Small Fur

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  1. Taoist Immortal vs Buddha

    Beyond Form and Formless in the Myriad of Dreams In the spiritual traditions, we sometimes speak of the formed and the formless. For many this is the idea of the things they can touch and the things they can’t touch, the things we can see and the things we can’t see- this may be the corporeal body vs. the aether of mind-emotion, for others they are the layers of human structure vs. energy (qi), while for some it may be this world vs. other (metaphysical) worlds, or the mundane condition vs. the existential condition. Whatever your (conscious and unconscious) choice of perspective, as your awareness becomes more subtle, what was once perceived as formless- through increased clarity and awareness, will become formed; and formlessness will take on new dimensions of nuance becoming even more fine… until at last we work on things which are very very fine, things that are very very pure- things which are a part of Nothing. This is the process of refinement to Consciousness- physiologically, psychologically and spiritually, and it happens many times over and over until one comes to completion. So, what you once considered as ‘this’ or ‘that’ will transmute as your experience and perception deepens in nuance and subtly, no matter where your point of reference in understanding began, no matter who you thought you were and what this is. Students, scholars and even some certain spiritual sages may argue with one another because their attachment to experience continues to be rooted in a fixed form- the idea of what is spiritual- be these concepts, rules or structures applied to thoughts, spirits, methods or processes. As this complexity of spiritual knowledge becomes clarified through experiential sense in Consciousness and resolves back in its origin of purity, we discover that the myriad of forms is actually rooted in an incredible simplicity- one that can begin to be directly recognized and understood through samadhi and the passage into non-being: It is not possible to understand the condition of form if we do not know the formless; and it is hard to know formlessness if we cannot recognize the nature of Emptiness. This evolution in Conscious being is an important aspect integral to what it is to experience spiritual transmutation. It is easy to think or imagine the process of transmutation of the Three Treasures in the tradition of Taoism to be different from the process of evolution of psycho-spiritual virtue in enlightened consciousness of the Buddhist tradition because few have fully recognized its essential source within themselves. These inseparable aspects of our ontological process are one and the same even if spoken of in different directions, pointing to seemingly different trajectories: they actually direct to one (non-)thing. It is from this origin that you can come to understand that all those myriads of ways were ever really just one way. It appears as many answers because you are made of the many and think of much, but the truth known by the Enlightened is much more simple, and it is pure. This is why the Buddha “points” and Lao Tzu says “nothing” without desire nor attachment to ‘this or that’, yet both answers arise from a single Consciousness residing in the Empty State. So the Enlightened teaching is actually just one teaching- and ultimately there is only one lesson. From experience and to use the Taoist perspective of terms, I would put this metaphysical spiritual process to Consciousness like this: “A thousand transmutations leads to a single essence whose truth lies in Emptiness” So as you say above, you hear Buddha’s words as a lot of ‘somethings’ and you hear Lao Tzu’s word as one mysterious ‘nothing’, but the reality is a single inspiration of unified light that has no words, for those who are enlightened share One True Consciousness. This is why these teachings are not the practice themselves, yet they are found in and through the practices- and this is also why the deeper key to any form is unlocked through Consciousness (ie. shen, Buddha-nature, the heart) within the formless and not willing formlessness through the formed by mentally and physically practicing entrenched ideas. And this is also why working on your nature and character are every bit if not more important than working on the body. The body becomes what is it in large part because of what you think it is and true transmutation lies beyond cognition to create, dissolve and resolve. This is why you must unlearn yourself to realize, and this is why practice and cultivation are so much more important than debating traditions, teachers and methods. When you approach the potential of a true teaching with fear and doubt, practicing half-heartedly, scattered and full of conflicting desire, then the truth of what that is, who you are and what you do easily becomes obscured. Instead, when your heart and actions are diligent, honest and move deeply in (self)awareness, it becomes easier to sense and know what is true (and therefore also what is untrue) about yourself, about life, and all that appears to be; from this perspective of such honest practice, living and cultivation are the same path to the same origin no matter what form it took. When you come to this in yourself then all the invaluable insights and precious teachings of the Enlightened will no longer be a method or a mystery but a revelation in transcendent experience beyond all manifestations, both ‘formed’ and ‘unformed’ and it will become you.
  2. Taoist Immortal vs Buddha

    Enlightenment is the surpassed threshold into transcendent awareness from which the consciousness begins a process of merging with Source itself. When you experience this, then the terminology used in different traditions dissolves because they never really were. The terms are simply a vessel for delivery, an anchor and a pointer; but its truth is not in its form. So if you want to understand the essential, cultivate yourself from this essential place within yourself: not from the idea of becoming this or that thing out there. Crossing this threshold enters one into the complete spectrum of Consciousness for dissolving impurities- this is experienced by all who have progressed in enlightened wisdom. Each may use their own descriptive term, or select different properties to arbitrarily define qualities of progression, or suggest different methods to practice, but it does not change the essence of the process. Whereas those prior to enlightened being (such as those who have awakened, or those who are leading healthy lives, or even those who are struggling) are trying to rectify and purify themselves from within mundane or more profound understanding, those who cross this threshold are purifying themselves from within the origin of a transcendent awareness. So the entire path, was always and is always one of purification so that what is pure and original may become us unobstructed through all fields of our manifestation. The differences between the enlightened and unenlightened lies in the origin of connection. Purification and consciousness are the two keys- the body is only one of many ephemeral substrates or fields whereby result may manifest and/or be redistributed through energy into material and then back again into energy. Therefore, working on these two keys are the most important and will determine the quality of progression in both method and process. And so to address finite terminology… The thing humans witness as Immortal and the thing humans witness as Buddha are ultimately the same manifestation of One Enlightened Consciousness. From the witness of Xing Dao (the consciousness of the Unnamed Ultimate) there are no longer forms; it is the essence of essence that purifies Being- and the degree to which this refined awareness exists in us depends on our level of completion across this threshold. This means, that Buddhahood and Immortality exist in the same phase of enlightened progression and completion. Here the origin of experience is the same even if some methods of practice through form appear as disparate pathways or processes. The reason for this is because at this phase there is only one Consciousness permeating Being and it is only the residuals of form and/or person in their cleaved multiplicity that appear to have facets which require resolve. Did you think Immortals became so without the wisdom of Buddhahood? Did you not realize that Buddhas are also Immortal? Enlightenment in its wholeness is a completely unified state encompassing and yet transcending all name, so do not let your mind distract you into ideas… But let me this point out: What practical, actual and applied value is this question to the one who has *not come* to this point of experience? What practical, actual and applied value is this question to the one who has *actually come* to this point of experience? The answer to both of these is the same: it is *nothing*. The reason for this may come from two completely different places, yet the origin of why is exactly the same. Therefore, people who sincerely want to cultivate, need not worry about the answer to this. The value of this path is inherent and has little to do with how the world defines it, nor even how you define ‘yourself’. It is not sophistication in intellectual discernment that makes one wise, but discernment of sense beyond sense: this means that the ‘proof’ is not necessarily (exclusively) in the body, nor is it (necessarily only) in the mind; and this is why it is important to continue meditation and cultivation until you can have deep awareness in silence and stillness (from within samadhi) in order to truly understand this. People who are concerned with names, stages, titles and verification processes will take the long path (of hardship) to each (supposedly) arriving stage while (potentially) undermining the very essence of purity within the path. People who struggle to progress along this path and use mind to move energies and orbits are moving through time while attempting to force the nature of phenomena. The more you move through time*, the longer you dwell in karma. Ultimately there is no time in the enlightened state- it is beyond immediacy and in us it is found through the most profound Presence. We are all capable of accessing this timelessness. Do not thwart your own progress by falling prey to the ego’s desire for achievement and go picking at Buddhas over Immortals, this light body or over that light body: care more for your own heart (the seat of wisdom and shen from which the light of Consciousness emerges through form), for goodness and for honesty (the Virtues necessary for Immortality and Buddhahood), for self-understanding (the deep self-reflection that becomes the turning of the light): then you will know light beyond all body while in this very body. You will best afford yourself every opportunity to taste the great fruit through the diligence of humble practice. Therefore, ‘for every one line you read, do ten practices’. This is all that truly matters. And a final note, for some of the people on this forum who say they are not concerned with enlightenment: The essence of why this forum is possible is because those who came to enlightenment shared their wisdoms of the path in all its many forms and methods, and because they continue to hold this light so that all other beings may flourish. That you are drawn to this, that you live at all- this makes you integral to the spiritual progression that is this existence, even in all its mundane guises of form. The light of Buddha is in all of our hearts, in all of our bodies, in all of this universe. You may not think you wish for nor have care to strive for this omnipresent recognition, but do allow yourself this opportunity for such true peace, for such pure love and for this liberation; for this wisdom and grace is beyond any form of thought, body or practice you will ever do- yet it may become all that you do if you open your heart and awareness towards it. In every Being is the Immortal Buddha and so may you know it as yourself. *Note that metaphysical travel to other dimensions may appear timeless or even be timeless but those places are not the form of non-eternality I am pointing to
  3. OP Question: Is internal kungfu knowledge deliberately hidden? My answer given above directly answers your question in a totality of breath and depth. But in case a more specific answer would benefit some, it is this: People who dwell in secrets think things can be hidden. People who dwell in the sacred understand what can be seen.
  4. How do we know who is a true teacher? What makes someone a true student? Every human is field of energy that originates from Nothing. Any student at any moment can see through a teacher and realize truth. A student whose mind is mundane observes falsity and cannot discern whether a teacher is true. A student that sees deeply can see through the falsity within a teacher. A student who is obscured will sit before a true teacher and will create an infinite number of illusions. A student who sees truly will sit before a true teacher and see through them to realize the Tao. A true student who is a true teacher sits before all people and sees the Tao through all being.
  5. Preface This is a basic post meant as a simple (yet also deep) guide and reminder to living with particular emphasis from the perspective of (jing) conservation. This piece does not talk about methods of jing tonification or replenishment1 which are different though inter-related issues. Rather, this provides foundational philosophy and perspectives with a few guiding lifestyle suggestions to consider in practicing conservation. I will note that many of the suggestions appear basic and they are. Yet most people fail to take care of the roots and the foundations: if you don't take care of the foundation at its roots, any accomplishment you come to at a more advanced level will be built on unstable ground and therefore eventually and likely come to some kind of fail. This includes people who experience aspects of the Void and become fearful of the existential, people who witness Tao and walk away in carelessness or disappointment, people who see some aspect of metaphysical light but cannot access them again or more profoundly, people who find bliss but become drunken, or people who have years and decades of cultivation that just one day simply get up and walk away in disillusionment, disheartened even given all their progress and effort. So, practitioners who come to resolve and completion on this path are people who care for and attend to the most basic until each succession of what is basic becomes what is fantastical to the novice. This is what makes the understanding deep, rich and profound; this is what allows it to become complete and enduring; this how existence transcends itself to become immortal. So, it is encouraged that after you read this, you take the time to assess what additional and specific changes you could make in your life to commit to improving your vitality- not only physiologically but also psychologically (which has more implication upon shen- the spiritual aspect of consciousness that resides with each yin organ (including zhi shen). Then as you regularly apply and assimilate these commitments into your life, consciously reflect upon how you can both broaden and deepen your understanding so as to refine your methods over time. Do this for the rest of your life. Every one who goes deep starts from a beginning over and over again, but what is the beginning becomes something completely anew with each successive cleansing and resolve, and what is basic in time becomes deep and profound if you are astute, diligent and sincere. As per usual and with few exceptions, I rarely post to a thread more than once. For those who continue this thread, please be mindful- post with generosity and take care that you words and ideas are posted with intention for benevolence. Share thoughtfully what you feel you know in yourself to be of value and benefit. Be as truthful as you understand while being kind. When we cultivate in ourselves strong yi (yi- spirit of the spleen organ whose virtue is intention), we can create greater shen for all beings (shen- spirit of the heart whose virtue is awareness and consciousness). ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Reference Notes for the following reading: Jing- is the primordial essence of existential potential and the root of vital energy. It also is one of the Three Treasues integral to the transmutation processes of internal alchemy. [Note that jing itself is not a tangible substance- though it becomes most notably the substance of semen and ovum; but as iterated above, it is an essence first and foremost before it transmutes into additional forms of (post-natal) qi.] Jing's associations are as follows, primarily because it manifests through the Water phase of the Kidneys: (thus these are direct notes about the Water element and Kidney organ as they relate to jing, but not necessarily directly about jing itself. Understanding the elemental phase from which jing arises and/or is associated is helpful to guiding health and living principles) Wu Xing Phase is: Water Housed in the Yin organ: Kidney Spiritual Axis and Stage: Heart (shao yin) Mother of: Wood Child of: Metal Seasonal phase: Winter Associated Gland: Adrenals Tissue governance: Bone Orifice opening: Ears Flavor quality: Salty Color of light: Blue Emotion: Fear Virtue: Faith Shen Spirit: Zhi Other terms Chong mai- the central channel deep within the core of the body running from perineum to crown that passes through the Triple Burners where primary subtle transmutations occur Shen- spirit, and for the purposes of this post refers to any one of five spirits that govern the yin organs of the body Principles of Conservation in Action and Non-Action The principle of conservation is a simple one, yet can be exceptionally sophisticated and deep. Pertaining to Jing, it is to prevent leakage and loss in each moment on a daily basis so that one can: -have vital essence from which to live a healthy, vibrant life -manifest the infinite potential in the ming of xing from jing (must be done in concert with Yuan Shen in wei wu wei from the Unnamable) -prolong existence so as to continue cultivation towards greater Consciousness (also known as part of the transmutation process of the The Three Treasures) [Notice that if you read these three points about why we conserve jing it is not so we can have egoic power to live forever, have more fun and attain more magical states- this isn't a celebrity contest to be novel and have a forever good time. Which isn't to say it isn't mystical and unimaginably beautiful- but it is also a sacred process and I encourage that those who have these kinds of feelings continue to work on their minds and hearts, to deepen their 'spiritual maturity'. It takes a combination of great fortitude, humility and wisdom to come to recognize this path for all that it is, let alone fulfill it through yourself. This in turn requires a depth of essence inherent to what manifests as the virtues of diligence, integrity and heartfelt courage. So every time you feel these stirrings of superiority, grandiosity, passionate zeal and desire, or conversely feel deep doubt, have reservation or fear your capacity- let it all go and just keep moving inherently, deeply, sincerely and unceasingly from the most essential place you know in yourself.] Just as jing can be conserved with awareness, diligence and care, it can also be lost through unconsciousness, wastefulness and careless expenditure, especially those that go above and beyond our most basic and foundational energy. In modern life, the propensity towards excess in living automatically leads to imbalance that can cause deficiency at a deeper physical and energetic level in the body, leading to disease manifested as aging and ultimately death. Three most basic, daily and common ways you can immediately begin working to conserve jing from the perspectives of: LIFESTYLE WELLNESS AND BALANCE: Be balanced and moderate in actions; do not over exert. For instance, do not work long hours, over-think, over exercise, stay up late, allow your emotions to be become stressed or upset. Do not consume caffeinated or high sugar drinks or foods to push your body to function beyond their basic healthful limit- this pulls energy from your reserves and taxes the adrenal system- the adrenals which are the glands of the kidneys and thus this will cause jing to be extracted. Do not indulge regularly in addictive substances- in most cases, the condition of 'getting high' draws from the jing and pushes out our reserves so that people can experience sensational phenomena through uncontrolled (and therefore not fully conscious) altered states (if you want to know bliss, god, and unceasing beauty, learn to find it from within naturally through your own heart and Consciousness. Through transcendent wisdom in meditation one comes to understand this beyond all measure and through all moments in ways that no drug, medicine or supplement can compare). Eat on time, and eat moderately so that you do not have to draw from the reserves from your body and so that the process of qi creation through the chong mai are not depleted progressively as it transmutes through each of the three burners. Drink a plentiful amount of clean fresh, vibrant water through out the day.2 Note: -as said in Taoism, "the highest good is like water" (implications which are both literal but also progressively energetically subtle, nuanced and deep) -the body is made almost entirely of water -all the jin ye (heavy and light) fluids of the body require fresh water to function -the kidney itself is the water organ in the wu xing phase To the degree that you think your life is 'too busy' or that 'you must' do certain things or that you feel your situation demands your extra energy to succeed, achieve or survive re-assess your perspective, remember that everything you do in life is a choice- even if some choices are difficult to make. Consider more deeply or profoundly what is essential- essence being not of the body or ideation of the mind, but of the yuan (original) in the universe. If you are a woman, until you learn the secrets to healthily cease menstruation (this is NOT the same as going into menopause- contrary) take care of your health so that your hormones are balanced during the moon phase and that your bleeding is fresh, bright and minimal. Menstruation and blood are in many ways for women analogous to the treasure of what jing is in men, so you must learn to conserve blood loss and smooth emotions/ hormones while purifying the menstrual blood. Menstrual blood that is dark, thick, heavy or excessive are signs of serious health issues in Chinese medicine and need to be addressed through lifestyle and dietary changes as well as with a trained practitioner. If you are perimenopausal, know there are ways- however rare but entirely possible, to restart your period. If you are late into menopause, then all the same lifestyle suggestions here apply but in particular you will be benefited by healthful methods of tonification because as noted later below, within most degrees generally and practically, it takes energy to make energy- so more tonification in this case will help with conservation, particularly if you can nourish the blood and focus on qi gong for the liver and breasts. SEXUAL INTIMACY AND HEALTH: When sexually engaging do so consciously, from a place of generosity and in mutual reciprocity where there is a foundation of clear, healthy trust and intimacy. Abstain from sexual behavior that is objectified, sexualized in action, thought and/or emotion whether it is with another person, a projection or image of another. The act of sexualization and/or objectification leads to perpetuation of leakage out the kidneys, eyes and penis- not only during masturbation or ejaculation, but upon mental and emotional provocation as well. Do not engage in random, casual or ungenerous and selfish sexual behaviors alone, with a partner or through 'fantasy' this reduces the opportunity for natural dual-circulation that can help heal and replenish the body, heart and subtle energy systems at the least and at the worse can increase the potential for deep hurt and harm to yourself and others, individually, inter-personally and collectively. To the degree that you suffer from forms of sexual addiction or unconscious habituation (ie. wanting sex out loneliness or emptiness; for vanity, control or power; viscerally unconscious base desires, etc), remove all forms of sexual stimulus from your life until you come to understand what is actually 'sexuality' free from socialized or unconscious base impulse. Instead, focus your attention on healthful life things. When you feel a strong urge or have a strong reaction to something- stop and bring great awareness to yourself. If you are in a healthy and secure relationship, make sure sharing intimacy is done in conscious presence with a mutually open heart and in generosity to each other. This alone if done with enough genuine care, will allow for a certain potential or opportunity for dual-circulation and/or at least mutual health even if neither persons entirely can recognize, sense or understand its technical processes. If you are abstaining from sexual engagement all together make sure that you are resolved. Without true resolve around the matter, conditions of stagnation and turbidity are likely to accumulate whether this is through suppression, repression, or other unconscious desire and fear. For health, flow, and to prevent negative accumulation, continue some measure of circulation until the system is fully purified; meaning in most cases that ejaculating (or some other more subtle clarified form if you are more advanced in your practice) on a rare occasion- will prevent imbalances to various layers of the system, including negative build-up and injury from excess, or conversely depression and increasing weakness in the body. Until the layers of the system are replete with shen to naturally circulate and refine the jing unaided, some measure of continued physical flow through the genital from a sacred inner place can be beneficial. The point in any case is to not simply abstain or not abstain from unconsciousness- be this a mindless procedure of discipline, fear or desire, listlessness or lust. MENTAL-EMOTIONAL and SPIRITUAL WISDOM: Find peace and faith; learn to release fear and do not engage doubt. (Note that not engaging doubt does not mean to relinquish discernment nor does it mean to have either blind faith nor harbor distrust) Fear is the emotion of the kidney that drains the organ's energy and source of jing. Doubt or the lack of faith (not meant from so much from a Western perspective but from the Taoist perspective of lacking trust in the mundane and existential mysterious) are opposing forces to the virtue of zhi- the spirit of the kidneys. People who live in perpetual fear and (particularly existential) distrust have a propensity to exert there will inappropriately (either forcing situations or giving up. As a side note, I also often observe greater levels of procrastination in those who have a constitutional predisposition to water) and cause harm to jing and more importantly, the zhi shen itself. Symptoms of these imbalances include feeling 'frozen' by fears, lacking faith about the course of things in your or other people's lives, doubting the potential of the existential, in yourself and in others; these are highly dangerous and harmful perspectives that come from a lack of clarity in the (organ) spirits. In fact, for so many the unfulfilled life, the unfilled dream, the doubt in whether this (spiritual) path is possible or true, is so integral to these emotions and perspectives. So when we look at jing from a more essential perspective of essence and spirit rather than purely as (post-natal) qi, we come to recognize that how we orient our mind, heart and spirit- and thus our perspective to existence can deeply impact our essence, and thus our actions and the outcomes of our life- including existence and non-existence, life and death. Among other practices, two of the most powerful to target the nature of the kidney and zhi is to dutifully practice 1) deep self-reflection in all moments- particularly when you experience fear or feel deep doubts and 2) to learn meditation that develops the capacity to listen into the silence of Nothing. Remember that the ears are the orifice of the kidneys and that deep self-reflection is the movement between the spiritual poles of kidney and heart. In time, once you have arrived at a certain successive mastery of these very basic life actions, go back to the foundation of the applied philosophy and move deeper. That is: Be still internally (in the spiritual and at the utmost, true stillness requires internal silence, the state of sung, and arrives through wisdom found through meditation), while in vibrant circulation (circulation which was once discrete circuits of the mundane body of qi as well as physical actions and behaviors in living; now becomes the movement of essences and treasures- including jing, and then eventually what is beyond essence and is radiant). When you can make living the same as conservation, the issue of either conditions will resolve and be no longer. Thus, refine your understanding of what it means to not-strive, be moderate, and to be free of desire and fear until your recognition is no longer mundane, until the energetic system and its spirits (the shens) do not move from unconscious impulse and until you are free of all notions that lead to such impulses- not only now in this life time and this moment, but across all planes and dimensions that are the field of time, space and dimension that become the thing you experience to be body and spirit. This is how we cleanse the 'karmic' to prepare the 'body' for the utmost forms of profundity. ------------- Footnotes and Miscellaneous Note: Note to cultivators who are middle-aged or later in life and/or those who are sincere and exceptionally serious in progressing along this path: If you are starting this process now, I suggest that in addition to the above, spend as much leisure time focusing on cleansing and/or purification as the means to actually conserve. Without a properly pure and bright system at all levels, jing can only be cultivated so far- so in order to go deep, you must make sure the system is very clear. The later one starts this process and/or the more accumulation a person has to work through (whether this is mental, emotional, physical or karmic) the more complex it is to minimize the loss of jing over time and thus hinder decline. This is because, if nothing else, as people age they have a phsyiological propensity toward less and less resources within themselves to achieve daily functions and balance, therefore all living increasingly must draw on the foundation of vital jing (rather than post-natal stomach and spleen) qi to act and survive, and eventually even down to the Sea of Marrow (these are bone and blood systems in Taoist medicine). Because the deeper process of systemic purification requires an intense energy of focus and application- particularly if it involves the density of physicality, in order to cultivate a more ascendant form and to refine and transmute more subtle energies, it actually requires a lot of energy. So it takes energy to make energy- energy which you may have less of depending on your constitution and/or level of health if you are deficient or burdened. (Note that once the system reaches are certain level of purity, the system will circulate in a more optimal manner and then this principal changes in certain deep and nuanced regards) Therefore, it is best to spend all time devoting energy to caring for your energy: spend your jing wisely! 1 True jing replenishment and tonification- that is what is deep and substantial enough to make an impact that is profound and lasting enough for transmutation, exceptional longevity or immortality; only truly begins after one has sufficient mastery of conservation in their living and adequately purified the system to the degree where shen and aspects of shen can begin to guide the process. Notice here that people who talk of subtle orbital circulation as a mental-physiological procedural process of qi have not realized True Nature (xing) and that spiritual maturity, greater depth and more profound realization is required to fulfill this process clearly and truly. 2 Regarding Water: those who have cultivated to a very advanced level will note that the start and end phases of all existential processes in the system begin and end with water, breath, and light- so water, like breath and shen, are core to cultivation. Students of mine who in early phases are dismissive when asked to take inventory of how much water they drink through out a day, trivialize a core aspect of the foundational root and thus foolishly jeopardize their potential towards more profound cultivation- not so much exactly because of this one thing, but because of the totality of their perspective in depth and breadth that leads to continually misguided perception born from unconsciously entrenched notions. There is a lot of Western conception that objectifies water into a mere mundane scientifically discrete particle and so much emptily spoken rhetoric around 'drink X ounces of water a day' that others hear the mere suggestion and automatically dismiss it as trite at some level while superficially nodding in agreement at its importance to one another at another level. Deep listening means the potential for deep recognition. Deep recognition leads eventually to profound understanding. And in time, that leads to wisdom; if you can do this in all moments, through all things, your understanding of what is existence and its manifestations will change beyond all conception. Take that to heart. And recognize that what is wise, is often simple. Be so humble so as to be sincere when being basic. Strive less to achieve all Taoist advancements yet be utterly profound in your sincerity and inherent in your diligence and you will surpass any need for stages and levels.
  6. What does tension in the upper jaw mean, what sort of emotional blockage does this area relate to? [I want to note that there are many ways to consider correspondences and interpret conditions in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) which depend on the unique presenting conditions of the patient as well as the perspective of the practitioner, so we can't go off of just generic theory or uncontextualized patient questions (even as I am listing some general points here); understanding this is an important aspect of how TCM defers from Western allopathy; it is not a 'one size fits all' type of diagnostic system, so please read this just as a general reference guide.] The area you reference suggests that this is the masseter muscle which sit between the joint of the mandible below the temporal bone of the skull. It is a delicate area of the face as the lower mandible can easily be dislocated through the misapplication of pressure (meaning one should exercise great caution when working on this area) as it is held together by only four muscles: the masseter, the temporalis, and the medial and lateral pterygoid . Generalized stress is a common cause of tension for this area but with repeated or ongoing issue, it can develop into Tempro-manidular Jaw Disorders (TMJD). Common symptoms of TMJ/TMI/TMJD are: popping or clicking of the jaw, sporadic headaches, and pressure changes and pain in the ear leading to tinnitus. Long-term issues can include such conditions as: chronic head pain, difficulties operating the jaw due to 'locked' jaw affecting a person's ability to eat or speak, facial tenderness and pain radiating downwards along the neck and shoulder area (which in turn can cascade and lead to other muscular, bone and joint alignment issues though out the body). In TCM this is classically a problem related to an imbalance in the liver. San Jiao (gallbladder and small intestine meridian) directly passes through this area. A common needle insertion point for this condition is Gallbladder 2 as this a local treatment point that sits in the depression of joints near the ear. Generally speaking we could say that Liver/Gallbaldder, Stomach/Spleen and an element of digestive fire as it relates to sorting (including emotional sorting) are inter-related correspondences to this condition.The emotions I predominantly see in TMJD are a repressed anger of wood hun and feelings of worry, hurt or anxiety related to the earth functions of the stomach and spleen (but also any or all other emotions associated with the elements, as hun shen cares for all spirits of emotions). In my clinical experience, people who harbor resentment toward others, people who are fiercely angry or jealous underneath, as well as people with dual-diagnosis (meaning they have a mental health condition combined with a substance abuse disorder) or patients with PTSD (Post- Traumatic Distress Disorder) often express this as a secondary factor. You mention here that drinking causes the jaw tension to become worse. Again, similar to the milder symptomology involved in dual-diagnosis and the way alcohol poisons the liver, this would suggest a direct correlation between the disharmony of hun spirit to the 'grain spirit' that you are consuming. Many people here are very concerned with complex transmutation processes (ie. jing into qi, into shen) that they do not understand and have yet to consciously experience out of rampant mentality and egoic motivation and therefore fail to take care of the very foundational things that lead to the ability to do such subtle transmutation. If one poisons their body through food and drink, through media, through thought and behavior, then they are immediately and directly harming their shen spirits- thus the corresponding organ and all its associated control functions; this in turn will course through the meridians and in the longer term effect essences (eg. The Three Treasures). Therefore, those who are sincere about tonifying vital energy (jing), circulating energy (qi and blood), and want to refine their consciousness (shen) had best start with doing the very, very basic things of taking care of their health at all levels- be this eatting and drinking cleanly, managing weight, abstaining from exploitive media, managing emotions, working on character/ inner nature, etc.,. It may not sound as glamorous as nei gong, but that is only because people don't understand the spectrum of energy and existence in which life manifests and so are otherwise consumed by distractions of the heart and mind and are led astray by the externalities of illusion. Your example here of drinking, jaw tension and how it relates to liver damage and thus hun (the shen or consciousness of the liver) are a very good and basic example of how important foundational health is to Taoist living; it is a reminder and hopefully a recognition to others that all levels of extremely refined transmutation must grounded in the very simple, basic tangible ways of living a pure embodied life. For additional support, I will add that there are many forms of holistic health therapies you could look in to for this. In specific, some of the ones I would consider for this condition are: myofascial trigger release therapy with an LMT to deal with muscular tension, articulatory readjustment and retraining with a D.C or chiropractor to deal with any physical dislocation and muscular habituation patterns, relaxation practices to address the underlying emotional conditions from a mental or spiritual health practitioner, and acupuncture with an LAc to transform the energetic patterns.
  7. First of all, I have not viewed the link you supplied so I am not addressing the content in there, just your question about the substances themselves and their processes. The "goal" is what you make of it. It's easy to dismiss this, in fact many students when I say something so simple do dismiss this while acting in theoretical courteous agreement - "Of course, right right" they nod their head vigorously, while lazily internally waiting for a seemingly more tangible answer that they really want to hear to be handed to them. The world is full of answers- but what could be better than realizing that all the resource you have to Become already lies within you? This is not a PC statement or a clever statement, it's the transcendent recognition of self beyond illusion and it needs to be taken seriously. This chosen path cannot be resolved in understanding to transcendence by those who need mental answers and desire social satisfaction, this is the path for those who are able to find true resolve and harmony in being without in every moment- and I mean that in many deep, deep ways. It is not to say that one may not experience forms of measurable change through practice and cultivation, but if you believe these moments of flux to be the arrival of the 'goal' or 'the ultimate' then you will have already seeded misunderstanding in the experience that you just 'grasped'. A profoundly truthful recognition at any level or layer of form is always beyond measure because it transcends the human device even if it can be witnessed in and through us. So students who tell me they want a teacher who will make them feel something specific and tangible, who are thus driven by the experience of phenomena- these are the people who enjoy the perpetuation of phenomena, who ultimately, are afraid to be without. And these are the same people who easily fall prey to strong intellectual minds and are seduced by imagery (ie. academics, powerful and persuasive egos, the look of monastic robes, fancy romantic tai chi moves, amazing displays of qi projection, etc.,.), who get caught up in their own emotionality of fantastical occurrences (ie. psychotropic drugs, mystical occurrences, impactful collective experiences, etc.,.), and who continue to crave affirmation to espouse validation (ie. credentialing, titles, audience recognition, etc.,) and thus are easily led astray and seduced by persons, groups and experiences seemingly more prestigious and enlivened than they actually perceive themselves to be. This is the weakness of insecurity and highlights the importance of doing the internal work necessary for a deep self-knowing... after all, from what source do you think immortality and enlightenment arises- somewhere outside of yourself? is it just floating somewhere in the universe of dimension? do you think a school will grant you a title and in that moment it becomes so? will society thinking you are a guru make it true? do you mistake the heavens for the Unnamble Source? So no matter what your lineage, who your teacher is, in order to walk this path truly, it must come from a guidance deeper and even more profound than the thing you think to be yourself. There are levels of exploration that can be done in the comaraderie of peers, or for the joys of health, etc.,. and in some of those exploratory or beginning stages, the simple practice of tai chi, qi gong, or basic knowledge of Taoist esoterics can provide an excellent foundation. For those who are are committed, there is incredible benefit to be had through selecting an area of study with great depth beyond a general workshop or class- at this stage learning must be continuous and your lifestyle reflective of each piece of knowledge; thus diligence and discipline are required. At later stages (and by late, I do not mean external progression, but internal: who you are, not what you have yet appeared to do or not do- this is about a maturity of sincerity), a private mentorship with a true teacher and the appropriate application of meditation can be profound. Thus the level, school, teacher or lineage you select may affirm to yourself the level with which you are ready to understand- assuming that instruction meets the substance of your willingness. Those who walk the true path deeply have already seeded in themselves a profound honesty- an honesty that will help them select or discover a true teacher, they will be sincere in their willingness and because of this they will arrive and know in concert with the Tao in their own time, not even because of their true teacher or a great lineage, but because of who they are. So the answer to this question is not for someone to tell you, not for the thing called "Taoism' to decide, or even your teacher. You come to the teaching because you are ready. And what you select- in consciousness and in ignorance, will continue your chosen path. Ultimately, the true substance is not found in any matter of phenomena- you will discover once you arrive there that even the substances of these Treasures in their most pure essence are so subtle, that they too nearly surpass anything which could give it name, including their own given names. When you are transmuting, in some ways, the pathway doesn't matter. I say this in part because you will notice that each school or scholar talks about the order slightly differently and yet each is still possible. The orders are different simply because of the starting point that is chosen. Since the substances and mechanisms are entirely inter-related and inter-dependent, one will not go without having at least some affect upon the other- the degree and quality of effect dependent on the quality of teaching and practice. The most basic understanding is to know that the energetic physiology of the physical system begins at the root- so this is jing and moves through the triple burner converting pre- and post- natal essences into qi through the middle dan tien before it arrives in the upper dan tien to nurture shen. This is the foundation of formations from the energetics of the mundane, especially when we are looking at how post-natal processes enable human life. However, even our systems exist in layers and dimensions, so again, the understanding of point of origin needs to be guided by a greater sense than just human dictates and esoteric sciences. If you arrive in Original Consciousness, this will make sense (if you follow my posts, you will notice that they are focused on shen and not jing. There are many reasons for this but an essential one being that you can worry about the form all day, but the form really only becomes whatever it is because of our quality of Consciousness- form is ephemeral and transient, its only purpose or value is as a vessel to enable Consciousness in its many manifestations, hence this is why immortality is possible. So even if the root of the energetic body is in jing medically speaking, the root of both form and formless of any manifestation and its capacity for transformation is ultimately found in (yuan) shen. Hence, immortality only has the potential to begin after passing through the threshold of enlightened strata). Thus, though the wealth of the post-natal substance can be arrived at through intense focus in still fortification and drive in conservation, as well as substantive knowledge of the medicines to enable longevity- to the degree that you are moved beyond having a substantively healthy form, you will begin to explore what is 'original'- the yuan. Here, at this point, there can be no "goal", as you spoke of. If you put the goal before you, you will obscure the very thing you seek. To be able to transmute and recognize what is so pure, requires that you have come to a peace of mind, heart and form. Desire must be arrested and greatly diminished if not entirely extinguished. What is pure is not tainted by semblances. Thus the pre-natal essence becomes through not only the principles of health that guide the bounty of rightful mortal living but also the processes of purification and release- here is where one starts the process of truly being without. Being without may be reflected in form, but more importantly is the source of your understanding and orientation to form, so that form in its infinite manifestations is immaterial from within the perspective of those who reside in Nothing. Caring for the Three Treasures exclusively in the post- or pre- natal state does not automatically guarantee that each will affect the other condition entirely. There are many, many factors that influence what is longevity and immortality and how it manifests in an individual including the stage of life in which they begin their cultivation, the overall path of their soul across time and space, their existing quality of health and clarity at the time the cultivations begin; and at later stages- the choice of manifestation they select, the depth of embodiment, the core of their focus, their ability to influence time and space including that of their own soul or 'karma' , as well as how strong deep and pure their spirit is in connection to Yuan Shen and Tao. In general, those that have mastered nothing, need to just focus on good quality health and greater self-awareness, in short, being a good human being and becoming a more self-aware person; they can further their being through substantive theory and disciplined practice. Those that are able to cultivate longevity will not only have attained requisite knowledge, but live in an applied understanding and thus will set the later stage to begin the purification process. While those who began this lifetime in a state of purity, will likely have automatically attained a measure of longevity and can begin the process of the Golden Seed. Most people are in some complex mixture in between and all people will benefit from the understanding of the care of form more foundationally, while self-reflecting upon their spirit through forms of meditation no matter the semblance of their stage. I want to offer that those who are later in life and/or have not been regular in their practices, who feel that they may be behind or think they would fail to complete milestones in cultivation (ie. perhaps because of health issues, trauma, past transgressions, or simply because they feel so exceptionally 'ordinary', etc.,.) and thus are resigned to lesser 'achievements'- do not doubt and do give up: live every moment as deeply and completely as you know how in health, awareness and self-cultivation- for this is the way of every Being who has ever come into immortality- they realize the eternality of the moment and they live accordingly, for there is only this moment to be and become. Remember too, that from a much greater existential perspective the path of your spirit is non-linear, so all that you give to this moment transcends this exact place and time. This is one of the understandings you can come to realize and (yes, palpably- lol) experience when you reside deeply in presence. So do not look to a later time to become, do not assume impossibilities from fear and doubt. Carry a light heart, be present, live honestly: always. ----- And so as for speaking, the next time you post a question to the forum ask yourself why you ask at all. Ask yourself what is worth knowing and why. Ask yourself to the utmost of the self you know, what is the answer. Then stop. Be still. Listen as infinitely long as it takes to understand- that is meditate and live in meditation- not dream, not human ideas of peace, but deep still inner awareness penetrating the silence. Be willing to move in both the knowledge and mystery that becomes each moment of what you are. Be content not to understand, instead be an honest person- discover whether your own questions are sincere, because the honesty of your understanding in reply depends on the quality of your sincerity in asking. Students and practitioners who do not recognize answers through the very simplicity of nature and being in the everyday, will limit their own understanding even when presented with the most profound of direct teachings. The answers are everywhere; existence in itself is an answer if you can recognize it and even more so, if you can penetrate it: there is only you who has yet to discover your own capacity to truly realize and become.
  8. How does suffering come to be

    Question: How does suffering come to be? There is a world of people born into the most dire circumstances. Take the millions that live in slums. What is that? ---------Answer--------- How does suffering come to be? There is circumstantial suffering- the external conditions of life that appear unfavorable in their hardships and challenges. And there is personal suffering- the internal perspectives and perceptions that feel like hardships and challenges. The two experiences intertwine in perpetuation of a condition that we can more singularly and basically call “suffering”. Suffering arises when we lose connection to Consciousness. Another way to say this is that when we are not present or when we are not in alignment with Consciousness itself, we suffer. From within that perspective of personal suffering we create more circumstantial suffering and in that generally created suffering, more suffering is created for the individual… again and again. This perpetual reverberation can happen in a moment, for years, over decades… across lifetimes. Thus, suffering is as much a perspective, as it is a state or experience: its myriad of manifestations is one continuous perpetuated movement born of unconsciousness through the lack of awareness in presence. What is presence? True Presence engenders a certain self-mastery in non-reactivity and peaceful resolve: this basic capacity for ‘arresting the spirit’ creates the opportunity for stillness and emptiness that allows for a pure awareness to move through our system. When we are consciously non-reactive, we are not motivated by fears or desires. When we are truly resolved there is no perpetuation because we have transcended the conditions we thought to be discordant in their diverse facets, and so we recognize the simple harmony in peacefulness. Ultimately, presence is the depth of integrity in alignment to Conscious through each moment of our being and that allows for effortless action. Thus, when one is able to be truly present, life is no longer a smorgasbord of emotional reactions to experiences. Instead, one becomes a grounded, embodied, engaged and present witness from within the simplicity of Beingness itself. When you recognize existence from a place of essence, the myriad of fictions resolve themselves in a simplicity from which the experience of suffering is extinguished from within. What can I do to stop suffering? Therefore, concern yourself less with the unconsciousness that is suffering, as the questions are as endless as their diverse manifestations. That attention to suffering can itself be an unconsciousness in motion and it is the way of the 10,000 creations, not the resolve of the One or the Nothing. Instead, choose to engage the light of Consciousness continuously; learn to perceive its unconditional omnipresence through all things, including: all conditions, all people and in yourself. The practice of cultivating this awareness is integral to how we ‘turn the light’ in ourselves and in unison with existence through reflective consciousness- not only deeply and formlessly from within the specifics of profound meditation, but also generally in living and in connection to all of life through ourselves. This practice of being in the light is the process of applying awareness through presence. As a starting point, come to recognize and sense the light in yourself, in experience and in others: hold this light (shen) through all things as you move through the world. This initially can take the form of ‘clearing and cleansing the path’ (the refinement of yin so that the yang shen can emerge) through releasing old resentments and the harbor of unnecessary forms of discrimination, the healing of old wounds, transforming patterns of stress and illness in the body, ceasing harmful consumption like violent or exploitive ‘entertainment’; to increasing or ‘tonifying’ your health and awareness through things like deep and honest self-reflection, eating cleanly and living healthfully, maintaining soft and kind eye contact, allowing for more heart-to-heart connection in daily interaction, realizing more specific gratitudes, expressing greater feelings of love and appreciation, moving from an inner softness quietness and stillness even when moving fast in the external world, sharing more generosity in compassion, or allowing for more freedom in joy as we move ourselves away from the unconscious habituation to misery.* [Take the time to read these guiding points less from the conceptual idea of specific blunt mechanical actions to take, but rather make time to experience each potential as a sense in yourself; then as you become more conscious of each movement and expression, continue to refine how it is you are. As we turn the light, we refine ourselves. So too can we do this from within the subtle essences of qi, but also can we do so from the coarse condensation of qi as form and form in motion. This is how we become subtle- in mind, in breath, in movement and in sense. So re-read these pointers and self-reflect upon them as a sense in yourself- what do they feel like in your heart, in your body, in your spirit? Learn from the undiscriminating mind of sense by becoming more self-aware of how you live in stillness and in action, internally and externally.] Then eventually as we relinquish even the desire for pleasure and beauty and move into a greater awareness, we can experience the true undifferentiated essence of nature in being: we can experience our own soul; we can experience Consciousness itself. ------ *Note: conversely, do not to use pleasures or beauties as a way to escape, assuage, project or otherwise delude yourself away from truthfulness or you will be using pleasure for unconsciousness instead of misery for unconsciousness. The transcendence of these two unconscious ways is found in the willingness for truthfulness that comes from presence.
  9. Cultivating the Golden Seed

    Prefacing Note On behalf of those who may benefit from this question as part of a distinct thread, and in the case that the original poster of the question would like to further their thoughts, I am moving this question here to its own thread. Though I am the originator of this post, I do not intend on hosting the thread since I seldom respond to a thread repeatedly. So this is a welcome open space for reading and sharing by those who have deep accurate intellectual knowledge or clear experiential understanding in Consciousness on the matter and are moved to share from its essence. If you are newly with seed and posting about the matter at any time, remember that what you say contains the sacred. Therefore, the post does not need (and could be harmed by) explicit vital detail, rather it needs your transmission. Therefore, speak from the place of what is essential. And If you are someone who has been in process for a while, welcome to you… welcome all. —————— How We Must Live and Become To Develop the Immortal Fetus Prior to the development of the Immortal Fetus, cultivation is usually necessarily multi-faceted and must take place on a variety of planes and dimensions within and through the individual- this can involve not only various internal and external alchemical practices, meditation, regular and deeply integrated lifestyle wellness practices and habits, but more importantly, the development of one’s consciousness and connection to such Consciousness itself. What is often overlooked during this process are the fundamentals of character and perspective, and the importance of how Being is refined through the very ordinary and unglamorous mundane of the seeming day-to-day. In this way, many of the precepts of virtues and methods extolled in Buddhism (though also spoken of in Taoism but are less accessible) can be readily practiced as a way of guiding the process to new birth. The recognition of Essence and Nothing through the baseness in living is the cultivation of form and formless, and its reconnection in purity to Original Essence and Spirit will ensure the natural development of the Golden Seed when: -an individual’s mundane process is sufficiently fulfilled (this contains within it an aspect of Ming which is not often understood correctly or completely) -the whole of the system is adequately refined (this refers to more than only the corporeal body) -and there is continuous proper spiritual alignment in integrity to both your own soul and the Tao itself Fundamentally Spiritual Consciousness Inspires Creation, and Proper Form Allows for it In my personal experience, the physiological processes of alchemy are secondary to one’s Nature: the importance of this is profound. In fact the capacity of our physiology for subtle energetic refinement is part of an inter-dependent process originating firstly from our own spirit which is then expressed often through mind and emotion. Therefore, our own spirit, character and consciousness refines the body, and in doing so, the energies of the body in return continue to refine the understandings of spirit, mind and emotions. Remember that mind, emotions and spirits are also just energies, so at its foundation, this is a cyclical process of energy refining energy, and the source inside yourself making this possible to the level of profundity required for the Golden Seed has to come from direct connection to your own Spirit. (If you are looking at this process through the lense of Taoism, recognize that things like ‘energy’, ‘connection’, ‘alchemy’ and ‘spirit’, are not ephemeral metaphysical concepts- that is, they may be conceptually abstract, but these are technical substances and therefore to willfully manage the process you must have an in-depth knowledge of its mechanisms, it cannot be lay knowledge- whether it comes about organically through awareness and Consciousness, or you came to know it through academic study, or guided mentorship, it doesn’t matter: your experiential understanding must be substantive enough to allow for clear, honest and refined distinction. So therefore and for instance, for those who experience and think Qi is just one thing, and that the Tai Ji are simply two different things- you need more foundational intellectual and experiential insight to progress as deeply as is required for the development of the Golden Seed). Ultimately, it is less about the perfection (of the maya/illusion) of ‘form’ and more about the purity of spirit and its connection to origin that allows for the transcendental changes and formations such as this. The body then is a vehicle for deliverance, so to speak, and the reason so many people begin with cultivation of the body is because the body is for many an obstacle. But when form is no longer an obstacle (meaning that without identifying with the body that you can still be firmly rooted in it and know the methods to care for it very well. If you can do this free of anxiety and fear, and do not consider such existence a misery or burden regardless of circumstance, then you will have transcended the fear that is death and living, and have found peace through the simplicity in being. This will allow for more subtle sensitivities to develop in your awareness.)- not even because of its supposed materiality but more because of your quality of awareness through perspective and experiential understanding of what form actually is, then this allows the energies to flow in greater harmony and resonance with not only your life, but with the universe and eventually the Unnamable itself. Ultimately the incubation of the immortal fetus and its development cannot be conceived nor its process complete without the necessary depth of clarity and connection to spirit and what is prior to essence: this can only be understood by one whose nature is not only truly clear but also has become consciously and truthfully simplified. In addition to the processes of deep and essential inner transformation that allow for the conception, one must already have consciously connected to the Unnamable, so this witness cannot be a happenstance glimpse. Thus, this connection has to be deeper than just an Awakening or even a series of Awakenings, and it is more subtle than the metaphysical- so for those who have had fantastic experiences of light, of emotional feelings of beauty and gratitude, of angels and heavenly beings, or time and space, or energy and kundalini- viewed from the Utmost, these are just other facets of the 10,000 things in its myriad of display. As this is a co-creative process between you and Consciousness itself, you must already be not only in witness but in relationship. Caring For the Golden Seed in the Early Stages without a Teacher Once you are seeded, the development process is not as complex as the various specific instructions may sometimes feel or appear (though they are very sophisticated in their simplicity). If you have come to this point of bearing the seed, then you will have already recognized the simplicity in essential nature and its condition of movements unobscured. In many ways, it is then simply a continuation of this wisdom through yourself from the depth of the Void. The self is a simply a container, and in right connection, there will be natural right movement and thus right development. If at this stage if you are without a teacher, then you will recognize that the two most important guiding points here are actually one and the same: 1) In your living, be in Source unobscured and unceasingly. Always be in alignment with Consciousness through all states, all conditions and at all times. There is no other way to live and it is the only true ‘living’ to be done. To support this, there is also one essential meditation and one essential process in living that I would recommend specifically. 2) In your living be wise- this is not cognitive intelligence, but deeply held wisdom from Source itself. Within this wisdom, practice safety: do not do anything to obscure or harm the natural process of gestation and birthing- see the first point again. (People who are wise are not reckless and have no concern for forms of indulgence. They live plainly, simply and are safe- not from fear, intertia or inhibition; but because they recognize what is truly needed: "Freedom to do what one wants is suffering, freedom to do what one needs is true freedom") Note that if you are without a teacher and/or in any way uncertain about the firing and steaming process, this lack of doing from within Presence is vitally important. Also, the seed in early stages is very fragile and real improper firing is not only a failure of method, but it is actually the (very subtle and insidious) exercise of desire- therefore this would actually be the application of unconsciousness even if you know the technicalities of ‘how’; so do not do it voluntarily without clear transmission. The firing and steaming schedule is not merely a mechanism of physics- at the transcendent level, these are actually methods of Consciousness you are applying. Therefore, they are powerful and must be done with an extremely refined precision from a depth of origin greater than the methods themselves. Either way, during this period, it is best to be in relative or complete peaceful retreat from society, even if you think you are and appear to literally be ‘doing nothing’ at this stage. As with what allowed for its conception inside of you, remember it is not the result that matters, but process, and in right process is contained result. So be at peace regardless of the progress of the fetus, just as you would all things; there is a Consciousness at work of which the fetus is one manifestation; your reverence to any eventuality must transcend even the precious embryo itself… In Source there is never impatience because there never was time; there is never agenda or possession because there was never something to be had. Remember that creation comes from Nothing as wei wu wei. [As an aside to those two main points (and I will not get into the details of why), I would offer that in your humility, give and share in benevolence as the Buddha spoke, if you can and if it is rightly for your path. One of the Three Treasures - sanbao 三寶 in Taoism can also be translated as compassion or love. Know that the spirit residing in each organ is illuminated from the spirits of virtue (known as the Five Virtues- de 德, they are: righteousness, trust, integrity, wisdom and benevolence and they are united in the consciousness that is shen 神)- these are important processes in culmination to the journey of the Ethereal Soul beyond this life time, and they are regardless of all things, worthy of our efforts. Give and share these teachings if it is rightly and you are able to do so from a place of transmission from Source… the world needs perhaps less teachers who know the materials academically and intellectually, and more who can hold true space in deep Nothing through experience.] So as with previous understanding that would have allowed for the seed, your lack of desire in radiant equanimity, your unceasing and sincere diligence, and your ability to remain in Source unobscured (this is actual True Presence) is what will allow for the support, knowledge and wisdom of its completion; the techniques are an intellectual recognition of natural process. While your understanding of its technicalities can help its advance and guidance, whether you are receiving precise information or not, at this level the instruction cannot supercede wisdom itself (known in Taoism as True Knowledge) or you will have prevented the very thing you are seeking to fulfill through improper force rooted in improper intent. Thus True Wisdom must be sustained and foundational through any attempt at practice of the firing and steaming schedule. True Wisdom becomes you when your Original Nature has come to a depth of merging with Source- on the mortal plane, this may take a little time, hence again, practice point number one. Be in that wisdom so what is right may blossom. And from this place of Nothing, you will recognize then that at its utmost, how Consciousness radiating through the illusion of forms is the creation of immortality.
  10. Hun & Po as they relate to Natural Meditation

    In order to understand the following in context, it is first important to have a foundation in Taoist medical knowledge. In order to understand it deeply, then it is important to have meditated enough to have developed the insight necessary to witness and discern the (meta) physics of the subtle anatomy of the human system. Without these two things, it is easy when reading about any Taoist alchemy (as well as the following below), to consider it as some kind of disembodied and entirely ethereal manifestation, and thus believe it to be something nearing mythic proportions or ascribe to it an obscuring amount of romanticism. In reality and fact, when seen clearly at a subtle level, energy systems are concretely discernible forms relative to the seeming emptiness of the universe and they can be organized into sophisticated structures and applied systems. This is why acupuncture works. This is why tai chi, qi gong, nei gong, and all the other manifestations spoken of in Taoism are much more profound than merely a theoretical or philosophical posit. That said, realizing distinction in the ascertainable nature of the seemingly subtle and profound in no way makes it less sacred or majestic when experienced in a sincere and deeply benevolent individual. The short answer is that the meridian networks of the body are derived from the primordial essence prior to the heavens and also the celestial systems of the (post) heavens, from which they then manifest on the physiological level- initially through the spirit of the yin organs of the body. The points themselves are actually both formed and shifting portal systems that can be seen, and they traverse time, space and dimension. In this way they are very similar to chakras, though smaller in dimension and their control functions- though not entirely dissimilar, are also quiet different. Thus, the various locale of the points on the body give access to certain geographic dimensions of the universe. In Chinese medicine, many of these points are classed in to categories. In the case of Source Points, they are distributed across the channels of the body on to either the wrists or the ankles, and all connect back the Yuan Jing (Original Essence) of the universe. However by the time these portals open onto the animal body (ie. humans, cats, dogs, horses, etc), they form small pools distinct to the spirit and organ of their associated stream. Each meridian has one Source Point- hence there are twelve, and each of those points contain access to the original, pure state of energetic essence. However, the potential to access these pools deeply cannot be apart from the quality of Consciousness in the practitioner as well as the level of health and Consciousness in the receiving patient. There are many ways to access these points that are equally or more greatly profound than needling, but this depends on the level of skill and Consciousness of the individual and methods involved; that said, even without much awareness or understanding by the individuals involved, needles themselves can still act substantively as a conduit for transmission- the effectiveness of it done at this level being best facilitated through integrity and intent, since there would be a lack of insight and wisdom to ground and infuse the treatment. In general, Source Points can be powerful connections to one’s principal health and I find their simplicity very powerful to restoring the system, especially to clarify the treatment of complex conditions; they are also very beneficial in cases of chronic diseases. Remember too, that disease occurs in more than just the gross body, so one can treat many layers of dimensions of a person and through a person using these and other access points. While one learns many categories of points as a modern practitioner in Chinese medicine, some of the information contained herein is not taught in part because of the historical and political progression of the medicine from ancient times to modern scientific Westernization, and even more deeply so because the knowledge is largely lost except to a rare few who have meditated deeply enough to develop such witness; it is from both of these understandings that I personally share this with you. I will mention that I think even more importantly than knowing the acupuncture points as portals, is the understanding of how they relate to treatment, health and ultimately Consciousness… the latter an issue which is often not recognized and also deeply misunderstood in modern practitioners. I rarely add a second response to any thread on the forum, so I hope that in this case the little bit of insight is useful.
  11. Sexual Jing: Is It Really Limited (?)

    Following in your line of reasoning: 1. The Nature of Qi gong, Intention in Practice and the Essence of Jing. 1A. Qi Gong. Qi gong is the facilitation of energetics to affect the wellbeing of the system. Most forms encompass a great variety of movements aimed at wellness- redirecting energy from all directions in the macrocosm to dynamically merge and facilitate the microcosmic conditions within an individual. These movements address not only organs and meridians, but also infinite conditions in an individual even beyond the energetics. 1B. Intention. If one is teaching or practicing Taoist cultivation from any form of obsession, then this is counter to the principles of method. I would examine in yourself what makes you think an entire system of holistic health and wisdom that has potential to heal any ill condition and tonify or cleanse the body, is somehow exclusively and myopically focused on only one essence, one organ, one source and thus is so limited in it’s scope and methods- because that is what you are (unknowingly) suggesting by saying this. 1C. Jing. It is unfortunate that anyone would perceive such a pure and powerful primordial essence capable of creating and sustaining life as the petty object of the genitals and sex. Jing is not sexual. People through their conditioning make things ‘sexual’; they ‘sexualize’. Though it is true that rejuvenation and consciousness can to be found through forms of intimate merging (eg. dual cultivation), Consciousness itself is not sex and neither are the purities of conscious essence. So jing is not ‘sexual jing’, it is the energy of the pre-heavens that imbue our life with generative force. It can occur through sex, but it is not sex itself. And in fact, jing is more simply gathered and stored without sexual practices, the methods of which can involve many risks when improperly conducted. (Side note: dual cultivation done from a state of sexual desire is one done in ignorance and from misperception of the intended practice.) 2. Conservation and the Lack Thereof. The Taoist principles of illness, health, and consciousness are rooted in the wisdoms of conservation- not just of jing, but also of qi and shen. That is, one should not waste what is essential in themselves. This forum is innundated with males driven by sexual ideations and so they fixate on a very limited recognition of jing, but this is largely a crude concern rooted in one’s own baseness and it limits the true potential prosperity. So much of these desires, fears and their resulting actions are misguided at a deep level by the orientation of one’s perception, maturity and ignorant intention. Rather than come to the depths of their foolery, they insist on it and rush to control what they are losing rather than simply abstain from what produces that loss in the first place. Desire leads to obscurity of essence, spirit and energy, and this in turn leads to death and cyclical rebirthing. In the common person- especially over the course of their lifetime, their very essence into form is increasingly deluded by such acquired consciousnesses (xi shen) to the degree that it forms turbidity, stagnation and ultimately results in waste of the Three Treasures: consciousness (shen), energy (qi), and generative force (jing). This waste is integral to why people age as they do. A person who feeds the Three Corpses (Sanshi 三尸: aka Three Worms, Three Demons) through the harmful wasting of their Three Treasures debilitates themself and dies just a little sooner in each moment. What are the Three Corpses? Thinking, emotionality and baseness. What are most people's desires and lives run by? Ideas, emotions, and baseness: people literally create their own demons. Does the process of expenditure and wasting need evidence when you look around at the human condition? If you throw it away you lose it. It’s really that simple. Can you continually re-acquire the things that you lose so readily and steadily? If you really care for it to begin with- why do you throw it away so continuously? If it could be recovered, would you know how to do so effectively? When does the process of lose and expenditure to regain that loss become futile? People say they fear death, yet they indulge desire to the point of their own demise repeatedly over lifetimes and it is not just through sexual desire exclusively. All forms of desire drive the Three Demons to rob the spiritual Treasures. To live in this manner, conscious or not, is a choice. What choice are you making in how to conduct each moment of your life? 3&4. Jing as Essence, Relationship of Quantities, Rejuvenation 3&4A. Essences and Substances. Jing isn’t a physiological term. When jing qi coalesces into form it becomes the substance of the semen and the egg, but even then jing is still the essence and those are technically the bodily fluids: those are the masses, this is the essence. They are inter-related but they are not the same. You can expend jing without ejaculating, and plenty do each day through innumerable means, because they don’t recognize the true value of it in themselves. We are not looking at the Western science of what your body’s refractory resources do or don’t do. We are looking at an alchemical process of creative force in the system before it even enters the body and as it continues to transmute through fields of form into any manner of vital condition from seed, to body, to energy, to consciousness and much more. 3 &4B. Mis-measurements. Sure, the physiology of the gross body can grab more generative essence (jing) and turn it into more bodily fluid (semen/egg) and so you have more semen to expell. It doesn’t mean you have more jing: it means you have used more essence and converted it into more mass (a process which requires tremendous sacred energy), so now you have more mass (semen) and less essence (jing). 3&4C. Potential Replenishment. And yes, jing can actually be replenished but not by wasting it through converting it to fluid and throwing it away, then trying to grab more so you can lose it again. There are actually many ways to absorb, increase, fortify and rejuvenate jing. But in most cases, the ordinary person is- for various reasons, largely incapable of effectively replenishing essence to greater sufficiency and instead more expedient in their unconsciousness to expend it through taxing the adrenals (adrenals are the glands of the kidneys and the kidneys are the portal of the jing) daily by doing such things like ingesting stimulants such as coffee, sexualizing each other, overworking, inordinately forcing existence, willfully engaging in unnecessary activity, etc.,. All these efforts use jing… and they didn’t even all require sex! When I look around me at what type of person has the highest concentration of jing in their system, it isn’t some big virile looking man, or some shapely woman… do you know who it is? It is babies. Babies are made almost entirely of jing at birth. Does that appear like sex to you? Far from it. 5. Understanding and Wisdom. Maybe it is not the teaching that is erroneous but the student who misunderstands the essence in the lesson.
  12. Hun & Po as they relate to Natural Meditation

    This is actually a very broad and in-depth question you are asking; more than we can get into over a forum post. To give a concise introductory synopsis, the Yuan Shen “Original Spirit”, also known as the “Great Shen” (‘shen’ can be translated to mean consciousness, awareness, or spirit) manifests as five different aspects of consciousness through the yin organs of your body. It’s anatomical relationships are: -Liver houses the shen Hun -Heart houses the shen Shen -Spleen houses the shen Yi -Lung houses the shen Po -Kidney houses the shen Zhi Though you may prefer one meditative form over another, ultimately, when your meditation becomes realized, all living is a meditation through which effortless action will flow forth. The intercourse of consciousness to form is the totality of awareness pervading every level of your system, from the subtle to the coarse. The greater this penetration, the more realized the being. To strengthen a spirit, one does not add substance to it. Rather, one purifies it. This purification allows for it to connect to its origin of substance: physiologically, these are pools of energy that traverse throughout the body in the form of meridians and into the universe through what are known as ‘Source Points’ along those meridian channels. Pure consciousness, or pure spirit is powerful beyond the human mass: so to have greater consciousness is to have greater strength of spirit. At some point, through deep cultivation and meditation, it is possible to connect to the organ spirits directly and affect their processes consciously. This communication is not of mind or language, but rather facilitated through forms of energy, light and awareness- all of which are similarly interrelated dynamics of state. To note, the usage of the terms “energy, light and awareness” are not an unrooted, disembodied new-age-feel-good-idea, rather these are tangible substances of force that can be directed through intentful awareness at minor levels through such things a needling and acupuncture, to more substantive directed movements like in the external arts, to much deeper things such as the internal arts, medical qi gong, meditative transmission and more. Although there are many other things called ‘spirits’ in the universe (aka- disembodied beings), the term spirit here is meant as ‘shen’ of the physiological and meta-physiological body. More spirits of the system are not created in this particular case- as that moves away from Source, rather the existing ones are refined, cultivated and transmuted into their original nature as Yuan Shen, so they are rarified until they are unified… less is more. As for each of the “little shens”, each one has a different quality of emanation and function both physiologically in the corporeal body and spiritually in the essences of the universe. When one cultivates their spirit, they do so not only within form but beyond form. When this cultivation of insight and realization is deep enough, indeed, a new birth occurs: it is known as the Immortal Fetus and it is the beginning of a transformational journey of the human into the transcendent.
  13. Let us clarify a few concepts and refine them a bit since they are often spoken of inter-changably in spiritual and ancient texts. They are discussed this way because when we are looking at energetic forms of consciousness so close to Source that their conditions are still pure and unified, relatively uncleaved and unformed; variations in their qualities appear very subtle, similar and seemingly indistinct, however their transformations are fundamentally interrelated. Understanding these omnipresent subtlities in our system more discretely might help to bring some greater definition to the matter and thus a little more clarity. Keep in mind, that although we objectify it by making it discrete through definition, the actuality of it is simultaneously unformed, amorphous, transitional and also formed… think of it as states of matter- like vapor into water into ice, in continuous inter-transformation coexisting across different strata of dimension and time and it will be a more accurate understanding. So, taking your quote by Liu Yiming, let’s look at some key terms: One’s Fundamental Nature (eg. we can call this a type of ‘essence’ for the matter of this discussion) is without form but also becomes all form (eg. the Golden Elixir, the human, existence itself). That is, this essence which moves through you and becomes you is also greater than just the form of ‘you’ or self: it is Consciousness itself. In its purity it is whole thus through you it remains unto itself whole, yet simultaneously in you it may not be complete in realization- both states of completion and incompletion comprise you at the same time (these are the energetics of the Tai Ji in daulisitc fragmentation as a part of Source in you). Artifically we can describe this by saying you are existentially complete but mundanely incomplete and the way to rectify that is to make your mundane self the same (e.g. cultivate) as your essential self: that is to exist from the awareness of your fundamental nature in all ways and at all times. This fundamental nature may express itself in the mundane ways of human conditions but it is essentially a transcendent state. So what is meant by ‘nature’ here is not the way your wind blows this week, but what even allows you and that wind to exist at all: that is your Original Nature (Yuan Shen) or your Fundamental Nature. The Golden Elixir is the pure substance of that Fundamental Nature and it is both formless and capable of becoming formed. It is essence that takes a quality of form in the purity of Fundamental Nature. While this essence of consciousness infuses all things- including our Being, when it is not yet realized in a person, it remains unsubstantive even though it is part of you. When the purity becomes substantive, it coalesces to form the Immortal Seed or Immortal Fetus. In many ways, this substance is the same as your fundamental nature, so it is you, but again, it is also its own, just as a child is of you and your making, yet it is also its own. Because the Consciousness that is the substance of the Golden Elixir is pervasive and omnipresent, it is ‘neither more in one thing than the next’, as it is this Consciousness that gives rise to all things. But in the Enlightened Ones, this awareness is so great, it forms to create a sacred seed from which the Being can co-create in transcendence. The Golden Seed from the purity of conscious essence is the opportunity for ‘rebirth’: a renewed, evolved existence of transcendent quality. This is not a metaphor, it is a reality experienced by a rare few, and it is sacred. In short, just because something exists- even in you or as a part of you, doesn’t mean it is realized or understood in its truth. To give a more tangible and simple example, we could say that you may have a beautiful whole heart, but that you may not understand how to nourish it, care for it, live from it, so you do not realize all that it is physiologically, energetically and spiritually. When the understanding is complete, then we can begin to work with it in ourselves (ie. advanced cultivation). We are complete in essence, but most are obscured from that realization. When that realization is great enough- not just in concept, but through the whole of experience in profundity, then that depth of tunderstanding starts to become you, and it will change you. That change manifests literary as the Golden Elixir, the substance of which is the essence of one’s Fundamental Nature. It is a not a metaphor; it part of the (meta)physics of how Consciousness becomes in the human physiology and its transmutation into Immorality and enlightenment; it is literal. What that Elixir is in the transcendence of the universe is pure and so it is whole, just as the xing (pure consciousness) that is the Unnamble is complete. But it only becomes of tangible value to you when you realize it. If you can think about it conceptually as one who can think of math or physics, it may be clearer, as we are looking at the real mechanics of energetics, its movement and states of formations. However, even if one can conceptualize of it, one cannot work with it unless their experience is profound enough to transmute it- think of which physicists live in theory and which actually can directly work with such principles of condition. I do not say this to convolute modern science with esoteric alchemy or to try to bring any form of legitimacy to either bodies of knowledge. Rather, I am just pointing out one potential method of intellectual process by which a person can mentally recognize this most clearly as it takes a distinct understanding of the abstract in states of formation to begin to cognize this practically outside of the seeming romantic artistry of prose, which I think sometimes the alchemical texts are misunderstand to be. Another way to begin to understand this is if you have the opportunity to learn the esoterics within Taoism and Chinese medicine and have both a very well formed and embodied understanding of the cosmological and onotological processes that create our being; at that point, all of these things have potential to make more cohesive, tangible as well as practical sense. Discussing it sporadically in partial threads on a forum, or through random bits of antiquated foreign languages can often cause these things to appear as partial, non-cohesive bits of information. Even here, I have had to leave out many of the specific inner workings and details of ontology to provide a generalized answer. Ironically though, in this case the more you can intellectually grasp this, the more you are at risk to obscure yourself from understanding it truly. So your origin of knowledge must ultimately come not from the mind, but from xing (the pure consciousness found in and through your fundamental nature). So my suggestion is to read this as a guide, as a pointer to your senses and/or take on concerted study if you are serious in your path of cultivation. Most importantly, rather than contemplating it, practice purifying yourself, including your mind of these ideas. Keep the body and psyche healthy, then through the purity of intention, stillness and silence these things may be realized. That is the method of the cultivated sages into Immortality and Buddhahood.
  14. Semen Yang Energy and oral transfer.

    Consciousness, Form and Essence in Intimacy Do not let form get in the way of recognizing the answer to this question. From a Taoist perspective, what one consumes is not the materiality, but the essence and/or the energy found within and through form. One’s capacity through exchange of such subtle substance(s) depends on many attributes unique to the nature of each individual’s composition, intention and capacity in relation to its source. Since at a basic level most people cannot perceive the qualities of subtle vital forces, they are unable to practice dual energetic circulatory exchange effectively. Because of this, the profound unifying consciousness transmitted through intimacy remains unrecognized and instead the act is reduced to a very base and corporeal experience of sex whereby any exchange of energy is merely a by-product of unconscious circumstance. So yes, sexual activity generates energy that pervades space and can infuse people, but this alone doesn’t make it healthful or profound. Quality and Capacity of Yang Qi In this case, you assume seminal fluid is made of yang qi, and while this is technically true, the materiality of it is not the entire measure of its quality. The essential vitality of qi will vary across individual- so perhaps your partner has potential to absorb something powerful from you, perhaps not. You must know yourself beyond theory and seek to cultivate, tonify, and refine its essence, so that the physicality of the substance becomes merely a vessel of delivery for what is greater, for what is more pure, potent or powerful. At it’s utmost it is: yuan shen contained within the yuan qi of a pure jing; at an intermediate level- clean, strong and vital common qi; and at a mundane level- a substance of high potency that can readily and massively create. But remember, simply having vital jing, does not mean you know how to transfer is essence, even if its physical substance (and therefore aspects of energy) are being given. Health in Receptivity of the Subtle In terms of the one’s ability to receive, this depends on the quality of their field (in Taoism the human vessel is primarily an energetic field) and its subtle regions and pathways. In this case, the central channel, the greater orbital path of the body and the middle dan tien of the heart are deeply integral to sexual reciprocation. If one suffers from various forms of stagnation and closure at any level from (be this the psyche, the corporeal, or the subtle) then the process of circulation may be inhibited. Conditions such as psychological frigidity and fear, weak kidney qi, blood stagnation born of the liver, a tight chong mai, an overly dense and phlemagtic form, and chronic illness; are all types of conditions that may inhibit the vital flow of qi not only in the individual but in dual circulation and cultivation. On the other hand, one whose field is weak and therefore more penetrable, one whose conscience is prone towards sucking in the energy of others; or conversely, one whose system is pure bright and vital, or whose conscience is clear and subtly refined in its awareness to harness… all these manifestations and more, can lend one to a greater propensity of absorption of energy. But note that experiencing and/or receiving energy is not as important as consciously being able to recognize, retain and transmute the healthful energy or consciousness contained therein, and that it is this which substantively creates transformation. Energetic Experience, Daily Living, Conscious Intimacy The basic fact that energy is exchanged through living is like any another condition of exchange in life…. whether you enjoyed feeling the sunlight on your skin, got sick physically from that heat, or were able to absorb its energy and transmute it to revitalize your three jiaos. So then, unconscious transient energetic experience is very different than the conscious and substantively transformative alchemy of dual energy cultivation. Depending on the quality of what was received, it is the conscious ability to retain or release and transform the subtle that will have most impact on the enduring quality of one’s health and consciousness. If you view the sacred unifying reciprocation as a “trade off” then it is unlikely you are giving, receiving and experiencing the profundity of ‘spiritual’ totality in such union. Sexual energy is alone powerful, but it can only of healthful value if the intention is pure and benevolent, if both partner’s understand (whether instinctually or intellectually) the methods for exchange, and if the vital essences are clear. And, it is of utmost value if in addition to all of this, both partners have enough connection to their own Original Spirit to transfer Consciousness. Since most people are not connected to their Yuan Shen but instead deluded by xi shen (acquired knowledge), this makes dual cultivation challenging- if not harmful, as many people attempt this with misguided understanding and through perverse means even if it is that some part of them desires a more transcendent goodness. it is easy to restrict this question to a matter of sex, because it is and also appears more charged with potential. But the truth is that there are infinite forms of relationship in which exchange between fields is occurring at all times. Your quality of consciousness and the purity of your vessel will help you to determine rightfulness and recognize the quality of these exchanges naturally, free of the complexity found in semblances if you allow yourself to expand your perception of existence and proceed from a deep benevolent place of sincerity.
  15. Strengthening the Blood

    —Disclaimer— I am generally cautious about giving direction on the forum regarding bodily and health practices generically: this is because people are comprised in unique and specific ways, and it is important not to act concertedly and specifically upon generic understandings and thus become potentially reckless towards yourself through ignorance… too often I see people attesting on this forum and clients coming to me with mental and physical injury resulting from careless, unconscious and incomplete understanding of health and lifestyle practices. So this is a brief answer intended to give insight rather than provide direct instruction. Examples are given for reference, not as a form of medical advice. ——— As with all levels of Taoist practices- be this from the physical body to the spirit, appropriate purification and tonification are necessary in all areas and at all levels of existence. The more holistic your understanding and approach, the more healthfully complete and deep the effect. PURIFICATION of Blood To simplify, make sure you are cleansing your blood: at the most essential level through bringing shen into the blood, and at the most coarse end of that spectrum through dietary/ medicinal consumption and healthful movement. Examples*: Shen- through reconnecting with one’s yuan shen, to making connection with the little shen (hun) of the liver in meditation and guiding this consciousness in to the body. Dietary- some options could be organic dark leafy greens, algae, foods or medicines that act upon the liver as a detoxifier such as astragulus, milk thistle and dandelion root. From a Taoist perspective, foods which are green and bitter; so as to astringe the liver. (Note: if you run deficient and cold or have poor and weak digestion, then make sure the plants have been warmed and cooked before consumption, as green plants run etherically cold and can imbalance a system in states of xu [deficiency]. Also note that in this case, by medicinal, I mean any concentrated form of a natural substance, such as an extract.) Movement- breathing and physical practices which open up the flow of the body from energetically/ meridian-based to physically. This can be engaged practices like yoga and stretching, dry brushing; or passive things such as receiving meridian-based massages like tui na or shiatsu. Breath breath breath and learn to pair breath with movement. TONIFICATION of Blood To simplify, make sure you are building your blood: at the most essential level through harnessing qi and at the most coarse end of that spectrum through dietary/medicinal consumption and healthful movement. Examples*: Qi- harnessing this through internal or external alchemy will help to fortify the materiality of the blood. Again, principles of dietary, movement and consciousness apply to the methods of gathering qi. If you cannot identify or understand what you are doing in your qi gong or tai chi practice then you can begin having a better sense by focusing gathering practices (which usually involve grasping movements), and tonifying practices (which usually involve pumping movements). Practices along the Liver channel are particularly beneficial when dealing with issues of the blood. Dietary- any form of warm, pre-processed qi, particularly those metabolized by other large warm animals- including pig, sheep, and bovine. Dang Shen or cordynopsis root; ren shen or red ginseng; and gou ti zhi or wolfberries (goji) are all herbs listed in the canon of herbal Classics. (Be conscientious that if your dosha is imbalanced toward kapha or your system overweight heavy and sluggish, then these might be cloying and are not generally advised. To be safe, consult with a TCM herbalist to determine what herb is best for your issues. Be aware that most Chinese herbal medicine is not prescribed as a single herb, but in formulas to balance effects of the herbs themselves and so that they are also working in concert with your personal body composition and issues.) Movement- strength training- particularly to increase vessel tone, deep powerful breathing exercises, and rooted full movement can increase the quality of strength in purified blood. (Do not train in excess to where you are straining yourself and causing physical harm or simply building generic mass. Blood- in itself or as qi; needs strong, clear and healthful space to move and coarse; poor forms of body mass density and further injury will only hinder this process.) *At all times, make sure you are not eating, dosing, moving or doing deep cultivation practices based on generic ideas of what is healthful that you simplistically read from websites, books, or just because it works for someone else who isn’t you, etc.,. You must understand and be in connection to YOUR body and know how YOUR body works or doesn’t work. Do not just follow dietary, medicinal and lifestyle suggestions mindlessly (such as from faith only or incomplete information), from immature drives (such as for power, even ‘Taoist or martial' power) or based from fears (such as anger about your life condition, worry about your health, etc.,) Be clear Seek appropriate, specific and healthful guidance. And because this is an excellent fundamental question to what it is we are specifically addressing, and so that you realize what is blood and qi consciously and not as simply a theory or romantic notion and then proceed to try and affect it without realizing what it is, I have provided a basic answer to the following question to be paired with this post: Yes, the easiest most basic way to experience this is to do a concentrated amount of cardiovascular movement over a condensed period of time. When you heart is pounding a strong healthy and slightly quick pace: stop. Notice that the sensation of the physical pumping through your veins and arteries is blood. Notice that the heat and feeling of expansion arising from the pumping of blood is qi coarsing through your body. Experience this by being still and present in the body. Proceed by moving vigorously as suggested above. Then coming back into present, still awareness of your body in the invigorated state while bringing your consciousness in discernment. And of course yes, there are most subtle ways to experience the essentially of your system and its subtle functions and manifestations at rest, but this takes deeper body and meditative cultivative awareness, which can come through deep learning and practice. Happy Qi and Blood to All!