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About turtlehermit

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  1. Mind only

    The topic of "the breathing stops" is an advanced stage of meditation. It is described in Taoists texts and mentioned in Yogananda's Autobiography where it is called Nirvikalpa Samadhi. This is a real phenomenon that occurs naturally as meditation becomes deeper. The breath slows down and the mind becomes clearer until both reach a stand still. There is sublime peace and fullness . It is described as the stage before one reaches a stasis like period lasting sometimes days. it would be interesting to here some experiences or comments about this topic. Thanks.
  2. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    "The square inch is the lower dantian" - further corroboration of the true Golden Flower method "In the past, the masters used to only teach this one point - concentrate the spirit on the qi point - the lower dantian" "when yang is sufficient, after the foundation has been built from concentration on the lower dantian, everything else will arise naturally" "all meditation masters buddhist, taoist, have taught this one point, allow the breath to flow down to the dantian, focus the mind on this one point, this is the way to clear the mind" "the turtle hibernates in the centre" "only when the turtle shrinks and does not lift its head again is the gong proficient"
  3. simplify

    Lower Dantian
  4. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    "Hara literally denotes the stomach and abdomen and the functions of digestion, absorption, and elimination connected with them. But it has parallel psychic and spiritual significance. According to Hindu and Buddhist yogic systems, there are a number of psychic centers in the body through which vital cosmic force or energy flows. Of the two such centers embraced within the hara, one is associated with the solar plexus, whose system of nerves governs the digestive processes and organs of elimination. The other center is associated with the tanden, a point of concentration, roughly the width of two fingers, located below the navel in the center of the lower belly. Hara is thus a wellspring of vital psychic energies. Harada-roshi, one of the most celebrated Zen masters of his day, in urging his disciples to concentrate their mind's eye (that is ,the attention, the summation point of the total being) in their tanden, would declare: "You must realize"---that is, make real---"that the center of the universe is the pit of your belly!" -Yasutani
  5. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    rub the buddha's belly for good luck
  6. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    "The whole of Taoist practice is to be alert to the Hara" One first needs to join yin and yang, conscious and subconscious, mind and breath together at the Lower Dantian. This is the place where alchemy is started, and the elixir is born. It grows and sprouts when vitality is full. By keeping focused on the "centre" all is achieved. The "centre", or Hara in japanese is the Lower Dantian, it is like a black hole that sucks in energy. Females are more connected to their Hara, which explains a lot. Males can connect to their Hara through meditation and become balanced, transcend duality, control their desires, and empower themselves. Focusing on the third eye can be dangerous and is not prescribed in most classic taoist texts. This was a well known mistranslation by wilhelm. "If you observe a child sleeping in his cot, one thing which should be noted by you, but which does not strike us normally, is that it is the child s abdomen that goes up and down as he breathes and not his chest which is absolutely relaxed. In our case, we breathe through the chest. Lao Tzu says - and now even science agrees with him - that as the animal consciousness and mental consciousness of man begin to separate, the seat of the breath is changed from the navel to the chest. The greater the distance between mind and body, the higher the seat of the breath goes. When the child begins to breathe from the chest, we know that his animal consciousness and his mental consciousness have broken apart. When an adult sleeps, he too breathes through his stomach and his chest is relaxed because in sleep this distance between the mind and the body cannot be maintained. In the state of unconsciousness, the distance is broken and the natural process begins. There is a Japanese word (no other language has its equivalent) for the initial source of breath. That word is "tanden". "Tao recognises three centres: one is the tanden (the navel centre), the second is the centre of the heart and the third is the centre of the head (the centre of intelligence). The tanden is the highest and most profound centre of Existence). Next comes the heart and the last and least profound is the centre of the head. Intellectuals, therefore, are the farthest removed from existence. An emotional person is nearer to existence than a rationalist. A devotee is much nearer to existence than the so-called intellectual. He who takes the intellect to be everything lives only on the surface of existence. His calculations are correct, his logic clear, but he never goes deep down because there it is dangerous; there all logic is lost and all calculations fade."
  7. Golden Flower Meditation

    Wilhelm's translation was flawed. The Golden Flower method is similar to the majority of other Taoist alchemical texts. The Hui Ming Ching, Dao De Jing, Canton qi, Yellow Court, Nei jing, etc,etc, are all unanimous on the location of the "centre" being the Lower Dantian. "Soil", "earth" and all things yellow and good are cultivated in the Lower Dantian, or spleen area. This is where Yin and yang, "fire and water" join together and create the elixir. Wilhelm mistranslated this one term and created much confusion, Cleary and other later translator's confirmed this, stating he had little understanding of the terms and concepts. "know the white, keep to the black", "the saint wears rough-hewn clothes, but cherishes a piece of jade in his bosom", "empty the heart and fill the belly". It is very obvious when you read many taoist texts, they are not talking about the third eye here.
  8. Breathing method Piko Piko Breath

    It is interesting, the similarities between Huna and Taoism. The Piko-piko which means navel and crown, or center to center, is very similar to the Taoist lower dantian breathing. Even the word Aloha means "the presence of breath". This gives more credence to the theories of Lemuria, or Mu, being an ancient spiritually advanced society that seeded these primordial practices into other cultures, before sinking. Given more to the fact that sunken cities have been found off the coast of Japan, emissaries from Mu could have easily traveled to China, and east to the Americas, branching out from their center in the pacific ocean.
  9. Golden Flower Meditation

    just curious where is the picture from?
  10. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    It is clear from Cleary's notes in his translation of The Secret Of The Golden Flower, that the main center being referred to is the Lower Dantian. Also the original author's (Lu Dongbin?) quoted texts (Mind Seal Scripture, Book Of The Yellow Caste a.k.a Yellow Court) speak of the center as the LDT. Thanks for the inspiration to reread these texts, the answers were there all along. In Taoist energetics, "the chamber of the creative' is the head: energy is drawn by attention upward from the lower torso (the chamber of water") through the spine and into the head. In purely spiritual Taoism, the energy of the initial stirring of the "celestial mind" of unconditioned awareness is fostered until it becomes complete awakening, as symbolized by the creative. Focusing on the crown of the head is a method of enhancing alertness (to prevent quiet stillness from slipping into oblivion) and is only for temporary use at appropriate times. " Stuart Alve Olson said: This is so simple that it eludes discovery. In fact, it is so simple that unless someone tells you, you would never even think of it - and when someone tells you, it is difficult to believe. Chuang-tzu talked about it quite clearly, but everyone still runs around looking for that big secret. Lao-tzu told us not to leave our own houses, but off we go on a thousand mile journey. The breath is mind, the mind is breath. Even many well-known Taoists "put legs on a snake" and make breathing techniques complicated and further confuse the issue by implying there is a secrecy in the technique. Not that all these techniques and teachers per se are wrong, some techniques are certainly useful in various situations. But to acquire and maintain youthfulness abd tranquility is really quite simple. First you need to understand the term natural breathing, whcih is not a method at all. The idea is to breath as we did when we babies. Lao-tzu's question "Can you attain the pliability of a child?" is a reference to this subject. Lao-tzu also said "The whole of cultivation is in subtraction, not addition." Taoism focuses on reversal, restoration and rejuvination to that state when we were children, to youthfulness. When we are young our cheeks are reddened, joints are slightly bent, bones are soft, bodies are warm, and the breath is natural and concentrated in the abdomen. As we get older our cheeks pale. joints stiffen, bones become brittle, bodies chill, and the breath is concentrated in the chest. During the span of our lives our breath constantly rises upward, until at death the breath finds itself in the throat, not in the lower abdomen as it was during childhood. The Taoist seeks to restore this trend and return to a more natural state of health and vitality. When a child breathes there are no thoughts of fixing the breath in the abdomen; the breath is there naturally. The child also breathes fully with the abdomen, meaning the entire stomach expands and contracts slightly si that it functions like a bellows or a balloon, not like those stomach pushers who just expand and contract the front of the stomach. This is only half-breathing. The breath should be felt on the lower spine and on both sides of the lower abdomen as well. The big secret is really no secret at all. All that need be done is to focus the mind on the tan-tien, not the breath, The breath will follow the mind, mind does not follow the breath. To breathe naturally you must allow the breath to become deep, slow and harmonious. This is something that cannot be forced by a technique. Picture your mind as a glass of dirty water. The more you agitate it, the cloudier it becomes. However, if you just let the glass sit, the debris will gradually filter to the bottom and the water will again be clear. Trying to make the breath deep, slow and harmonious is like stirring the water. The breath cannot be natural because you are forcing it. But just by letting it go, it will relax of its own accord and become natural. How can you be natural? Calm the mine. First empty your mind. and don't fill it with techniques and schemes. As the mind settles, so will the breath. Eventually, when the mind and breath settle, the breath will be almost undetectable, like Chuang-tzu's "Withered log and dead ashes" analogy. Yin Shih-tzu, a famous modern day (1872 - 1934) Taoist, realtes in his work "When I left the breath alone to sink into the tan-tien of its own accord then the qi rose upward and circulated throughout all my limbs." His only technique was simple "abiding by the tan-tien." He focused his attention on the tan-tien, not his breath. The Tai Chi Chuan Classics relates the same principle of not focussung on the breath, as that will result in obstructing the qi. Within Taoist works there are many technique for breathing excercises, such as holding the breath, embryonic breath, reverse breath and tortoise breath. All these excercises are valuable. However, natual breathing should be considered both the basis for and the culmination of all the techniques. Without acquiring natural breath, the other methods are merely fascinating techniques that lead nowwhere, except to some psychological and, possibly, physical ills. The other methods become valuable only after you have experienced and can consciously control the circulatation of qi. not before. As Master Liang related, "Don't speak of defecation to a starving man; don't speak of winter to the mayfly." The first and biggest step is to acquire natural breath. Don;t bother with other forms of breathing until you've natural breath. Don't be like the man who lived during the Ming dynasty wo bought a thousand books but could not read. Breathing is not a secret, or, if it is, then it is an "open secret." Natural breathing occurs naturally, not by force or invention. Just feel and sense what is going on in your lower abdomen. Instantly, you will find that your breath followed you attention there. The more you pay attention to - sensing, observing, feeling - the lower abdomen, the deeper and more profound the breath will become. Just leave the breath alone, it will sink and develop of its own accord. The effort is simple keeping mentally focused on the lower abdomen. not on physicaly pushing the stomach in and out or bringing in great quantities of air."
  11. Golden Flower Meditation

    Thank you. Quotes taken from Cleary's translation. "The whole work of turning the light around uses the method of reversal. The beauties of the highest heavens and the marvels of the sublimest realms are all within the heart: this is where the perfectly open and aware spirit concentrates. Confucians call it the open center, Buddhists call it the pedestal of awareness, Taoists call it the ancestral earth, the yellow court, the mysterious pass, the primal opening. 12 The celestial mind is like a house; the light is the master of the house. Therefore once you turn the light around, the energies throughout the body all rise. Just turn the light around; this is the unexcelled sublime truth. 13 The light is easily stirred and hard to stabilize. When you have turned it around for a long time, the light crystallizes. This is the natural spiritual body, and it steadies the spirit above the nine skies. This is what is referred to in the Mind Seal Scripture as "silently paying court" and "soaring upward." "Mind Seal Scripture" -"The sacred sun and sacred moon Illumuniate the Golden Court. One attainment is eternal attainment" According to Stuart Alve Olson, the Golden court is the mysterious pass, yellow court, original cavity, LDT. "When you want to enter quietude, first tune and concentrate body and mind, SO that they are free and peaceful. Let go of all objects, so that nothing whatsoever hangs on your mind, and the celestial mind takes its rightful place in this center. 9 After that, lower your eyelids and gaze inward at the .chamber of water: Where the light reaches, true positive energy comes forth in response." "In terms of energetics, the "chamber of 'Water" means the lower abdomen, where energy is built up for circulation. In spiritual terms, the "chamber of water'" refers to the true sense of real knowledge hidden within temporal conditioning." "In psychophysiological Taoist energetics, ""water is associated with the genitals,fire is associated with the heart: the intercourse of water and fire is then defined as placing the attention (associated with the heart) in the lower abdomen (associated with the genitals)." "Focusing on the crown of the head is a method of enhancing alertness (to prevent quiet stillness from slipping into oblivion) and is only for temporary use at appropriate times." "Focus on the center" is translated by Wilhelm as "the center in the midst of conditions," misreading the verb yuan, "focus," as the noun yuan, "condition." There follows a passage (not in my Chinese text) interpreting "focus on the center" to mean, as Wilhelm translates, "fixing one's thinking on the point which lies exactly between the two eyes." "This is not what the Buddhist term originally means, and this consciousness altering technique in Wilhelm's version is the subject of strong warnings in modern literature of the Completely Real school of Taoism; it is said to be very dangerous. The presence of numerous such fragmentary yogic interpolations out of character with the overall teaching of 92 the text leads me to suspect that Wilhelm's text had been doctored by quasi-Taoist cultists, quite possibly disaffected Confucians, who were devoted or addicted to altered states of consciousness." It is clear from Clear'ys notes that the center being referred to here is the lower dantian.
  12. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    You're correct, in reading the Wilhelm text it briefly states to start by focusing on the abdomen, or the "house of water". It is strange that this is meagerly mentioned in the last part of the text. It does also mention the "lead in the water region" (which denotes the lower dantian), and describes the full course to the crown and back down to the lower dantian. Cleary states the that the "center" being between the eyes was a mistranslation by Wilhelm "doctored by quasi-taoist cultists", and that focusing there could be dangerous. He calls the center the Yellow Court, and the mysterious pass, which both are commonly the lower dantian. "The function is all in the center, but the mechanism is all in the two eyes. The two eyes are the handle of the stars, which manages Creation and operates yin and yang. 5 The major medicinal ingredient beginning to end is only the "metal in the middle of primary water" (i.e., the "lead in the region of water"). The preceding talk of turning the light around points out a method for beginners to control the inside from outside, thus helping them to attain independence. 6 This is fur middling and lesser people cultivating the lower two passes in order to penetrate the upper pass. Now as the Way gradually becomes clear and mastery of the device gradually matures, Heaven does not begrudge the Way but directly divulges the unsurpassed doctrine. Keep it confidential, and work it out." This to me denotes the center being the lower dantian. Also it seems like it's saying to keep it secret, which would explain the confusion and roundabout way of explaining the method. This text does not make sense unless you get this key point which is tucked in discretely like an afterthought. Cleary does a good job of hiding it as well. It's like people don't want to say the word "lower dantian" haha. Anyways that's my rant.
  13. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    The Golden Flower is a beautifully written text and translation by Wilhelm, one of which sparked my interest in Taoism. Just trying to clarify some key points in it, because I hold it in high esteem. The Yellow Court Classic might help clarify. It seems the texts describe the circulation between the dantians, and perhaps the Golden Flower just left out the original foundation in the lower. As I have heard it was assumed this was already cultivated.
  14. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    The lower dantian is not only for refining jing into qi, in my understanding it is the source of all emptiness and the center of the buddha, many reliable sources state this and suggest focusing on this place. The images of the fetus are in this place, it grows in the womb. It is the yellow court according to most reliable sources. Perhaps this was one of those most treasured secrets of taoism that has been hidden? It would explain all the confusion...
  15. Lower Dantian / Hara vs. Third Eye

    I was referring to the technique of focusing the mind on the lower dantian constantly as a meditation method to still the mind and refine the elixir, naturally the essences would be refined. But holding to this center continually as the fetus develops? Is this not the true "yellow middle"? And as shen is developed all three dantians are flowing, while simultaneously being centered in the embryo? It is interesting that the Hui Ming Ching, included with Wilhelm's Secret Of The Golden Flower speaks of the germinal vesicle, as the yellow castle, or dragon castle at the bottom of the sea, which is in my opinion most likely referring to the lower dantian, which leads me to believe The Secret Of The Golden Flower's "yellow middle" is one and the same. Moreover that these were written by Chan buddhists, who most likely were focusing on this area.