Eternity

Water Method of Taoist Meditation - Questions

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Hello everyone,

 

I recently began practicing the water method of Taoist meditation according to Bruce Frantzis' books relaxing into your being and the tao of letting go. I have a few questions regarding the method that I would like some assistance with and I would be grateful for any responses.

 

Firstly is there a standard method to begin the scanning? Namely do you initiate the practice by centering your concentration such as performing Buddhist Samatha meditation to obtain access concentration or enter the first jhana, allowing you in turn to focus better on the feelings of blockages? Or do you simply start scanning with scattered attention and allow it to focus over the course of the meditation?

 

Secondly, I noticed in other posts on the subject that there were various understandings of how to actually perform the scanning. Some individuals were starting from the crown moving downwards and not moving beyond blockages they encountered, preferring to hold their awareness on them until either they disappear or the meditation is finished. I read that one individual been working on the head area for years. I believe Bruce indicates that you should scan the whole body every meditation session. However I feel that this does not leave sufficient time to work on any one blockage.

 

Third, I would be very appreciative if others who practice this method could detail their experiences with this meditation practice. As Bruce is the only person that I have heard speaking about this method of meditation, I can't help but remain highly skeptical, and I sometimes wonder whether he made the whole thing up. Coming from a yogic meditation background I find the Chinese methods to be very highly marketed for money and disconnected which makes me question their credibility.

 

Looking forward to hearing from you guys.

Edited by Eternity
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I have never heard of such method as the "water method of Taoist meditation".

Third, I would be very appreciative if others who practice this method could detail their experiences with this meditation practice. As Bruce is the only person that I have heard speaking about this method of meditation, I can't help but remain highly skeptical, and I sometimes wonder whether he made the whole thing up. Coming from a yogic meditation background I find the Chinese methods to be very highly marketed for money and disconnected which makes me question their credibility.

That which make you wonder, isn't it.....???

 

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I found starting above the head was better than on top of the head, then you scan down until you encounter a blockage and sit with it until it dissolves, then you move on to the next one. It is best to work on one blockage at a time but there is a technique where if you don't think a blockage is going to shift you can move the energy onto the next one and when that shifts it dissolves both. I would bring the energy down the whole body at the end to the lower dan tien, but I think it isn't possible to do the whole body properly in one session.

 

I gave the Water Method a good go for a few months but didn't stick with it, but this woman here used it to heal a number of long term problems like PTSD with it http://roguetaoist.wordpress.com/ so for some people it works so I don't think its Bruce's invention from his imagination.

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I noticed in other posts on the subject that there were various understandings of how to actually perform the scanning.

Everyones nervous system is different.

Frantzis explains his perspective, and gives some outlines and "rules".

Keeping these things in mind we just have to experiment and create our own water meditation.

 

Apparently it's easier to have a common language for the manifest (sending energy through pathways - fire path) than to demanifest.

 

 

I sometimes wonder whether he made the whole thing up. Coming from a yogic meditation background I find the Chinese methods to be very highly marketed for money and disconnected which makes me question their credibility.

 

If by "Chinese methods" you mean EnergyArts then no, the methods taught are real.

You might see how they tie in with other Taoist meditation / internal arts if you continue this path...

I know at least one water meditation that is not from his lineage, seen hints of more.

 

Yes there's western marketing. Personally I don't see the problem as I would never have known about it if he lived out some spiritual beggar role in a mountain somewhere :P

Edited by Ancient Sword of Khuul

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I have never heard of such method as the "water method of Taoist meditation".

 

That which make you wonder, isn't it.....???

 

 

That is precisely it. Vipassana, samatha, metta, even progressive relaxation are at the very least tracable to multiple sources and have a history of effectiveness to one degree or another. I am going to have to root around and see if bruces' taoist master Liu was in fact recognized by fa shr as enlightened as is claimed and if so, whether bruce was in fact was a long time student of his.

 

 

I found starting above the head was better than on top of the head, then you scan down until you encounter a blockage and sit with it until it dissolves, then you move on to the next one. It is best to work on one blockage at a time but there is a technique where if you don't think a blockage is going to shift you can move the energy onto the next one and when that shifts it dissolves both. I would bring the energy down the whole body at the end to the lower dan tien, but I think it isn't possible to do the whole body properly in one session.

 

I gave the Water Method a good go for a few months but didn't stick with it, but this woman here used it to heal a number of long term problems like PTSD with it http://roguetaoist.wordpress.com/ so for some people it works so I don't think its Bruce's invention from his imagination.

May I ask why you did not stick with it? I have read this person's blog and it would seem that it is the only source showing a marked benefit from the practice beyond those expected of any simple relaxation technique.

 

 

Everyones nervous system is different.

Frantzis explains his perspective, and gives some outlines and "rules".

Keeping these things in mind we just have to experiment and create our own water meditation.

 

Apparently it's easier to have a common language for the manifest (sending energy through pathways - fire path) than to demanifest.

 

 

 

If by "Chinese methods" you mean EnergyArts then no, the methods taught are real.

You might see how they tie in with other Taoist meditation / internal arts if you continue this path...

I know at least one water meditation that is not from his lineage, seen hints of more.

 

Yes there's western marketing. Personally I don't see the problem as I would never have known about it if he lived out some spiritual beggar role in a mountain somewhere :P

Apologies fror my lack of clarity. By chinese arts i mean in general. It seems that when looking up chi, qi gong, tai chi, or whatever else associated with chinese internal arts you are bombarded by dozens of people trying to sell you their secret method of harnessing whatever. This is not the case with buddhist, yogic, christian, or other long established meditation practices. I can get information for free regarding any of the traditions i just mentioned, however, if i wish to learn the secret of taoist meditation, i need to spend some serious coin and possibly subscribe to some paid membership. In a way it would be much more believable if he was giving the information for free like the yogis for anyone to experiment with. As a taoist master, i would expect mr frantzis to be beyond any attachement to wealth and instead put himself behind the people to help them without taking credit, holding the jade in his heart yadda yadda yadda as indicated as a mark of a sage in the ttc.

 

I hope no one is taking offence to my line of questioning as i do not inted to come accross as polemic. However, the tao te ching is my map of reality and i have long since been interested in the passages with appear to reference a practical meditation process. I think it would be a shame to have sincere people wishing to follow in the footsteps of lao tsu be swindled or waste their time.

Edited by Eternity

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May I ask why you did not stick with it? I have read this person's blog and it would seem that it is the only source showing a marked benefit from the practice beyond those expected of any simple relaxation technique.

 

I didn't stick with it because it wasn't the right technique for me at that time, with the mentality I had then I was trying too hard to make things happen so I had to switch to even simpler forms of practice so that controlling part of my mind couldn't dominate. I gave it a really good go though and at times could feel benefits; relaxation is basically what it is about but relaxation on a profoundly deeper level. It did teach me some things in that you realise that emptiness is at the root of all problems, blockages and issues, so it wasn't completely wasted practice.

 

If you have no confidence in it already that is probably not a good sign but what they usually recommend is that you do it for 100 days with an open mind then see, you may gain confidence through practice.

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Hello everyone,

 

I recently began practicing the water method of Taoist meditation according to Bruce Frantzis' books relaxing into your being and the tao of letting go. I have a few questions regarding the method that I would like some assistance with and I would be grateful for any responses.

 

Firstly is there a standard method to begin the scanning? Namely do you initiate the practice by centering your concentration such as performing Buddhist Samatha meditation to obtain access concentration or enter the first jhana, allowing you in turn to focus better on the feelings of blockages? Or do you simply start scanning with scattered attention and allow it to focus over the course of the meditation?

 

Secondly, I noticed in other posts on the subject that there were various understandings of how to actually perform the scanning. Some individuals were starting from the crown moving downwards and not moving beyond blockages they encountered, preferring to hold their awareness on them until either they disappear or the meditation is finished. I read that one individual been working on the head area for years. I believe Bruce indicates that you should scan the whole body every meditation session. However I feel that this does not leave sufficient time to work on any one blockage.

 

Third, I would be very appreciative if others who practice this method could detail their experiences with this meditation practice. As Bruce is the only person that I have heard speaking about this method of meditation, I can't help but remain highly skeptical, and I sometimes wonder whether he made the whole thing up. Coming from a yogic meditation background I find the Chinese methods to be very highly marketed for money and disconnected which makes me question their credibility.

 

Looking forward to hearing from you guys.

 

It's been a while since I read any of Bruce's books, but I think he basically coined the term 'water method' and defines it as any style of meditation that uses natural breathing exclusively. He says 'fire methods' are the techniques that use things like reverse breathing and breath retention.

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As a taoist master, i would expect mr frantzis to be beyond any attachement to wealth and instead put himself behind the people to help them without taking credit, holding the jade in his heart yadda yadda yadda as indicated as a mark of a sage in the ttc.

 

Mr F is a real character, isn't he?

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There is no substitution for an in-person question. If you can't understand it from the book then the book is not the source you need. He still teaches, why not go to a seminar?

 

The terminology may be B K Frantzis' but there is no question he learned from a legitimate teacher. Liu Hongjie was well known in the martial arts world of Beijing and did teach BKF for 3 years. His credential have been questioned strongly in the past and have stood up to sceptical scrutiny before. It is certainly conceivable that Liu used the terms water method and fire method. Not being familiar the with terms is no reason to question BKF's legitimacy. He has certainly achieved enough to have something to teach.

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I didn't stick with it because it wasn't the right technique for me at that time, with the mentality I had then I was trying too hard to make things happen so I had to switch to even simpler forms of practice so that controlling part of my mind couldn't dominate. I gave it a really good go though and at times could feel benefits; relaxation is basically what it is about but relaxation on a profoundly deeper level. It did teach me some things in that you realise that emptiness is at the root of all problems, blockages and issues, so it wasn't completely wasted practice.

 

If you have no confidence in it already that is probably not a good sign but what they usually recommend is that you do it for 100 days with an open mind then see, you may gain confidence through practice.

I found someone nearby where i live listed as an instructor on bruces' website, so i will definetly be looking into it.

 

There is no substitution for an in-person question. If you can't understand it from the book then the book is not the source you need. He still teaches, why not go to a seminar?

 

The terminology may be B K Frantzis' but there is no question he learned from a legitimate teacher. Liu Hongjie was well known in the martial arts world of Beijing and did teach BKF for 3 years. His credential have been questioned strongly in the past and have stood up to sceptical scrutiny before. It is certainly conceivable that Liu used the terms water method and fire method. Not being familiar the with terms is no reason to question BKF's legitimacy. He has certainly achieved enough to have something to teach.

I do not so much question bruces legitimacy because of the terms although that does hold a very small sway with me. I question the legitimacy of his "system" based on his clearly definable pursuit of money from his "customers", going against the very description of a sage as described in the chief taoist text the tao te ching. I do not wish to give the man a significant sum of money simply to be in his presence for a day or two. Most other legitimate traditions help those seeking higher understanding without any monetary benefit beyond donations. I wonder what his teacher, an enlightened buddhist and taoist immortal would think of requiring people to pay him hundreds of dollars to educate them about moving beyond material wealth and existance! I am simply remarking that because he is going against the taoist ideals, perhaps his writings should be questioned more.

 

Thank you for bringing up the point about scrutiny. Could you please provide me a link to the discussion so that i may educate myself?

 

Also, I would appreciate if you could clarify his acheivements that would support him as a daoist sage for me or point me to an independant source.

Edited by Eternity

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I don't think he charges too much at all. http://www.energyarts.com/events. It's not like he's doing workshops all the time either, and as far as I'm aware he doesn't do public classes anymore. Also, it might be an idea to rethink your ideas on material wealth. You could be the wealthiest person on the planet but if you aren't attached to the money then you are in no way going against Taoist ideals. We can't really judge whether someone is attached to wealth on face value.

 

I did a qigong weekend with him last year and it was well worth it. I felt a notable increase in energy by the end. He does a lot of talking but when you get down to doing it he is incredibly skilled at making sure people are doing it right.

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There is no substitution for an in-person question. If you can't understand it from the book then the book is not the source you need. He still teaches, why not go to a seminar?

 

The terminology may be B K Frantzis' but there is no question he learned from a legitimate teacher. Liu Hongjie was well known in the martial arts world of Beijing and did teach BKF for 3 years. His credential have been questioned strongly in the past and have stood up to sceptical scrutiny before. It is certainly conceivable that Liu used the terms water method and fire method. Not being familiar the with terms is no reason to question BKF's legitimacy. He has certainly achieved enough to have something to teach.

 

Yeah, I dig his stuff. Never met him, but I learned a lot from Tao of Letting Go and Relaxing Into Your Being. His longevity breathing stuff is good too. I enjoyed Opening the Energy Gates of Your Body, but I never really used it for practice.

 

I own The Great Stillness, but I haven't read it yet.

 

I think it depends on where you're at with your practice and what you want to accomplish, but he has some very useful information. Some of it may seem expensive, but compare it to a year of martial arts classes at a local school. I considered buying his Hsing-Yi program, but decided I was already paying an instructor who knows Hsing-Yi; if I wanted to learn it I would probably be better off just asking him to teach me.

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Thank you for bringing up the point about scrutiny. Could you please provide me a link to the discussion so that i may educate myself?

 

I really don't remember, it was years ago on Empty Flower which became Rum Soaked Fist. I'm sure the posts were all purged in the migrations over the years. The end result was the consensus that while you could criticize the man, who he had trained with stood up to scrutiny.

 

As for credentials as a sage, just the fact that he was known as a notorious *sshole of the highest order who clashed with just about everyone he met and now he is not and does not, it says to me that he has cultivated something. I will leave definitions of sage up to others.

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Bottom line, virtually everything I have read by BKF, from Opening the Energy Gates and Relaxing into Your Being, he is SPOT ON! His methods have results. I also have the luxury of his widely kritisized Bagua Mastery program. I think it would be worth looking into for virtually anyone.



I highly rekkomend if you don't already have it, in order to help you with Relaxing Into Your Being, to buy Opening the Energy Gates of your body, this will help alot!

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Eternity, you should try to contact user "Sloppy Zhang"... he has been quite interested in Frantzis' stuff for a long time and has some experience and can probably help alot.

 

Regarding the use of the phrase "water path" or "water method". As far as I know, Bruce Frantzis and Max Christensen are the two teachers who use this terminology. I feel there is a common ground there, although on the surface their practices seem different. The downward, non-forced flow of energy is emphasized, as opposed to the rising heat energy or kundalini-type energy of the so-called "fire path" traditions. Max's techniques tend to unlock a bit more "high amplitude" energy as opposed to Frantzis. On the plus side, Frantzis seems to have a very consistent, clear system to follow with his books, CDs, videos, training programs, martial arts, etc.

 

Good luck, I have read a few of BKF's books myself and think it's a cool system.

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I prefer this water methods built in safety mechanisms for beginning pupils, but my heart is with the Kunlun. I also am kindly advised on occasion from Lao Xie Christopher Matsuo, who was a student of Max. I prefer the wu family Baguazhang over the Cheng style. I wouldn't call I can see a few parallels between the two, but I thought Kunlun was a thunder and lightning art. I am just a beginner so pardon me if I am off base. I started my qigong and Baguazhang journey with my local Master and sifu and among the first qigong exercises were the same as the ones I found a few years later in BKFs Opening the Energy Gates of Your Body.

Edited by spiraltao
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