Truth Seeker

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  1. Master Jiang Feng passed away

    Even if you're new here, you should recognize the rudeness of raising this question in a thread dedicated to the deceased person. Would you show up at a eulogy and start questioning the deceased person's ethics? If you have questions about charging money for health services, that could have easily been brought up in a new thread. In addition to being thoughtless, you also did not do much research. He did not charge his students for exams or qi treatments, only herbs/pills IF they were needed (not everyone needed them). The medicine was expensive because the ingredients are expensive - large quantities of high quality wild rare herbs, for which the market in China is highly inflated. So he had to pass along his costs in the medicine, as well as make a living, support his family, build two hospitals and employ several staff members. All that said, his lifestyle was much less lavish than that of the typical US doctor, even though his skills and knowledge were exceedingly rare. So to answer your question, his compassion lay in dedicating his life to a system of medicine little understood by any culture (even his own) and one that is open to constant skepticism; curing patients who sometimes could not find success anywhere else; teaching his art openly when most masters are very selective in who they teach; and literally giving his life in the effort to try to save a dying patient - and after all that, to still be second-guessed by anonymous people on internet forums who know little yet are quite sure masters shouldn't be allowed to make a good living.
  2. Master Jiang Feng passed away

    Jiang Feng's passing is a jarring tragedy on many levels. The simplest, he was only 51 and a father, husband, and founder/leader of two hospitals with staffs and hundreds of patients who respected and admired him. The broader view is that he was also Shifu to dozens of students worldwide, to whom he embodied a potential of human development that would otherwise seem the half-believed wish of legends or fantasy. He made the impossible possible simply by being able to do it himself. In a still broader view, this is an incredible loss to the world because of the knowledge he had attained and the skill he had developed - considering both in combination, he was sincerely among the rare few in human development. His traditional knowledge gained from a decades-long apprenticeship with the monk Xuan Kong, combined with his university education, his long professional experience, and his clear-sighted individuality, forged him into someone who routinely achieved the incredible. I've lost count of the testimonials I've been told or read about how he quickly diagnosed an ailment, or healed someone who had been suffering for years and couldn't find relief through Western medicine. It was only a few years ago that he opened his first hospital, which was a major victory in his long struggle to openly practice Classical Chinese Medicine inside China. Perhaps the greatest loss is the influence he could have had on the spread of this knowledge in the world - the influence of a practitioner whose qi development and demonstrable skill ultimately forces a rethinking of the nature of what we are and how we can be healed. Lastly, we can't fail to miss the evidence of his compassion, in that in trying to save a dying patient he pushed himself so far and so selflessly that it cost him his life. His death, an incredibly painful loss, is made still worse in the realization that this deficit will never be made whole.
  3. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    That was a typo, should have been "does not." Thanks for catching it, I've edited it. Can't recall which famous figure it was from the '60s who grew discouraged with psychedelic drugs and quit, saying to the effect that drugs allowed him to see reality better, but then sobriety showed that it was just a convincing illusion.
  4. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    That statement implies that this modified posture will yield the same results as half or full lotus, which isn't entirely accurate. The balance and structure are different, therefore the results must necessarily be different. I used that modified method myself when starting out and found it helpful to take my mind off my inflexible body, which allowed me to relax. But with stretching over time, I could do regular half and then full lotus, and preferred the results I got with them, and so dropped the modified posture. It all depends on what type of meditation you want to do - many people simply sit in a chair to meditate, or even lay down. But if the goal is "flexibility" as OP stated, and doing true half or full lotus, then stretching is necessary.
  5. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    This woman has a number of videos on stretching in regards to lotus: We all have to work with the limits of our body while increasing those limits over time. Half-lotus is good, and switch positions when your knees (especially) or your hips hurt. As the hips open, it will take pressure off the knees.
  6. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    There's no shortcut to flexibility, just stretch every day. It took me a year of stretching to get into full lotus. Drugs are a fantasy, not insight. They're pleasant obviously, that's why people take them, and they can cause dramatic visions, but in my opinion it is a lot of randomness and a small amount of internal symbolism, but not real knowledge. If the "truth" does not persist when you are sober, then it's not really truth.
  7. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    Unbound, welcome. And congrats on your upcoming trip, it sounds like a very worthwhile endeavor. Since you will be without electricity (internet) and unable to travel to meet any teachers, it seems you're not really in a position to follow any particular teacher/school during your travels. My advice would be to not focus on following any path or dogma right now, or try to sort out who can do what, but rather take this time to focus inward. What's more true, that which you read about or that which you find within? Any genuine practice has the foundation of stilling the mind, seeing a new view of yourself and the world in that quieter, clearer state, and doing the work of removing from your mind/character that which is a hindrance or a veil. That alone can take a lifetime. If you do that for 2 years, you will be in a much better state then to consider a path or school. Sit comfortably, in half-lotus or full lotus if you can, relax deeply and still your mind. It may take many months before you can keep thoughts out of your head for more than 5 seconds. But the more you meditate and the longer your session is (half-hour is not bad, an hour or more is good) the better you become. Eventually you reach new states of awareness, I suspect it's a never-ending ascent. You'll know it when it happens, and that is the beginning of the work. It's not something someone can teach you, you can only reach it yourself. In the meantime, there is much you can read to expose your mind to different schools of thought - not to follow them, but to consider them, their strengths and weaknesses. All the books you read were very recent. To explore classic works of brilliant thought in a few different directions, I'd recommend: Vitality, Energy, Spirit, a Taoist Sourcebook by Thomas Cleary: great anthology of Taoist works Kashf Al-Mahjub by Ali Ibn Usman (Hujwiri): brilliantly spiritual classic by a sufi master, with wisdom from many sufis Great Swan by Len Hixon: an Indian perspective and reminder that the heart of spirituality is love The World We Used to Live In by Vine Deloria: thought-provoking collection of first-hand accounts of amazing phenomena among Native Americans Magic and Mystery in Tibet by Alexandra David-Neel: fascinating and insightful chronicle into Tibetan Buddhism in early 1900s I'm sure there are brilliant Christian works out there too, I look forward to exploring that realm some day. Best wishes to you.
  8. Chronic fatigue from doing qigong

    That's what I was going to recommend. I see that ChiDragon responded and obviously he's the one you should consult with. Perhaps doing a lot of that particular qigong and a lot of physical exercise are sending mixed messages to your body and you simply need to adjust the mix. I can also concur though that 3 hours is a lot of time on qigong, and it may just be overloading your energy system. So while perhaps "more is better" for some people, you may have pushed it too far too fast. Hope it evens out for you, let us know.
  9. Inner Peace and Nei Kung

    I'm not interested in arguing this ad nauseum either. The evidence is there, as well as Micah's rebuttal. People can make up their own minds. If new evidence arises, we can talk more then. As final clarifications: 1. Jim does know the full 3-word name of the head of Mopai. It's in the letter from John Chang that he still has. However, Jim usually uses an abbreviated form of the name with a mispronunciation that would lead one to assume the initials are "YK." 2. The Indo students were clear in saying they know all current advanced students (meaning students of the current head), not just old students of John.
  10. Inner Peace and Nei Kung

    Yes, Micah, these discussions get tedious. I too chastise myself for spending time on them rather than training. So why do we do it? Because for those of us who care about Mopai, when something smells like a fraud, it triggers a sense of responsibility to investigate and expose it. And since every answer you give fails to clear your name, I don’t see this ever ending until you are finally truthful. You maintain you are being truthful, but I’ve investigated this enough to know you’re not. Still, you answered my questions and asked to be left alone, so to be fair I will not ask you more questions right now. I’ll simply respond to each answer you made and leave it to readers to judge for themselves. Completely false. Jim’s post, which Micah read, contained the short description that Shifu Lin has repeatedly given for himself in ebooks and emails: an older Chinese man who lives at least part-time in the US and has a long background in neijia martial arts. The Indonesian students who posted know every advanced student in their small school and have said that description does not match anyone in their school. It appears that is was actually during the course of the email chain in question that “Shifu Lin” stopped signing his name (January 2012). He signed the early emails but not the later ones. Even in the ebook “Questions and Answers On Learning Mo Pai Nei Kung” he signed the first letter “Sincerely, Shifu Lin.” No signature on later letters. Since I have never emailed with Micah, I cannot speak to his signing habits. As to why "Lin" would suddenly sign "Micah," the answer is simple: pick a fake name and try to remember to sign it on 500 emails. I guarantee you'll eventually slip up and sign your own name. People, the point is “Lin” increasingly calls attention, period. No one is trying to "out" him. The Indonesian Mopai school is so small that there is no way he could escape having his identity discovered – if he existed. Again, we have students on here who state they know every other advanced student. Thus how hard could it possibly be for the head of Mopai (who certainly knows every advanced student) to figure out who “Lin” is if he existed? Do you really think the head is wracking his brains, unable to figure out who it could be? Or do you suppose that he suspects someone but doesn’t want to cause a fuss, so he’ll allow the “offical” website of Mopai and other such insulting nonsense to continue? No, the obvious reason "Lin" has made it this long without being discovered and expelled is because such a student doesn’t exist in the first place. Micah didn’t make sense there. Jim didn’t know YK’s name yet he confirmed it? A person can’t confirm something he doesn’t know. And YK is the student of John who then "taught Shifu, as well as John"? Either those are typos or Micah is using incoherent writing to avoid answering. But to correct Micah, Jim has known the name of the head of Mopai (whom Lin calls “YK”) for years. In fact, the name of the head is written in a 2005 letter from John to Jim, which I have seen firsthand. Lin has always said he was taught by “YK.” The problem, as I pointed out last time, is that the head’s initials are NOT YK. They sound like they would be YK when Jim mispronounces the name, but no Chinese speaker would make the mistake Jim made. Thus there is no reason that “Lin” would make the mistake of using YK as the initials, unless “Lin” did not know the head’s real name. Without even being asked, Micah’s martial arts students came here to defend his name. So considering the massive amount of allegations heaped against “Lin” as being a fraud, yes, I am very skeptical that so few of the supposed dozens of people who have met Lin face to face will show up here to confirm it. I did not suggest that “Lin’s” identity be revealed, merely that verifiable breathing people show up to share their experience in meeting him. I don’t think that’s a strange expectation at all. But I think Micah and I have different perspectives on many things. I am glad we were able to discuss evidence rather than throw insults around. I thank Micah for being willing to do that. Unfortunately, everything he has written only makes the argument stronger that Lin does not exist. Micah speaks with confidence and a weary, peaceful humility when put on the spot, but when one takes a step back and views the story dispassionately, it simply does not add up. The evidence paints the picture that "Shifu Lin" is a false persona and Micah is orchestrating an elaborate false school.
  11. Inner Peace and Nei Kung

    Micah, I agree with you that insults are a waste of everyone's time and energy. I think it's good that you've come here to address these allegations. But I doubt I'm alone in wishing you would do just that - address the specific allegations, rather than politely dismiss the whole situation. These threads would not exist were there not strong evidence that you are in fact Shifu Lin. So to make this direct and productive, and to answer the most prominent accusations on the public record, please respond to the main arguments (recapped below) that Shifu Lin is a persona created by you: 1. Mopai in Indonesia has repeatedly stated through multiple students that there are no students matching the basic self-description of Lin. They've unequivocally called this a scam. Therefore how can this advanced student "Lin" exist? 2. You are writing emails for Lin from his email address, as evidenced by the prospective student who had a long back-and-forth communication with "Lin" in which you repeatedly signed it "Shifu Lin" until a later email in which you slipped up and signed it "Micah." I've seen these emails myself. How do explain writing emails from Lin's account? 3. "Lin" has stated that a major reason for his secrecy is to avoid trouble with the current Mopai head. How do you then explain all his actions to the complete opposite, such as the many ebooks and launching the "official" website of Mopai? It's plainly marketing, and the website in particular is insulting to Mopai Indonesia and has already been condemned on this forum by Indonesian students. If there is a "Lin", his above actions would be nonsensical, for he's just calling attention to himself and asking to be expelled. How do you explain this? What does make sense is the allegation that the ebooks, website, Facebook forum (which "Lin" has never even appeared on), etc. is entirely you marketing two businesses at once - your business and your business as "Lin." 4. As explained in Jim's post, "YK" is not the correct initials for the current head of Mopai. That was a mistake made by Jim and apparently continued by you. If "Lin" is truly a student of the current head, why would he use the incorrect initials used by Jim? 5. You've stated that there are "dozens" of people who first trained with "Lin" in kung fu and then trained with him in Mopai. We've heard from a few people who know and praise you as a martial arts teacher - it's been made clear in no time that you are indeed a martial arts teacher, no one examining the evidence can seriously doubt that. So why is it so hard to find people who will step forward to say they've met "Lin" in person? You and Jamyang Dorje seem to be the only two people who are on record anywhere as saying they have met "Lin" face to face. Can you not produce more (verifiable) people from among the dozens who have met him, to share their experiences? As has already been pointed out, you have a history of not responding to the more difficult allegations, and instead you wish everyone the best and say you have to go train now. I have summarized the primary allegations against you in direct, specific questions. I think many people would find it easier to make up their minds about this situation if you would please give direct, specific answers. If your teacher exists, naturally you'll want to consult with him first, so that you may answer completely on his behalf. You are, after all, his constant spokesman. If you simply suggest that people email him for answers, you'll understand if that is viewed as evidence of an evasive, guilty man. Thanks, Micah.
  12. Thanks, Formless Tao. Being Western myself, I was a bit hesitant writing about the Asian perspective, but I'm glad I at least landed in the ballpark.
  13. I don't see it as a similar recurring psychological pattern at all. The clan warfare starting over water rights was a zero-sum struggle over something needed to survive. It triggered "kill or be killed" instincts and escalated from there. The current East-West flare-up is mainly over hurt feelings and differing views on teacher-student responsibilities - more akin to a family squabble. No one wants to physically hurt anyone else, and no one "needs" Mopai in order to continue living. So again, I respectfully say that the stretch you made in making that comparison is just not valid. What I will agree with you on 100% is that it would be great if the underlying issues were explored and addressed. But that is far beyond the abilities of this forum since we're mostly just watching through the window at the real parties involved.
  14. WOAH!! I see validity in your take on student/teacher relationships - the models you mention certainly do take place, as do the models I mentioned. A lot depends on the dynamics of each individual case. But PLEASE do not compare old clan warfare to the communication breakdown between Asian and Western Mopai students. That is completely false, and inflammatory to the point of irresponsibility. Those old clans wanted to kill each other. Most, if not every, student in the West (and probably many in the East) would actually like to practice together in harmony, as a worldwide brotherhood. It has always been the actions of a few people that have ruined it for everyone. MASSIVELY DIFFERENT than some recycled widespread clan warfare. Please do not add fuel to an already unfortunate fire.
  15. The OFFICIAL Shifu Lin aka Micah aka Hern Hung.

    "Jamyang Dorje", I had a feeling you'd show up - you're the ONLY person on here who ever backs Micah's BS about there being a Shifu Lin. You write like Micah, have the same interests as Micah, and claim to live near Micah. If you believe "Dorje" is just another alias for Micah, raise your hand. Mine is way up high.