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  1. 9 points
    *** The last chapter of this series is dedicated to Marblehead... he often said certain passages were still a struggle and yet, he was very clear as to his thought. To be clear and yet also murky is the Way of water. MB often appealed to the anarchist way... yet he stated it with typical aplomb that gave an air of knowing exactly who he was, where he was, and what he was doing in the moment. Being in the moment was his hallmark and a lesson we will cherish about him. *** To Marblehead, Peace to our friend: David Hinton 2002 81 Sincere words are never beautiful and beautiful words never sincere. The noble are never eloquent and the eloquent never noble. The knowing are never learned and the learned never knowing. A sage never hoards: the more you do for others the more plenty is yours, and the more you give to others the more abundance is yours. The Way of heaven is to profit without causing harm, and the Way of a sage to act without contending. Dwight Goddard 1919 81 Faithful words are often not pleasant; pleasant words are often not faithful. Good men do not dispute; the ones who dispute are not good. The learned men are often not the wise men, nor the wise men, the learned. The wise man does not hoard, but ever working for others, he will the more exceedingly acquire. Having given to others freely, he himself will have in plenty. Tao of heaven benefits but does not injure. The wise man's Tao leads him to act but not to quarrel. Bradford Hatcher 2005 81 True words are not embellished Embellished words are not truthful To be right is not to be argumentative To be argumentative is not to be right To be knowing is not to be sophisticated To be sophisticated is not to be knowing Wise ones do not accumulate Though intending to act on behalf of another The more they themselves have gained Though intending to give to another The more they themselves are increased Heaven’s way is to benefit, but without doing harm The wise ones’ way is to work, but without competition Wing-Tsit Chan 1963 81 True words are not beautiful; Beautiful words are not true. A good man does not argue; He who argues is not a good man. A wise man has no extensive knowledge; He who has extensive knowledge is not a wise man. The sage does not accumulate for himself. The more he uses for others, the more he possesses of his own. The Way of Heaven is to benefit others and not to injure. The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete. Gu Zhengku 1993 81 True words are not embellished, The embellished words are not true. A good man does not quibble; He who quibbles is not good. A man of true learning does not show off his learning; He who shows off his learning does not have true learning. The sage does not store up. Helping others as best as he can, He is helped even more. Giving others as much as he can, He becomes richer and richer still. The Tao of heaven benefits rather than harms all things; The Tao of the sage is to give rather than rob the people. Ch'u Ta-Kao 1904 81 He who knows does not speak; He who speaks does not know. He who is truthful is not showy; He who is showy is not truthful. He who is virtuous does not dispute. He who disputes is not virtuous. He who is learned is not wise. He who is wise is not learned. Therefore the Sage does not display his own merits. Flowing Hands 1987 81 Truthful words are not necessarily beautiful. And very often, beautiful words are not truthful. Those who are enlightened do not argue. Those who do, are not aware of the nature of all things. People always think they know; but the Sage looks and talks like an idiot to men, but he is enlightened. That’s why clever men never understand the nature of all things. The Sage never stores things up, he remains open and yielding to all. The more he gives and does for others, the greater his abundance. The Dao of Heaven is sharp and pointed, but it does not harm. For it remains with all good creatures. The Dao of the Sage is work without interference.
  2. 8 points
    When I first joined this forum I tried to be perfect in my execution of the various forms I was taught, and thought that by doing them very well I could "max out" their benefits so to speak. Later I painfully learned that how you practice (your mindset) is much more important than how well you execute the various meditations and forms. For example, if you are not relaxed and rush into it, if you do it with a perfectionist mindset, or a confused mind or body. Look honestly at yourself before even starting your form, ask yourself why you are doing it. Are you trying to sedate yourself, to run away from responsibilities, to gain a feeling of safety, to gain power, is it an ego thing ? When you get the "How" part down, when you are sincere and reconnect to your deepest consciousness, then the form won't add that much to your experience. I found. It's just an icing on the cake. Then later on I also painstakingly realized that the time you spend not-practicing is more important than doing a 30 form in the morning and a meditation in the evening. Because there's 23 other hours in the day. If you live an unbalanced lifestyle, no magical form is ever going to compensate for that. And for spiritual matters, I found cultivation is real life. So I found that true cultivation is rough, it's an every day, moment to moment adjustment of your energies. For example, for lower dantian development I don't think it's wise to meditate 10 minutes in the morning and then let your energy float the rest of the day. So at first I was trying to do a lot and fill myself of all kinds of energies. I tried to fill up my container actively. Now I see the reverse. I am already full and take a bottom-up approach. I avoid leaks to the container by appropriate lifestyle changes, you could say correct energetic hygiene. Of course I still practice, but when I do, it's not with the mindset of being a performer. If you are aggressive in the way you view your practices or attach tightly to them, then this energy will also reflect in your form. So you need to work on yourself, as a human being first and as a practitioner. How you move will reflect who you are. That's what I learned.
  3. 8 points
    marblehead, marblehead, marblehead He is probably here, there and everywhere. I miss him a lot.
  4. 8 points
    Hello My Friend! How I appreciate your images and words. Thank you! One of the most wonderful aspects of any vacation for me... is the moment of opening the door and returning home. Exhale and settle. Here and now. Such simple bliss. Such treasure! How wonderful, to seek out the unfamiliar, only to rediscover everywhen, the familiar. Home is always here and always now. And it's so good to be home.
  5. 7 points
    Well I think we're in complete agreement - and your point illustrates what I mean perfectly. You’re demonstrating great progress in your practice. You’re certainly not doing the same thing you were doing a year ago. Note that I didn’t say you should be changing your form... it normally takes decades to really master a classical practice. But you should be progressing in that form as you’ve illustrated beautifully But I see a lot of people just repeating some movements, thinking that the movements have some magical effect in and of themselves. And I’m trying not to name names, but there are very well known teachers perpetuating this notion. This error might have come from mixing ideas of ceremonial ritual with the Daoist internal arts (the familiar newage mishmash misappropriation of spiritual traditions). Ceremonial ritual and the internal arts are completely different. In the internal arts, the magic is not in the repeated movements - the magic is in how you use these movements to create change in yourself. And for that to happen, the focus and approach needs to be very different - much more aligned to how you’re describing your progress through your own practice. And yes - it takes time - a lot of time...
  6. 7 points
    Because I don't see it as a static practice. It started off very mechanical and was slow going. Over time, I started to link the movement, breath and mind into a changing, fluid form which initiated healing, strength, flexibility and elasticity of body, mind and spirit. It has changed me in ways I never thought possible when I started. Once ingrained into muscle memory, it became automatic. It wasn't me doing the practice, the practice was doing me. This, I believe, is possible for anyone, whatever practice it is they do, provided they practice diligently, day after day, over a long period. Take a method, do it consistently and it becomes part of who you are.
  7. 7 points
    I agree, it's the healthy building kind of masculinity. Sadly quite missing in society as of late. It's sidelining women in decision making process and trivializing them as either objects or as non-existent people. In some patriarchal family structure you can have honor killings of women who don't obey the father or her brothers in their lives. A woman having multiple sexual partners is seen as bad while a man doing the same thing is a hero. Societies can kill of female children at times when they feel the male children are better. Pioneering work in computer programming was done by six women working with the ENIAC, though their achievements were recognized only after their time when most of them were dead. Historians just thought they were women posing next to equipment as models and ignored them in the writing. Sidelining women for no other reason is invisible to many men, after all we don't experience the same things. Something that the feminists struggled against in the not so far off past is now becoming a distant thing for most of us, but still a reality in some parts of the world. It's quite readily apparent that we've moved on from much of that. Such things motivated earlier feminists and still do in less fortunate parts of the world. The kind of feminists that become a joke in public discourse are of course removed from such struggles and probably just using the term as a cover for misandry and become unwitting tools for male versions of themselves in the political arena.
  8. 7 points
    Even if every word of teaching was destroyed, the answers within would still be available. And people would continue to discover..
  9. 6 points
    I have edited the book and republished it so you can get it now on Amazon if you wish, it is much smoother reading than the first edition. I added quite a lot of fascinating anecdotes plus I remembered to add the insider information on what ... or who ... really killed Bruce Lee, and why, but you have to get the book to find out. https://www.amazon.com/Lineage-Dragons-mysterious-qigong-teacher-ebook/dp/B07P891QX7/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=a+lineage+of+dragons&qid=1552403156&s=gateway&sr=8-1 Contents 1 - The Andes Mountains 2 - The Art of Flying 3 - The Bruce Lee connection 4 - “We are Dragons” 5 - Early Adulthood 6 - Sai Baba 7 - Meeting the Master 8 - Practicing the Path of Power 9 - Enlightenment Experience 10 - My teaching 11 - The Star Wars Connection 12 - The Path of the Warrior Wizard 13 - The Taoist Path of the Immortal 14 - Chi Kung vs. Nei Kung 15 - Masters of the Way
  10. 6 points
    The "Mind" that is not quiet is in Trance - the trance of your habituations: Imagine that instead of just your one personal phone, tablet and computer - you had 10,000 of them. It is tough for many to put down just 3 of these for a day or two - but imagine 10,000 of them and you are always using one or 100 of them with a tension extended to all of them all of the time. This is the state of "Mind" - this is Waking Sleep - this is constant Trance - this is the illusion, the cloud, the veil. It is all the things you like, don't like, believe in - and definitely do not believe in - it is every diversion you have a proclivity too and hold dear or resist. The fickle flighty Timbuktu of me-ness that you happen to be played by. It is relatively easy to give up hatchet murdering and picking your nose in public - but this is not the greater thick trance cloud of mesmerizing sleep - its far more the positions of little things and things "you are certain of" and about which you identify yourself. Try: I Awareness I cognition "I am" can be taken as possessive - the root of the sleep Move to just your Awareness - to the center of the head - Cogito - Sum Sometimes you may open a door and suddenly a breathtaking view stops all thought and momentums - you are simply awareness taking in the beauty and smells with no judgement - for a moment you are Awareness - Awake - Presence. Then Mind labels it and describes it and contrives it and diminishes it - or not - but think back to those times when for a moment your breath stopped and time stopped and Presence was breathing striking golden light. This resides in you - it is YOU - Self - but the mind has places to go that must be gotten too - until it is realized that the the Mind was never meant to be the driver.
  11. 6 points
    Its very odd that what is a legitimate harmonisation technique devolves to characterising the subject as a female 'victim'. The opposite of harmony. This kind of thing does seem to attract manipulative people. I'm not saying it won't work in some way - but for your own sake watch your intent.
  12. 6 points
    For me, a big realization occurred after having dedicated taijiquan/daogong practice for close to 15 years (around 2015). cultivation needs to evolve from physical/energetic to spiritual. If we follow the path and have a good teacher, we will evolve naturally. These techniques (any cultivation technique being used - qigong, taiji, etc) are means to an end. The objective of cultivation is (or should be) purification of the mind (in that, the tendency of the mind to attach to "this and that", and judge, and take positions, etc etc). A pure mind results in stillness of the ever fluttering veil that hides our true nature from us. The result of all practice should be end of practice and abidance in our true nature, constantly. Most importantly, the cultivation practices should be accompanied by spiritual (jñāna) teachings and study, so that the mind has a proper direction (this can be taoist, buddhist, vedanta, tantra, etc etc, but a proper framework is required). Missed the part about an easy daily set -- I still do the taiji single form/daogong forms. But it has now transformed into dissolving of the physical. A constant bliss always exists (a deep sense of well being, even when I might be physically unwell). Whenever I tried too hard for it (after having a taste), it went way. If I just let go of the desire for the bliss, it came back. Eventually I realized that it never goes away. It, along with the True Nature, is always present. Only the mind needs to be relaxed. Transmission to my younger self -- i was too dumb for any advice. You know our teacher already told us all we needed to know, but it took a long time to get through to me
  13. 6 points
    I lay no claim to any particular tradition ... except in my practice of taiji and then I follow the forms as taught by Chen Zhenglei. As for my Daoist views and energy practice, I proceed from the point of view that Daoism cannot be simply a philosophical mental exercise, that there has to be a physical practice in order to appropriately balance the physical, mental and spiritual aspects. Its like a three legged stool. Lose one leg and you're gonna have a problem. My practice tends to be sporadic. I will practice regularly for a while and take a break and then resume again. My practice is a simple ZZ, although I do use visualization in my practice. I did a little Zen Buddhist style study and practice for a few years but did not find it as meaningful and satisfying as Daoist approaches. What would I tell myself as a younger person looking into Daoist related arts? Keep going boy, you're on the right track.
  14. 6 points
    my son and I at the museum. walking by an oil painting of adam and eve at the apple tree... with the serpent. my son: Dad? me: yea? my son: why do they always paint adam and eve with belly buttons? what were they supposed to be attached to? me: i love you.
  15. 6 points
    The bottom line for the sexes is We need each other and We compliment each other. in truth, we're not so different.
  16. 6 points
    Yes, there are parallels. The following is a quote from the Wikipedia article about Tummo: Miranda Shaw clarifies: Kuṇḍalinī-yoga offered a range of techniques to harness the powerful psycho-physical energy coursing through the body... Most people simply allow the energy to churn in a cauldron of chaotic thoughts and emotions or dissipate the energy in a superficial pursuit of pleasure, but a yogi or yogini consciously accumulates and then directs it for specified purposes. This energy generates warmth as it accumulates and becomes an inner fire or inner heat (candālī) that [potentially] burns away the dross of ignorance and ego-clinging. Yes, I do. Generally only to already somewhat experienced practitioners, though. And even to those not quite the way I was taught by my master, who had me meditate for several hours outside in a cold winternight sometimes. However, this brings to mind a little story... Once, during my last stay in Kathmandu, a group of mountain travellers showed up. I sensed that they were insufficiently prepared for their adventure (unfortunately, many of those travellers are, since trips to the Himalaya have been commercialised some 15 years ago). Though they had no prior experience with meditation, acting on a hunch, I insisted on teaching them Tummo in just one evening. During their expedition, they got stuck at an altitude of over 6000 meters due to bad weather conditions. Threatened by the deadly cold, they put to use what I had taught them. And they were alright until they could be retrieved by helicopter, except for some minor symptoms of frostbite. Later they told me that they credited their Tummo training with their survival. I was more than happy to hear that.
  17. 6 points
  18. 6 points
    Very, very few people know who they are. This is because the 'who' that we are is beyond concept and form. We don't really get to know until our consciousness or spirit turns back to itself in self-recognition. But most of us have not actualised this potential even if we are able to formulate it ourselves. The problem is identification. Identification tends to lock you into a set of ideas about yourself and the resulting set of emotional tensions around these ideas - or self-concepts. We are persuaded by the knocks of life into a particular shape - into a mode of activity which is preserving the bundle of concepts and so on which form our ego - like a little prison of our own making. This makes us feel uncomfortable when the ego is threatened and reduces our scope of action to those which remain in our 'comfort zone'. If you have the feeling of being the person in the room no-one notices then you have to recognise this as an ego power play, its an act of self preservation at a basic level. It is difficult to jump out of this right away because it is a ring bounded by fear - and fear is energy. In order to escape you need to run down this energy barrier by taking little steps. Each time you take a little step then you gain some energy back which sets you up for the next step. You need to decide quietly in your own place to put yourself deliberately in situations where this feeling is challenged. Decide on one small step - do it - and then review - with the overall goal of breaking identification with the set of responses you have been dealt (by your parents, your upbringing, society, religion .. what ever). Getting to the point where you don't feel you can continue as you habitually have been doing - is actually, although it might not feel like it, a great opportunity, as few of us genuinely change anything without reaching a state of total dissatisfaction. Its a ground for change. If you want to change then start with simple things, change your routines, decide on things you can do to alter your immediate environment and confront uncomfortable situations one by one starting with the 'easiest'. Just my thoughts as ever
  19. 6 points
    I know this topic is quite old and dusty, but I was looking up some things about Lui Yiming and come upon this thread. I have practied in the Zen tradition for around 25 years. I was originally drawn to Taoism, but 25 years ago, in the U.S., finding a teacher of the Tao was rare, so the next best thing was Zen. I studied with a few teachers and all the while studying Taiji and Qigong. My latest Taiji teacher is Taoist and really rekindled my original interest in Taoism. He is teaching me the philosophy and the internal components of Taiji, but he still strongly emphasizes the martial arts components, which is good. As far as him sharing the Tao, he says it is up to each person to cultivate. So, I continue to read and practice. I have had the fortune of studying with Stuart Alve Olson for a few months and he helped set me straight on a few things. The reason I am replying to this antiquated post is that I wish I was here to comment for fatguyslim about Liu YIming. Yiming believes there is a superiore virtue and inferior virtue. Superior virtue is basically one already being quite achieved in spiritual practice and not in need of much work. The rest of us mere mortals fall in the inferior category. Therefore, we need to practice in order to work on our desires and defilements in order to have the enviornment be just right for total realization of the Tao. In my years of Zen practice going along side of my Taiji practice, I had stumbled upon the senstations of what happens in internal alchemy rather easily. However, when I realized how to practice some elements of internal alchemy, I saw the continued benefit of doing so. Therefore, revisting the writings of Liu Yiming is very refreshing, because I feel comfortable following a direction like this while still doing the internal work that needs to be done. I do not see these two things as separate at all. It is like in the Heart Sutra, where the Bodhisattva knows all about the emptiness of things and the manifestation of that emptiness in form and even in this knowing continues to live in this world to do the work that is necessary. For me, it is the same in internal alchemy. They go hand in hand. Yiming is pointing out that in its ultimate reality, all of the physiological aspects of internal alchemy are empty of any self nature. However, as I see it, as long as we are cultivating along the path, we still have work to do. He is not saying you are nowhere and worthless because you practice from the standpoint of inferior virtue. He is saying that as humanbeings in our after-heaven existence, we must work to get back to our original nature. This does not mean our lives are meaningless or fruitless until we get there or that there is really any difference between here and there. What we must do, however, is work on putting things back together the way they were in our original condition. If you are to become an immortal, it may take several lifetimes to do. However, even if you do not become an immortal right now, you sure can live your live in a very refined way of a cultivator of the Tao. That is no small thing. If you can be at peace with this, then you are well on your way. Just keep practicing everyday, the rest will take care of itself.
  20. 5 points
    The Bon Tradition is a very rich tradition who's practices I find great value in, for those of you who practice in the Bon tradition which are your favorite practices and why? I find the following essential and indispensable 1.The nine breaths of purification: This can of course be done for many many rounds and in my experience is very refreshing and does help clear the Lung and the mind and the emotions making them more stable. 2. Tsa Lung: This practice helps circulate the lung in the body and really helps re-energize and clear blockages as well as clear out stagnated lung. This also further clears and calms the mind 3.Guru Yoga: Guru Yoga is such a beautiful loving heart experience and even though I learned of Tapihritsa and Shenla Odkar almost at the same time I favor the connection with Tapihritsa. Tapihritsa resonates best with me as a closely felt heart love connection that brings tears of joy and deep gratitude to my eyes that goes beyond just respect. In this practice Ah, OM, Hung, White, Red & Blue lights connect at Crown, Throat & Heart Chakras. Body, Speech & Mind we connect to the lineage through the guru of the lineage. This to me is very important because the guru introduces us to Buddha so the guru is very important. We connect to the attributes of the guru and not only get purification but our mind via induction aligns and become more like the mind of the guru thereby helping us to perceive the Buddha. I have some experience of tummo described in another thread but find the basic first version I learned to be best as the book learning just added complexity to what I was gifted and without direct teaching not as good. Due to years of Lucid dreaming and it growing ever stronger I have begun learning dream yoga of the Bon Tradition. I welcome a constructive dialogue and am eager to learn from the more experienced in this tradition thank you for taking the time to read these words.
  21. 5 points
    Science is weighing in on the rejuvenating effect of decalcifying and restoring the pineal gland. This is a link to a 2018 journal article "Pineal Calcification, Melatonin Production, Aging, Associated Health Consequences and Rejuvenation of the Pineal Gland." I'd bet this is what the alchemists have been trying to effect, and why there are so many references to returning to youthfulness.
  22. 5 points
    Illness and discomfort should be gone. Endless positive energy that is always refilled no matter how much we use should be the norm. All relationships should be positive and be able to give the gift of uplifting energy to those who are down. In professional work we should be at the top of our game and show others how to exceed. In life and returning to simplicity we have effectiveness with less effort. What is simple for us could be unattainable or hard work for others. To show others the ways of energy healing and give them responsibility for themselves instead of people playing a victim card is important . These things can be passed on in an informal, non teaching way and within the working environment personally without any mention of the discipline we may practice. Give light to others as if they are part of your own family.
  23. 5 points
    Yup. Yes exactly - understanding where you’re going and what you need to work on to reach where you’re going is key. There’s this notion that there’s some magical quality to a specific set. One year you try Pan Gu next year you try Fragrant Qi Gong then you go for Hunyuan - always hunting for that magical effect. In my experience, the reality is that the internal arts are like any other skilful endeavour - like for example playing the piano. There’s no magical tune that will impart the skill of piano playing to you. You’ll need to use several tunes... You'll need to practice simple scales and focus on particular elements until you have them down. You’ll need to find places where you’re weak and work on improving those... When you’re ready to move on, you need to do that... etc. And of course you’ll need a teacher (or several) that will point out your errors, suggest new approaches and tell you when you’re ready to move on and where your focus should be next. I should also say that not everyone needs to take these arts that seriously... sometimes you just want to be able to bang out a nice little tune on the piano that makes you feel good. Similarly some people find it relaxing and rewarding to just let go and wave their arms about - and that of course has its place too - nothing wrong with that. But I think there’s a huge deception going on (or maybe it’s just delusion) when people market their arm waving and imagination based practices as some kind of advanced spiritual practice that will bring you enlightenment and help you manifest that yacht too. ‘Stay away from those teachers young freeform :)’
  24. 5 points
    I wish I'd kept my ZZ sessions shorter and so I wouldn't have kept giving up.
  25. 5 points
    I spend less time trying to do things and more time just letting things happen... To the degree that sometimes I wonder what exactly my practice is... i wouldnt tell my younger self anything, though. I needed to experience whatever it was at the time. Actually I would tell my younger self to stretch more and lift less
  26. 5 points
    Hi All I'll do my best to explain what brought me here. I began having energetic experiences about 3 years ago through the practice of the Wim Hof Method. His method (for those who don't know) combines breath work with progressive cold exposure. During this practice I would experience sensations best described as "magnetic" in my hands, belly and head during the breath holds. I also began to experience light behind my forehead when I had my eyes closed. I continued this practice for a while but at a certain point I felt that it was a little too frenetic and jarring to my system. I kind of modified the breath practices by slowing down the breathing and limited the cold exposure. A year later I went on a 5 day silent meditation retreat in the Insight tradition. My experience on this retreat was profound and afterwards I began to take meditation very seriously. After about 4 or 5 months of diligent practice I began to have extremely intense bouts of crying and emotional release. These experiences were often accompanied by an intense magnetic sensation in my chest. I had a history of trauma and had battled depression for most of my life... steady meditation practice was essentially releasing the valve on my emotional pressure cooker. I was very overwhelmed by these experiences, but I eventually found a buddhist teacher and a therapist that practiced western psychology within a buddhist framework who I am still working with. These experiences really threw a huge curveball into my life, and the last couple of years have been full of really intense transition and emotional release. As I began to gain some confidence with all the energetic experiences I had been having, I wanted to learn a way to work with them, so I started learning to practice Donna Eden's Energy Medicine, and eventually I enrolled at an Eastern Medicine school to learn Massage Therapy. My most recent experience with the subtle energy happened a few months ago during a moment of intimacy with my partner. My body began convulsing, I started sobbing and I was thrown into intense flashbacks from childhood as well as "memories" that I could not recall from this lifetime. This went on for about 4 hours and was accompanied by many intense visual experiences. Since this has happened, my body has continued tremoring and I've felt a build up of energy in my pelvic floor that is sometimes incredibly difficult to manage - either causing a "hemorrhoid" feeling or intense and difficult to manage sexual energy. A few times, I've been able to draw the energy up to my crown and back down through breathing, resulting in some pretty blissful experiences, but I haven't been able to do it consistently and for the most part this energy has been very difficult to manage. So I'm here looking for some recommendations for practice - While I do have a background in the Martial Arts (Kenpo) I don't have a ton of experience with Qi Gong... I've taken a few classes and read some Mantak Chia but I've never dove into the practice, I find it difficult to learn these things through books. I live in the NY area and am definitely interested in meeting teachers or other practitioners who my experiences resonate with. I'm also happy to have a place to share these experiences where people will have more understanding and experience with what I'm going through.
  27. 5 points
    This whole business of trying to have a conversation on the internet is predicated on the notion that the participants are well-intentioned rational human beings. Sadly, as is evident here, this isn`t always the case. It`s easy to get caught in the spider`s web. I`ve often imagined that the right argument could set the troll-of-the-moment right -- but there is no right argument and no winning. Some people are simply beyond reach. At least that`s been my experience. No human being ought to be dominating anybody else by virtue of their gender. Chimpanzees and hyenas might beg to differ and that`s fine; I`m not talking about them. Anybody who says different isn`t worth having a conversation with.
  28. 5 points
    To me it means that I do not see the world as it is, I see the world as I am.
  29. 5 points
    I was a Daoist practitioner for over a decade until discovering Bön, which changed my life. Now I'm a committed Bön practitioner and no longer practice anything else. I do the 5 external offerings - butter lamps, water, food, incense and flowers; as well as prostrations daily. The 5 offerings help deepen my connection to the lineage and maintain some continuity even when I have little time for formal practice. Prostrations are wonderful physical exercise and are great for taming the ego. I clear and open the channels and chakras with the 9 Breathings of Purification and 5 Tsa Lung, take Refuge, generate Bodhicitta, then practice Guru Yoga. This is my core practice. The Breathings and Tsa Lung allow me to settle, focus, and connect with a far more subtle awareness and more expansive openness than would be otherwise possible. Refuge is like the fuel and support and generating Bodhicitta is the pure intention that guides the practice. Guru Yoga is the centerpiece, opening the heart through connection to my root teacher, to all of those who have helped me on the spiritual path, to the entire lineage of masters, and most importantly, to the true teacher, the Nature of Mind itself, Kuntuzangpo. I use other supplementary practices from the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyüd as needed to support connecting with and resting in the Nature of Mind. There are a number of these, some involving breathing techniques, visualization, and so forth. I recite the Invocation of Tapihritsa and the mantra of Zhang Zhung Meri, guardian Yidam of the Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyüd on a daily basis. The Invocation of Tapihritsa is a condensation of the entire Dzogchen path in a beautiful verse written by Nangzher Lopo, an 8th century master and disciple of Tapihritsa, who was the first to commit the oral teachings to writing. I practice the Invocation of Yeshe Walmo, protector of the Bön teachings, in the evenings. Many Bön practitioners I encounter have amazing stories of their deep connection to Yeshe Walmo. She has been of profound benefit to me as well, literally saving my marriage. I engage in other practices - dream and sleep yoga, Sherab Chamma, Sang Chöd, sky gazing, and others, but not as consistently. If I had to pick a favorite, or most important practice, it would be my daily informal practice - integrating the Nature of Mind into day to day activity and relationships. It is such a powerful and challenging practice! A lifetime practice.
  30. 5 points
    This is my way of seeing it too. It has to do with the fact that we are 99.9999999% not here. The .0000001% remainder are the mass of the protons, neutrons, electrons, quarks, neutrinos spinning. The rest of the atom is space. And the components of the atom is being broken down further. As our instruments get bigger and smarter, I'm guessing that the end realization will be that we are nothing but the dream of the One Intelligence. Without the spinning action of the atomic components (or the solar system, for that matter) we wouldn't be here at all. I read recently where the scientists involved with the Hadron Collider have found that some atomic components, when split, actually bend time by splitting into the past! So much we don't know.
  31. 5 points
    Thanks for adding this Feng & English version, as I think it states things most clearly for this chapter. The second half of this chapter is especially important for those who understand about energy and light... The sage never tries to store things up. (Never tries to store or hold energy in the body) The more he does for others, the more he has. (The greater the connections with others, the greater his potential) The more he gives to others, the greater his abundance. (The more energy he gives/shares with others, the more he has access to, and energy is really unlimited) The Tao of heaven is pointed but does no harm. (Light flowing through a sage “hits” others, but only helps and clears issues) The Tao of the sage is work without effort. (Light has a significant effect on others, but simply “radiates” - not sent)
  32. 5 points
    Sikhism is a spiritual path based on love and sacrifice. There is nothing else. It's a very simple straight-forward path. When you take a look at the history of Sikhism going back 300-500 years, you'll see they had 10 Gurus. All preached on universal love and sacrifice for the benefit of others. They sacrificed themselves for other religions as well. The 10th Guru made their holy book, which is a collection of spiritual poetry of beings who had attained the highest, these were writings of beings outside of the Sikh Gurus as well. Beings with different religious backgrounds. Truth is the Truth, Light is the Light regardless of color, creed or religion. There is only 1 Truth. Sikhism really does not have a set of requirements to be a Sikh, it's teaching are universal because it is all about universal love and connecting with God, you'll see that in the scriptures. Anyone can be a Sikh(open-minded learner), the gurus even taught to study other scriptures and teachings to see what you could get from them. The Tenth Guru created a discipline and mandate for those who wished to be Khalsa(The Purest of the Pure, Image of God) this was so others could know if they ever saw these Khalsa people that they'd be images of God and could be helped by them(it kind of backfired lots of fake ones with outside robes etc. but empty inside). The common theme you will find is universal love and sacrifice in their scriptures, it is spiritual poetry with such a steady rhythm that it can be listened to day and night. This is a path of steadiness, so their scriptures are written with such attention to vibration and sound and meaning to create a steady energy flow that never gets old. It is always new, always refreshing. For their spiritual path they use japa of the mantra Vaheguru, Vahe(Wow) Gu(Darkness) Ru(light) Vahe-Guru Vahe-Guru Vahe-Guru is chanted over and over and over to clean the mind from the veil of darkness that is keeping it from realizing itself. They recite 5 main prayers and listen to Kirtan(Singing of Scriptures) throughout the day, they are always blissed out. They are enveloped in love for their Creator day and night. They have no other support. Vahe-Guru describes the journey from Darkness to the Light, all you can say is Vahe(Wow) when you have that experience. They meditate upon the subtle unstruck sound and the whole holy book is basically praise of this subtle sound which can lead one back to their true home, it can lead one to the highest. Different names for this sound from different traditions such as Amen, Aum, Ong. Sikhs connect with this sound for their path to self-realization. They refer to this sound as Gods' voice and its' calling them home, they listen to it with much 💖, some just call it energy. But to them it is much more, the thing is all this energy has intelligence and it is Gods' voice/consciousness itself in the view of the true Sikhs. In the view of Sikhs from this sound came the 5 elements and the creation, this sound came from the creator so it makes sense that it can lead one back.The whole holy book is praise of this sound. The japa and purpose of mantra is to get closer and deeper to this unstruck sound which is resounding through the whole universe and creating everything. I know this path because I walk it. I am a Sikh 🙏 There is deeper spiritual stuff but I feel this is a nice summary
  33. 5 points
    I don't think there's one way of dieting that fits everyone. What works for me may not work for you. Eat what you want to eat, and good luck to you.
  34. 5 points
    Depends on ones definition of soul. 😊 Lets take a peak into Mystical Judaism.... In Qabalistic terms, there is Nephesh which is the “earthly soul” - your personality and life matrix. It is your astral body. The heavenly soul is called the Neshamah, and the two must be joined in order for consciousness to survive death - otherwise the Nephesh will return to the elements in which it was formed. These two are joined by Ruach, which is the third quality of soul. This is the middle soul, inbetween the Earthly and Heavenly parts. This is your guide, your intelligence, your compass and road map. This distinguishes between Good and evil. It will also disintegrate upon death with the Nephesh. This is the same concept that is talked about in other traditions. Think “eternal life” or “salvation” in the Christian tradition. This is just the Qaballahs mapping of the process.
  35. 5 points
    I like em as they got weapons on their altar S Spears swords chakrams shields actually their symbol is made from two curved swords, a straight one and a chakram We have a population of them nearby ; Gurdwara Sahib Woolgoolga And not only this, they are building another one near by ! Then, there is this guy ;
  36. 5 points
    And I think this is, in part, what feminism (at it's outset) meant to address. One Saturday morning, when the extended family was gathered at my grandparent's house we heard strange sounds. It was the ice breaking and grinding under the bridge up the road from the Spring thaw. My uncle took his son up the road to see it. My sister and I said we wanted to see it to, we were told it was too dangerous for us.. On another Saturday, my grandfather gave us a ride up the road to our house, so we could go swimming. And while I was the oldest child, strongest swimmer, and it was my home, my younger male cousin was instructed to keep an eye on us girls. It was gentle, loving, and persistent. Enough so that a female cousin who was older than me became resentful to the point of calling the younger male cousin (who was referred to as Kevin from heaven) Kevin from hell. The women where I come from gained the right to work outside the home, and kept the expectation that they would take care of the home, meals, and children. I was actually instructed in such by both the public education system of that place and time, and older females. I began reading a book title Warriors and Worriers mentioned in another thread, and the author mentions how in one of the last existing hunter and gatherer tribes every male child by the age of 5 owns his own bow, states that upbringing cannot be removed from the perceived differences in the sexes, and then goes on to make her case anyway... And given my own experiences, that's where I've left it for now. Thank you for sharing your perceptions Aetherous. I agree it certainly has become a mess, and was instructed by my father from early on how difficult this time in history is for men who have no idea what is expected of them or what their role actually is.
  37. 5 points
    I have a lot of hope for men, since I think masculinity at its core is compassion. When it doesn't appear that way, as so often happens, it seems to me that "men" have lost their way - they became feminized. Most often, they weren't guided and raised by a good man, and therefore don't know who to emulate, if anyone, and because of that they don't know who they are. At a certain period in history, the rites of passage into manhood were no longer practiced, and it was up to the individual father to do that; many eventually didn't understand the importance of it and stopped "raising" their sons, if they were even raised themselves. As such, I think it's essential for discussions to take place about what masculinity is, and for men to become truly masculine so as to lead by example...so that adult boys can finally understand, and be raised into men, coming into alignment with their true nature - of compassionate strength. I think the increasingly poor relationships between fathers and mothers is the primary reason why good men aren't raising children appropriately (basically, aren't being true fathers)...and that as individuals, it's up to us to go against the way of society, and make waves in the world by intentionally living in the right way. We are all individuals, so we only have half of the say when it comes to our relationships...and we just have to try our best. It's my belief that women are responsible for many broken families in our society, against their own benefit, but some men end up being the culprit, too. I heard recently of a man whose wife cheated on him and divorced him...who every year, brings her a birthday cake and presents to celebrate with the kids. Someone asked him why he did it after what she did to him, and he said it was to show his children how a man treats a woman. That is masculinity. Here's one of my favorite thinkers on the subject of gender and relationships (who is a woman), writing about masculinity in a recent piece: https://thefederalist.com/2019/01/15/dont-need-less-traditional-masculinity-need/ On the subject of the patriarchy: I don't know what that is.
  38. 5 points
    Thank you to the men who sheltered and protected and the women who birthed and nurtured. And to the women who sheltered and protected and the men who nurtured.
  39. 5 points
    Thank you to the innumerable ancestors who have gone before us and made our present existence possible.
  40. 5 points
    History is full of kick-ass women. Just a small sample: The ancient world was full of warrior women – and men were terrified of them Famous Viking Warrior Was a Woman, DNA Reveals 9 Female Warriors Who Made Their Mark On History
  41. 5 points
    Traditions don’t begin and end with these two figures. Many, many masters have practiced transmission and some traditions it is very important. Just because you don’t practice it or know about it...
  42. 5 points
    My master told me when I was initiated by him that people who get a transmission might feel terrible initially. That is because the transmission and teacher's presence triggers a detox (cleanse) which could be energetic, physical and emotional (all three are actually interrelated). How one receives the transmission depends on their level of preparedness. If your mind is full of crap (acquired ideas and concepts, negative patterns and habits), the transmission will begin to clear it up. As it gets cleared, it rises up and gets observed, which will cause issues (to state it mildly). That is why a teacher or experienced mentor is so important in this field. We need to have a rapport with the teacher/mentor such that we can share anything without fear of judgement. Good teachers and mentors are like that. They WANT to help us. They WANT us to evolve and develop into more complete and mature spiritual beings. They WANT us to wake up. I've shared presence with some people. Some get it, some don't get it. One person, whose path is purely the jnana yoga way (contemplative), has no sense of energetics and his heart level was not open yet. So he didn't feel anything. Yet, he tells me that meditation is easier for him when we're in the same space. Another person, who has had significant yoga and healing background, progressed very fast and might I say also had an awakening such that previously held negative tendencies were shed like dirty laundry. The most difficult are the skeptics. Those that are obsessed with their intellect and their preconceptions. Because the ego (mind) will find a way to neutralize the most profound of experiences in such people.
  43. 5 points
    Working with/for my dad for a decade + was problematic. He was quite hard and demanding to work around, often setting up Catch 22's. I'm sure I wasn't faultless either, but it was a cause of daily aggravation. Nothing intellectual helped, but what did was Aikido. Working out, punching and kicking, throwing hard and getting thrown hard, within a positive friendly space. It was nice. Most mental aggravation is you yelling at you. Find something that tires out the body in a good way and you can break the cycle of thinking and being jealous/angry/whatever about other people. Martial arts of any sort has good lessons on focusing on the now. The person infront of you. Anything that gets you out of your own head and tires the body a bit is good. Cause basically you are allowing thoughts that are driving you crazy, over and over. So, practice getting out of your head. Try to realize They are not hurting you, unless they're physically there pounding on you, you are hurting you. There's a yoga practice of (angry) Thought on, grrr, Thought off (feel peace), go back and forth, over and over, til you realize, you're in control. Might take days, weeks or months or never. The above isn't about 'Love', imo that's too high a goal. We're not saints (or martyrs), its about gaining peace by focusing your mind elsewhere. Or when you do focus on the problem, its about finding possible solutions or learning to live better with it, not letting it fester and circle in your head.
  44. 4 points
    I signed up for this forum over a decade ago. At the time, I was studying both Buddhist and Daoist systems of practice. Over the years, my Daoist, energy, qi etc. based practices have changed, come and gone. My Buddhist practice has evolved quite a bit, but remains a steady core part of my life. I am wondering: for those who have engaged in energy-based practices long-term, what have you seen over the last decade or so? If you could beam back a transmission to your younger self, what would you say? What has worked and what hasn't? Have you discovered a simple, easy daily practice set?
  45. 4 points
    I think that's a key point --- most of us don't want to spend years (or even 20-30 minutes a day) waving arms and imagining things. But I would bet that 99.99% of energy practices are exactly that. I suppose the same can be said for mind-based practices. With Buddhist meditation, you may end up spending many hours practicing with no noticeable result. Then one day, some large chunk breaks off and things are different. I couldn't stick with it in the absence of the class. I have only met one other teacher in the same vein--- you could feel the heat radiating from his lower dan tien. But he was very demanding and wanted people to spend all their free time on Tai Chi. And he lived pretty far away. I took Hsing-I recently for a couple of years--- but those guys wanted to fight and I kept getting hurt. I could not abide by the violent mentality. I had a meditation teacher who once said it doesn't matter if you meditate perfectly for an hour if you spend the other 23 training in distraction. So in this case, you would have to choose between mind-practice and energy-practice in daily life? Nice!
  46. 4 points
    Common sense. For instance, what works for me is a very low carb/no carb way of eating predominantly based around meat, eggs, butter and small amounts of cheese. Hydrating with plenty of water, green, oolong and pu-erh tea, other herbal teas and good quality coffee. I have never felt better. I would never force this way of eating on anyone or say that their way is wrong. Just look at the militant vegans these days. Virtually all of the warm, caring people I know eat meat regularly, so the idea that negative energy comes from eating animal products is totally false.
  47. 4 points
    I just feel they're always with me. How can they not be? I have pictures plastered all over my work cubicle, all over the house, plus I have my shrine, and even in my truck. They send help even when I don't ask for it. They send inspiration. I've been protected. But it's all subtle and on the d.l. from them, nothing overt like visions or voices.
  48. 4 points
    Yeah - just remember that it’s something you’re choosing to do. Don't pressure yourself. For me personally I found it useful to be a little forceful in just ‘turning up’ for my training every day. I’d have a specific time that I’d start and made an internal agreement with myself that if I did 5 minutes that would be my training done for the day - if I did more then I did more. I made the commitment to do that for 6 months. And I’d generally do about 1hr, but some days just that 5 minutes. After a while it was the best part of the day. I’d plan my training carefully. Make notes, keep tabs on changes and progress. And it naturally extended in training time. Now I’ve designed my life around my training - because it’s important for me. But I’d dissuade anyone jumping in this way when they’re just starting out (I consider at least the first 5yrs as starting out).
  49. 4 points
    There is a wonderful new English resource for channel and chakra practices from the Bön Mother Tantra: http://www.lulu.com/shop/tsultrim-tenzin-and-dmitry-ermakov-and-yungdrung-rabten-and-carol-ermakova/magyu-tsalung-tummo/paperback/product-23946284.html
  50. 4 points