From nothing to something and back

I let go and enter the domain of no one.

Heaven and Earth are one.
The circle and square are equals.

They separate as necessary without effort.
First boundless stillness, then endless movement.

It makes no sense to talk about form or formlessness.
Substance or no substance – what’s the difference?

Body, energy and mind – what are they?
I am just a conduit of the forces of Nature.

My mind drives and fills out Form.
Empty but full, it pervades the Universe.

I stand in the Center.
Watching the Master and the servant at work.

When we offer no resistance,
we meet no resistance.

Miracles and Mystery.
The mundane stuff is welcomed like a friend.

I have no mind of my own.
Eventually this will fall away too.

Perfection in imperfection.
Imperfection in perfection.

It seems as if I am there, but I am not.
I am not, but am I right here.

Others cannot fathom it.
I cannot fathom it either.

Naturally – it’s ok.

(Poem about the liberation of mind, heart and intention “Shen, Xin and Yi” in spiritual work like: Standing Meditation, Qigong, Neigong, Neijia and Taiji )

My river runs to thee

Blue Sea – Wilt welcome me?
My River wait reply.

Oh Sea – look graciously!

I’ll fetch thee Brooks

From spotted nooks – 

Say Sea – take Me?

Emily Dickinson (1830–86).

Everywhere leads the Way

everywhere
leads the Way

it is perfect
impenetrable
forever

a thousand voices
may rise
but silence says it better

open your eyes
and close them up again

listen intently
then not at all

you have nowhere to go
and such is the real journey

for all roads lead inevitably
to your soul

Yu Jinghai from The Voice of Sea

The understanding of mindfulness

It seems to me that “mindfulness” is often misunderstood. In my view it’s because of wishful thinking or simply “wrong view” to use a buddhist paraphrase.

I guess you can argue about the definition of  “mindfulness”. And you can argue which is more or less accurate in and out the Buddhist context. The following is however not really dependent of an correct definition of term “mindfulness”.

A simple and straight forward definition of Mindfulness is the act of being aware of the present moment.

For example being aware is in a natural and strict sense not judging. If you’re judging, you are judging, and then you’re not being aware. Off course you can be aware that you’re judging, but then you’re not judging, you are being aware! Daydreaming is not being aware, but suddenly you can become aware that you’re daydreaming.  If you’re lost in your past or thinking about the future; you simply cannot be mindful of the present moment.

Mindfulness is the act of being aware, moment to moment, of everything that happens in your entire field of perception, without being seduced, captivated or lost in the intertwining events of your own mind. You are even aware of awareness itself. Your mind is clear like water. The longer time you’re able to support pure awareness, the more mindful you are. When you are truly mindful you are the lord of your own house in a spiritual sense.

Most people really don’t know what mindfulness are in regards to pure awareness as mindfulness. Because they have no access to this experience. It can only be hinted at, but it cannot be explained. This understanding of mindfulness can only be understood through direct experience.

If your mind is all over the place. And your mind is jumping around the entire time like a monkey in a tree. Then you are not mindful. In a sense you’re lost. You’re constantly being captivated by everything that occurs to you. You can say you’re a victim of your emotions and thoughts. In away this is a negative definition of mindfulness.  In a spiritual sense this is to mistake the servant for the lord in your own house. Many consider it the common and the current state of the human mind.

Life takes place in the present moment. It’s not yesterday or even tomorrow. In a way there is no yesterday or tomorrow.  Truly we will never have anything but the present moment. The practice of mindfulness awakes you to, and anchors you, in the present moment.

In this way mindfulness to me is good in an absolute sense. It’s an essential skill in life. And it’s something that should be learned, practiced and mastered by every single human being on the entire planet.

Mindfulness is not escapism, blind acceptance, or a radical form of denial.

To be mindful of the present moment, is to align you self with the truth of this moment. It’s not more and it’s not less.

Mindfulness is an innate quality or faculty of the human mind. Like the skill, ability or faculty of “concentration”, “acceptance”, “understanding”, “affection”, “cognition” and “conation”. It is not inherently good or bad in it self, it’s just an ability, skill or faculty of the human mind.

Being mindful of the present moment, I get to understand the events in my life, understanding all the events, I get to understand my self deeply. Understanding my self, how can not begin to understand others. Understanding others deeply, how can I avoid seeing the suffering of others. When I understand the suffering of others, how I can avoid compassion? When the feeling of compassion is alive in me, I see my self in others. Seeing my self in others, is that not like becoming one with them? Then I need not speak of love – because love is all pervading!

How can it not be better to live and act from this understanding of “mindfulness” in regards to self, others and the planet?

Riding the wind Floating with Clouds

Lieh-tzu had the immortal Old Shang for a teacher and the sage Pai-kao-tzu as a friend. After he had finished his training, he came home riding on the wind and floating on the clouds.

A man named Yin-sheng heard about Lieh-tzu’s feat and wanted to learn this skill of riding on the wind. So he went to Lieh-tzu and asked to be his student. So intent was Yin-sheng on learning this skill that he stayed at Lieh-tzu’s home and kept pestering the teacher with questions. This went on for several months, but Lieh-tzu only ignored him.

Yin-sheng began to get impatient and then angry that Lieh‐tzu was not teaching him. One day, he left in a huff.

When Yin-sheng got home, he calmed down and realized he had been stupid and impulsive, so he went toLieh-tzu and asked to be his student again. Lieh-tzu simply said, Now why did you come and then leave and then return?”

Yin-sheng said, “When I first came to ask you to teach me, you ignored me. So I got annoyed and left. Then I realized I was too impatient and reckless, so I came back to ask you to accept me as a student again.”

Lieh-tzu said, “I had thought you were intelligent, but now I can see you are quite stupid. Listen to what I went through when I learned from my teachers.”

Lieh-tzu said:

“When I asked Old Shang to be my master and Pai-kao‐ tau to be my friend, I decided to work hard to discipline my body and mind. After three years, I was afraid to have notions of right and wrong and I did not dare to speak words that might offend or please. It was only then that my master glanced at me and acknowledged my presence. Five years later, I thought freely of right and wrong, and spoke freely of approval or disapproval. My master gave me a smile. Seven years later, my thoughts came naturally without any conceptions of right and wrong, and words came naturally without any intention of pleasing or offending. For the first time, my master invited me to sit by his side. Nine years later, no matter what came to my mind or what came out of my mouth, there was nothing that was right or wrong, pleasing or offending. I did not even entertain the idea that Old Shang was my master and Pai-kao‐tzu was my friend.

“It was then I became aware that there was no barrier between what was inside and what was outside. My body was illuminated by a bright light. I heard with my eyes and saw with my ears. I used my nose as mouth and my mouth as nose. I experienced the world with the totality of my senses as my spirit gathered and my form dissolved. There was no distinction between muscles and bones. My body stopped being heavy and I felt like a floating leaf. Without knowing it, I was being carried by the wind. Drifting here and there, I did not know whether I rode on the wind or the wind rode on me.”

He then looked at Yin-sheng and said, “You had only been here for less than an hour and you got dissatisfied that you were not taught. Look at your condition. The parts of your body do not cooperate; the vapors of the sky and earth do not enter your body; your joints and bones are so heavy that you can’t even move. And you want to learn how to ride on the wind?”

When Yin-sheng heard these words he was ashamed and did not ask again about riding on the wind.

Teachings of the Tao: Readings from the Taoist Spiritual Tradition by Eva Wong p. 46-48

The world is really great!

The world is really great!

There is room for

the Sun, the Moon and the Stars,

the Earth, its Mountains and Rivers, every Plant and Tree

bad People and good People.

All of this exists in space.

The emptiness of our nature is also like this.

 

Inspired by Hui-Neng

 

 

Reaching the bright end

as effortless as light
and as certain as time’s passing

we walk forward to a stillness
we can never know

with the clouds yawning in the distance
and the sky, forever quiet

we drift, less certain than foam
reaching the bright end

of the sea

The Voice of the Sea: Poems of the Tao by Yu Jinghai

The Jade Tablet

The Jade Pendant InscriptionTo guide the Qi, allow it to enter deeply and collect it. As it collects, it will expand. Once expanded, it will sink down. When it sinks down, it comes to rest. After it has come to rest, it becomes stable.

When the Qi is stable, it begins to sprout. From sprouting, it begins to grow. As it grows, it can be pulled back upwards. When it is pulled back upwards, it reaches the crown of the head.

It then touches above the crown of the head and below at the base of the spine. Who practices like this will attain long life. Who goes against this will die.

Reference: Sitting in Oblivion – The Heart of Daoist Meditation by Livia Kohn 2010 Se also The Jade Tablet neigong.net

Fifty

Between birth and death,
Three in ten are followers of life,
Three in ten are followers of death,
And men just passing from birth to death also number three in ten.
Why is this so?
Because they live their lives on the gross level.

He who knows how to live can walk abroad
Without fear of rhinoceros or tiger.
He will not be wounded in battle.
For in him rhinoceroses can find no place to thrust their horn,
Tigers no place to use their claws,
And weapons no place to pierce.
Why is this so?
Because he has no place for death to enter.

Lao Tzu Tao Te Ching translated by Gai-Fu Feng and Jane English