks, Seb