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About mattmiddleton

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    Dao Bum
  1. dao and brahman

    Hmmm, thats a new take on it - life. prana. not so much 'brahman' but life or the life force, that which is livinig behind the name and form.
  2. dao and brahman

    from what i understand the Brahman is a universal presence which is the underlying essence of all things. It is difficult to fathom, and the quest of the 'nondualist' vedantins (advaita vedantins) is to realize or experience this brahman by first discovering their 'self' (atman) - something that is more profound than soul and mind and body - and realize that this atman is, in fact, Brahman. Daoist meditation and alchemy merges the body/mind/energy with Dao - so theres one similarity between the two concepts. Brahman is unlike Dao in so far as it does not move and is a eternal/static phenomenon. Dao moves, it is movement itself. Brahman is universal in 'size' - as is the Dao. Both Brahman and Dao are invisible and difficult to conceive of. brahman defined on wikipedia
  3. dao and brahman

    shall do. gotta hit the sack now though. will write in the morn.....cheers!
  4. dao and brahman

    I've been drawn to a bit of the old upanishadic lore of late. It seems to me the Brahman is the Dao. Would someone like to compare and contrast? if you wanna? thx, matt
  5. Laozi Pilgrimage: Discover the Dao 2011

    May I ask how the response to this has been thus far? You full up? Is it still available? This would be a trip of a lifetime for me. Oh to win the lottery. And to be in Livia Kohns company,,wow,,,such a great writer and daoist scholar.
  6. The cultural Revolution

    thanks everyone for your the last post mentioned, mysterious essence is eternal, a direct experience of dao is available to all with or without the help of idols and temples. but how sad it makes me to read of the killings of the mountain hermits. or am i fooled like the chap who said none of this happened? holocaust denial? ach i dunnow.
  7. The cultural Revolution

    Can anyone tell me how much of a catastrophe the Cultural Revolution was to Daoism in China at the time, eg - the extent of lost texts and sacred places etc. And also how daosim has attempted to recover since then? It always saddens me to hear of such a rigorous sacking of a country's own culture..
  8. Wu tai chi

    Hi, just wondering if anyone here can tell me a little about the key things that differentiate Wu style tai chi from Yang style, what its core concepts are, how the moves differ, how its intent / focus differs etc etc... i'm just curious as i'm about to start up with a wu teacher. Of course i could wait and find out but as I said a little overview would be appreciated here. thanks!
  9. What makes Buddhism different?

    my pleasure
  10. Of Buddhists and Taoists

    on this thread: well...maybe the dao is a source. maybe it is also a way. maybe it is essentially monistic. From what i see, daoism is earthly, it lives and breaths in the real - it dosent actively transcend anything does it? Is the Dao real or not? Perhaps Vajrayana Buddhism transcends this 'field'. Maybe it really really does. Maybe it is just that little bit more sophisticated. Thats okay isnt it? Do you go give up your Daoism now? This 'source', as we define it we lose it, we find it we lose it, smaller and smaller, on and on and on infinitum - it certainly would be extemely difficult to reify. How large is this dao? this field? this oneness? don't the daoists just drift with the mystery of it? Do they reify it? Is that the aim of Daoism?
  11. Yiquan standing meditation

    hey thanks alot you guys.!
  12. Starting a Tai Chi practice

    Same here. Ticked all the boxes. Any Yichuan instructions online at all anyone?
  13. Yiquan standing meditation

    Hi there, does anyone have any tips for the standing meditation or zhan zhuang? what is a good amount of time to stand? thx. what should one focus on in the main as one stands?
  14. Living Tao In The World

    Hmmmmm. I live in a fairly easy going part of the world - Dunedin, New Zealand - a small university town in the country's South Island. I am a recording artist/musician, run a web-site and sell my product online (in little sporadic bursts ) And no, this isnt an ad. It relates. Ha ha. Thus environmentally the conditions surrounding my life are very much more relaxed than say, a stock-broker's in Frankfurt. These conditions are a good compromise between the absolute hermit/mountain dwelling devotion of a chinese daoist monk in the 14th century and the ruthless hustle of late modern capitalism. I am blessed to have the time and space to at least attempt to live a daoist lifestyle whilst participating in a system i simply must play ball with. I have attempted to gradually reduce outlandish desires and their many variations from my everyday life - noting the cumulative stilling of my being with each new reduction. Being a musician i have been able to observe first hand the folly of excessive ambition. I have observed many artists approach insanity as they over-estimate the happiness desire and ambition can bring - beautiful, creative people ultimately depressed and their soul destroyed when the industry fails to provide for them. Actually - that was ME fifteen years ago (without the beautiful bit). It was these experiences that pointed to the wisdom of rejecting ambition - of yielding , of just being content with simple acheivements - financial or artistic or personal. Just living a quiet, (as 'uncool as it might seem to those crazy nihilists i know) simple, self-contained life - in tune with the seasons, yielding to and neutralizing situations and people that try to stir this up, yet, as Jacksquat mentioned, including others/society/community in your environment - yielding-to to while one participates-with. To live in the Way as a city dwelling westerner one needs first an income/roof over ones head. So, i suppose - do what you gotta do. In some countries - welfare is available, in others - you better flip burgers or something. But make sure you can pay the rent. (I often think back to the 19th century with its aristocratic rich kids spending their days drugging and invoking demons - lucky lucky them). Second, one needs to actively reject/neutralize the ubiquitous and mind-numbingly repetitive barrage of multi-media advertisments, to not buy into their messages, to not let them aggravate ones passions, to be courageous enough to be happy with what one has - in a word:voluntary simplicity (VERY subversive). Third, one needs to monitor and be mindful of oneself, ones mind, thoughts, emotions, habits - to gently keep oneself in check. Observe the interplay of yin and yang in the world. Observe it in oneself. Join a tai chi group - there you may meet others like you. One needs to know the skills of re-using and recycling. One might grow ones own food. As far as my 'success' with these methods is concerned - well - from when i discovered Daoism up to now, I have calmed down so much - my friends always tell me this ha ha, but of course i still have much to iron out. But i am only young and the path is lifelong. One must focus less on results and more on process - one of the main tenets of tai-chi. i think the thing may be to not actually give up ambition or effort . It is to make them real - aligned with nature - harmless and with longevity in mind. One will find oneself more and more at odds with the modern capitalist agenda. daoist quietism, self-containment and wholism is absolutly anathema to it. If you live in one of the northern hemispheres great cities, maybe you could consider moving to the country, or to new zealand. ha ha. So, for me, it took a brush with the madness of rock'n'roll and many horrible first hand experiences to teach me the futility of ambition. Ugly, plastic, unnatural human ambition.