mjjbecker

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About mjjbecker

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  1. https://www.thedaobums.com/topic/49349-help-needed-to-translate-alchemy-book/?do=findComment&comment=891527
  2. Help Needed to Translate Alchemy Book

    The translator referenced here has been a personal friend of mine for some years now, and asked me if I would post on this. As long timers here know, I said I would never post here again, so that should give some idea of my regard for the person in question. He is someone who I have spent a fair amount of time around here in Beijing, so I can vouch for his credentials directly. Most importantly, this is something that I believe can benefit a lot of people, and that is why I am happy to lend my support to it. So, why participate? What qualifies this person to translate these kinds of works? Firstly, he has completed a degree course in TCM at a prestigious university in Beijing, in the Chinese language. He is now doing post graduate studies in Taiwan, again in the Chinese language. Anyone who knows anything about TCM knows that it is inseparably connected to Daoist thought and principles. Someone who sincerely studies Chinese medicine is also doing so the same in respect of the Dao. Further to his academic studies, my friend has also sought out capable and qualified experts in Chinese medicine, at his own personal expense in time and money (and continues to do so.) He has always shared what he has learned with others, and not just kept it to himself. I can personally testify to his skills and sincerity. He is a practicing, lineage Daoist. He has teachers who are authentic lineage members. Not theorists, faux philosophers, or lightweight intellectual dandies, but people who live and breathe the Dao. People who drink deeply from the well, not the typical shallow draught brigade. As if full time studies were not time consuming enough, in the years that I have known him, he has always been busy helping numerous people with numerous problems, from medical issues, to spiritual assistance from authentic, legitimate Daoist lineage masters. This is something he continues to do. I know the subject of college tuition fees is a thorny one. Those who have worked to pay their own way through college know how hard this is. Imagine doing so in a foreign country and culture. There are some who feel they should get something for nothing, but ultimately someone has to pay. People have bills to cover, not to mention their own precious time to use wisely. There has been, and continues to be, much debate over what Daoism is, and is not. I would think anyone who sincerely wants to know would jump at the chance of supporting a person who sincerely wants to share this knowledge; a person who has the academic and intellectual ability to do so, and who has access to recognised, lineage Daoist masters who can advise and guide on the important details. My friend could easily just read these books and enjoy them for himself. He doesn't personally need to translate them, and he already has well paying translation work. Translating obscure texts doesn't pay anything like what commercial work does, and not many translators actually have a clue about this kind of material. This is a great opportunity for people who don't have Chinese language skills and access to authentic sources. I would urge people to take it. If not, then it is a real loss for non-Chinese speakers, and real understanding of these subjects will remain privy to only a small number of people. I'm returning to my self-imposed exile, so please direct any questions you have to the OP.
  3. Over-engineering your practice

    Perhaps people should ditch the 'basics' tag and instead think more about 'fundamentals'? Without those fundamentals there is nothing. Come to adore them and they will adore you back.
  4. Turning vegetarian - need advice

    For the OP. Are you familiar with HFW and his 'River Cottage' TV series'? He did a series a while back on vegetables alone. It was very interesting and included some Vegan stuff that looked worth investigating (not particularly practical while I'm still in China though). There is a book of recipies from the series that I like (I like most of his recipies and they are actually doable, unlike some) you might want to have a look at. I also mention HFW because from the outset of his 'River Cottage' days, he discussed the ethical issues of raising livestock that you ultimately are going to kill. When I lived in another city some Indian medical students had a local set-up an authentic Indian food restaurant. Wonderfully low prices, lovely food. A bowl of daal alone made for a fulfilling meal. I'm not vegetarian, though I know someone that did become vegetarian after a lorry filled with livestock, on the way to the abatoir, went past them. By all means follow your own feelings on this. We are all here to learn, experience and grow in our own ways. For anyone else in general, for health-and cultivation-the practice of fasting is well worth investigating. It is a practical step that almost anyone (medical condition allowing) can follow, regardless of budget or dietary circumstances.
  5. http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20131028230224-27307105-my-first-job-not-getting-paid-to-be-honest?trk=eml-mktg-inf-m-job-1029-p6 By T. Boone Pickens Founder, Chairman and CEO at BP Capital and TBP Investments Management
  6. Yin? (yang?)

    Er, no. Cat commented that John Chang was speaking to a novice. Indeed he was, but I clarified the point. The audience in this case is not the literary construct of 'Kosta Danaos' (which the character in the book was-you'd know that if you'd followed Kostas' comments on the matter) but the reader. And if you had paid attention to what I wrote, instead of trying to score points, you'd have noticed the bit about how the book was written in a specific manner for a specific audience and purpose, and that it was not about the 'practices'.
  7. Iron Crotch Qigong

    This book: http://chinesebookstore.ecrater.co.uk/p/16478229/healing-impotence-the-traditional-chinese Is actually IC based training. There are a series of exercises in it, not limited to the obvious focus. It isn't expensive either (from the above seller-others are asking silly money as it retails here in China for only 60RMB...) There are also recipies for treating impotence (boosting your jing basically). I don't practice IC and think many of the benefits claimed can be found from other training. If you are going to use certain practices, it REALLY is a good idea to have close supervision from a teacher.
  8. Light

    I sent this email to someone who asked me some questions about their personal practice. Some of the points may be relevant and of interest to others so I am copying it here also. I found the points raised applied very much to me as to the person I was addressing them to. "Expectations. Stop it. Perhaps it is your questionable taste in music (though I confess I like the t-shirts) that is holding you back? I recommend some Doris Day ('Que Sera, Sera') and Lynn Anderson ('Rose Garden'). No, I'm not joking. Whatever the intellectual curiosity might be, it will get you-or anyone else-nowhere. AGAIN, I come to the point why traditional teachers do not tell students about things in advance of their actual experience of such things. It leads to preconcieved notions and gets in the way of allowing matters to unfold as they should. Profound experiences 'happen' rather than appear 'on demand'. Think of the best orgasm you ever had, and think about the times you tried or expected to repeat that experience. The expectations never equalled or approached the actual event as it happened, of its own accord. As I understand it, there is just 'now'. The rest is just overlaying expectations onto reality. We might never do anything if we spent our time agonising over what other people can do. You might never attempt to get laid if you spent all your time worrying about what porn stars have and can do (or worried about all the airbrushed images of 'perfect' physical specimens). Fortunately the drive to fuck is (usually) enough to prompt one beyond such worries, even if the worries never completely disappear. Neigong practice is the same. Most aren't going to approach Wang Juemin in this lifetime, but it doesn't mean the effort put in is either misguided or wasted-or not 'enjoyable'. There WILL be energetic changes happening, even if you are not aware of them at the time. 'Tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, BOOM!' The wonderful thing about nearly dying is the appreciation it should bring of the moment, of life and the beauty of the 'here and now'. Much nicer than stomping around with shit coloured spectacles on surely? Why worry about the end of the world; yours personally and/or everyones? Find the beauty in each situation. See the moon clearly on the surface of the water. Now then, it just so happens I can give you some sound technical advice, which I know is what you are after (though it won't work anywhere near as well without following the 'user instructions' above). Do the STANDING Stillness Movement. Why? Because, in my opinion, it will open up a person quicker than the sitting. Given your injuries in particular, I recommend this. I'm of a mind that sitting is great, but what to practice and when will vary. I've a feeling standing would be the right focus for you now. Go through ALL the GoT exercises. Repeat individual execises to find which ones 'resonate' with your needs at this time. Like tuning forks and a piano, once you've 'got' the note you can move on. Pick a few moves and put in some quality time on them. That way you'll 'get' the frequencies. For Michael, it may work to run through the whole lot in one session, but I believe most people need to drill and polish moves to the point they have truly accessed the energetics. Keep a written journal and note down your observations (NOT expectations) of your practice, and any particularly relevant experiences related to the practice. To recap. 1. Put your expectations to one side and instead put your attention to what IS ACTUALLY HAPPENING NOW. 2. Go through the GoT exercises, putting in the time required on each to 'get' the particular frequency of that exercise. 3. Put your thoughts onto paper and get them out of your head. Do the above and you WILL find that you return to that level you are looking for (and surpass it). I have. Finally, remember to get some quality time in thinking about things other than all this stuff. Everything has its place and time."
  9. What exactly is a dan tien?

    Kostas has written about it from a physics point of view in his books. I don't have them to hand, apart from the Pammachon one (hense the reason I quoted from that). He has a very solid background in hard science (aerospace work can be very unforgiving if you get things wrong...) as well as esoteric experience beyond the vast majority claiming expertise on such subjects (certainly not limited to a certain school and its method...) The ancients certainly DID have a scientific approach. The problem we have is that very few people, now, have the actual experience to understand what was being stated. There is therefore a lot of wild speculation, with some of the worst being attempts to apply pseudo-scientific theories to these things (people with no experience of high level energy practices and a middle school understanding of physics and biology). Why do those who know usually stay out of sight? Look at history, complete with its periodic purges (murdering sprees) of 'enlightened' individuals. Frankly, just look at some of the behaviour on this forum. Lunch beckons, which is an infinitely more rewarding prospect that some of the replies that are likely to follow.
  10. Here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wu_wei http://taoism.about.com/od/wuwei/a/wuwei.htm Clearly you need all the help you can get. For my part this is the straw dog that broke the camels back. Onto the ignore list you go.
  11. Video-Wang Ji Wu's Neigong Exercises

    I can't, I really can't, be bothered to debate the matter of terminology or the validity of these practices. Suffice to say that if a 100 year old Xing Yi master of superb repute, and one of his top students, (who also studied neigong under Hu Yaozhen), Zhang Bao Yang (over 90 years old and still teaching) held/holds these exercises in high esteem, that will do for me. If anyone with direct experience of Wang Ji Wu's lineage, or perhaps who have actually practiced the exercises, would like to chip in, I'm sure that would be instructive and interesting. Or we could just have the usual influx of opinion sans experience.
  12. ...

    1. Just tell me you did practice safe sex. 2. That's right, don't obsess, don't analyse it.
  13. I've been meaning to post this up but kept forgetting. The link was originally posted on YouTube during a 'debate' on Tim Cartmell's video of these exercises. I've no intention of going into who is right or wrong or whatever (one can practice exercises in more than one way, depending on ones mood alone). I do think the video is useful and interesting for anyone doing these exercises, and the source does seem to be authentic and direct. http://video.sina.com.cn/v/b/39441868-1117945852.html For anyone with the book it will be helpful in showing the exercises actually being performed.
  14. Plenty of good information already. It's good. Don't worry about it. Or perhaps don't become attached either way, to the 'highs' or the 'lows'. The 'highs' certainly bring into stark contrast the rest of life's experiences. With 'awareness', you have to let go, or you can drive yourself to the edge-or over. I completely cleared up digestive problems earlier in my life using the 18 step tai chi chi kung exercises ('Shi ba shi taijiqigong'). I've posted some links up before for this info if you do a search. It can be found for free online and there are some videos on YouTube also. Fundamental to anxiety and digestive issues can be issues with tension in the body. You want your belly to relax and sink down naturally. Once I went down the neigong path I found I could no longer do standard abdominal crunches. They restricted my breathing too much with the whole 'flat stomach' thing. Fortunately the Chinese martial arts have plenty of good waist exercises. The exercises above will certainly help you to relax and to allow the organs to sink into their natural locations in the body. This will certainly help. Another good set of exercises are the 16 Neigong exercises in Tim Carmell's Xing Yi neigong book. They look 'simple' but then excellent practices often do. For people without a teacher to supervise them, I think moving exercises are better than static ones. My number one recommendations for 'cultivation' are 'Stillness Movement' and the 'Gift of the Tao' practices. You can find plenty on this by doing a search on the forum. Personal preference and each to their own, but it works for me. Finally, and fundamentally, never forget to keep in contact with friends and family. Don't be afraid to ask for help or just some company when you are feeling 'down'. They don't have to be practitioners of meditation or anything like that, just people who genuinely care for you. Without such help I would not be writing this now. When the dark night comes one needs ones anchors in the storm.
  15. RIP Master C.K Chu

    I just saw that myself last night on the RSF forum. My condolences to his family, friends and students.