August 18, 2006 at 12:36 am #16586
I think Bagua summed up beautifully the “fundamental difference” he sees between Daoist Alchemy and Chan paths, which I post below as reference. I agree with his assessment on all points, including focusing on the underlying unity of the Five Shen from the start – realizing the Original Spirit is always omni-present, best accomplished with the simple method of the Inner Smile.
I note that, like many others, he points out that “Chan is in Dao Alchemy, it has to be”. And I agree, both historically and methodologically, Chan is, as the original Dao practice of “sitting in forgetfulness”. But the CONVERSE is not necessarily true, that Dao Alchemy is inside Chan. That is the question I have been raising. If it were the case, I don’t think the Dao alchemists would have developed further methods beyond simply sitting, forgetting, and waiting for change to happen. One wonders why there are not the same horde of Daoist alchemists claiming that Chan is the same as alchemy – apart from the Chinese cultural synthecists amongst whom it was popular to posit that Confucius, Buddha, and Dao were all One. Of course there is anunderlying fundamental Oneness – bu the Devil is in the Details
I think that Chan is the same insofar as Dao Alchemy is based on the natural transformational cycles of yin-yang and five phases, and that if one merely rests and does nothing but observe those transformations or the “empty” or netural core of the Wheel of Life, they will continue to happen spontaneously. The Wheel will keep turning, and you see it more clearly from the center.
But will the key aspect of the “inversion of primal water and fire” as the quickening process of completion of the soul happen spontaneously? Possibly – one cannot exclude anything from happening spontaneously, and I for one would never claim exclusivity to ANY path.
But I am 100% confident that the very thing that Buddhists scorn the most – the Daoist “spinning chi” – is the very thing that speeds up the alchemical transformations and quickens the process, and allows one to simultaneously embrace movement, stillness, and the crystallization of Original Essence (the yuan jing essential to immortality) all at once.
The issue of completion is the most critical difference that should not be glossed over – for the sake of your own soul completion.
I refer you again to the research of Peter Novak, who concluded that ALL the ancient religions of mankind, on all continents, posited a binary soul that would split after death unless unified into a third force that resolved their Heaven -Earth tension and created an immortal consciousness. Novak notes that amongst the modern religions, only Buddhism claims to bypass this process, a claim that he notes is impossible to substantiate.
Thanks again bagua for your succinct summary. Glad we agree.
>The fundamental difference I see between Tao Alchemists on this and Chan. Tao alchemists think you are incomplete, you must do alchemy to make something you do not have now or will not naturally occur, if you dont your “being” will spit into parts and go into the collective, the chance for an integtrated spirit/immortal is lost. This is the splitting point for me.
>Chan believes you are complete now, as you are, it is the overdevelopment of the intellect/ego/emotions that creates a separation from realizing and living from yout true nature, both as an individual and part of an eternal creation.
>Now I practive both, as each has their benefits, but to me, Chan is in Tao Alchemy, it has to be.
>Later Heaven and Early heaven are not two separate things, they exist simultaneously, it is like stillness-movement exist togehter. One can use these terms in many ways, does not mean they are correct.
>The Five Shen are not separate, they are one shen, with five aspects or qualites, this inseparable aspect must be taught from the beginning, but seems to get lost. They are inseparable and really one as Yin-Yang is in separable and are ONE.August 18, 2006 at 7:32 am #16587
>>One wonders why there are not the same horde of Daoist alchemists claiming that Chan is the same as alchemy… Of course there is anunderlying fundamental Oneness – bu the Devil is in the Details<<
As far as that quote that delighted Fajin so much – Shang-yang-tzu saying that "The Way of Bodhidharma is identical to the Way of alchemy" – would he then be classified by you as one of these 'Chinese cultural synthesists'?
I am trying to discover in my mind how all this infighting and politics can be separated from the truth. To be blunt, I absolutely *know* that Michael's view is cosmologically correct. If Fajin really believes that yuan = yin, that is a major mistake! I am trying to understand why sitting in stillness in Chan fashion would make a person believe this.
NNAugust 18, 2006 at 1:02 pm #16589August 18, 2006 at 6:01 pm #16591
I want to express something that may (or may not) reveal a truth. Where does Yuan come from? Where is Yang generated?
If you have no Yin, can you have Yang or Yuan?
If the log is low, can there be much fire?
baguaAugust 18, 2006 at 6:16 pm #16593
How does one measure “accelerate the alchemical process”? From my experience, there are not many if any who claim to be immortal taoists? Where are the high level people that are living examples of this acceleration?
Lao Zi, Zuang Zi and others do not talk of the step-by-step detailed alchemical method of White Cloud, there are many taoist methods for obtaining the goal of union of tao and humanity, some extremely detailed, some very general, it appears in the taoist community there are many ways to acheive the goal. So my point is there are many ways to acheive the goal, not one way.
I dont believe Lao Zi mentions at death if one is not acheived they will split and go into the collective and the opportunity for integration is lost. I beleive this is a great misunderstanding.
I do believe the Kan and Li formulas are rooted in basic chinese medicine, which came first I do not know. But the evolution of the formulas seem to come after the warring period, much later.
Im glad when we do agree, peace and harmony permeate the Qi fields.
baguaAugust 18, 2006 at 6:55 pm #16595
My answers would be:
>>Where is Yang generated?<>If you have no Yin, can you have Yang or Yuan?<>If the log is low, can there be much fire?<<
The flame of yang does NOT burn on a log of yin! Yin and Yang are always *equal* partners which is why there is yuan!
I know why you are saying this – you think physical manifestation 'depends on' original spirit. But to no less an extent does original spirit 'depend on' manifestation. That has always been the point I was making and Michael was (I think) making.
If physical manifestation is yang 'moving towards' the yin of spirit, that is one direction. If spirit is yang 'moving towards' manifestation, that is another direction. Both processes happen constantly and simultaneously and that is why Michael says you must understand it *as* a process.
If one thing exists that is all things, then how does creation proceed from it? Something 'moves towards' – that is yang. Something attracts that which is moving towards it – that is yin. And when they find each other that is yuan. – except you cannot necessarily say 'when' since this is not happening in time as we experience time in the physical plane.
Any help? NNAugust 18, 2006 at 7:36 pm #16597
Its all simple. The three are inseparable.
If one understands chinese medicine.
Jing is Yin and is cooked by Yang to create Yuan Qi, these are three things, but they are inseparable and exist simultaneously. Yuan Qi comes from the cooking of Yin/Jing. This cooking exists at all times in this life. You call it process, I call it natural. My natural includes your process. Your process denies my natural.
The model I just explained is the mechanics of Lessor Kan And Li, which is just tapping into what alredy exists.
baguaAugust 18, 2006 at 9:57 pm #16599
There is not three in this picture, but two.
>>Jing is Yin and is cooked by Yang to create Yuan Qi, these are three things, but they are inseparable and exist simultaneously. Yuan Qi comes from the cooking of Yin/Jing.<<
"Kidney jing encompasses both kidney yin and kidney yang, often referred to as the body's original yin and original yang. Kidney qi is produced by the dynamic interaction between the two, specifically the action of functional/warming kidney yang steaming the material kidney yin."
Jing has yin-yang aspects. Qi has yin-yang aspects. Shen has yin-yang aspects. When we look at them as a totality, jing is yin, qi is yang, Wu Ji is neutral. When we say yuan qi from the kidneys, that is prenatal qi and is yin because it is before birth. Postnatal qi from food and water is after birth and is yang.
There are many perspectives to look at this from. The term yuan tends to throw so many people off and we get people like Michael thinking that it is neutral and Wu Ji is not and therefore Chan does not lead us to Wu Ji. In the grander picture, Wu Ji is neutral, or non-dual.
FajinAugust 18, 2006 at 10:20 pm #16601
>>To be blunt, I absolutely *know* that Michael’s view is cosmologically correct.<>If Fajin really believes that yuan = yin, that is a major mistake!<<
*It is not just me who says yuan = yin, but most Daoists (if not all excluding Healing Dao) who believe so.
I am trying to understand why sitting in stillness in Chan fashion would make a person believe this.<<
*Sitting in Chan fashion helps one to understand that their true self is a "non-doer". That spirit is neutrality that governs vitality (jing) and energy (qi) as Lu Dong Bin says. Master Zhiyang, Zhang, Sanfeng, and Lu Dong Bin say this in the quotes I showed you. If you still think Michael knows better than the Immortals, good luck! I tried to help out.
FajinAugust 18, 2006 at 11:56 pm #16603
Jing is stored in the kidneys, there is a time it is not Kidney Jing.
Jing is yin compared to shen. Jing is cooked by the Gate of Vitality/Yang, it creates Yuan Qi, the image is a cauldron, with Jing/Yin inside and Gate of Vitality/Yang underneath it, cooking it creating steam (whole steamig in kan and li is based on this.
When the Yuan Qi moves to the organs the get a new name, so when it goes to Kidneys its Kidney Qi. This Yuan Qi ignites the Kidneys creating Kidney Yin and Yang, the root of the body.
This is not so sequential, like the big bang, boom its all happening at once.
Wu Ji is contained all everything, so everything has a Yin/Wu Ji/Yang aspect.
Postnatal qi from food and water is after birth and is yang.
This is Spleen and stomach and is the location of Greater Kan and Li, and is the karma/patterns created by our effort, its about karma we create in this life.
Cosmological diagrams and structures are tools, lets not mistake the tool for the reality;, lets not mistake the finger for the moon.
The only thing that matters is what these practices do for your daily life. Hopefully dreams of immortality doesn’t take people away from living in this life, moment to moment. Its all here, right now, all else is fantasy.
baguaAugust 19, 2006 at 7:14 am #16605
>>The three are inseparable.<>Your process denies my natural.<>The model I just explained is the mechanics of Lessor Kan And Li, which is just tapping into what alredy exists.<<
I'm sure you're correct.
NNAugust 19, 2006 at 7:37 am #16607
… if anyone is prepared to discuss.
I still think this is an argument about language primarily, for example, when you say this:
>>*Sitting in Chan fashion helps one to understand that their true self is a “non-doer”. That spirit is neutrality that governs vitality (jing) and energy (qi) as Lu Dong Bin says. Master Zhiyang, Zhang, Sanfeng, and Lu Dong Bin say this in the quotes I showed you. If you still think Michael knows better than the Immortals, good luck! I tried to help out.<<
– you aren't saying anything that denies the 'cosmological view' I am talking about. So I think if it is all a question of what 'yuan' means that is disappointing. When I speak about Michael's 'cosmological view' I am speaking about something different from what you are talking about, that spirit governs jing and chi. (By the way it is not only zen people who practice one-pointedness! As a magician it is one of the first things I learned.)
The 'cosmological view' I'm talking about does not only include the cooking process that you and Bagua are talking about. I've already said, about a million times, that I think sitting in stillness *can* lead to attaining the Tao! I seem to be the only person here, bizarrely, who will come out and say that it works, but works better also in tandem with other aspects of Tao science such as are taught here. I say this is bizarre because both you and Bagua *in actual practice* seem to agree with me.
I don't know if the conversation can continue without some time passing for everyone to absorb, but can I ask you a question? I hope I can phrase it right!
The myriad things distract from the one, correct?
If you can hold to the one, the myriad things lose their power to distract, correct?
If so, please tell me: where do the myriad things come from and why do they have the power to distract?
NNAugust 19, 2006 at 9:23 am #16609
I agree with you that jing is yin. It must be yin as the root of creation. But what I don’t agree with is that everyone on this board says that yuan qi is some kind of neutral force in between yin-yang. Yuan qi comes from yuan jing, these are prenatal sources and are classified as yin.
In TCM, kidney yin and kidney yang are also called yuan yin and yuan yang. Yuan does not imply neutrality. It just means original, or prenatal. But in the case of Tai Ji, qi is yang as it is the effect of jing.
It cannot get any simpler than this, I hope we can agree.
>>Hopefully dreams of immortality doesn’t take people away from living in this life, moment to moment. Its all here, right now, all else is fantasy.<<
*Just curious. What do you think was the reason then, that many Daoists secluded themselves in a cave and practice nei dan?
FajinAugust 19, 2006 at 9:40 am #16611
I am prepared to discuss.
Sorry if it sounded like I was arguing. I am in disagreement with some of the things that Michael says, I don’t initiate the discussions, just reply to them.
>>I am speaking about something different from what you are talking about, that spirit governs jing and chi.<>I think sitting in stillness *can* lead to attaining the Tao!<>The myriad things distract from the one, correct?<>If you can hold to the one, the myriad things lose their power to distract, correct?<>where do the myriad things come from and why do they have the power to distract?<>why do they have the power to distract?<<
*Because they are in movement, our minds follow that movement. So we constantly cling to them.
There is a saying in Zen that goes something like,
"There are many different leaves on a tree, but when we understand the root, we understand all the tree's blossoming."
FajinAugust 19, 2006 at 9:45 am #16613
I want to say exactly what *I* mean – even, just for myself! Then you can call me anything you like and tell me I am following a false prophet and rejecting the true immortals if you want! – but don’t worry, because things are not so bad as that.
So firstly, I asked the question about the myriad things, or the 10,000 things. I ask this because I feel what a Buddhist would tell me is that the 10,000 things come from one thing – you can call it wuji if you like (I think that is not quite correct) – I would call it unity. But that is only words and doesn’t matter!
All I mean to say is that a Buddhist would tell me that ego and suffering comes from the false view of the 10,000 things as separate, when in fact because of coming from Unity they are only one thing.
What I am saying is that, as well as being only one thing, they are *also* 10,000 things. Neither view is correct. All views are correct. Each individual life of the 10,000 things is important individually, also each is important as a body of the whole Unity.
Now secondly as to this question of ‘yuan’. I used this word in the sense Michael used it – if it has another sense then fine, use that, I will use the word ‘neutral’ instead so we do not get caught up in this business of what is pre-natal and what is post-natal.
Whatever the Unity is (you call it Wuji I *think*…) it is neutral and tends neither towards yin nor yang predominantly. I’m sure you agree with this – and by the way Michael doesn’t disagree I think! Which is why we have to be so careful with words, as I come to in a second.
But before that, I have to say this: the yin and yang of material existence must be unified; when they are, something appears that is neither yin nor yang but a reflection of the greater unity. This is the third and reconciling force between yin and yang. The three are one – it is just like mem aleph and shin for the kabbalistically inclined. I will stop calling that neutrality ‘yuan’ if you don’t want me to call it yuan – it is just a name. But all I meant is that the primal Unity tends in neither yin nor yang direction. And so, when a realization or an alchemical act leads to unity within postnatal realms, it leads also towards neutrality just because it leads towards Unity. I doubt you disagree with this, assuming I’ve managed to explain right.
Thirdly and finally, the business of Wuji itself. The complete Unity in my own conception is not Wuji, Wuji is *beyond* even this Unity. I am going from very limited experience but also from teachers and now Michael says the same which is encouraging. I leave to you to make of this what you will.
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