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Flying Phoenix Chi Kung

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Where did everyone go? To practice more of course! :)

 

I am not posting much as I have been taking more classes with Sifu Terry, although I should probably update everyone here and in my own ppj too because of a lot of development. Coming soon!

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Posted (edited)
On 3/14/2018 at 11:52 PM, Earl Grey said:

The other week, I learned the long form Monk Serves Wine in what began as a one-hour session that quickly became two hours because of the awe-inspiring turn of events that transpired in my session with Sifu Terry.

 

It was just after he had posted to do the flash meditations as slowly as possible, which I had begun doing weeks before. We began our session and he was delighted to see how quickly I picked up on the form, but no more than I was due to the immense bliss (as Tao Stillness would describe) that I experienced doing the form, even before learning the breath control sequence and divided by sections at a time. Upon learning the form, we practiced several times with the breath control sequence and on the last one, something wonderful happened. I saw a blue sapphire gem and golden chains around it, then afterwards, a Buddhist stupa similar to the ones outside of the Javanese temple of Borobodur, and outside in front of it was either White Tara or Kuan Yin standing in a pillar of light. Sifu Terry said I just may very well have been initiated, but I do not know into what, and he recommended I reconnect with the being who came during our session or to talk with Eric Isen to see who this is and what this means.

 

Since that session, my average for the flash meditations slowed down, and now is anywhere from 4-6. 

 

There is also now a sphere or egg-shaped object I feel energetically that automatically corrects my form in Flying Phoenix and I see it carry over to my Tai Chi and Liuhebafa training. It is as though I am manipulating a sphere within, around, and in front of me at all times
whenever I move.

Also, during Temple Guardian Standing at Entrance (a Bok Fu Pai form for those who don't know), a friend came by and saw me standing there and began doing Zhan Zhuang Embrace the Tree in front of me, then said something strange about me was going on as he observed. My skull became deeper and face became wolf-like, as my eyes were closed but looked like they were open and piercing him. How interesting.  In previous sessions when we would all stand in a circle for basic Zhan Zhuang, he and another student would observe things like my hair becoming golden (not blond, but gold) and eyes and face changing or body size increasing, or seeing my body look like it was the cosmos, as though they could enter my body and float amongst the stars. This time in particular was interesting because it wasn't even 15 minutes, and the things he and everyone else would see would be around the one hour mark.

This now more than ever makes me want to learn more Bok Fu Pai from Volume 6 (and the whole system while I am at it) and both versions from BFP and FP of the form with the same name Child Praying to Goddess for Mercy. I was also excited because I did the fifth flash meditation that was the Bat Din Gum form and after doing it for six minutes it felt like my body hardened and had been doing Iron Shirt Qigong.

 

Yesterday, I also reached a milestone for practice of the long form. I began my afternoon session after a long nap with Basic Seated Meditation 5% 60% 80% 40% 30% (which I nicknamed "Tuning The Universal Intellect") for about 10 minutes. Afterwards, I did the flash meditations from volume 5 in order, and averaged 4.5 minutes to 6 or 7 minutes each. I then did long form MSW at about 11 minutes, then for standing long form from volume 5, I thought I would get a good 10-12 minutes for my average before my afternoon appointment, as I wasn't sure if I would move slow enough to beat my best previous time of 16 minutes. I opened my eyes after moving as slowly and gracefully as possible while allowing the form to do itself, and found myself shocked to see that I did the form in 24.5 minutes. 

 

I am about ready to consider draining my credit cards and sell things I have to get more sessions with Sifu Terry and keep learning more advanced practices. :) 

Hi Earl Grey,
 
Thank you for your update on your nice results from your practice following our last FP session.

Glad you are doing the Vol.5 "flash" meditations and doing them more slowly and as round as possible.

 

There is also now a sphere or egg-shaped object I feel energetically that automatically corrects my form in Flying Phoenix and I see it carry over to my Tai Chi and Liuhebafa training. It is as though I am manipulating a sphere within, around, and in front of me at all times whenever I move.

 

The entire FP System is based on a perfected Monk Gazing At Moon posture.  All the other moving meditations build upon that, including the Vol.5 meditations.  Some internal Chinese martial art systems call the ideal shape/form:  the "golden bell."  Glad to hear that the  "golden egg" you feel is being carried over into your Tai Chi and LHBF  I had a lot of Wuji training since 1980 primarily due to my year of seminal training with Master Bow Sim Mark in Boston, so for me, it was more of a "meeting half way" between FP's golden egg and the Tai Chi Wuji shape/form.  I had a great depth of wuji in my mind-body prior to learning FP Qigong.  But once I had practiced FP for about one year, everything dramatically changed in my Tai Chi and LHBF.  I  remember so well that after I had practiced a complete set of "Bending the Bows" (18 rounds) for just a few consecutive days (3 or 4), my Tai Chi dramatically changed.  My practice of the 37 Form and  108 Form became much more effortless.  It was as if they would do themselves. 

Also, during Temple Guardian Standing at Entrance, a friend came by
and saw me standing there and began doing Zhan Zhuang Embrace the Tree
in front of me, then said something strange about me was going on as
he observed. My skull became deeper and face became wolf-like, as my
eyes were closed but looked like they were open and piercing him. How
interesting.

 

Explanation:  As a function of his own  Zhan Zhuang practice and personal predilection, your friend was able to "see" you as the whole of you--or the all of you--meaning your karmic lives all intersecting in the NOW.  A condition that is always visible to one who can see. While you were doing Guardian Standing At the Gate, you were in a relaxed, integrated state. Your friend was able to see a couple of your karmic past lives (or perhaps even progressions!) also possibly because you two have been karmic friends--i.e., friends in past lives.  For me, this was also true of crossing-paths with what turned out to be fellow martial artists in past lives.  When I have come upon my karmic friends in this lifetime for the first time, the recognition was mutual and instantaneous (at first sight).  And in the case of a couple of my karmic close friends, including one of my most important teachers in this life , the initial recognition, where the feeling was mutual spontaneous elation, was during phone calls at great distances before we had met in person-- one of which was at a distance of  3,000 miles across the country. 

 

In previous sessions when we would all stand in a circle for basic Zhan Zhuang, he and another student would observe things like my hair becoming golden (not blond, but gold) and eyes and face changing or body size increasing, or seeing my body look like it was the cosmos, as though they could enter my body and float amongst the stars.

 

Your friend's seeing one of your karmic lives with eyes bulging while your present incarnation was doing the "Guardian" meditation with eyes closed is very typical of seeing past lives.  E.g., in one of many of our Tao Tan Pai healing study groups in the late 70's and early 80's led by favorite teacher, the late Master John DavidsonI would see each of my classmate's karmic past lives change on their face and superimpose on their "normally seen" bodies--with every couple of breathes--and with vivid visual details such as ancient clothing,an asian bun hairdo on a caucasian guy in this life, a Chinese sword on one's belt, and seen most commonly are:  totally different shapes of heads and bodies, and totally different faces.  

 

This time in particular was interesting because it wasn't even 15 minutes, and the things he and everyone else would see would be around the one hour mark.

"Seeing" is a higher state of consciousness (HSC), to use the term of Daniel Goleman. The more one practices Flying Phoenix Qigong, Taoist Elixir Method Nei Kung or the certain systems of authentic Yoga, the more one steadily perfects one's seeing, and develops greater and greater  volitional control to ACCESS to the unconditioned, unfettered mode of perception.  For example, once one completes the training in Taoist Elixir Method, one slips in and out of "seeing" modality as required by protect, educate, and elevate one's spirit.  There are also natural-born seers who are just blessed (or cursed) with the capacity to see everything in the tonal.

 

 

This now more than ever makes me want to learn more Bok Fu Pai from Volume 6 (and the whole system while I am at it) and both versions from BFP and FP of the form with the same name Child Praying to Goddess for Mercy. I was also excited because I did the fifth flash meditation that was the Bat Din Gum form and after doing it for six minutes it felt like my body hardened and had been doing Iron Shirt Qigong.

• EG,  Nice that you were able to experience the very different energy cultivated by the last standing meditation (from the BDG system) on Volume 5.

 

Yesterday, I also reached a milestone for practice of the long form. I began my afternoon session after a long nap with Basic Seated Meditation 5% 60% 80% 40% 30% (which I nicknamed "Tuning The Universal Intellect") for about 10 minutes.

Great name that you coined for this meditation!  I may have to license it from you to use in future DVD programs.  As I have stated regularly on this thread, the first  first three exercises-- "basic preparatory seated meditations"--on the Volume 2 DVD are anything but "basic" compared to the universe of Qigong exercises that exist and especially compared to those that have been published.  For the past 6 months, at teh end o feachof my 90- minute Tao Tan Pai-31 classes, I lead students in 2 of these 3 "preparatory Monk Serves Wine mediations" to allow them to compare and contrast.  Without exception, everyone is startled by the intensity and power of these "basic" meditations.

 

Afterwards, I did the flash meditations from volume 5 in order, and averaged 4.5 minutes to 6 or 7 minutes each. I then did long form MSW at about 11 minutes, then for standing long form from volume 5, I thought I would get a good 10-12 minutes for my average before my afternoon appointment, as I wasn't sure if I would move slow enough to beat my best previous time of 16 minutes. I opened my eyes after moving as slowly and gracefully as possible while allowing the form to do itself, and found myself shocked to see that I did the form in 24.5 minutes.

Excellent that you took it upon yourself to practice the "flash" meditations on Vol.4 at a slower speed, averaging 4.5 to 7 minutes!  I would add to your practice my 2018 nuanced revision of my 2003 video instruction:  make your first position on the first meditation (90 80 30 50 40) more round and relax the angle of the wrists a bit.

 

Good job in increasing your practice time for the Standing Long Form Meditation (Vol.4 capstone) from 16 minutes to 24.5 minutes!  Lookout Charlie Thomas ("ridingtheox"), Earl Grey is hot after your record of 40+ minutes!

 

Best,
 

Sifu Terry

 

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Edited by zen-bear
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Posted (edited)
On 3/12/2018 at 7:12 AM, DSCB57 said:

Sifu Dunn and everyone here. Please bear with me, as I feel the need to explain something which will possibly allow you to understand why I find it necessary to write as I do. I understand that this form of expression may have been a cause of annoyance or that many of you may have misinterpreted this for something else, and I certainly feel this very often, as though people here actually resent my contributions. There is a great deal more I would like to have contributed here, and I feel I have a lot to share, but am very reticent to do so, because I have the impression that I am barely tolerated and considered a nuisance to be ignored in the hope that I will go away and disappear.

 

I have discovered that I suffer from a condition recently named 'Aphantasia' (the condition was already known and to some extent recognized in the 1880s, but has only recently been given a name and become the object of rigourous , although as yet rather limited scientific investigation).

 

This condition basically means that the 2% of the human race who suffer from this have their brains wired in such a way as to totally preclude the ability to in any way use the faculty of visualization or imagination. This not only affects the sense of inner sight, but also touch, taste, smell, and in some cases even that of sound. 

What this means for me is that my only means of remembering anything, whether it may be something I have perceived or otherwise experienced is by means of my inner dialogue, because once I close my eyes, for me this world ceases to exist. There is nothing more than darkness and my inner dialogue (and physical and energetic sense perceptions) - the voice of my consciousness, if you will. 

So if I want to be able to remember anything, I have to go through a process of meticulously and precisely describing my experiences and perceptions to myself as one would need to to a non-sighted person, otherwise, I have no means of remembering anything. The moment after seeing something or hearing, touching, smelling or tasting it, nothing remains of that experience beyond what I have committed to memory via my internal dialogue. This reflects upon my way of expressing myself both verbally and in written form, and I apologize for this, although I cannot expect anyone with a functioning inner eye or the power to imagine to understand.

It also means that when I write, it takes me hours of reading and re-reading in order to ensure that I have committed everything necessary both to paper and to memory. It can be an exhausting process. It also means that I require a considerably more extensive amount of descriptive language input in order to grasp an idea or concept which for anyone non-aphantasic would be supplemented by their imagination, thus bridging the intellectual gap. It also means that my mind is considerably more active in this continuous process of interpretation of the world via my inner dialogue.

Let me give you an example: I am sure that for most of you, you take it for granted that when someone talks about 'counting sheep' in order to get to sleep, you will know what that means, and be able to experience it at will. Someone with aphantasia is only able to conceptualize what that means, but I cannot possibly actually understand what it means or experience this. As they say, if you want to know what ice-cream tastes like, then you need to actually taste ice-cream - there is no substitute. Well, we aphantasics cannot taste that ice-cream, figuratively speaking, because we simply lack the neurological wiring to enable us to do so. Another example would be if you were to ask me to form a mental picture of a scene such as a sunset setting over the ocean. My inner dialogue can piece together descriptions of what that might be like, but I have no ability whatsoever to perceive any sort of mental image of that scene, so any form of meditative contemplation requiring holding a mental image is impossible for me. The only way for me to remember a number with more than three figures is to hear it with my internal dialogue. 

If I do not remember the name of the street where I parked my car, I have no inner map to guide me, and spend much of my life getting lost and losing objects.

I am not asking for sympathy, as much in the same way as other senses will be augmented in a person who has lost any of their senses, our brains find alternative pathways to achieve the tasks we need to perform, and so in some ways this condition could be considered a gift, and in fact a considerable amount of aphantasics are considered highly gifted - nature's compensation perhaps... For example there is nothing but my inner dialogue to interfere during meditation, so I am able to enter into very profound states of consciousness relatively quickly and easily. 

Conversely, the breath sequencing system used in FPCK is very difficult for me, because the bliss experience interferes with my inner dialogue, and I have no way to remember which breath I am on and often have to start over. It also means that in order to remember the meditation forms, they must be committed to muscle memory, but if I leave sufficient time between practice sessions to forget any part of the form, then I will have to relearn it, thus I have probably forgotten more IMA and Gongfu forms than most people have learned in a lifetime, and they are gone forever, because there is no means to recall them from memory. Perhaps you can imagine how frustrating a life like this can be, and how this can lead to severe depression?

 

I hope this goes some way to explaining the tone, linguistic content and length of my written contributions here and elsewhere, as well as explaining why I find it necessary to ask so many questions and enter into so much detail. Thank you all for hearing me out.

 

David

Hello David,

Thank you for posting your detailed explanation what aphantasia is and how it makes your life difficult relative to those that do not have the condition.  Like other subscribers who have responded with understanding and support, I want to encourage you to continue posting any questions you have about FP Qigong practice and try to share with the thread your further experiences with FP Qigong practice, even though you've said that you don't remember experiences outside of your inner dialog.  But you might keep a note pad and pen nearby each time you practice and jot down anything that immediatly comes to mind after your practice.

 

I'm sorry for taking so long to reply to your posting but I had to read it a few more times and also to read your dialog with Aeran on page 186   to try to better understand some of the things you are experiencing while practicing FP Qigong.

 

Another example would be if you were to ask me to form a mental picture of a scene such as a sunset setting over the ocean. My inner dialogue can piece together descriptions of what that might be like, but I have no ability whatsoever to perceive any sort of mental image of that scene, so any form of meditative contemplation requiring holding a mental image is impossible for me. The only way for me to remember a number with more than three figures is to hear it with my internal dialogue. 

Based on this example of your inability to form mental images. I can say with utmost certainty that this inability is not a major handicap in terms of FP Qigong practice because as everyone knows of the system,  no visualization is necessary to do any of FP Meditations.  And this fact makes FP Qigong--amongst the universe of Qigong systems and yogas--probably one of the more suitable and beneficial for you and others with aphantasia.

 

Conversely, the breath sequencing system used in FPCK is very difficult for me, because the bliss experience interferes with my inner dialogue, and I have no way to remember which breath I am on and often have to start over. It also means that in order to remember the meditation forms, they must be committed to muscle memory, but if I leave sufficient time between practice sessions to forget any part of the form, then I will have to relearn it,

 

Try writing down the breathing formula for each FP Meditation on paper.  And then perform the breath control sequence by reading it with your eyes open.  Then close your eyes and do the meditation (except for Monk Gazing At Moon, of course).  While keeping the eyes open during the breath control sequence is not optimal, it is most important just to get it done.  

(Similarly, while it is absolutely not optimal to speak while doing the breathing sequences, because I have been doing FP Qigong for so long and because I teach it four times a week, I often talk my classes through each breathing sequence as I do the breathing and the meditation with them, speaking tersely and while doing the breath controls as best I can.)


*I don't know if this has any effect with you or others with aphantasia, but with the general population,  writing down the material or instructions that one wants to remember  in one's own handwriting script will put the information into the brain to some degree depending on the person. This works especially well when done just before on falls asleep.  Handwriting is an ideo-motor response, such that one's personality can be accurately analyzed by a graphologist, and conversely, through handwriting the material, a person can take in external information that one wants to memorize or program the mind with a set of instructions and have it executed the next day automatically by the subconscious. Such "programmed instructions" can be to do anything, including to recall information that one has seen or heard or movement or sensations that one has felt.  

 

...thus I have probably forgotten more IMA and Gongfu forms than most people have learned in a lifetime, and they are gone forever, because there is no means to recall them from memory. Perhaps you can imagine how frustrating a life like this can be, and how this can lead to severe depression?

I can't imagine how frustrating and exhausting not being able to remember forms of physical movement abd other specialized physical skills that one wants to remember or information about the world around oneself to this extent can be.

 

But this is something that you can set up and do if you have the resources... so that you can practice the entire FP Qigong system and derive a very high percentage of his salient health benefits:

A)   Play the CKFH DVD volumes on a large TV monitor and do the breath control sequences by reading the instructions on the DVD or by closing the eyes and listening to my verbal instructions of the breath controls that i give when I lead the final round of practice for each FP Meditation.  DON'T WORRY AT ALL ABOUT DOING THE BREATH CONTROL SEQUENCES FROM MEMORY.  THE GOAL IS TO SIMPLY PERFORM THE BREATH CONTROLS AND THEN DO THE POSTURES OR POSTURES WITH MOVEMENTS.  JUST DOING THE FP MEDITATIONS THIS WAY, SLOWLY AND STEADILY, FROM FIRST EXERCISE OF VOL.1 ALL THE WAY TO THE END OF VOLUMES 4, 5, OR 7 WILL ENABLE YOU TO DERIVE SIGNIFICANT HEALTH BENEFITS, WHETHER YOU FEEL THEM AND REMEMBER THEM OR NOT.   While not optimal, there should be no negative effects whatsoever from practicing this way.

 

B )   Do the moving FP meditations with eyes with squinting--almost closed--but just enough to follow the DVD instruction. Eventually, do more and ore sections of each moving meditation with your eyes closed, peeking at the DVD whenever necessary.  As many a subscriber has said about FP:   "Just do it".    In your case JUST DO IT anyway you can working around your handicap.

 

C)   If you can afford the expense of a second TV monitor (and this is something, btw, that any FP practitioner can do):  set up a video camera to shoot your own practice of the FP Qigong as you watch and follow a CKFH DVD.  And set up the second monitor (receiving the live feed of your practice) alongside the monitor displaying the CKFH DVD.  This is relative easy to do with a smartphone camera and Facebook:  you can do a live stream of your camera footage through any Facebook account.

 

In this manner you can more closely follow and mimic my form on the DVD's and get maximum benefit from each Meditation, given your aphantasia.  Again, there should be no negative effects from practicing this way.

Of course, you can learn any martial art, any yogic, art, any movement art with this type of one camera + two tv monitor set-up, as long as you get DVD or streamed footage of a high-level master or expert who adequately demonstrates the true art.  Always try to get the source material from the source!

 

Best of luck in your practice.  And remember:  the best cure for depression is activity.

 

Sifu Terry Dunn

 

Edited by zen-bear
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Hello FP practitioners,

 

I want to report in addition to practicing "Moonbeam Splashes on Water" (Vol.3) and the FPHHCM Long Form (Vol.4) on a daily basis,  over the past 4 weeks--since just before the start of the last mercury retrograde cycle, I have been practicing three seated Monk Serves Wine meditations (full sets of 7) every other day over the past 3 weeks.  I have been doing various combinations of the MSW meditations, drawn from Volume 2 and Volume 7 and few others not yet published.  I do theses sets of 3 MSW's  seated usually in the morning before starting the workday, taking 40 to 55 minutes.

 

Each time feeling the reserve of FP Healing Energy increase and each time seeing blue light internally ranging from dark dull soft midnight blue (more often) to an elating flourescent sky powder blue (once in a blue moon--no pun on "blue" intended).

 

Also the usual physical symptoms from FP practice that I and others have reported in the past are manifest after each practice session:  feeling relaxed and rejuvnated, surface of the brain feels uniformly "charged",  and the grey hair count is definitely smaller each time.  And each time after I through my day's agenda mentally while in FP Meditation (during the resting breathes), the entire agenda gets executed throughout the day on "auto-pilot"--with straining to remember any part of the TO DO list.

 

In addition to these "normal" effects of FP practice, I also experienced these salient effects, which I don't believe I've written about and I recall anyone posting about yet:   hair on the head, beard, fingernails and toenails growing noticeably much faster--in fact, growing like crazy.  With hair and beard thicker.

 

I hope you all are progressing nicely in your regular FP practice--"slow and easy is the Way"-- and are attaining and enjoying such noticeable and verifiable benefits.

 

Carry on!

Sifu Terry

Edited by zen-bear
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