forestofemptiness

Thoughts on Energy Arts / B.K. Frantzis

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That sounds interesting. Too often in internal arts circles it seems to set the person against the flow of the world-- absorbing, expanding, dominating. The emphasis on surrender sounds very appealing. 

 

31 minutes ago, rideforever said:

Nevertheless the idea of surrender and flowing, letting go, unknotting, undoing, unwinding, into the darkness ... is very a valuable part of practice.

 

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20 hours ago, Walker said:

A few thoughts on BKF...

 

1. I am 99% sure he just made up the whole "Buddhism is fire, Daoism is water thing." If anybody can point to any source in classical Chinese for this distinction, please let me know. I will find the original text, read it, and try to translate it here. (I have never heard any such distinction be made, and as far as I am concerned it is silly--there are thousands of different techniques in Buddhism, and thousands of different techniques in Daoism. In both Buddhism and Daoism, some ways of practicing are a bit more "firey" and some are a bit more "watery." This whole water path thing just seems like half-baked marketing to me, from a nearly-bygone era when very few westerners could read any Chinese and very few had lineage holding teachers. I think it mischaracterizes both traditions. But, again, if anybody can point to a source other than BKF himself that discusses this fire-water dichotomy, please do so). 

 

He was one of the first authors I encountered, very early in the game, and it's true that it's from a "nearly-bygone era" of very limited availability of things taoist to a westerner.  Those were the days of looking for "where do I go with this taoist spell I fell under" -- I never went with any of his practices or took any of his stories to heart -- yet the idea that western systems are, without a single exception, upward-bound (toward Light, Sun, Father in Heaven, Paradize, pyramids, the head trips, hierarchy, patriarchy, yang, massively consuming...  all expressions of Fire) while taoism is downward-bound (the way Water flows, down to Mother Earth, Dark, the womb, LDT, soil under your feet, toward earthly Life rather than heavenly afterlife, path of least resistance, non-hierarchical values, matriarchy, yin, massively nourishing...  all expressions of Water) did ring true.  So true in fact that to this day this is the first thing I notice about any phenomenon on autopilot, a primary diagnostic tool of sorts -- upward-Fire or downward-Water, pyramid (scam) or evenly spreading out (the life-generating ocean... and Amazonia, incidentally,  looks like an immense and very even green ocean when you look down at it from a plane -- and is very wet.  Nothing sticking out.  No pyramid shapes.  Even and wavy like Water.) 

 

Of course this is just a very rough and raw take -- there's indeed thousands of techniques, but the goal, the vector, the where they are headed (there's that word again) and spearheaded (and again) -- that's quite noticeable from the get-go no matter what technique you're looking at.  And of course if you go deeper into taoist practices, there's Fire within Water and Water within Fire, there's that.  And if you go wider, there's also Wood, Metal and Earth, each of them containing all five.  And wider still, there's Thunder and the amazing and terrifying techniques of Thunder magic, there's Lake which is a different kind of Water altogether, there's the dangerous Water abyss of the I Ching, and the rest of them ten thousand things.  So, of course, the Water-Fire dichotomy is a pre-K distinction.  Nevertheless, I believe it's still important to notice.  I don't think BKF invented it.  I think he interpreted  and sort of grokked something he learned, and it's not any one method or source, anymore than the Catholic Jesus or Presbytarian or Greek Orthodox or Mormon are "the source of Jesus" -- but if it's about Jesus, it's Christianity, and if it's Water-like in its overall scope of values and vectors, it's taoism.  So, cut the man some slack.  I don't think he was wrong on this one at all.  I think he was mighty insightful even if he's wrong (or worse) about everything else.  Even a broken clock shows the right time twice a day.  

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A broken clock may show the right time twice a day, but the problem with Frantzis is that he claims to have more power, understanding, and skill than he actually does, and it shows in some of his instructors and the experiences of people I know in his courses with him who have characterized him as being more interested in financial gain and promoting himself. 

 

I will share vague details here and save the actual story for my close confidantes: he boasted about his skill somewhere in public, but was unaware of the individual in front of him being very skilled himself. Volunteering himself when BKF wanted to show off his skill, he ended up embarrassing BKF as BKF ended up on the other side of the room, who then realized that he had forgotten his humility. 

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The problem I see is not bad teachers, which is problematic, but unworthy students, which is even worse!

 

Bad mouthing people is plain wrong especially if you haven't met them in real life and have a solid experience in the art they are teaching.

 

About BKF's Beijing-based teacher, Liu Hung Chieh:

 

"While still in his teens, Liu Hung Chieh became the disciple of bagua master, Liu Zhenlin. Liu Hung Chieh furst studied with Liu Zhenlin when Liu was teaching in the school of Cheng Tinghua's son Cheng Youlung and Dong Haichuan's student Liu Dekuan. Liu Zhen Lin was a famous fighter and bodyguard who first studied bagua under Yin Fu's student Liu Yongqing (who was a close friend and training partner of Yin Fu's top student, Ma Gui). The young Liu Zhenlin learned all of his basic bagua from these two masters, but his teachers brought him to bow before and become the disciple of court minister Liang Zhaiwen; in this way, Liu Zhenlin received entry into the third generation of bagua masters, which was the same generation as his foundation teachers. Liang Zhaiwen was a military man who had been the chief guard at the most important fire gate on the Great Wall before becoming a court minister. Due to Liang's position in lthe court, his association with the palace eunuch servant Dong Haichuan was not widely known until after Liang's death. Because he was the top student of Liu Zhenlin, it is same to asume that young Liu Hung Chieh also received training under his teacher's gongfu "uncles," Liu Yongqing and Ma Gui."

 

Source:

http://northstarmartialarts.com/blog1/2007/10/16/the-whirling-circles-of-ba-gua-zhang-part-2.html

 

 

 

 

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8 hours ago, rideforever said:

He is right that Taoism is about flowing down and dissolving into the darkness of tantien it's enlightenment is based around awakening tantien.

Buddhism is about consciousness and awareness (within the head) and very technical using a lot of mind energy to analyse things.

 

Well, I think you're wrong in your characterizations.

 

Analysis may be part of Buddhism, but I think the statement "Buddhism is about consciousness and awareness (within the head)" in untenable. If you have studied with Buddhist teachers in person, perhaps your observations reflect what they displayed. But those observations are not representative of the Buddhism I have encountered. 

 

Secondly, if you think that the lower dantian is the source of enlightenment in Daoism... well... you're off to a start... but keep studying. 

 

12 hours ago, forestofemptiness said:

@Walker, tall tales aside, do you have any thoughts on his methods? Legit or bullshido? 

 

Never met him or his students. Like I said, the demonstrators in his bagua mastery DVDs were enough to turn me away. Have heard two versions of a story similar (but set outdoors, in a parking lot in Arizona) to what Earl Grey mentioned from two people I believe can be taken quite seriously. Enough so that I wouldn't bother to take one of his courses even if it was held next door to me, but heck, could well be that'd I'd be missing a golden opportunity. At the very least, I'd get hands-on instructions on finger banging tofo, non? 

 

_______

 

1 hour ago, Gerard said:

The problem I see is not bad teachers, which is problematic, but unworthy students, which is even worse!

 

Lol, what, pray tell, is a "worthy student?"

 

1 hour ago, Gerard said:

Bad mouthing people is plain wrong especially if you haven't met them in real life and have a solid experience in the art they are teaching.

 

So is "good mouthing" people you haven't met and whose arts you do not practice!

 

I always think sharing rumors is fair enough, especially if they come from reasonably credible sources. We all bear a certain responsibility for our reputations, even if parts of our reputation are quite false. Hearing a warning about a teacher who might be problematic could spare a student from wasting much money, getting sucked into a cult, getting raped, and so forth (no, I am not suggesting BKF presents any of these risks except for possibly the first; yes, there are teachers in the Chinese cultivation world who are guilty of all of the above and worse, including murder). So, please wouldja ease up on the sanctimony just a tiddy-tad, @Gerard. 

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5 hours ago, Taomeow said:

did ring true.  So true in fact that to this day this is the first thing I notice about any phenomenon on autopilot, a primary diagnostic tool of sorts -- upward-Fire or downward-Water, pyramid (scam) or evenly spreading out (the life-generating ocean... and Amazonia, incidentally,  looks like an immense and very even green ocean when you look down at it from a plane -- and is very wet.  Nothing sticking out.  No pyramid shapes.  Even and wavy like Water.) 

 

Well, maybe you and BKF are correct in this observation, or at least correct from a certain angle. But... "rings true" is a tricky thing.

 

The Buddhism I know is certainly not pyramidal, though some (edit: too many, but if you think that's the only way this tradition has been understood by its disciples, you ain't read angel Kyodo williams or listened to Joanna Macy speak) people certainly make Buddhist institutions that are.

 

The Daoism I know is full of pyramids, including in institutions and the pantheon (both products of humanity), which was modeled on the Chinese imperial system. However, the Dao has rooms for pyramids and valleys and is not lessened or increased in the least the more or less pyramids or valleys there are in any houtian world. 

 

We all need to be a bit careful of the distortions the lenses we choose to wear create for us. After all, the Amazon is no closer to the Dao than Mt. Everest or the Marianas Trench. Unless your definition of Dao necessitates such distinctions, in which case I can only say, you and I wear different glasses. 

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1 hour ago, Walker said:

 

Well, maybe you and BKF are correct in this observation, or at least correct from a certain angle. But... "rings true" is a tricky thing.

 

The Buddhism I know is certainly not pyramidal, though some (edit: too many, but if you think that's the only way this tradition has been understood by its disciples, you ain't read angel Kyodo williams or listened to Joanna Macy speak) people certainly make Buddhist institutions that are.

 

The Daoism I know is full of pyramids, including in institutions and the pantheon (both products of humanity), which was modeled on the Chinese imperial system. However, the Dao has rooms for pyramids and valleys and is not lessened or increased in the least the more or less pyramids or valleys there are in any houtian world. 

 

We all need to be a bit careful of the distortions the lenses we choose to wear create for us. After all, the Amazon is no closer to the Dao than Mt. Everest or the Marianas Trench. Unless your definition of Dao necessitates such distinctions, in which case I can only say, you and I wear different glasses. 

 

Yes, I, too, know more than one kind of taoism, but methinks the kind that's full of pyramids is a hybridized product of either cross-pollination with buddhism or an involuntary competition with it.  Modeling it on the imperial system was the outcome of the imperial system itself, for many, many dynasties, favoring buddhism over taoism -- not just in their hearts but primarily in their taxation policies and outright assaults on the original taoism, accompanied by several waves of cultural revolution style destruction of all but a handful of its original vast scientific and spiritual legacy -- yes, the cultural revolution was a very traditional endeavor in Chinese history, nothing unprecedented there --  while punishing possession of those books by death for generations (allowing only for a few notable exceptions some of which are what we know today as "traditional Chinese medicine").  Which is why I am always after "that other" taoism, the "before buddhism" kind, hard to find, finding me on occasion, and proto-taoism that is harder to find but definitely closer to what the rain forest is like than to what pyramids are like. 

 

"Not closer to the Dao?"  If nothing is closer than anything else nor farther away, why bother?  I am forced to operate under the assumption of the holy sages that "in the human world, tao has been destroyed."  I know it's not "positive thinking."  But that's the only kind that makes any cultivation make any sense at all.  Seriously...  If everything in the human world is perfect tao as it is, might as well watch me some TV.  Butter me on both sides and call me a biscuit.  The rain forest was not created by the destruction of tao in the human world.  Pyramids were.      

 

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4 hours ago, Taomeow said:

Yes, I, too, know more than one kind of taoism, but methinks the kind that's full of pyramids is a hybridized product of either cross-pollination with buddhism or an involuntary competition with it. 

 

Honestly, given that we see institutionalized greed pop up everywhere in the post-agricultural revolution world, I think this gives the pre-Buddhist Chinese a bit too much credit and makes Buddhism into a bit of a scapegoat. By which I mean to say, I think that a bureaucracy and hierarchy probably existed in institutions that claimed to study Laozi before Buddhism arrived, and if somehow they didn't, would have come about sooner than later. My thinking on this is sorta like what you'd expect from somebody who nodded along while reading Ishmael and Against the Grain. The societies in China that produced Lao-Zhuang though were already heavily sedentary, agricultural, and metallurgical society. Patriarchy, slavery, Heavenly reward for obedience on earth, etc. all seem to spring from that recipe like mushrooms after rain. If anything, I feel that Lao-Zhuang, et al were a cry for sanity in a land that had already gone mad--after all Laozi left! The fact is that the Daoism that comes down the 2,500-year-old pipeline to us is a product of The Man as much as it is a product of those who think The Man has his head up his holy ass. I mean, case in point: the damn Yellow Emperor's Inner Classic, an indispensable, ancient Daoist classic, has the word "emperor" in the title and not only identifies castes/classes in its opening chapter, but also advocates that the castes/classes shouldn't complain. 

 

In any event, as for "involuntary competition," any Daoist who competes has already lost the plot a bit. Thankfully, this seems to have been understood by enough wise ones that those who faded into their backgrounds passed many things down the chain. 

 

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Modeling it on the imperial system was the outcome of the imperial system itself, for many, many dynasties, favoring buddhism over taoism -- not just in their hearts but primarily in their taxation policies and outright assaults on the original taoism, accompanied by several waves of cultural revolution style destruction of all but a handful of its original vast scientific and spiritual legacy -- yes, the cultural revolution was a very traditional endeavor in Chinese history, nothing unprecedented there --  while punishing possession of those books by death for generations (allowing only for a few notable exceptions some of which are what we know today as "traditional Chinese medicine").

 

Some good points there, though I don't fully believe that the Daoists solely did this because they had their backs up against the walls. There was plenty of vital, fun, free-wheeling, beauitful Daoist literature going back into the Six Dynasties and Tang Period that replicated the cultural milieu of the times in its depictions of heaven in the same way that people raised on Hollywood movies can barely imagine what God looks like without seeing Morgan Freeman (hey, at least they don't see John Wayne) surrounded by Doric columns. Humans seem to habitually recreate fantastical versions of their actual surroundings in their theatrical, literary, artistic, and poetic imaginings of the "beyond." I think it was possible that for plenty of ancients enthusiasts for Daoism it just seemed "natural" the the heavens had an emperor and a bunch of ministers and curved roofs (probably no Doric columns, though). 

 

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 Which is why I am always after "that other" taoism, the "before buddhism" kind, hard to find, finding me on occasion, and proto-taoism that is harder to find but definitely closer to what the rain forest is like than to what pyramids are like. 

 

I hope you find what you seek. But please know that there are many Buddhists who also seek "before Buddhism Buddhism." See Longchenpa, for one important and influential example. 

 

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"Not closer to the Dao?"  If nothing is closer than anything else nor farther away, why bother?

 

Daoists I know simultaneously teach diligent practice whilst not bothering. I think working with this paradox this is extremely important. My experience is that practice is of a much higher quality when one does not bother at all while one undertakes cultivation. 

 

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 I am forced to operate under the assumption of the holy sages that "in the human world, tao has been destroyed."

 

I don't think you are forced to operate under that assumption, and I don't think all holy sages share it. 

 

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 I know it's not "positive thinking."  But that's the only kind that makes any cultivation make any sense at all.

 

Cultivation that makes sense to the logical mind might not be the best cultivation that is to be had.

 

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 Seriously...  If everything in the human world is perfect tao as it is, might as well watch me some TV.

 

This is a dangerous trap of thinking that is warned about consistently...

 

... especially in commentaries on the Heart Sutra (which I suspect it will pain you to hear me say, but if it makes you feel any better, some pedants complain that the Heart Sutra is apocrypha created with Daoist influences, so...)

 

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Butter me on both sides and call me a biscuit.

 

If you butter both sides your hands get mad greasy...

 

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The rain forest was not created by the destruction of tao in the human world.  Pyramids were.

 

Fair enough. But we are typing to each other back and forth on the 21st century equivalent of a pyramid. I say this not to try and back you into a corner, but to point out that this seems to indicate that we both, as thoughtful people seeking some sort of "truth" and "liberation" have concluded that simply eschewing with all the trappings of a diseased way of living does not bring one to The Way. As we are sincere seekers, were we convinced that simply unplugging and going off grid would bring us to our destinations, we quite likely would. Yet we seem to have the hunch that remaining here--with our computers full of conflict coltan and conflict gold, built by terribly overworked poor people in factories with a lot of toxic air and very little humanity, running on the fires of coal, and leaching industrial chemicals into our skin as we type--is actually somehow right. This seems to indicate that on some level we believe that somehow the Dao is indeed immanent, even right here in the human world. 

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9 hours ago, Taomeow said:

closer to what the rain forest is like than to what pyramids are like. 

this rang the bell... thank you

 

re-minded of the following sentiment:

 

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there are more miracles in a square yard of simple earth, than are presented in all spiritual texts of the world combined...

 

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I think there are two aspects of Daoist arts that we mix up: martial arts and spiritual arts. Personally, I am more interested in spiritual arts. I have spent a number of years in various fighting-based clubs.

 

I am always unsure what to think about CMA (Chinese Martial Arts) students who talk about fighting ability. As I recall, in the heady, madcap 1990's the Gracie family decided to put to the test which martial art was the best. As it turns out, it is probably a combination of Western boxing, Brazilian jiu-justu, and Thai kickboxing. Usually CMA people who I have known to be fighters are already scrappers, but I have almost never heard of some one using CMA against an aggressive and unwilling opponent. Nor have I heard of a CMA initiate putting the slap down on well-trained MMA fighters. If that were the case, professional fighters would be training CMA. In addition, most people who actually fight a lot (i.e. police and military) tend to take up MMA rather than CMA. Most of the fighting discussed in this thread appears to take place between two CMA practitioners in a limited environment. As I recall, Bruce Lee realized this as a limitation of CMAs and adjusted his own fighting accordingly by drawing on other fighting styles. 

 

The only exception to this for me was a person who trained under Mike Patterson. He allowed for fairly free flowing sparring in his classes which often degraded quickly. A nth degree Tae Kwon Do black belt/instructor took a hit to the face and never returned. The teacher however, could take on MMA guys half his age. He had ability, but it only came with years of hard, full time training and exercise. 

 

I have heard of CMA folks who also fight, but it is not clear to me whether they were utilizing their CMA or if they were just brawlers. In addition, they seem to be looking for fights (most adults do not ever get into fights), which suggests that their spiritual development is lacking. And given that most people do not get into fights, many of these "in the world fights" may be against untrained, out-of-shape people.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Walker said:

 

If anything, I feel that Lao-Zhuang, et al were a cry for sanity in a land that had already gone mad--after all Laozi left!

 

I think so too.  And this cry for sanity was bound to fall on deaf ears.  Which is one reason I look as far back to what remains of pre-Laozi taoism (Fuxi and the shaman Yu the great, e.g., and "folk" taoism and the I Ching minus the Wings) as I possibly can, and prefer taijiquan and meditation and using a luopan and experimenting with herbal formulas to talking "about," and ancient diagrams to texts written "around" them.   We all do what we can based on how we understand the subject matter.  My understanding is based on a pretty much visceral "knowing" of a wrong turn taken long before Laozi.  But it's not in my power to skip over millennia of BS in one fell swoop -- it is in my power though to seek out and try to access, in myself, what went before all the BS -- it's still there, amazingly enough, I wasn't launched from Mars (at least I hope I wasn't.)  It is in my power to choose the general direction of where I want to go with it.

 

9 hours ago, Walker said:

 

Daoists I know simultaneously teach diligent practice whilst not bothering. I think working with this paradox this is extremely important. My experience is that practice is of a much higher quality when one does not bother at all while one undertakes cultivation. 

 

Yeah, I mentioned "watch TV instead" in the spirit of the tongue in cheek.  I haven't had cable in over 20 years.  I know this paradox, and practice because...  well, there's no "bothersome" reason why.  Because too many of who I don't like don't practice anything or else practice something else.  :D  

 

9 hours ago, Walker said:

 

I hope you find what you seek. But please know that there are many Buddhists who also seek "before Buddhism Buddhism." See Longchenpa, for one important and influential example. 

 

 

Far as Tibet is concerned, I prefer pre-Buddhist non-Buddhism, aka Bön.  :)  My very first exposure to the Eastern thought that made a dent was Dzogchen, but my Dzogchen teacher mentioned tao at one point and the rest is personal history.

 

I can't say I found or didn't find what I seek.  There's another paradox for you.    

 

9 hours ago, Walker said:

 

Fair enough. But we are typing to each other back and forth on the 21st century equivalent of a pyramid. I say this not to try and back you into a corner, but to point out that this seems to indicate that we both, as thoughtful people seeking some sort of "truth" and "liberation" have concluded that simply eschewing with all the trappings of a diseased way of living does not bring one to The Way. As we are sincere seekers, were we convinced that simply unplugging and going off grid would bring us to our destinations, we quite likely would. Yet we seem to have the hunch that remaining here--with our computers full of conflict coltan and conflict gold, built by terribly overworked poor people in factories with a lot of toxic air and very little humanity, running on the fires of coal, and leaching industrial chemicals into our skin as we type--is actually somehow right. This seems to indicate that on some level we believe that somehow the Dao is indeed immanent, even right here in the human world. 

 

I had a similar discussion once with a locally prominent classical Chinese medicine doctor in China, a Longmen taoist, who was of the opinion that there's no clear distinction between "natural" and "unnatural" but was professionally and "taoistically" more interested in finding out where the distinction between "human" and "not human" lies.  He had encountered cases, e.g., where a patient was born with large parts of the spinal vertebrae missing, or without a brain, and lived.  Not the way one would expect a human being to live though.  So "human" was of much interest to him as a spectrum.  To me it also is... 

 

Yes, we are using our computers to get to the closest possible approximation of belonging to a tribe, of being tribally connected we can muster without actually belonging to a physical tribe (which is what I find even more impossible to recreate by just unplugging -- no, it's not the humanless desert that's missing from the life of a tribal creature gone civilized/modern, it's the real human connectedness...  and this-here computer is not the "next best thing" by any stretch of imagination but it's the "only" thing practically available.  Better than nothing doesn't mean "good" or "normal" to me, but it means what it means.) 

 

Basically, I don't worry about tao, she'll be fine regardless of what we do to ourselves (or allow the unmentionables to do to us, as the case may be).  I worry about the tao in the human world.  About being "not fully human" without necessarily being something "better" or "next" or "realized."  Just not human enough.  That's the problem I have with modernity, and with any which system that doesn't see it as a problem. 

 

 

     

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On 04/09/2019 at 3:44 PM, Rara said:

No, but I've read one of his books. Personally, I think he's onto something. Perhaps maybe a bit misguided when talking about the arts' effectiveness in combat, but for healing, I'm on board.

He could kick your ass ;)

(But I'm not sure he transmits the arts in a way that teaches his students to kick ass)

 

To answer the OP... I learned tiger and dragon many years ago and think it's been very worthwhile. It's a nice container to practice daoist concepts in.

 

If you're looking for qigong I say sure.

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17 hours ago, Taomeow said:

 He had encountered cases, e.g., where a patient was born with large parts of the spinal vertebrae missing, or without a brain, and lived.  Not the way one would expect a human being to live though.  So "human" was of much interest to him as a spectrum.  To me it also is... 

 

This missing brain yet functioning normally case situation is discussed in the Holographic Universe book by Michael Talbot - an oldie book but Spring Forest Qigong master read it and said that the book is an accurate portrayal of reality. The book features the work of Karl Pribram (neuroscientist) and David Bohm (quantum physicist) and so argues they had a similar view of reality. But Eddie Oshins worked with Pribram and Oshins unsuccessfully tried to explain to Pribram that he did not properly understand quantum phsyics. Oshins also taught Wing Chun and Oshins realized the secret of Neigong is the noncommutative phase logic of quantum physics. So this is a kind of dialectical reversal of extreme Westernization since otherwise ALL of Westernization is based on symmetric logic from the commutative principle (qp - pq = 0).

 

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9 minutes ago, voidisyinyang said:

This missing brain yet functioning normally case situation is discussed in the Holographic Universe book by Michael Talbot - an oldie book but Spring Forest Qigong master read it and said that the book is an accurate portrayal of reality. The book features the work of Karl Pribram (neuroscientist) and David Bohm (quantum physicist) and so argues they had a similar view of reality. But Eddie Oshins worked with Pribram and Oshins unsuccessfully tried to explain to Pribram that he did not properly understand quantum phsyics. Oshins also taught Wing Chun and Oshins realized the secret of Neigong is the noncommutative phase logic of quantum physics. So this is a kind of dialectical reversal of extreme Westernization since otherwise ALL of Westernization is based on symmetric logic from the commutative principle (qp - pq = 0).

 

 

I remember that book.  

 

I believe "the secret of neigong" Western sciences are not unified enough (nor advanced enough) to crack at this point.  "Translating" those concepts into Western terms is merely a matter of prestige -- some eastern masters want to be taken seriously in the context of Western sciences, the vogue of the day, so every time something "rings a bell" they are happy like Pavlovian dogs, the bell means dinner, or at least someone scratching them behind the ear.  I believe, however, that Western sciences have a way to go before they can tackle live phenomena (whose complexity is exponentially greater than that of mechanical ones) and would have to start on that journey by reversing its direction.  And that if they want to tackle things like neigong (which they usually don't) on their own terms, they would have to advance quite a bit farther in that different direction in biophysics, chaos, fractals and power laws (applicable to, but not entirely encompassed by, noncommutative geometry and physics).  

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1 minute ago, Taomeow said:

 

I remember that book.  

 

I believe "the secret of neigong" Western sciences are not unified enough (nor advanced enough) to crack at this point.  "Translating" those concepts into Western terms is merely a matter of prestige -- some eastern masters want to be taken seriously in the context of Western sciences, the vogue of the day, so every time something "rings a bell" they are happy like Pavlovian dogs, the bell means dinner, or at least someone scratching them behind the ear.  I believe, however, that Western sciences have a way to go before they can tackle live phenomena (whose complexity is exponentially greater than that of mechanical ones) and would have to start on that journey by reversing its direction.  And that if they want to tackle things like neigong (which they usually don't) on their own terms, they would have to advance quite a bit farther in that different direction in biophysics, chaos, fractals and power laws (applicable to, but not entirely encompassed by, noncommutative geometry and physics).  

 

yeah western science is dependent on external technology that has to be a standardized reproduction. This is why "quantum biology" is still dismissed as woo woo by many standard physicists despite the subject of "quantum biology" making the cover of SciAm in 2011 and then "quantum biology" being the science award winning book in 2016: "Life on the Edge." As for "chaos" and "fractals" and "power laws" and "exponential" - those are all still Western symmetric logic. I made that error in my 2000 master's thesis - that the Taiji could be equated with a logistic equation from chaos science. Nope. As my reviewer (who initially wanted to publish my master's thesis as a book) Charles Madden points out - the Taiji can NOT be a fractal since the Taiji does not use symmetric logic.

 

So actually hardly anyone knows about Eddie Oshins as he worked at Stanford Linear Accelerator Center but he only had a master's degree and Oshins was very pissed that the New Age had co-opted his research and then twisted its meaning around. But Oshins did collaborate with math professor Louis Kauffman (whom I think maybe even reads this forum and my blog). I have corresponded with quite a few quantum physicists on this matter - so for example David Bohm's model is being continued by his collaborator Professor Basil J. Hiley whom also now relies on a "noncommutative phase" logic.

 

So I would recommend studying Alain Connes if you want to understand noncommutative phase science - as it sounds like maybe it is new to you. It DOES require a total "re-write" of Western science - for example "noncommutative calculus"!! For me - I realized in 10th grade that Western science was based on faulty logic and so I secretly rejected the Pythagorean Theorem! This still raises snorts from the couple friends I have. haha. Because of course anyone doing anything "practical" like construction relies on the Pythagorean Theorem! But maybe what we think of as "practical" really isn't such!

 

So yes Western science is very limited but there have been some interesting attempts to "convert" Daoist training and Eddie Oshins is the only one to have cracked the secret of the logic of Neigong - in my view at least. I mean as I posted here - I figured this out on my own and then I SEARCHED the interwebs - since I am largely self-taught (after my master's degree) then I figured SOMEONE must have figured out this secret. Sure enough - it was Eddie Oshins! But he actually died young and I guess he was ridiculed or something as someone posted online that he was insane or something. Oh well. I asked Kauffman about this and he never said anything about it. On the contrary Kauffman has corroborated the important work of Oshins.

 

Oh also Nobel Physicist Brian Josephson told me he practices qigong and NOW he is studying Louis Kauffman's noncommutative phase logic as well!! So no one can use an MRI without the Josephson Effect and it's also the basis for the origin of the VOLT at NIST. But if you read Josephson's Nobel Laureate address he states that the origin of the effect is "symmetric breaking" aka that the origin of reality is ASYMMETRIC (not the symmetry that Western science is obsessed with). oops.

 

 

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@voidisyinyang Thank you for the recommendations, but I've got my hands full with Nassim Haramein (that is, when I'm actually looking in the direction of cool heresies in western sciences, something that doesn't happen often -- that Elvis has left the building for me quite a while ago.) So, I can't promise I'll dedicate much time to finding out what western sciences have decided about taoist arts in the last five minutes I wasn't looking.  In another five minutes it will change anyway.  :D 

 

I don't think taiji "is" or "is not" a fractal since I'm yet to find a natural phenomenon or an art based on same that is "not" a fractal.  But we've been looking at different parts of that elephant.  

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Anyone who writes this:

 

https://www.energyarts.com/bagua-circle-walking/

 

Deserves a lot of respect. No mumbo jumbo, just plain and simple facts derived from PRACTICE.

 

And those who do practice in earnest will reap the benefits.

 

Students need to be better than their teachers at one point! It's a clear sign than the teacher is doing a good job and has chosen worthwhile students. :)

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4 hours ago, Gerard said:

Anyone who writes this:

 

https://www.energyarts.com/bagua-circle-walking/

 

Deserves a lot of respect. No mumbo jumbo, just plain and simple facts derived from PRACTICE.

 

Meh, it was an okay essay. Pretty much typical "doing baguazhang will solve all of your problems" martial arts teacher website boilerplate, im(perhaps insufficiently)ho.

 

By the way, last week didn't you just say this when a woman came here to share her book?

On 9/14/2019 at 2:58 AM, Gerard said:

2. The less you read the better if you really want to go DEEP in this path and FEEL and UNDERSTAND what you really are and the ultimate nature of reality

Wait. So reading books = bad, but reading essays on websites = good? Just wanna be clear here.

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Everyone has to advertise themselves, my teacher does too; generic stuff too like everybody else.

 

Wait, some don't write anything online except for posting on forums trying to help others. There are others who write nothing. It all depends on the person, doesn't it?

 

But ultimately the student is the one who must put all the effort in.

 

So what was the point of your last post? 

 

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I work with someone who has worked with him. Bruce is a very advanced practitioner of both daoist meditation work and martial arts (which is my background), and so while his center might be a little expensive there is definitely real skill you can learn there. That said, you do need to take what he says with a grain of salt, and I'm not surprised by the one users story of Bruce bragging in front of someone he shouldn't have. Learn what you can from him, which is a lot, but keep a level head and move on. 

(Also, to the person who's talking about the Gracies and MMA in relation to CMAs, understand that self-defense and sports fighting have a lot more differences than they appear to, which is why the two worlds seem so far apart. If you're interest, check out Rory Miller and Iain Abernathy as good easy-to-find sources on martial art's relationship to self-defense)

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But again, what do normally people know about Ba Gua? Even most practitioners don't go past the martial and/or forms level?

 

This art will open you up completely if practiced with depth. Foundation work is a must too. 

 

And there is the "X" level? What is this?

 

Find out for yourself and you'll see what this means. ;)

 

Ba Gua is:

 

1. A kind of religion. But it's all about practice.

 

2. The sum of all religions.

 

3. Taoist in essence

 

4. Heavy on understanding the nature of consciousness and what YOU really are. Your true and ultimate nature. 

 

5. The sum of everything 

 

 

 

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Well, I decided to take a chance. I just finished the first week. 

 

The other night, I came home fairly late. My wife asked how it went. "Well," I said, "It was something I haven't had at these classes for a long time."

 

"What's that?" she asked. 

 

"It was--- fun," I said. 

 

"You never say that," she said. 

 

It's true. I have taken different MA classes over the years, and with the exception of a kick boxing class in college, none of them have been any fun. They may be fun at some parts, but certainly the entire experience is more work than fun. Some have been informative. Some have been useful. But none of them have been any fun. Usually, they are hard work. Or boring. Or a bit of both. 

 

It was also easy. They have obviously put in a lot of thought on how to teach people. And also multi-layered, with a heavy focus on meditation and mindfulness of the body. The teaching seemed pretty in line with what I have encountered at some other reputable schools. 

 

Obviously, it just started, but just thought I would share some of my initial impressions. I may have a different opinion in a few months. 

 

 

 

Edited by forestofemptiness
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On 05/09/2019 at 1:29 PM, Earl Grey said:

I am not a fan of BKF and do not recommend him or his instructors in general. To us, he is ultimately lacking in power or skill martially, and his qigong isn’t impressive nor is his writing accurate. This is all that I will say publicly on the matter.

 

Hi EG

Who's us ?

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1 hour ago, CloudHands said:

 

Hi EG

Who's us ?

 

Teachers and peers and lineages.

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2 hours ago, Earl Grey said:

 

Teachers and peers and lineages.

 

Sure what is the link between you all ?  US sounded like a group.

Simple curiosity !

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