December 11, 2004 at 9:47 am #2344
Hello everybody. Hope all is as well with you as it can be.
I’m going to be trying to avoid web dialogue for a bit, both here and in “the other place”, so I thought I’d leave y’all with a summary of my recent thoughts and doings.
My dilemma for the last year or so, as I’ve mentioned before, has been that I’ve met two very very advanced Buddhist teachers.
Now in general, in my current state of ignorance, I’m more inclined towards Taoism than Buddhism. I like the idea that there are more positive responses to life than escape. I like the idea that we can enjoy the process of being and all the connections to the macrocosm, rather than just diving for the emptiness behind it all. I like to think that there are some positives to all this tripping around in duality.
Ironically, however, the happiest people I’ve met are these Buddhists. And while they buy into the whole Buddhist cosmology (wheel of samsara, suffering, get out if you can… ) they’re clearly not in any hurry themselves, and seem very much at peace.
Added to this, in fact preceeding it, was the unfortunate recognition that in four years or so I hadn’t gotten very good at taoism. Now I have reams of excuses. I’m a very cerebral type, who had, furthermore, been abusing his body and mind for some time. I clearly needed lots of preparatory medical type practices, just to have enough health and energy to play with. But nobody told me that and I didn’t ask.
I’m not blaming anyone. We’ve had this discussion before, here, about how the alchemy practices were actually intended for people who’d done years of very rigorous, guided preparation.
(Indeed if you believe “Opening the Dragon Gate” the apprentice had to die and be brought back to life at the end of part one, part two was another three years or so of intensive continuous daily guidance from three amazingly advanced beings, and then alchemy was included in part three. Serious divination was required to find the one student who could possibly handle it all!)
I still think it’s better to have these teachings available than not, so people can maybe get a glimpse. I certainly would not have such a clear idea now of how far I have to go, if I had not had a chance to try and fail at higher practices. Maybe it would help if people were assessed and told whether they were ready, but Taoism is about nothing if not personal responsibility.
I remember once telling Michael Winn how I was just starting to realise how much preparation this whole proposition involved. He gave me a huge grin and nodded very vigorously. Now and again I recall that he did 4 to 8 hours of kundalini yoga daily for four years before he even started Taoist stuff.
So anyway, I stopped going to alchemy retreats. Loved the cosmology, loved the understanding, enjoyed the transmission, but took away nothing I could practice and feel I was really doing it.
So I start hanging with the buddhists. Thinkiing of myself as a taoist working undercover, trying to steal some heavy-dooty preparatory moves. And yes, I got individual attention and assessment, herbs, exercises, some awesome dharma talks, and a chance to see how frantically unstill my mind really is, and how conceited and envious I am.
And I’m still there. Working on basic energetic health and mental stillness. Getting a new model. As follows :
Mind projects spirit out of body. Dreaming, desiring, worrying, visualising. Space in body is filled by karma, fold upon endless layer of it, which is physical, visible with practice, and tangible on release. Spirit needs to be returned to body. For taoist and buddhist alike. Health and karmic release results.
And the very simple practices to that end are what I’ve decided to do until the end of 2005, at least. I’m not entirely happy with it, but it seems by far the most effective way to get to a point where I can maybe become qualified to judge between various other plans. Which I’m clearly not right now.
Otherwise I will end up just following fashions, going with whatever I’ve heard most recently, and keep the mind busy comparing and contrasting. I’ve had enough of that, which is why I’m going to tiptoe away from this most enjoyable forum.
I may be back. Wish me luck.
P.S. William Bodri is the devil, the very spawn of beelzebub. I can’t prove it and I don’t yet know why. But he is. “Meditations for beautiful skin”, my arse.December 11, 2004 at 10:27 am #2345
To bad you cant study with me…
I could get you over your Daoist Dilemma!
Though you have to walk the path you choose.
To bad in the end you will just end up right back here,
cause there really aint no were else to go.
And I just dont mean on this website,
I mean in the Dao Baby…
Its infinite and eternal…
ah di ose!December 11, 2004 at 11:12 am #2347
Have always loved your posts, humor.
Best to you on your path.
KeithDecember 11, 2004 at 12:51 pm #2349
I for one, will miss you (a lot). I’ve always enjoyed your posts and — despite all your self admitted ignorance — they’ve taught me things.
This most recent post of yours is no exception. I read it and I very much recognized that guy. He very disconcertingly resembled the guy I see in the mirror each morning. And you’ve got me thinking (again) about how to start or re-start a path that I thought I wanted to be on a few years ago.
My hope — and it’s a selfish one — is that you’ll find your way back to this forum or dao bums from time to time — if for no other reason than to tell us how you’re progressing.
In any event, I wish you all the best.
Bodri is the devil? Hmmm . . . I always suspected it was Michael Winn but, you know, you may be on to something . . .December 12, 2004 at 11:47 am #2351
Buddhist teachers rock! Their practices are great, but their philosophy is dour. For the package to work successfully imo, you need regular 1xweek contact to learn how to keep your happiness above the waves of all that sorrow. If you can’t have that contact, reduce your contemplation of samsara. The trick is to learn to handle their philosophy in a way that supports cheerfulness–the teachers have mastered this tricky situation, you can too.
PS One last practice: try sungazing! http://www.solarhealing.com It may be the missing link!December 12, 2004 at 5:29 pm #2353
Last summer when I camped out (in the screened portion of the tent) and I awoke to the sun shining and just basked in it absorbing it for an hour… I had SO much chi built up from this. I was just radiating it. I was up till all hours the night before partying at a friends annual bash. I had no hangover, not tired at all. I can tell you if the sun is shining before I recieve any external indication based on how I feel.
This practice is interesting, thanks for sharing it. Winn had us doing something similar at H&E alchemy this summer. If I recall correctly we where looking directly at the sun mid day. Nevertheless, one can develop a relationship with the Sun in Greatest Kan and Li. I believe this is when one is able to become breatharian if that be your thing. There is unlimited energy in the universe and it is available to all of us at all times and there are many ways to this. A friend of mine just showed me one day how to just bring it in by letting it come in, I was astonished – she never practiced inner alchemy either, she just new she could get it when she needed it 😉
Well, let us know how it goes Yoda!
MattDecember 12, 2004 at 11:00 pm #2355
You will be missed, but good idea. Commit, do, smile and grow. Each day a new chance, each month a new beginning, each year a new birth 🙂
Bodri the devil? May be giving him more credit then he deserves 🙂
Personally I admire his knowledge, but don’t like the way he grades (down grades) others learning and systems.
MichaelDecember 13, 2004 at 3:35 pm #2357
Please would it be possible to share your friend’s way of just letting energy in when it’s needed? Sounds fantastic.
Thanks a million! (as they say in Ireland)
MikeDecember 13, 2004 at 9:56 pm #2359
Yea, she just brings it in 🙂 No kidding! she just opens to it and lets it come in, sorta like being the center of the universe and letting the energy just come in. In a way I guess it is similar to spiraling energy to bring it into a tan tien.
If I remember correctly she noticed a feeling when in the woods and then realized it was the energy from the trees and she just started letting it come in. Then she realized she could just bring energy in whenever she needed or wanted to.
I hope that helps. When she told me I tried it and was like, wow! It does work! Of course I still like to complicate things and do various chi gung forms and meditations 🙂
MattDecember 14, 2004 at 6:52 am #2361
Thanks for that. It sounds as if she’s really lucky and can open up naturally. I’d like to be that but have to rely on all the complicated things! One day though …
Best to you,
MikeDecember 15, 2004 at 4:55 pm #2363
Love that song. It sounds like your friend is one.
Sungazing make you a natural mystic. Just stand and watch the sunrise or sunset. Watch the pre-rise and the embers too. The beauty, energy, intelligence, bliss seem to arise of their own accord. If you do it as a ritual habit, the feelings seem to grow over time.
If you watch the horizon 15 minutes before the sun rises it is very exciting to see the first moment of sunshine. Very exciting… The Navajos say that you participate in making the sun rise when you do this. That’s the way it really feels.
Cloudy days or buildings in the way is less exciting but is still empowering and worth experimenting with.
My 5 yr old daughter digs it too–she falls down in fits of laughter even if it’s cloudy.
The funny thing about it is that watching the sunrise feels like a prerequisite practice to all the fancy stuff that all of us have been doing for years. It gives you a basic charge that you can then use for meditation, work, play, etc. It’s free, requires zero skill, zero practice, can be done in a very short period of time, etc.
-YodaDecember 15, 2004 at 7:37 pm #2365
In Chicago the sun (& moon) rise over Lake Michigan. There is usually a small crowd by my local beach to see the red autumn full moon rise over the lake.
MichaelDecember 15, 2004 at 8:14 pm #2367
Right now, I can see the sunrise from my backyard but in the summer I’ll need to drive, not walk, a half mile to see it. Maybe if the practice really improves me, I’ll walk.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.