Gamuret

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  1. Could somebody please give this gentleman a fine Cuban cigar? He's spot on! Exactly! The old question still remains unaswered, therefore perhaps RFunaki will be so kind to help us out. David Verdesi has been advertising himself variously as Dr. David Verdesi or David Verdesi Ph.D. He is even now claiming that he is a Ph. D. - for your reference: http://www.wayn.com/waynprofile.html?member_key=11773729 Please look under "david-verdesi's Details" in the above link. He is still declaring that he has a doctoral degree. Now, from which university precisely did David Verdesi obtain his Ph. D., when exactly was this and in which discipline (religious studies, etnography, medical anthropology, etc.)?
  2. At the risk of indulging in Deng Xiaoping-like "mathematics" (who stated: "Mao Zedong was 30% wrong, but 70% right with how he handled things") I would say that the following is the case when it comes to David Verdesi: - 1/3 of what he claims is certainly true and he does have some rather interesting abilities - 1/3 is a mix of half-truths, disinformation, exaggeration and sometimes outright lies - 1/3 are delusions of grandeur and self-deception on his part (emphasis on self-deception here). And this is probably one of the most dangerous combinations when it comes to shaddy characters in the field of spiritual cultivation. "Merde avec chocolat" (shit with chocolate) as the French would say - mix the two together and it can look quite convincing if you do it right, but when you take a bite you're in for a nasty surprise. The first step to executing a good con is to make your target doubt it's perceptions. Let us say I want to sell you a machine for which I claim can transform worthless pieces of scrap iron into gold. Now, everyone in their right mind would have the perception that this is complete nonsense - unless you can make them doubt what they perceive. The second step is to convince them about the veracity of your claim. And the third step is to appeal to your target's fears or desires (in the above case it would be the desire for wealth) so convincingly that it will swallow your offer hook, line and sinker. It is not that we see the things how they really are, but how we ourselves in fact are - with all our hopes, fears, desires, etc. that modify our perception like a pair of coloured glasses.
  3. After some time I again see the Verdesi-discussion pop up to the surface. A good point you make Harry. Whome to trust? It seems that David Verdesi is having considerable "problems" with organizing Wang Liping's seminar. This though I believe is not his only problem. I've heard that he was not granted a visa by the Chinese authorities after he tried to return back from Korea to China. In the end he had to return back to Italy. This was also the reason why the 2008-seminar had to be hastily moved to Denmark, because it simply couldn't be held in China due to David being refused entry to China. Sean Denty has frequently mentioned Verdesi's close connections to the Chinese government and his longstanding co-operation with various prominent institutions in the People's Republic. Of course Sean never disclosed the names and persons of those institutions with which David Verdesi co-operated. Isn't it strange that such a prominent person valued so highly by the Chinese government is being refused a simple visa? Or is this just a dark conspiracy of the anti-Verdesi elements among the Chinese officials who want to prevent him opening up the most secret and sacred Daoist teachings to the Westerners? Well, Little1, in the light of what is happening around the Wang Liping seminar in Denmark it would certainly be interesting to read that letter exchange between you and David - if you choose to make it public, of course. G.
  4. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    Well, the whole thread is becoming more and more like one of those never-ending Mexican soap operas. I obviously have my own share of responsibility in this. Whatever the truth (about David Verdesi and other matters) is, I do hope we will come to see it one day - independent of proponents and detractors. Free of clever marketing and ad hominem attacks. Best, G.
  5. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    I think it's really pointless to argue. I said what I had to say and you said what you had to say, Sean Denty. Time will tell who was speaking the truth. Best, G.
  6. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    Yes, Song Yongdao, David Verdesi still uses a translator. Procurator is absolutely right. One of his translators is a Chinese female who at the same teaches him Chinese. David Verdesi started to learn Chinese only about a year ago and his language-skills are supposedly still very bad and he has to continue using translators to communicate with his own masters. Sorry, for bursting in, your question was adressed at Procurator, therefore I should let him answer. I just wanted to confirm what was said previously. G.
  7. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    Yes, Harry, some of the posts regarding David Verdesi that certain members of this forum made were indeed more of an emotional outburst than sober discussion. Still, the questions remain. I can understand that and I do appreciate you candor. You defending your teacher is quite natural. The problem is not with you, but with David Verdesi. If he can't stand the heat, then he maybe should get out of the kitchen, stay in China and quietly do whatever he does, without advertising himself. Best, G.
  8. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    David Verdesi knows barely enough Chinese to order a lunch for himself. Just take a look at Michael Saso or Kristofer Schipper. They are also anthropologists who have done extensive field-research in the Taiwanese Daoist community. Both are initated Daoist priest and have mastered modern as well as classical Chinese. The point is that Verdesi and Sean Denty emphasize how David Verdesi speaks Chinese in order to give him the aura of an expert and to attract clientele, while Verdesi in fact has to employ a translator. Harry, it's not about powers, it's about honesty. And you can spin it as much as you want and try to find as many excuses as you want and it will still be about honesty. Regards, G.
  9. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    Harry, you and Sean Denty still don't get the point. The point is not about powers, but about the fact that David Verdesi seems to employ half-truths and outright lies in order to promote his enterprise. He makes claims of scholarly excellence and tight connections with the Chinese government and yet cannot back either of them up with names and dates through which one could verify these very same claims. And you yourself are constantly using the strategy of obfuscating and spinning - like Sean Denty. Look, nobody said or questioned Wang Liping being a practitioner of "lei shan dao". We simply pointed out two things: a.) "lei shan dao" doesn't seem to be mentioned in any serious scholarly literature b.) Verdesi's masters seem to belong to entirely different schools, which may or may not be related Don't forget. It was Sean Denty who came to this board advertising his teacher. And when somebody asks him simple and direct questions about David Verdesi or his credentials, then he gets a hysterical fit and throws a temper-tantrum like a little child. ... These are the signes of maturity on which Sean Denty prides himself so much? And Harry, if you are so bored, then do not participate in the discussion. It's really that simple. G.
  10. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    Exactly! I was also asking myself why "lei shan dao" is never being mentioned in any serious scholarly source. Sure, you have the wu lei fa - the thunder rites of the Zheng Yi sect and other things. But lei shan dao? Never heard of it before. Is this something that David Verdesi simply invented? And why does Zhai Jiangfeng state that his' arts are those of Kangmen Qigong?
  11. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    A very good point, you made Neikung. Sean Denty, some time ago you even mentioned that this disgruntled student will try to induce the paper that published the original article to put out another article, where everything will be retracted and the student will apologize. Can you please tell us in which newspaper exactly will this text appear? Recently I received some information regarding David Verdesi and I would be interested to hear from you Sean Denty if you can confirm them. No, David is not in excellent health. Due to contracting dengue-fever in SE Asia he actually has such a sensitive liver that he cannot even drink a glass of alcohol. David often uses a translator, who is a native Chinese. He has been studying Chinese with her for about a year, but his language-skill is so poor that he has to continue to employ the translator. Prior to that David Verdesi never studied Chinese seriously and always employed translators. This is not quite accurate, sheng zhen. Some people who took part in David Verdesi's seminars actually felt cheated, because David Verdesi didn't inform them about the hidden costs in the form of special pills. The cost of pills could reach $ 15,000 to $ 20,000. So, Sean Denty, back to the old question. Where and when did "Dr." David Verdesi obtain his Ph. D.? G.
  12. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    I think Zeus has got a point here. IF David Verdesi received teachings from John Chang for free and then charged money to his students for leading them to John Chang, then this would be highly unethical. Even if John Chang was just giving treatments to the people who were led to him by David Verdesi, it would be still very unethical if David Verdesi would charge these people in order to simply see John Chang, because John Chang gives his treatments free of charge. And still there is the issue around David Verdesi's Ph. D. Where did he obtain his doctoral degree and when exactly? If he doesn't have a Ph. D. then it is morally reprehensible that he advertises himself in such a way. If he indeed possesses a doctoral degree and doesn't want to disclose where, how and when he obtained it, then is unethical for him to boost his reputation in such a way, because the basic information about a Ph. D. is public information and since he puts up claims of scholarly excellence, he should be able to back them up. G.
  13. Wizard Wang Liping?

    Styrofoamdog - good questions, Song Yongdao - a very sober, unpretentious and down-to-earth answer. I wish all discussion here would be like this. Looking forward for more reliable information. Thank you. G.
  14. John Changs 1st Westerner student

    And what would you call your hysterical and high-pitched reactions quoted below? Mature? The problem is that you still don't get it. If someone puts claims of scholarly excellence and co-operation with reputable academic institutions in order to advertise himself and his enterprise, then it is expected that he will back his claims up. If one refuses to provide evidence for these claims, then it is highly unethical to advertise himself through such means, attract people and above all to take their money. What would you say, if I would start telling you: "Oh, you must believe me, because I have a Ph. D., I am Dr. so and so, but no I refuse to say where and when I obtained these credentials." It is unethical, period. As I said before, in my opinion the notion that preternatural powers are automatically a proof of spiritual maturity and accomplishments simply doesn't hold water. If you deceive people, you are deceiving them, despite all your great powers. Sean Denty, in all your zeal for immortality and powers you forgot one thing. Before one can become a god or immortal one must really be human and humane. An honest and decent person. Let me put the whole thing to rest. I am rather fed up with how certain people try to spin the whole story around David Verdesi. And besides, it's a thread about John Chang. Best, G.