Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Wisdom for those on the Path

To expand on the previous post; here's a piece I wrote in a different forum. I see alot of people getting alot of information but lack process or direction. So "to send Chi" in cyber-ville I thought this would be useful here as well.  Take it as face value there are no definitive in anything. 

Traveling abound you encounter many types of people. You see how people perform their art and traditions. There is no region the same as well as the people that practice them.  The one thing that is universal is quality or not. The underlying problem with anything is passing on to the younger generation the fruits of a tradition to be carried forward. This can be seen in family held recipes of a favorite dish, herbal remedy or secret gardening technique.

Being a lifelong student of Spiritual Studies and Body/Mind Health practices I feel its useful to send "Wisdom Chi" to the community. There is usually many burning questions, common questions received like how does one learn? In anything in life I had found with whatever one focuses in one will need the following: 

  •   The initiative to get massively passionate on whatever that might be.
  •   A Mentor Experience HANDS ON IN PERSON. There is no better way.
  •   Access to Oral Tradition; or the insights that are not written anywhere.

These are three check points I follow to this day. When I was a performing Musician/student, I made sure my teachers where the best in their field but also had the Self Mastery "the insights you never seen anywhere". Being a lifetime student as well in East Asian Traditions follows the above. 

A few years back during my comparative Taoist Religious Studies, my teacher sent to me by accident (or not..possibly for shock value). A several day footage of a obscure village in China performing a two week Funeral Ritual that went in out of homes and non stop chanting, and dances etc. It was amazing! The level of Mastery was something I will never forget and was quite moving. It motivated me to ramp up my sincerity of memorization, practice and educating the next generation, even more.

The future of these traditions require mentor-ship, hands on experience and specialized knowledge. Communities, healing enclaves and experiences is how one accelerates the process. You will need to sacrifice things in life to get what you want. Its no different than being in school. In School many are out and about on the weekend and the dedicated are at home studying deeper. The ones that succeed are the dedicated and persevere. The ones whom waste time and don't give extra effort miss out and accumulate miss opportunities.

The internet is great for connecting and communication; as I am doing here.. but should not be the dominant force in getting to be a hopeful expert in whatever one seeks. These practices require serious effort and practice like anything. You will need to be involved with people, teachers and experiences. You have to get tested in whatever you do thats the value of participating. There will be lots of wins, stumbles and plain ole "I blew it moments". 

Eventually through the process you become more educated grounded and begin to the embody the tradition. Learning will never cease and do-not over fill you're cup in haste to avoid someone more experienced then you. Take the useful lessons from anyone and learn to integrate them in you're life practice.  
 A old East Asian oral story on The Great Apple says it all:

I can tell one how great this apple is. I can describe it in many wonderful ways and sounds. But it will require you to express your inner will and see for yourself. Only then will it confirm to you all that I have told you. You will need to test many apples large ones, small ones and various types. Only then will you develop the skill of eyes are open to receive the experience; ears open to develop wisdom and mouth mindfully in action to embody the experience. You now have truly learned have you not.


Saturday, March 7, 2015

Creating a Wonderful Life Part I

To Think it And See It, Is to Create;
Imagination Creates You're Reality
Si Tai Gung T.T. Liang

In my classes and traveling this past late winter I encountered many wonderful practitioners and new friends. Often many interesting conversations come up, such as how to create a Life Practice Tradition with Qigong. These are the "Burning Questions" in many peoples minds. So in today's entry I will address it from the standpoint "you have test road many traditions thus far now what"? So much I like and not sure where to go.

Seek Within: The first thing that comes to mind is ask yourself "what is it that you truly want"? What is the practice that brings you the blissful states that you cannot wait to do each and everyday. For whatever it is you really want, that's whats going to flow through you with ease and come out the best. Follow youre heart and find the peace and joy with the practice or tradition that youre most comfortable with. Ignore what everyone else would like to plant in youre mind. 

Understand  that you are on the right road. Embrace it truly and do the best at it, that's what you can begin to focus with massive action and passion. Another point is to find a mentor for sure. Don't kid yourself you will need a mentor/teacher to help you stay accountable to progressing. A great guide is a great map to the end goal. 

Yin/Yang-Fire & Water: We all have strengths and weaknesses. Don't waste time on practices and traditions that totally aggravate you. Everyone's personal cosmology will have a strong "affinity" to certain things. These are practices, traditions and ways we learn that come naturally. There will be also practices and traditions that are in total opposition as well. Forget these practices for the time being, if not forever. Don't waste time on weaknesses, focus on strengths, cultivate them. I have taught students who struggled with certain structures and when it was changed up, viola they start to excel.

 Some people are great at meditation and natural healers, but cannot exist outside of that structure. We also see some are great at learning like a Tai Chi Chuan form, but their naturalness to it - is to expand the structure beyond the ordinary. The typical class will not serve them any longer. We also see some are great form players, but cannot do anything else that well  either.  A comparative tradition is in Music; we see the similarity in Jazz musicians who awakened into improvisation skills who cannot no longer function in a Classical Musician realm. They are now expanded in a different way. I believe not one is better than the other its just ones experience and cosmology to practices and traditions.

Filter What Comes In: Beware of what you let into your consciousness. The only thing holding you back from creating youre peak experiences is you. The way we think is influenced and ultimately will help or derail our progression. There will be critics and "Debbie Downers's" these are usually the people who have created a life of non - completion and are frustrated and jealous. Everyone is entitled to there opinion, but it does not matter in reality. This is just the Chaos of their mind.

Imagination Creates Reality: Master T.T. Liang taught this and wrote about it in his Tai Chuan Text called "Imagination Creates Reality". He simply states in his Liang-isms "To think it and see it is to create; the Imagination Creates Reality". This is taught in Form practice to see youre opponent and imagine the application etc. A more concrete practical application to get progress along the path I recommend the following.

(A) Pick a form, sequence or skill you would like to practice, and put it in your consciousness, the mind. This is something that you will have a personal commitment to for a period of time, until perfected. From there you will truly embody that skill to a new profound level.  As a note here you need to also pick something thats within youre level of reach; even if you are a beginner, this will help you to progress. In these traditions "Less is More" does not have to be so intricate, the most basic can become profound. Work with youre teacher with this in mind. You will have a new found joy and energy if you feel you have been stuck.

(B) Imagination Creates Reality= Imagine right now that form or skill. See yourself performing it. This is the first level of achieving it. Practice this several times a day even within a meditation session. This can be useful and is used in Japanese Shi Kan (Concentrate and Investigate or Look tradition) Meditation. Use video aids to help kick start the memory process....blink it in into the consciousness. Watch people that do it as well in person; which should be the first option. 

(C) Now as you see yourself performing it, use that imagination to create the reality. Imagine what it looks like, perfectly. See yourself doing it elegantly, beautifully and with much joy and bliss. See yourself from beginning to end perfectly... with confidence and with great spirits. The more you are able to fuse that and crystallize that vision; the more you will be able to manifest it as a "self fulfilled personal prophecy", in youre life. 

Practice as much you as can do your best. 

End of Part I