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  1. 14 points
    Hmm... Perhaps we might want to compare this sad state of affairs "today" with "way back when" of taoism. E.g., let's take a closer look at the Eight Immortals, who did achieve something... if immortality and god-like powers count as "something." He Xiangu was, by today's standards, anorexic -- in her teens she started eating only powdered mica and became like a wraith. Cao Guojiu had family trouble that brought shame and persecution, that's why he became a recluse. Li Tieguai was irritable and bad-tempered, a disheveled beggar, lame and walking with the aid of an iron crutch. Lan Caihe never made it clear whether they were a boy or a girl, and it's couldn't have been all that easy "way back when" for someone sexually ambiguous (and still isn't). They alternatively dressed as either male or female and were carried to heaven by a crane while in the state of drunken stupor. Lü Dongbin, scholar and poet, was also a womanizer and a drunk prone to bouts of anger. Han Xiangzi didn't have any flaws of character, but unlike in the case of others, there's no evidence he ever existed as a mortal. Zhang Guolao preferred drinking wine to nearly everything else, and could go for many days on that alone. Zhongli Quan was a general and led his army against Tibet. He was beaten in battle by the Tibetans, escaped into the mountains and traded in his damaged military career for taoist studies. So, it's not impossible to have less-than-stellar health, troubled or failed social life, and all kinds of character flaws and still accomplish "something."
  2. 13 points
    My friend, Jim, has left this mortal coil. His passage is a loss for me, and for all who had the opportunity to come to know him, but I am not -- and have not been -- sad for him because it was not a loss for HIM. Jim completed one section of the trail and moved on to the next section. I would like to think he reflects with fondness upon his memories of us as we do upon our memories of him but I suspect he is "in the moment." I usually am. A warrior, a philosopher, my friend. Fare thee well, Marblehead. Light, Brian P.S. If anyone feels up to it, fill me in on major changes here in the last two years (via PM...)
  3. 13 points
    It seems most fitting that the thread is in the Daoist Discussion as he was a stalwart 'philosophical daoist'. He had asked on his deathbed for no announcement and attention of himself on TDB but a coming 1 year eulogy from members seems useful to remember him. My only regret is that he was here in FL and I never made time to meet him. In a weird way, I was able to observe and interact with him on TDB like I was in his living room anyways. I felt like I could always find him on any day discussing any and every topic. And that was part of his soul: While he maintain a strict individual sense of chinese daoist philosophy he saw the equality bestowed to all. I don't think I ever saw someone so capable to so staunchly defend their own beliefs and yet affirm his opposites they had a right to theirs. Due to this nature, he could talk in every single forum and subforum with ease. There is no argument his posting count is something nobody may likely ever get to and it is not because he was verbose but because he saw the value in everyone posting. He was the consummate welcomer. He defined how to treat one and all who came, and found something in their post, however brief, to raise the welcome flag. As I said, he was a strict philosophical daoist and even I butted heads with him at times. But his position was not because he did not believe in religious daoism but rather, there was no practical use to him (in his life). He did not debate whether another might find value in it and use of it. Herein was his greatness, his own naturalness in action.
  4. 11 points
    The worldview of a lazy centrist: The world is just fine for me so I know there can't be that much wrong with it. So I am justified in never cultivating the kind of moral clarity that would lead me to actually help anyone less fortunate, especially if it would rock the boat. Furthermore those who disagree with me must be stupid, mentally ill or fanatical for not seeing, as I do, that the truth is relative and certainly never clear enough to motivate action, especially if impolite. Therefore I care much more about perceived civility than those who dare oppose the current status quo. I will never stop being firmly planted in a lazy, false compromise of centrism defined entirely by the poles of the situation I happen to find myself in. I will never be bothered to fight, god forbid, for so-called "justice". Left, right or religious - what does it matter, I'm doing pretty OK ... ... Anyway, I appreciate everyone's feedback. Not an excuse , but I'm having a very rough month to be honest. I've unsuspended Limahong and I'm sorry if I've disrespected the memorial topic. Sean
  5. 11 points
    This is actually not an uncommon occurrence. Chanting Amitabha's name is widely understood as a slow but reliable and safe way to clear karmic obscurations, create good karma, train the mind, and greatly increase one's chances of finding an appropriate teacher/path in this lifetime (i.e., its value is not solely limited to praying for rebirth in Amitabha's Pure Land, and it is widely held that some practitioners who simply use this practice can reach enlightenment in this lifetime). Part of the reason that Daoists offer this teaching is that ecumenical attitudes have been quite common for centuries. Another reason is that Daoism doesn't really have (to my knowledge) an equivalent "one size potentially fits all" practice like this one. Still another reason is that Zhengyi Daoism is extremely complicated. If you've ever had the opportunity to observe an all-day Zhengyi ritual it's just insane. Non-stop chanting, singing, playing instruments, dancing, martial arts, coordinated steps holding torches... all this stuff memorized (!)... barely any breaks, Daoists pouring in sweat under their robes. There's little from that repertoire that could be offered to a person who is just visiting a holy mountain, whereas the practice of chanting Amitabha's name can be mastered in under a minute, and bear gifts for the rest of a person's life. It is indeed an admirable contribution and indeed one of the reasons that Buddhism has touched so many lives. While some with Daoist affinity has a dis-affinity for Buddhism, it's hard to deny that many, many people who chant Buddhas' names or mantras report phenomenal effects. Yes, the Daoist "easy path" has been referred to as 上品 or 上乘 since at least the Song dynasty, when some of the ways of sorting, categorizing, and "ranking" various parts of Daoist praxis that are still used today came into vogue. These practices really just center on "doing nothing" (but they might involve some postural or light mental focus instructions) and are spoken of in some detail by the Book of Balance and Harmony (中和集... I remember its translation being somewhat confusing, but it might be better than nothing) and maybe some other texts that are in English. Such practices really are, from a certain standpoint, the easiest thing imaginable, and their proponents tend to argue that they also slowly but surely lead to the very highest attainments. The big caveat is that "doing nothing" is an instruction of unparalleled subtleness, vagueness, insubstantiality, elusiveness, ass-backwardness, boringness, "am I doing not doing right-ness." Thus, Daoists tend to be acutely aware that It is, paradoxically, extraordinarily difficult for the vast majority of practitioners to do the easiest thing. That is why discussion of 上品 /上乘 more often than not make the point that exceedingly few people are ready, as beginners or potentially even after years of seeking, to understand such teachings. This does not mean they must be kept secret from beginners. Quite the opposite, their gist can be discussed quite openly, beginners really can't make heads or tails of this gist. There is no real secret. "Do nothing." There you have it, the whole cat (well, minus a few details, perhaps), out of the bag. If you say to Daoist master (and I am speaking of people I know, not hypothetically) that that makes no sense, he or she very well might laugh, say, "I know," and then suggest you go and recite Amitabha's name for a few years to cultivate wisdom, remove obstacles, and so forth.
  6. 10 points
  7. 10 points
    Trying to read through this topic has caused me to enter a dissociative fugue state. I literally have no idea what is going on here and I'm locking for my own mental health.
  8. 10 points
    Exactly what I wanted to say if I had time! I have a lot of respect for Silent Thunder but this strategy often does not work in life, and has not been very effective here, either (conversely, Sean taking firm and decisive action in the summer was effective). Speaking of time, I pray for the day we can use ours having actual conversations about Daoism and other topics of interest here, when we do not have to waste precious minutes every day begging agenda-pushing obsessives from flying off into mad tangents every three posts! Everybody, including the body of the Dao Bums, needs an immune system. I'm glad this fever has flared up. I'm glad this fever is in public for all to face and see. May it get rid of the bugs, and not end with the people who have long represented the soul of this place retreating once again. They might not come back--many great cultivators have left this place over the years, not to be seen again. Each time that happens it is a real loss for all curious seekers brought here by a Google link, hoping to find the Dao!
  9. 10 points
    i'm struck so wholly to the core when a loved one passes along with the hole left in their passing is piercing gratitude gobsmacking gratitude because all about me i see this one reality and it centers on me, this little speck and my heart expands and my mind goes blank with the magnitude of it... that out of all the spinning galaxies... out of all the combinations of energies from the remnants of a supernova i got to meet them. that i had the fortune to get to know them... what treasure! then to have had the fortune to share time, to share deep conversation, myriad ideas, realizations and more than a few belly laughs... to get to know them... to count them friend... such treasure as this! miss you dearly my friend. recall you fondly and often... and so deeply grateful, to be able to miss you for having known you, was to expand what i know of me
  10. 10 points
    The Big Dipper actually has nine stars. Two were still visible at the time of the eight immortals and are present on the astronomical maps of the time. But they aren't that. They are the archetypal characters who embody the Eight Trigrams as they manifest in human personality. Generally speaking, there's deities who are indeed "star gods" and planet gods too -- but the star or planet is like an office they take, a job they assume. There's 64 gods taking turn assuming the office of Grand Duke Jupiter, e.g. -- which one of them is the planet Jupiter? The one in office. The office will be putting forth regulations -- we may call them qi -- that will reflect the personality of this particular boss, not of his predecessor and not of his successor. Even the Jade Emperor was a person. The cat's meow of taoism is that you can cultivate your position in the universe. There's fixed stars but there's no fixed destinies. Matter of fact, even stars descend to assume offices on earth and go back to heaven when that's what they fancy.
  11. 10 points
    I'm OK. The fire front hit early evening Friday. It was a fast moving inferno propelled by a strong, gusty westerly wind. I was up all night defending my house and studio and managed to save both. But many houses have been lost in Nymboida including my neighbour’s and a number of my friends. We're a rural community with people living on a minimum 25 acres of mostly forested land. About half of the 12 or so houses on the road where I live are gone and more than half in the community at large, at least on this side of Armidale Rd. Many large trees have fallen, some still smouldering. The surrounding forest is devastated, all blackened trunks and bare earth. No understory or ground cover remains. I weep for the wildlife that’s perished. The forest that used to be alive all day with birdsong is now quiet. It’s even sad to see the few remaining birds flying around in a futile search for food. So many native animals have perished, with those few survivors likely to starve. I have a couple of pademelon’s (small wallabies) sheltering under my house. They’ve taken refuge here because there’s still some unburnt grass around my house and I have a small pond for them to drink from. A possum is here too and I’m putting out food for it. I’m slowly recovering from feeling totally exhausted. I feel calm enough as long as I stay in the moment, centred in my breath-body. I've been very much focused on my own situation here and getting some overview of the fires's impact and what it means for myself and the environment. I've been wandering around the surrounding forest, connecting with the damage, and doing a few small, simple things like tidying up some of the mess around my house. Today is the first day I've felt up writing something about it. I've needed to be in my own space. So much emotion to process. It was almost inevitable that such a catastrophic fire would come through here, given how dry the forest is and with fires burning in the region’s forests for the past month. All it took was a very hot day with high winds and low humidity for the fires to break containment lines on multiple fronts. I was well prepared and knew the fire was unstoppable. A recommendation to evacuate came through Friday morning. My plan was always to stay and defend my home but even so I had second thoughts when the fire front crested the hill to the south west of here. It was a fast moving monster. I wasn’t sure I could save my house but I knew I could always take refuge in my fire shelter if I needed to. As it was, the two fire-fighter pumps and several fire hoses I had set up got me through. I was own my own. The Rural Fire Service could do nothing to help. It’s a small community here with much support but, even so, people are in semi-shock. Although fires are common in this area, there’s never been anything like this one before. Even for people like me who haven't lost their house, it's been a traumatic experience. Yet also one that's very connected with the reality of natural forces, with the reality of life. This too is of the Dao, perhaps more so that much of contemporary life. But it's certainly not something I'd ever want to go through again.
  12. 9 points
    My abdominal cavity has been cleaned out and I have been on broad-spectrum IV antibiotics for about 60 hours now -- I suspect I am in far better shape than the message forum... <grin>
  13. 9 points
    I don't know who "escalated" what. Personally, all I did was ask "Everything" to not post unrelated stuff in just one thread -- a thread I started that was focused enough, alive and well and ongoing, and specific enough to require some reading effort toward participation and some thinking effort toward meaningful participation. The Sumer thread was conceived of as long term, a gradual exploration of a complex subject. "Everything" brought that to a halt repeatedly. I asked very politely to please stick to the topic. That was very easy for "Everything" to ignore, just some chirping OP interfering with his flow, who cares when he overfloweth. I asked him to please start his own thread for things he'd rather talk about. I asked again. And again. And again. Other posters in the thread did the same. And again. And again. He responded by more massive spam and a rather unpleasant attempt at identity theft -- in my thread he wrote an imaginary dialog between a wise sage "Everything" and a mean-spirited idiot "Taomeow." Didn't even bother to mess with quotes the way he did with other people, but just wrote purported "Taomeow's" speeches ascribed to me from scratch. ( I shudder at the thought of someone doing a search online and that falsified identity coming up in response. It got later split off into a separate thread by Sean, along with some of "Everything's other "contributions," "Everything's" very own to do as he pleases. I resisted the urge to ask Sean to at least remove that "fake Taomeow" part because I didn't feel like "escalating." I was just hoping maybe no one will go read that, not many people are capable of reading everything "Everything" writes. But I still feel a bit uneasy for it still being there.) Sean asked "Everything" not to post in the Sumer thread anymore. That, too, was promptly ignored. How on earth did I manage to "provoke" it? I've been a magnet for a certain kind of energies on many occasions, I'm not complaining, it's part of my path and I wouldn't be on "any" path if not pushed by rather merciless designs and devices, I know that. But still... What kind of disability of sense and sensibility ought to have struck to help anyone "just ignore" attention of this nature? Which brain pathways ought one to disable to successfully see this behavior as harmless, and one's reaction, as "escalating?" If this is love, I'll take abuse, please. And if this is abuse, as I think it is, it ought to be stopped, please.
  14. 9 points
    I'm very grateful for the lack of moderation and the current atmosphere. It is indescribably better to me, than the bias of recent years. As for spamming troll-like behavior... Stop feeding a thing and it whithers. Arguments are transactional and require two participants to manifest. When I want to diminish a behavior in myself, I first have to identify it, then I have to stop feeding into it. After this, it begins to whither. This applies to plants, puppies, children, teen and adult attention seekers and my own undesirable behaviors/tendencies. Report what breaks the rules to sean. But really... rule thy self. Moderate thy self. Stop validating and condoning by responding, but if one feels compelled to respond, for the sake of peace, stop escalating. It's unbecoming of the effort our teachers have imbued in our development, stunts the heart and spreads misery which is life blood of troll like pursuers. Spamming off topic is against the rules. Report it. Starting threads calling out members is also a suspension worthy offense. As is Ad-hominem. Moderate thy self. We have a plethora of skills we've developed... practice them here and now... bring it off the mat. Life is life and we're all here by choice. Self moderation for the win. I only read E-things responses on occasion and then, only when they are concise. I skim passed them otherwise, as I've no interest in stream of consciousness responses to what are otherwise thoughtful conversations. But to rise up and assault him verbally, lends him a validation he has not earned in my perspective. No one is capable of ruining my experience here but me. Spamming is a minor annoyance, easily remedied by scrolling past responses, or using the ignore function. Lately I impose media limits and engage in regular media fasting when I start becoming off balanced by participation in social media, news, or entertainment. Maybe some self imposed time away would benefit. and on that note: I'm going for another walk. It's feeling like a two walk day.
  15. 9 points
    ^ agree with this. I think the the banhammer should only be wielded on those who are repeatedly abusive. Personally I have a soft spot for someone who comes onto a thread calling for him to be banned and thanks everyone, regardless of whether he/she is a bit kooky. With regards to the previous moderation crew, I liked and respected Kar3n a lot. I had no idea about her political views though, as I never really frequented the off topic areas. As a dyed in the wool socialist, I have no sympathy for far right views. But I think politics shouldn't really have a place here at all.
  16. 9 points
    I recommend those that take offence, to please put 'Everything' on their personal Ignore List. This can be done under the account settings tab. Its also a good opportunity to practice restraint.
  17. 9 points
    Dear Friends, I wanted to share with you an exciting bit of news (for me at the very least ). My new novel titled "The Mahāsiddha Field" is scheduled to release worldwide in paperback and Kindle eBook format on December 10th, 2019. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B081SPR24B Some of you longer-term bums here have read the initial parts of the book a few years back (then under a temporary working title). I thank all those who encouraged me to complete the book, and for valuable feedback when I had requested it a few years back. I hope you will get a copy of the book and enjoy it. I know the words I am going to type below are used very frequently, but I mean it from the bottom of my heart, nonetheless. I thank all you Dao Bums for being such a constant part of my life since I became a member back in 2007. I couldn't have done this without you all. Love and Best Regards, Dwai
  18. 9 points
    Simple: do not push your own unrelated agenda and derail from the intent stated on the OP, and talk with people instead of over them and at them, especially since you are drowning them with a sermon in every thread. Staying concise really helps too. If people are talking about fried chicken, they don’t want some vegan fundamentalists telling them that meat is evil or some yogi saying that not eating meat makes you more spiritual—they’re talking about recipes and good places to eat it. You come in and tell people that chicken is part of the infinite and we find the fried and the meat within us and don’t need it—that is NOT ON TOPIC.
  19. 9 points
    Hard to believe it's almost a year. Still missing Jim's presence everyday, he was so important to this place it's a wonder we've carried on thus far without him.
  20. 9 points
    Marblehead was a very special person. We had some very good discussions, and I always appreciated how open he was to various points of view. Definitely one of the good guys...
  21. 8 points
    Just sharing this cos i like it . Especially this part 'So therefore, if you let it be, in fact, the things we want the most actually come.' Sounds quite Daoist for a Buddhist
  22. 8 points
    I wish things were a little more chill around here these days. There are multiple threads going on right now calling out particular members, flame wars raging out of control. If only I really was a fairy and could dust this place with be-nice powder -- I think we need it. The current bruhaha started a page or so back when Limahong referred to Taomeow and I as "ladies." I´m not a lady and posted a reply making this clear. I also stated that I felt Limahong made an honest mistake about my gender. Such mistakes are easy to make as we (mostly) haven´t met in person; I´ve made such mistakes here myself. Subsequent posts by Limahong made it clear, however, that he was misrepresenting my gender intentionally, and, when he went so far as to call me a fairy, I decided to make a report. I´m gay and this isn´t the first time I´ve been called a fairy. It´s a standard homophobic slur and that´s how I took it. That said, I had no idea Limahong would be banned. I´ll go so far as to ask @sean that he be reinstated. (Maybe he could be requested to edit the fairy post.) Don´t get me wrong -- it´s wonderful having a moderator who so clearly stands up for the dignity of all people. I´m thrilled. But if we go around banning everybody who has ever made a racist, homophobic, transphobic, or "right wing bullshit" remark there will be precious few of us left. We´re all in this together. In life together, online together. We´ve all been hurt and are at various stages of dealing with the varied stuff life has thrown at us. A few of us are veritable sages or on the verge of sagehood; others, not so much. But the beauty of a place like this is that every once in awhile we all come together in mutual respect and glorious imperfection. Lets honor Marblehood´s memory with our kindness.
  23. 8 points
    Below was the original post. Please don't read it. Jim D and Gendao didn't, and they won anyway. Final score: Jim D has lots of credentials and is frustrated because nobody delivered him a line item budget for PBS, might be in wrong thread, smells kind of poopy (don't worry, he won't be offended that I wrote that, as he explained he has lots of credentials and OPs are superfluous). Now where's my line item budget? Gendao uses cia-controlled internet to do Google Image Search, subverts CIA, saves all indigenous people of world, destroy Annunaki, and drink fourth Mountain Dew of his day in ONE FELL SWOOP! BONUS POINT: Vonkrankenhaus is a CIA agent... Learn more by reading on! Congrats, guys, you're WINNERS! As I'm sure is the case with lots of people here who grew up in the States, I grew up with Mr. Rogers as a big part of my early years TV diet. Like lots of people, I always looked back on him fondly as a part of the milieu of toddler-to-nine-year-old innocence and wonder, but beyond that I never gave the man an awful lot of thought--he simply occupied the same part of my memory banks as Big Bird, Elmo, and Lavar Burton--midday PBS magic. Then yesterday I read this article. And today I read this one. They're both long, but Tom Junod has the gift of gab and keeps the stories flowing. To anybody with a bit of time on their hands, I think they're very worthwhile reading. I don't suggest we try to emulate Mr. Rogers' outward manifestation (shit, I don't know that I could for more than ten minutes if I tried), but his unwavering commitment, his discipline, his ability to influence others, his boddhisattva's compassion, his dauntless contentedness just being his own weird self, his gentleness, and his power (evidenced more than once in these articles, and most palpably so both in the brief closing of the Esquire article as well as the writers' reflections twenty years later in the Atlantic piece) are inspiring. What a life, and what a surprisingly uplifting thing to read in a day when 9 times out of 10 it's better to know less about celebrities, not more!
  24. 8 points
    Everybody remembers something personal about Marblehead -- he interacted with everybody. Even if it was just to say something like, "I have nothing to say to this," or "I don't think I can add anything." I once asked him, well, if you have nothing to say, why not just say nothing? His response was unexpected and really made me smile. He said (don't remember verbatim of course), when someone posts and no one responds, they're just left hanging. So I'll write something -- if I have nothing to say, I can at least acknowledge that I've read what they wrote. It may have been before the emoticon buttons were installed on TDB which now might serve the same purpose, but even if it was after -- I'm not sure when -- it still made sense to me then. Like a quick acknowledgment -- I see you, you're not surrounded by totally unresponsive vacuum. I liked it a lot. R.I.P., dear friend.
  25. 8 points
    Yes, exactly. E.g. a post where you tagged me yesterday (thanks, by the way! ) that concerns an interesting question regarding possible parallels between Dzogchen's rigpas and taoism's yuanshen -- I didn't have an answer off the top of my head, went to explore a bit, uprooted some really interesting material, was thinking, ought I think about it some and then try to answer, or just post a quote from and/or a reference to that article I liked, or wait till Steve gives a better Dzogchen perspective than I currently can -- then this-here thread came up and I forgot all about it. That's my main complaint about chronic derailers. They effectively replace not just posts on a virtual page but us with themselves. Like some practicing body snatchers that start seemingly small and then who knows when and where it stops -- if at all. Replacing our thoughts and feelings with their own urgent itches to scratch in public. Well, I don't want to be replaced. Online, I don't want to be everything that is. I want to be a poster, reader, interactor with people who interact with me and with each other, I want to be a forum participant when visiting a forum. Not a dumpster for garbage sermons about how I don't know how to live in here and now and here and there and everywhere. I frackin' do.
  26. 8 points
    This is true. It’s unfortunate that Dawei who was an otherwise excellent administrator had such a liking for Trump. And with rabid Trump supporter Karen as a moderator, it was too much. To my mind, it was this bias, both expressed and covert, that made this forum such a friendly place for extreme rightwing political views; views that are the antithesis of every major spiritual tradition and especially that expressed by the Daodejing. However, whilst I certainly saw the need for Sean to intervene and redress the bias, he did so outside of the rules of this forum. These minimal rules have served this forum well in that it’s a dynamic site, full of vitality. Dawei, as administrator, was particularly strong on allowing discussion to be free flowing and, to my mind, showed wise judgement (aside from his strong pro-Trump bias) when deciding whether to take disciplinary action against anyone. Prior to Sean’s intervention, all I thought that was necessary was to retire Karen as a moderator and replace her with a neutral or anti-Trump person. Karen herself had already served a long time as a moderator and was very hard working. She put a lot of herself into trying to help this forum run smoothly. However, she had a strong combative streak, and that when combined with her strong political views severely compromised her ability to be an objective moderator. I do not want to see any member banned except when they clearly violate the rules. This is a public forum open to anyone. If Daoism has any validity at all, then we must allow the freedom for the Dao to work its wisdom here. The quality of discussion here is a reflection of our collective de, especially that of those members who contribute the most. When things go awry in my own life, I have learnt through trial and error to examine my own attitudes rather than putting the blame on others. Nothing wrong with expressing animosity, but ganging up on others is outside of what I would hope can be the ongoing spirit of this forum.
  27. 8 points
    I understand the frustration some members feel toward Everything and have felt it myself but I wish this was a quieter discussion. Remember when Kar3n ruled the moderation scene? Many have questioned the justice of her rulings; few questioned the fact of her authoritative presence. Threads like this one didn`t happen because the matter was referred to Kar3n or some other member of the moderation team; people understood that action would be taken or it wouldn`t -- and that would be the end of it. In the wake of Sean`s triumphant return, things feel a bit murky. Is Sean acting as a one-man moderation team? Do all the old rules still apply or have they changed? We need a stronger sense of where we`re at. Otherwise aggrievved Bums understandably take their grievances to the public portions of the board rather than dealing with things behind closed doors. Having been the subject of group meetings myself (what the heck are we gonna do with Luke?) I do not wish that experience on anybody -- not even on Everything.
  28. 8 points
    I realize as I sit here, I am feeling disappointment. There was this brief moment where I believed there was sincerity in the starting of this thread - an honest quest regarding the idea of being on topic. And some understanding the desire for others to share and connect around certain topics was (no, is) the manifestation and expression of their own being. But no... Somehow, everyone who wishes to engage in the discussion of an actual topic is still being looked down upon for not "expressing" their "true evermore nature".. which is soo odd to me, in a way I lack the words to express - save it seems extraordinarily arrogant to me. The breeze seems more responsive to me than some of the words typed here.
  29. 8 points
  30. 8 points
    Hi everyone I have been a long time lurker on this forum. I am currently practicing xingyi and bagua for about 2 years now. What lead me to the internals Ma is on Feb 8 2015 I was in a bad accident in the army and left me pretty crippled, I had a walking cane and it was getting so bad I was about to be in a wheel chair or major surgery. Then in 2017 after great research of west and east medicine I have found a legit teacher where I live after so many turned me down because they have no faith. Well in 2019 I ditched the cane I have been walking on my own for almost a year, I have little to no pain, arthritis is no existent, OFF ALL PRESCRIPTIONS. I was a non believer at first, but after healing bone/Joints a such a rate my team of doctors all can't believe the progress made in 2 years. I still have a long way to go before I am 100%, after my success with the IMA I would like to help my fellow practitioner.
  31. 8 points
    I miss Marbles. He was such a grounding influence here. His presence was never overpowering but always engaged. I particularly liked to see how his materialistic view softened over time. I could literally see him opening up towards the end, entertaining new possibilities. Thanks for remembering Anand. I will try to join you all on Sunday.
  32. 8 points
    Well i’m seven kinds of thick throated and teared up now from reading you guys on this. There’s some of you on here that i do hope i will have the opportunity to hug in real life and its painful to realize it as a visceral longing just because one of them had the nerve to go die on us. I still miss him, the old grouchy bundle of wisdom. The Marblehead-shaped hole in this world is still a beautiful place to visit, a monument even. Like something else it has no form or location, it is not something or somewhere, and yet... we meet there. Odd isn’t it? I came here some nine years ago, way back enough to feel ancient even, and cant say i remember exactly when we first came into contact but i do remember noticing two things: he already had a/some version of his anarchist signature and oh how i rejoiced in that, took an instant shine to him for planting his foundation clearly as the ground upon which his words stood as well for his tone. Check this out: How badass and on point can one be? Even back then it carried a glint in the eye together with a dead-serious litteral truth. Thats how he reads to me. In these eyes of mine, Jim (still struggling with that) had a certain vibe of pulling our legs while simultaneously giving excellent advice and/or teaching by example. Well, goddamn it Marbs here it is. Again, for the i-don’t-know-how-manyeth time this last year, i’m grieving your death and missing you with laughs and tears. I so much figure you’re out there somewhere enjoying, hanging out, poking pun-fun at some haughty goodhood or butting heads with dragons on matters of staunch materialism. Because who says it’s not materialist to be an immortal? Anyhow, this was just about to turn into some hagiography and sentimental drivel so lemme compose myself, imbibe a libation of beer and one of rhum. On sunday i will invite Great Heavenly Lord Guan for a humble offering in your name and until then be about my earthly business. Here’s to you Marbs, here’s to you my good friends far away but close by virtue of here, here’s to the rest of you Bums - one and all - for Blessings, Happiness and Longevity. Outtie 5k - PEACE
  33. 8 points
    To a great member, A welcomer, a rock, a man who lived life on his own terms, and lived it well. To Jim your wit and wisdom are missed.
  34. 8 points
    During some of my more melancholy moments, I admired Jim and once dreamed of him while he was alive meeting me in the event that I were to die without having achieved everything I wished I could in life, that he would let me know the same as what Ben says to Peter above (image from Death of Spider-Man). After his passing, I regret not being here because I had left during the time the forum and admin had essentially become a right-wing mouthpiece and there were serious signs of hypocrisy and unethical practice throughout here, from unethical posting of instructions of a system that is also dangerous to the rudeness of people whom I wonder how the hell they became admin. Had I known he would leave us, I'd have made more effort to speak with him, because he was a friend to all. I dreamt as well about seeing him and leaving something for his two sons, and asked before an admin removed my post about his two sons and a message for them, but I suppose whatever came through was what was meant to be shared and what I remember or get out of it. Jim is still sorely missed, and he was a friend to all, even those we find difficulty being friends with, for even his own opinions never weighed more than his humanity, his personality, and character.
  35. 8 points
    I just donated $.01 to you. I hope it helps. (Actually, if you could meditate up one of those remote orgasms for me like you did to that lady in the coffee shop years ago, I'd cough up a little more).
  36. 8 points
    I find it humorous to read the narrow-minded and dogmatic proclamations about this or that tool, this or that method... We all need different things and this changes with time. It's nice to see that people find something they think is working for them. Not so nice to see when they are not changing or growing, just becoming infatuated with another object.
  37. 8 points
    I do—far, far away; as far as possible, in fact!
  38. 8 points
    Hollllll' up! People pay for this stuff? Fuck, why the shit have I been working all week?! Lemme get in on this too! Freeganz4Lyfe! So anybody got questions about walking, a favorite hobby of mine? Please PayPal me $30. Hiking, a leveled-up version of walking, is gonna cost you $50. Walking in a circle is $60, $70 if I don Chinese style acrylic trousers, $80 an I will even reverse breathe, which means breathing--but backwards! Can you fucking imagine? It's almost like eating backwards, but with air! I also know a lot about cafes and bookstores. $30 and I will sit in a posture of your choice (including legs crossed at the knee with tweedy impertinence or full chrysanthemum) while drinking espresso, and then tell you whatever I was thinking about, whether you want me to or not. Drinks extra. Don't worry about paying for the book, I usually just sit and read the whole thing cover to cover on the floor of my local independent bookseller's, like, fuck those bourgie bastards, y'know? Finally, for $50 I will schedule a twenty dollar session with Voidisyinyang and let you know how it goes. If indeed I have an O at a D I will need you to pay an extra $4 of laundry fees and $3,000 for six months of therapy or trip to Hawaii, depending on which one I decide I need. My PayPal account: IAlsoSellLowPricedBridgesInBrooklyn. Cheers!
  39. 7 points
    Yesssss, I love hugs, hugs all around please. 🥰 I do hope Marblehead is somewhere pleased with the somewhat turbulent but also IMO never not-loving emotional arc of this thread. Rest in natural great peace Marblehead, you're a good one. Aw shucks, yous Guys* *AND Gals.. and Ghosts. and Yoshis
  40. 7 points
    Present situation excepted (it's a little too confusing), I'd like to say that I think I get what Sean is doing here and (more or less) why. I deeply appreciate his commitment to championing basic human rights and values in his moderation choices. I also appreciate him managing this space solo... it's not a trivial task. Thanks Sean, Welcome back Anand Love to the rest of my friends here!
  41. 7 points
  42. 7 points
    I lurk more than I post (I think this is my 5th post). I tend to read threads without logging in (mostly at work, I admit). No logging in, no personal Ignore List. So when someone hijacks a thread, that thread is pretty much hosed for a regular reader who does not log in.
  43. 7 points
    You´ll never see me hanging out in the philosophical taoism threads. Not my thing. But I do know that one line about the Tao not being something you can name with language. I love that. I think all deep truths are beyond language. For me, the essence of truth is paradox, mystery, the unknowable. I bring this up because I find myself agreeing with two seemingly contrary positions at the same time. In a rational universe both ideas couldn´t be true at the same time -- so thank goodness this isn´t a rational universe! Let me say from the get-go that I totally agree with Taomeow that Everything´s behavior has been abusive. He was really awful in her thread. Worse, he was awful in the guise of being loving. It´s the guise of being loving part that really twists it up into something awful. I don´t know squat about Sumeria and ancient history but if there was some sort of primordial paradise that was lost with the dawning of civilization, I´ll bet the downfall started with pretend sweetness. There´s really nothing worse. So to Taomeow and Earl Grey and Nungali and myself I say this: You have every right to be pissed. You have every right to shout your dissatisfaction loud and clear. You care about this place and the time you put into your contributions and it sucks that someone is allowed to come and...bleep, bleep, bleep. And then there´s @Silent Thunder saying in his wise way...no one is capable of ruining my experience here but me. And as much as I don´t want to, I find myself agreeing with him too. Even though it seems to go against everything I just said. I can´t tell you which of these perspectives is more right. I like them both, which I suppose makes me either a namby pamby people pleaser or a sage. Please don´t bother telling me which.
  44. 7 points
    some June day in 2013, a truly summer day in every sense, lazy cloud, his brother, and myself climbed into a jeep I hadn't completely destroyed yet, drove down a couple of backroads through the forest, to Cumberland falls and met up with Marblehead. of course the falls itself was the first thing that we shared commentary on. jim said what a great place for meditation it was and how difficult it is to completely clear one's mind; how could you ignore the water falls and not think of it in its presence? he said something about how I didn't look like the college student he was expecting to meet. he generously offered to buy us all lunch, and asked what we wanted to order, there by a snack stand; hotdogs, ice cream soft drinks, burgers, fries, place. lazy cloud quickly spoke up, saying that the lodge was where lunch is being served and Marblehead ended up buying us all pork chop plate dinners. jim smoked his cigarette after lunch and after we had touched upon a few Taoist topics; lazy cloud's brother and Marblehead got into a long discussion concerning solar power. we probably hung out just over a couple of hours. if I had to condense down to one word that described the encounter and Marblehead, that word would be jocund. marblehead said he wanted to get over to jelico mountain while there was still light to check it out. Marblehead, said he had met a few other bums. he talked some about the poker playing ralis. on our way back after we had parted ways with Marblehead, lazy cloud and his brother talked about how they really enjoyed meeting jim. lazy cloud described jim as a "scientific Taoist". I thought it was remarkable that in person, jim was the same as an online Marblehead. I hate using overused descriptors, but the word authentic fit jim like a glove. in real time jim was just as quick and spontaneous as Marblehead comes across here on this forum; except in person, much better. his typed hehehe isn't the same as looking into his eyes while he did hehehe with a cigarette hanging off his lip. I met Marblehead at the one year anniversary of my XYP initiation. we all know his materialist theory views and have heard about his chair. after our meeting I did notice some change in his postings concerning spiritual aspects. he was one who wanted to see evidence and wasn't much on things he couldn't identify objectively. however, jim was open minded and knew there were mysteries in the universe and with the process some of us here refer to as Dao. we've read Marblehead's "Evolution is a fact." Marblehead/jim was well aware he was undergoing evolutionary process too. he left his mark here for sure. a prolific poster, a handy philosopher to engage with, an authentic person. he remains part of the magic that is The Dao Bums. as long as this site remains online, Marblehead achieves immortality. an immortal dao bum, if you will.
  45. 7 points
  46. 7 points
    Sad to hear this. He was always supportive even though he knew of my inclination to religious Taoism and his favor of philosophical Taoism is undoubtful . I can't stop recalling how he gave me a hand when I was under fire in some posts. Maybe the regrets of many people's life are their knowing of the Taoist jing-qi-shen theory not earlier enough ..
  47. 7 points
    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/09/your-gut-directly-connected-your-brain-newly-discovered-neuron-circuit?utm_campaign=ScienceNow&utm_source=JHubbard&utm_medium=Facebook A very old new discovery
  48. 7 points
    No. No. No. No banning for past transgressions - ban for rule breaks (which may include hate speech if so deemed by Sean). We are DBs not the moral majority - not the not-so silent majority. Do you want to propel us back to the 1950's? First of all none of us know what actually transpired in those MacDonalds of yesteryear - what if more or less nothing happened and it was all just in his mind. So there was only imagined 'O at a D' and then we are banning someone just for thinking something. Thought crime. And we are the Ministry of Truth. Second - suppose it did happen - then what is the pathway to redemption? To be dispatched to the wilderness or to be left here where we can take the piss out of him as long as we like. As cultivators of various types we have to believe in pathways to renewal and liberation. Otherwise what are we doing here? Love and forgiveness brothers and sisters NOT witch trails 2019.
  49. 7 points
    Inasmuch as what you say here may accurately represent the Buddhist and Daoist teachings you've encountered in your life, it contains some truth. But as you have evidently encountered a smaller sliver of what Buddhism and Daoism have to offer than many others among us have, you present a much smaller serving of fact than some others here can. Ignorance is unavoidable for all of us; 99.9∞% of the universe is unknown everybody on this board. However, even though it is challenging sometimes, if we aspire to be cultivators then we have to be open to the need to gradually diminish our ignorance of certain things. When faced with information that is new to you, do you really do yourself any service by reacting with emotion, vitriol, and a slew of imaginings about a person who know you only by a few lines of text? The very partial instruction you have written about here may well be what you learned from your Daoist teacher. That does not mean your statements about Buddhism are correct, nor that your blanket statements about Daoism are, either. Did you know that, in fact, numerous Daoist teachers view lower dantian focus meditation as something that is not particularly important or useful and do not practice it (examples I have met: some Longmen teachers, the neidan Western School)? Did you know that still others actively counsel against focusing on the lower dantian because of the undesirable side effects that doing so can cause (examples I have met: a 仙學 teacher in Chen Yingning's line and a Daoist taiji teachers)? Do you know that there are Daoist teachers who warn about potentially serious complications if lower dantian focus is done at the wrong stage in training, or in the wrong way? Do you know that there are some teachers who only teach focusing on the lower dantian as a response to specific physiological phenomena that can arise during meditation? In short, this is a deep and complex topic. Finally, while you may not have met any Zen practitioners who "surrender" or "flow down," I suggest avoiding making conclusions you could only really make had you seen the end-all-be-all of Chan/Zen and Buddhism at large. Daoist ancestors like Lu Dongbin, Li Daochun, Liu Yiming, and many others have unequivocally stated that Buddhists can accomplish what Daoists do. The living Daoist master Hua Ching Ni has repeated this teaching in his books. Lest you still harbor the notion that I am copying and pasting things here, allow me to state that I have visited as well as studied and practiced with many Daoist teachers who offer the same opinion when they are teaching in person. Before you vent more spleen in my direction, please be aware that I am taking the time to write all of this for the benefit of curious newcomers who deserve to get as clear and comprehensive a picture of these traditions as we are capable of offering. I'm not particularly interested in converting you to my views or forcing you to abandon yours. Simply, you have made points that strike me as glaringly in need of counterpoints, because they demonstrably counterfactual, and could mislead others. This is why I am taking the time to write. You are welcome to disagree with me, but why can't you do better than calling me stupid and telling me to shut up without even spending a couple of days looking into the ideas I have presented?
  50. 7 points
    So glad you okay, so sad about your place . Its a relief to hear from you . Once, I was fighting a nasty fire, a few of us on one side and some others on the other side, working in a pincher movement going up a spur. A wind flare up and direction changed the fire erupted and surged towards the others. All we could see was a wall of fire and smoke. We carried on with our task and eventually won, the fire died down and then we saw the others on the other side doing the same . Man, was it a relief to see those guys. Like its a relief to hear from you . After a while nature will start to regenerate. And people like you will be there, doing their regeneration work , now, assistance, in a totally different way . A lot of the problem stuff ( weeds, feral and exotic intrusions , etc . ) will have been removed as well as the natural stuff. The battle against that will have shifted to an assistance and encouragement to natural regeneration . Cycads are a good example, they tend to come up first and other more ancient natives ( they have been around long enough to have strategies to deal with huge unusual fires and can deal with them) I am reminded of two things ; one from hermetics and another from bio-dynamic gardening ; all of nature is renewed by fire and effecting change takes a long time, one needs patience . Glad to hear about the few animals that found refuge with you . And , of course, this is emotionally shattering, and takes time too to regenirate, so , once again, thanks for taking the time to 'report in' . 7 weeks after 10 months later (and this was a hugely devastating fire that burnt out everything , even the observatory there . )