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Found 10 results

  1. Intro

    Hello Friends, This is my first post. I wanted to join thedaobums in the hope of possibly making some new friends and contacts, as well as engage in some good discussions about the site's many interesting topics. I've been a "lurker" for a while, and I have found this forum to be the most dynamic, eclectic and diverse of the several that I have belonged to which deal with related topics (dharmawheel and some esoteric forums). Anyway, my background is itself eclectic, and I'm increasingly having a difficult time fitting myself into a label, without, at the same time, being able or desirous of "rejecting" anything that I may have identified with in the past. On the whole, I think this is a good thing, as I see a major goal of the spiritual path as being able to transcend labels and "identities." At the same time, I'm finding it quite uncomfortable. It's like a man having 3 or 4 families which don't know or acknowledge each other, each of whom he loves deeply as "part of himself"; he is unable to live with any of them all the time, but unable to part with any of them in an absolute sense; at the same time, he has a sense that what he is truly seeking lies outside the very category of "family" (if this metaphor makes sense). With this in mind, I'm reluctant to call myself a "Buddhist," or "not a Buddhist," a "Christian," or "not a Christian," a "Taoist," or "not a Taoist," etc. Over the past five years, I've been deeply immersed in the Western Esoteric Tradition, particularly centred around the ideas of Renaissance magi such as Agrippa, Dee, Bruno, the Rosicrucians, as well as Swedenborg, Boehme and the (non-Blavatskian) Western Theosophical tradition, while also finding many limitations in their points of view and needing to supplement this with study of the more metaphysical traditions of the East--Buddhism, Taoism and Trika Shaivism. But then increasingly I can't find what I'm seeking in any one of these traditions to the exclusion of others. I see them all, perhaps, as "upayas": skillful means to lead deluded beings to liberation. Despite all the arguments I have read and participated in over the philosophical subtleties of what precisely this "liberation" entails, I still naturally incline to this general universalistic view. I'm fond of Crowley (again while acknowledging his limitations), and I think that he was on to something (inspired) by his realization that one needed to break through externally imposed labels, restrictions, and identities and discover one's own "Holy Guardian Angel" in order to truly move forward. I think he was mistaken on many levels, but this idea that one needs to, as it were, make one's own tradition (in his case, Thelema) rings true for me, personally. If one doesn't, one is more or less the victim of centuries/millennia of historical and scholastic traditions which may have nothing to do with one's real quest. I know how much he suffered (and made others to suffer) in pursuing this ideal, however. Still, in a sense I consider myself a "independent Thelemite"--"independent" because I do not consider AC's personal revelations, mythos or ideas regarding the different Aeons (interesting as they may be) as binding on anyone other than himself. I think it could be argued that there is a "thelema," properly understood, hidden within each if the world's great religious/spiritual traditions, including Christianity and Islam (vide Corbin). I also disagree with Crowley regarding the importance of compassion and even pity; the Bodhisattva ideal is one of the most noble and glorious conceptions that I am aware of. Practically, I have more and more withdrawn from outward religious rites and turned towards silent, objectless meditation. The other, more active side of my spiritual practice involves Bardonian Hermetics, and a sort of streamlined angelic theurgy. Still, I feel like I've been stagnating for some time and I feel a strong need to break new ground. This is why I have increasingly turned towards the possibilities of astral projection (or "journeying") as a means of contacting higher Wisdom beings to help me move forward. My abilities are still weak at best. In this connection, the recent discovery of Qigong and energy work in general has been a great help. I never talk about this stuff to anyone. The anonymity of this site encourages me to share in the hope of finding like minded fellow-travelers. This is the reason I have written this long and regrettably egotistical post. I am what we might call "esoterically isolated," outwardly living a workaday life with a family, and without any associates beyond two or three distant contacts. I got "burned out" long ago on spiritual organazations and groups, and prefer the way of the hermit, at least until circumstances shift and other possibilities arise (I can't rule it out). Still, I am looking forward to hopefully learning and sharing whatever I can with friends here. Thanks :-)
  2. Yes, that is how I define myself. I'm both at the same time, therefore I could as well be none. I don't believe in believe. That being said, I believe that we are all transparent to Nature which we humans make part of. All things known and unknown are plenty as they are, so much so that everyone is biased to conserve their own identity that is the manifestation of that which is stranger than we can suppose. But one thing I know for sure! I am an animal, I have the same necessities as other beings and there is the unfathomable mystery. And at this constant contradition lies the conservation of infinity. Besides that all is poetry, and I like poetry because knowledge without emotion (hence biased) is sterile and has no use.
  3. Here is a link to the event: http://theshiftnetwork.com/QuantumDreaming
  4. I am creating a Book of Dreams. This is something I am using to raise my frequency or vibrational level. You could also think of it as something that is keeping me more positive and helping the negative to have less of a hold on me. In this Book of Dreams, so far, are places I want to set my eyes on. These include the Big Sur coast in California, the Venice Canals, and the stars reflected in a still sea. I can not properly express to you the power this picture I have on my calendar for one of the Venice Canals, or the image sequence in the movie, "Pirates of the Caribbean, At World's End" has on me. There is more energy there, more desire to set my eyes on these things, than there is to let the events of the last month and even last few years have a detrimental hold on me, In short, they are getting me out of this swamp I am in. Please keep this in mind when you post. Remember dreams are very fragile things, and if you break mine, you are destroying the only thing that is currently keeping me going. The only dreams I have at this moment, the only reason I have to live. I appreciate your understanding. Now, the reason for this thread. I am going to start adding things I wish to experience in this Book of Dreams. One of the things I have been curious about, for a very long time, is ayahuasca. But I have heard there are people defrauding those looking for this experience in South America. I am hoping that someone here either knows of an authentic place where this can be experienced, or, even better, has actually been somewhere and had this authentic experience, and would be willing to tell me where this place is. I hope this request does not violate the rules of this forum, as this is considered a drug. For me it is for the shamanic and spiritual experience. I just found an article that talks about this can even help with depression and PTSD. I know, from my own experience, the positive effect shrooms had on me. I know it changed me somehow, for the better. I know that ayahuasca will do the same. So I definitely want to experience this. http://reset.me/story/document-contains-nearly-every-study-ever-conducted-on-ayahuasca/#.VUvl1Xfbo74.twitter If you are not allowed to post and tell me where I could go to have an authentic experience with ayahuasca for any reason, maybe you could PM me? I would appreciate this. I need to know this place to go, so I can do a search for images that I can place with some writing about it in my Book of Dreams. It is a very visual book I am constructing. I do not wish to break the law and I do not know where this is legal or illegal. But I reserve the right to practice civil disobedience on subjects like this. If everyone tried shrooms a couple of times in their lives, believe me, the entire human race would transform for the better. So any laws saying this or ayahuasca is illegal I can not support. If it grows naturally on the earth or is part of a practice or tradition of a native people the law does not apply, as far as I am concerned. In the end it is my body, and I decide what goes into it, or not. Not the law! If this thread violates forum rules, and I hope this forum is not that inflexible, I understand if those in charge feel they must close it and I apologize. I was just reading that article and wondering where I could go to collect information on this. I thought maybe I would start here. Thank you.
  5. Hey, I have been reading and learning for years now with out any real practice. Recently that changed and as I begin to explore the vastly different world of trying these tequniques and not just reading about them I would love people who have accomplished more than me to post how/what they found to be helpful and hurtful. If you feel you can help me out as a teacher I would love to hear from you, PM me Thanks, SlippySlim
  6. The question/subject of psychedelics (specifically plants) for mental health was raised on another thread. I thought it was worth creating a separate thread for, for anyone interested, and, to stay on topic re: commemorations for the great funny man Robin Williams. http://thetaobums.com/topic/35932-robin-williams-dead-at-63/page-2 Psilocybin has been shown to be effective in lots of other areas too. Anxiety, depression. I know some of the psychiatrists who were involved in one of the studies around it. One of them was personally injected with it before going into an fMRI scanner. Lots of other psychedelics (not just plants) too. MDMA, DMT, Ayahuasca (specifically, rather than pure DMT), LSD. Generally they seem incredibly useful for psychotherapeutic work as they help break down barriers in minutes that can otherwise take months; they make the mind/self/perception much more malleable, less rigid, which is self evidently beneficial for therapy and internal work (also, of course, this aspect of them means they can be very dangerous in the wrong settings). You've got the biochemical effects which can be beneficial, the psychological effects, and, the spiritual effects. It'd be interesting to see if in the future, like we have many health professionals trained in alternative medicine overtly, or privately, if we'd similarly ever get psychotherapists who are trained in the psychotherapeutic use of psychedelics, AND in shamanistic skills for their spiritual use. They used to be commonly used in psychotherapy settings, and often to good effect too (there'll always be exceptions). This was before one of the most ignorant, costly, dumbest, insidious wars was ever initiated, by nixon, "the war on drugs." All war is bad of course; protective use of force, and self defence are necessary; generally, war, not so much. If you look at the figures of what has been spent on fighting this war, how long it's been going on, and the victims of it - (who range across all demographics and classes, from the abused unregulated worker in the poppy fields, right up to the upper class heroine user who ODs because of un-standardised dosages, mixed drugs and having a stigmatised illness that has to be hidden) - then you'll see that, though it may seem incredibly innocuous, it is in fact one of the most costly wars on many levels. If you haven't heard of it already then MAPS http://www.maps.org is pretty much THE go to organisation for the modern use of psychedelics for health. Ibogaine IS incredibly interesting. I was contemplating taking it, not for addiction, but to help break anxiety patterns/issues. Though, after a bit of research I came across some studies that discussed how some have died after taking it, days later, from subtle minor heart problems that are seemingly un-detectable before. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc0804248 https://wiki.dmt-nexus.me/w/images/d/d8/Fatalities_after_ibogaine_use.pdf http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22458604 If I ever did do it now then I think It'd either be in a clinic where I was monitored for a few days after, as well as during, OR, if I could get the necessary kit myself, and see if any of my friends are trained in life support. This is generally just a response to the quoted post, (and an opening up of the topic), there's a lot of info on it all.
  7. Dividing Dragons from the Snakes

    Hello Everyone! I thought I'd introduce myself, give some background, and explain my goals for utilizing these forums. Hopefully someone might be able to point me in an appropriate direction after reading. Soon I will be leaving on a sustainable agriculture initiative to work with some tribal peoples in South America. I will essentially be spending two years in a very remote place without running water or electricity with a decent amount of free time. This to me seems like the perfect opportunity to get some real work/practice done in qigong/yoga/neigong/neidan/weidan/etc and/or the other techniques discussed in these forums without the usual distractions of daily life. So, I've been digging around in the forums for a few weeks, as I wanted to do my due diligence before posting. After hours reading through with seemingly hundreds of tabs open on my browser, I feel I haven't made much progress in finding truth. Threads tend to devolve into arguments and heresay. So I'm hoping those with a little more experience can help me discern the Dragons from the Snakes. Who is legitimate? Who are the frauds? Wang Liping, Dr. Jiang Feng, and John Chang appear to be authentic in achieving a high level of mastery in their various lineages. David Verdesi is a controversial figure to say the least. Can anyone say with confidence who has real attainment and is worth pursuing as a teacher and mentor? I would love to hear your recommendations about where to start my journey. I hear one can injure themselves pretty severely if they train incorrectly. I'd like to eliminate that option from the get-go. Here are the books I own so far: -Opening the Dragon Gate - The Making of an Authentic Taoist Immortal trans by Thomas Cleary -Ling Boa tong Zhi Neng Nei gong Shu - Wang Liping and Richard Liao -Daoist Neigong - The Philosophical Art of Change by Damo Mitchell -Both of Kostas Dervenis books The Magus of Java and Nei Kung: The Secret Teachings of the Warrior Sages -2 of Bruce Frantzis' books on the water method of Meditation: Relaxing Into Your Being and The Great Stillness I would certainly also appreciate your recommendations as far as resources and books. So far all of the complex metaphors and translation issues has been fairly confusing to me. Does anyone have a preference for a translation of the Dao De Ching? I'm also beginning work with a yoga instructor so that hopefully I will be able to sit in Full lotus position by the time I leave for South America. Lastly, I wanted to share my motivations for pursuing this path. Obviously they are multifactorial, but ultimately it boils down to simply a yearning to understand the nature of existence itself. Who and what am I? Why do I or any of us exist? How much potential do I have, and how can maximize my ability to make a positive impact on the world? Don't get me wrong, of course I'm psyched about the abilities that supposedly come along with that understanding, but to me those are just awesome side effects and great tools for helping people. Anyway, I wish everyone the best and look forward to hopefully hearing from some of you soon!
  8. Some artwork..

    I wanted to share some more recent artwork and feel free to comment etc... I Give thanks to my Ancestors Romance and affection I fly free from all the illusions of limitation, I am the Eagle
  9. Hello everyone! It's very easy to notice the great simmilarity of (Neo-)Paganism and Daoism. Worship of nature, herbal remedies, meditation and other spiritual practices, magic, superstition (astrology etc.)... What is your opinion on Paganism? What are the main differences between Paganism and Daoism? In what way can they complement each other? I'm looking forward to hear your opinions!
  10. Amazing short documentary about Bushmen shaman and healing dance: Anyone on TTB who practises or is/has been involved with this tradition ? Any feedback you want to share? Thanks.