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About sl23

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    Dao Bum

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  1. I remember a friend once telling me wrt occult practices, the rituals, the paraphernalia, the systems are all subordinate. They are there for no other reason than to help your mind focus. The real power of the occult lies in the power of your mind. I see all practices the same, they are a means to an end, a stepping stone. I've read several books that mentioned the very same thing about meditation. Focus on one thing, once you are proficient in that, remove all objects from your mind, this is stillness. It's not something to be forced, it happens gradually, as with any skill it takes time to nurture it. It's just that the results are very subtle.
  2. Hello Everybody

    Victor, I should add that Iyengar's book is based solely on Hatha Yoga, ie postures and breath control. There's a small section on Meditation but it's focus is on health, strength and preparation of the body for advanced pranayama (breath control) and then for Meditation. His path is based on 8 stages 1. Yama - Self control 2. Niyama - Self discipline 3. Asana - Postures 4. Pranayama - Breathing 5. Pratyahara - Control of the senses 6. Dharana - Concentration 7. Dhyana - Meditation 8. Samadhi - Union/Nirvana/Oneness Here's a link to 'his' website:
  3. Hello! Is Taoism right for me?

    I hope I didn't offend! Contrary as it may sound, I believe in much of what Jesus had to say. That's not my issue. My issue is with organised religion. It's been seriously abused to entrap and take advantage of vulnerable people in so many ways. Haha, you say most won't take money, how do you know? Have you met that many true teachers?
  4. The Way

    I see, so really it's not even possible to learn internal styles from books? At least not effectively. I've never been interested in fighting, but would like to learn all aspects of Tai Chi. I doubt I ever will though unless from a book! Or maybe videos.
  5. Hello! Is Taoism right for me?

    You're most welcome I have to admit, the little I know about Taoism, it is very appealing. I like the quote you selected very much too! The trouble is, in my experience, just about everyone I've encountered is a selfish, egotistical liar! They hide behind their social masks so well, but I've grown to be able to see straight through the vast majority of it. There was a film called Jupiter ascending released few years ago. I can't exactly remember the lines but was about trust. It stated something along the lines of... Trust does not exist, the trusted only follow according to their current desires, trends. As soon as the trusted person's desires differ from yours, they could easily go against you! No one, No one has the right to look down upon another, no matter what their role in life is. At least if this whole spiritual thing is real! If not then the reverse could be true, who knows? But you can't know how or why some other person has become a monster. Life is so utterly complex that we should judge not lest we be judged.No I'm not Christian or any other ian. But that simple truth, along with many others, stands true and will always be so. Truth is immutable. It's amazing what people will do for money! I watched a video on YouTube about a young Indian boy meditating inside a hollow tree without food or water for, it was either 6 or 18 months! But he became a local phenomenon. Thousands came to visit near the end so a fence was erected to avoid disturbing him. Some westerners heard of it, students I think, wanted to make a documentary. They weren't allowed to film up close only from around 25m away. They had infrared camera to film at night, but too far away to see. It was just blackness. So there's no way of knowing if he was fed and watered then. An amazing feat in itself, to sit there day after day without food or water without moving, just sat in the lotus posture. Around 18 months, I'm sure it was that long, he disappeared one night. Wasn't seen or heard from for some time. Then he started to teach. The video I saw of him in meditation with some students, was strange! He sat there in lotus, all was silent, hair covering part of his face, bit like The Grudge! lol But he sat there meditating then opened eyes and started looking around at people without moving his head. Then after a minute or so closed eyes again. Apparently, they earnt quite a bit of money from that little escapade! So was he genuine or not? I seriously doubt it! That's the trouble with humanity, greed and corruption is widespread and getting worse!
  6. The Way

    Wow, thanks for the explanation. I agree, that's why I have been so put off by western teachers! Even Mantak Chia, Yang Jwing Ming and Erle Montaigue has some backlash, genuine or not I don't know. But ipossible to learn from those guys so I'm left with little choice. Btw, may I ask, what exactly do you mean by ' a lot of the movement is hidden?' You mean to do with visualising Chi? Breath control? Or actual physical movements? Thanks
  7. The Way

    I learned Shaolin Tiger Crane from a teacher based in Essex, UK. Found this very difficult despite my good level of health and fitness at the time. Couple years experience. Funny thing is, I learnt more from my few weeks of Karate wrt Qi than I did with Shaolin school! Though I never knew it at the time! Tai Chi only practiced for few months due to the teacher being more interested in ripping me off than having good morals! Not many teachers near me. Qi Gong I have tried to learn solo but hit walls with structure of practice, where the goal lies if you see what I mean. There's a thousand different parts of hundreds of systems, some of which are incompatible. Which parts belong to which systems, which order are they to be practiced, ie if it were Karate, there would be grades, as no such thing appears to exist in the world of Kung Fu it's all very vague as to how to progress. When I practice Qi Gong I don't feel much, but I feel something. There's one exercise I just started messing about doing, maybe I saw something similar in a film, who knows, but it has a very profound effect! More so than anything I've tried. Don't even think it's a real Qi Gong exercise! But when I do it, I feel Qi and after, I find I'm so relaxed that punches have far more power and control. Weird!
  8. Hello Everybody

    I have practiced Yoga for many years, though only at a basic level. I find I cannot go to bed without practice now as it is so good at relieving aches and pains in the joints and muscles. I personally chose around seven postures for a sort of complete personal system and it seems to work, for me at least. I followed BKS Iyengars system from his book Light on Yoga. Impossible to fault that book as it contains everything you need to know about practicing and plenty on the philosophy too. Highly recommend it.
  9. The Way

    Sorry, I didn't know how to separate each quote so I included my reply and bolded the text. Thanks for your reply
  10. The Way

    You got that right
  11. Hello! Is Taoism right for me?

    Sounds like the story of my life!!! I have always been a skeptic. I scrutinize everything, maybe too much. To the point of exhausting all possibilities. I have looked at religions and used this analytical approach to destroy every proof, notion or ideal setout within them. Though personally I've always known in my heart that religion is just, well, wrong for want of a better word. It's ideals are fantastical, requiring you to believe something without a shred of proof, no questions allowed and if they are, the answer is always something mysterious like 'only God has the answer!' Translated means we don't know! I found this to be true of Yoga philosophy too, which isn't a religion, though I believe it was originally practised by Hindus. History and religion are two of my pet hates That's not to say they're all fake. It's just there is no ONE religion or ideal, there's just truth, but it's your own truth. Religion is supposed to provide answers, hope, solace, free you from your self by giving up that which is your only way out, Your Will. You are in control of your own life more than you probably know. Though a few years ago I did want answers about religion so by chance(?) I had a couple of Jehovah's Witnesses knock my door. They visited several times and the last time, the anger and impatience of their inability to subdue and convert me was inherently apparent. They simply could not provide answers to my questions. Sorry, I digress! Taoism has never been something I've looked into, I suppose because to me it's another religion. Though I have had a long interest in Shaolin martial arts as well as the internal styles. I don't actually know much about Taoism now I think about it, something I may have to remedy. But, for me, I think systems are wrong. Religion or spirituality is a highly personal thing. Each of us is different, you don't need a path to follow, you're already following the path that is right for you. Following a set path can guide you by helping you focus on certain ideals, that's great, but beyond that, all philosophy is pointless. I know, I know, I'll be shot down for saying this, but it's only my opinion. If 10,000 people agreed with me, would that make it a religion? That's exactly what's happened! Religion in all it's forms are there to either control the populace, for those unable to think for themselves, or those that do, to provide comfort, a sense of belonging to something. Because let's face it, a spiritual path is a lonely one! If you don't find it so, you aren't following a spiritual path, because as I've said, it's a very personal thing. I only came here yesterday by accident. I was looking at Shifu Yan Lei's website on Qi Gong. But I read on there that he will help guide you as much as he can, but 90% of the work is yours. Only you can do what's required for you. Religion seems to be the other way around! As Neale Donald Walsch stated, there is no right or wrong. We just Are. In the grand ultimate scheme of things, if there is ultimately no right or wrong, what does it matter what you do? But this is again another dead end, despite making perfect sense in his book. There are no answers to anything here, in this world, plane, whatever it is. All these ideas about religion, philosophy, practices, are all conjecture. We FEEL a need to be better, searching for something, but what is it? Nobody can provide an answer, if they can, they can't back it up, so their answer becomes false. Believe in Dao or don't believe in Dao, it makes no difference to who or what you are, you will still be on your path. Daoism, or any religion, is not a requirement but an aid. but only IF, IF there is validity to the bold claims of those enlightened ones. You see, that in itself is something taken for granted. What IS enlightenment? A state of feeling free from the binds of life? Happiness, contentment? Great attributes, but it takes a lifetime to achieve something that is utterly pointless as we all die! Unless you accept that we are more than Human flesh. If we could know, truly know that there is life after death, that we are immortal as is claimed by most religions and spiritual paths, all of these practices are a waste of life and we should all be materialists, gorging ourselves with our selfish desires that are never satisfied. I've longed for two answers, which are: 1. Are we really just flesh and bone or do we truly have an immortal soul that reincarnates? 2. Why DO hotdogs come in packs of 8, yet hotdog buns come in packs of 6? Aleister Crowley had it right when he said 'Do what thou wilt, let that be the whole of the law' I know little of his system, beliefs or ideals, but this much is true. Because we have no answers and can provide none. Practice seems the only way to provide such proof, but which? Does it even matter which? There can be no one single path if we are all different. Sorry for the long post, I'm getting there! The upshot of it all is, follow what you believe to be true, because that is all we can do. Follow your own truth, because there is nothing else to follow. You wouldn't follow something you believed untrue, you have shown this. So just do what's right and as a wise friend said to me about 30 years ago... 'Be good!' That's all we can do. Take care and all the best
  12. The Way

    Thanks for your replies. The flat earth thing was more in jest with a twinkle of seriousness to it
  13. The Way

    Hi, I sorta came here by accident. I've been looking into Shifu Yan Lei's teachings the entire day. Somehow I ended up here! I started my journey 28 years ago at age 18. Primarily with selfish intent as I was introduced to various occult teachings. But was also shown Shaolin and Yoga. I've never been the type with desire to hurt others, only to better myself. As such, the occult got left behind for the loftier purpose of self development. I fell in love with Shaolin, but personal issues prevented me from pursuing the life I so longed for. Yoga became my path, always with a longing for Martial Arts, although only Shaolin and recent years Tai-Chi. I admit I'm not a great studier. But consider myself fairly intelligent, maybe not as much as some of the people here though! Anyway, I've longed to study Qi Gong for almost as long as I can remember. Thing is, how do you know if a teacher is authentic? That always put me off training with someone. There seem to be more and more authentic teachers springing up on the internet, whether it's a front is another matter. Yoga is quite simplistic to follow compared to many forms of Kung Fu or Qi Gong. For a start, Yoga is not hidden.Most martial practices are kept secret for various reasons. One thing that I could never understand about Tai-Chi and Qi Gong is that there are so many systems that is is confusing which practices belong to which system. Because no system is fully explained you have to grab bits from each to fill in the gaps. Whether using the internet or books as source, no-one has made anything like BKS Iyengars book Light on Yoga. Everything is explained from basic breath control to each posture and it's effects on the body. There's even a six year course to follow should you be dedicated enough! That is a real teacher. Today everyone is in it for the money so they milk every bit of information. Supply part of a technique in one book or DVD, then next year release another with some bits that were missing from the previous. Yan Lei's material seems condense and to the point, but upon reading or watching, there are questions unanswered. A good teacher leaves no questions. Iyengar left none! That one book could take you to an advanced level of Yoga, Light on Pranayama even further. My point however, which is getting lost, is that there is simply no structure to any of the teachings, unless you can interface directly with a teacher regularly, but that's usually at great expense. Something I can't afford. I don't suppose anyone can enlighten me by answering some questions please? 1. What is the real goal of Qi Gong/Tai-Chi? Enlightenment? What exactly is enlightenment? Nobody knows. If there are those that know, you wouldn't understand. As was explained in a funny story I read on this site just now about Socrates and Plato. So, how do you know? 2. As there's no complete, publicly available, known structure to any of the systems of Tai-Chi or Qi Gong, or none that I've come across, how the hell do you get into something without knowing where it leads? I've read that certain Qi Gong practices if mixed can actually have adverse effects or cancel each other out. So you can't just start with a pick n mix attitude. How can you follow a system if there's no definitive goal? Health is a good goal, but for me, I want more than that. It may seem strange, but I've never felt like I belong here. I participate because I have to. Just as those incarcerated are forced to participate in activities they have no interest in. Either that or suffer from total boredom, depression and loneliness. I am blessed to have never been ill, colds and such but that's it. If you knew my problems, you'd be shocked at how it's even possible! But now I've engaged for many years in a life I never wanted, have a family that I love, even though I find it hard to reciprocate due to my desires for something more. That life has ended though I have three loving children to show for it, I am back at the door of philosophy to find answers. Everything in life for me is second best as I cannot do that which I only ever had a passion for, to find answers, to practice... something. My main interest is with Yoga and Tai-Chi/QiGong, but the more I read about chinese arts the more confused I get! 3. For god sake can someone tell me, is the earth flat, or not??? I find it highly amusing that those that believe it flat are so undeniably positive about something without a shred of proof! Only people like that are religionists, faith works wonders eh? Sorry for the long post, just thought I'd ask the questions even if I appear stupid! Got to a point where I don't care anymore. Just want to find answers! Thanks for reading, if you did!