Tuesday, April 29, 2008

1988 - Sealed my fate with Dao at Louguan (3)

In the seminar, we also practiced Shui Meng Gong (sleeping practice) at night when we went to bed, Master Wang would daigong from a long distance away in his own room. Since the seminar was held on a mountain and far away from the cities, the strength of Master Wang's qi was especially strong. During the practice, it was common to feel coldness, hotness, numbness, lightness and heaviness etc. Many of us would also experience spontaneous movements, the body parts would shake, twitch and do many other things. Some would even walked out of bed and started doing random acts, just like one would do during sleep walking, and after Master Wang had finished daigong, they just went back to bed and sleep. During the spontaneous movements, we would also make different noises, spitting, cursing, crying, shouting and singing. This was all quite normal since under Master Wang's strong qi field, the student's body would produce internal qi rapidly and this would result in various random movements of the body. One could imagine that if this happened in a city, what would people think we were doing? Not only could Master Wang daigong from a long distance away with powerful qi, he could control the details of everyone's practice too, this can hardly be comprehended by mere mortals, only one who has studied authentic neidan and achieved a high level could he begin to fully appreciate Master Wang's power.

There was another curious phenomenon associated with the Sleeping practice: some students "dreamed" the same dreams that involved Master Wang, this happened three times.

My own experience with the sleeping practice was as follow : at first, my stomach would heat up and then after a while, my body shook a few times and then I would enter into a state of nothingness ---- comfortable, confusing, floating and warm. When I gained my conscious again, I noticed that my sleeping posture had changed and my hands formed a special mudra that i had never seen before. Master Wang had said that spontaneous hand mudras that appear during any practice must be remembered carefully, they are your own achievements and are very important to your practice. Master Wang told me later that the hand mudra is called "Protect Essence Mudra". There are 12 hand Mudras accompany the sleeping practice. Master Wang taught 9 of them, the remaining 3 are : men's "Protect Essence Mudra", women's "Protect Blood Mudra" and the husband and wife mudra. These three must be obtained by the practitioner themselves. I was glad to obtain one of the three.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

1988 - Sealed my fate with Dao at Louguan (2)

The weather at Mount Zhongnan in September was gloomy and cloudy as usual, you could go without seeing the sun or the moon for a month or two easily. We hadn't seen the sun or the moon since the class began. The mid-Autumn festival happened right in the middle of the three weeks long seminar. A few days before the festival, Master Wang had mentioned twice:

"Only moon cakes but no moon light in the mid-autumn festival is no fun."

We had already heard rumors that Master Wang has the ability to control weather. From the way he said it, we thought that he must be planning something on the festival night. A lot of us had the same thought and therefore a group of us got together and planned a way to see Master Wang do his magic. In the evening on the festival day, everyone gathered in the great hall of the Louguan Temple, Master Wang was also there. We decided to stick close to Master Wang and not let me him get of our sight. When he was walking out of the great hall, we followed. He turn around and smiled,

"Why are you guys following me? Go back inside. Go."

We just stood there and smiled. When Master Wang walked off for about ten seconds, we quickly followed suit. When we got outside, a light breeze raised from the ground and suddenly it started raining. We looked around but couldn't even see the shadow of Master Wang. We looked at each other, "Where is he ?".

The sky was gray at the time and there was not a hint of the moon. I turned around and walked back inside. Some of our classmates were meditating, so i decided to do the same. I wasn't sure how long I sat until suddenly something climbed on my leg. I opened my eyes and was startled to find that it was a mouse. I chased it off me and then raised my head to look at the sky. One could see some moonlight behind the mist but not clearly yet. I slowly walked outside the great hall while keeping my eyes in the sky. The moon became brighter and brighter and one could see the veil of mist gradually dissipated. After another fifteen minutes or so, the clouds started to drift off too. The moon was extra bight and beautiful, one could even felt the warmth of the moonlight. At midnight, all the clouds had disappeared, there was only the big, bright and beautiful moon hanging in the clear sky.

That was the most memorable Mid-Autumn festival in my life.

The next day, Master Wang said in the class :

"The moon came out last night so no one is going to curse me now."

Out of the 20 days that we were in Louguan, the sky was only clear in the festival night. Was that a coincidence? After the seminar had ended, I met a daoist friend of mine in Xian who didn't attend the Louguan event. He told me that he had wagered with someone that one could see the moon during the mid-autumn festival since he knew that Master Wang would be teaching in Louguan at that time. He won the wager.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

1988 - Sealed my fate with Dao at Louguan (1)

In June 1988, Master Wang organized a seminar in Beijing. I wasn't able to go since I was busy with my thesis and the graduation defense. I did manage to photocopy the notes from my classmate who attended and other informations presented in the seminar.

On 15th, July 1988, I reported to my first job in a state-owned corporation in Lanzhou. My job officially started on the 20th August. Not so long after that, I received news that Master Wang would organize another class at Louguan. I just started my new job and I didn't have any personal connection with high level people. How was I going to attend? I asked my friends in Xian to help me, I asked them to use the name of the Shaanxi Daoist Association to send me an official invitation letter. I took the letter to see my division boss. He agreed happily to let me go, I even got all the benefits of being on an official company business trip. That's how i was able to attend the class.

Daoist transmission at Louguan has very special meaning. Since it is the mother of all Daoist temple in China, there were over 100 daoist monks who attended the event. Because of these reasons, Master Wang taught a lot more than he would otherwise do at other places; the students were especially excited by all the extra content in the classes. We even got to see some amazing power of Master Wang.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

1987 - My fortunate destiny with Dao (2)

My first "Spiritual Jewels Zhineng Neigong" class with Master Wang was an unforgettable event. When Master Wang daoyin (*) daigong (**) for the first time, everyone experienced the most extreme pain, it felt like someone used a screwdriver to burrow directly into your bone marrow, It was unbearable. When Master Wang had finished, he said, "It has only been 37 minutes, look at all your faces, you are not qualified to let me daigong yet.", no one could really understand what Master Wang meant at that time. I only felt that my foundation was too weak, I was a bit ashamed to have disappointed Master Wang. After a dozen years of practice, I have finally started to appreciate the meaning of Master Wang's word that day. When we want to learn advanced dan fa (***), we need to ask ourselves : Am I well prepared? Am I qualified?

Master Wang had told us a lot of things in the class that you can't find in any textbooks. His daigong was very interesting, sometimes it was very comfortable, sometimes it hurt like hell, when he hypnotized you can hear snoring from every corner of the room, during the daoyin, the internal qi would lap around inside the body. Master Wang did not allow any sound recording, some students sneaked in sound recorders, but in the end, whoever tried to record in the class all had their recorders broken mysteriously and no one was able to record anything. They took the broken sound recorders to Master Wang, he picked them up and had a look and then said, "It works fine." He passed it to the student who then tried using it, it worked. This had happened multiple times. Only the sound recorder which belonged to the university association, who had gotten the permission from Master Wang to record the event, was able to record the class completely.

The seminar seemed to be so short. Master Wang has asked us not to see him off. I asked a friend of mine to go to the train station together ahead of time to wait for Master Wang, not too long afterward, Master Wang arrived. We chatted for a few minutes and took a few photos together before Master Wang got on the train. We stood there quietly to see the train moving away slowly. It was the first time that I understood the complex feelings one has when seeing off a love one, the sadness and the yearning. Suddenly a thought came to my mind to describe Master Wang : a true blessed saint.

The seminar was successful overall, however there were also some regrets. During the eight-day class, Master Wang had performed two experiments : one of them was to use mind power to fire up a frog's neurons pathway, the other was to use mind power to change of coefficient of superconductivity of materials. The two experiment were successful. The only regret was that the chair of the lab was away in a meeting and didn't participate in those experiments, he rejected the findings of the lab. A golden opportunity to study human body science was squandered this way. Another regret was that we took a full reel of photos, including the pictures we took with Master Wang at the train station, unfortunately they were all overexposed. We had heard rumors that unless Master Wang had agreed, he wouldn't allow his photos to be taken, otherwise, he just had to think slightly and the film would be ruined. We thought that maybe the film was damaged before the seminar, but anyhow it was regretful to lose all the photos.

After the seminar, we collected and compared notes with each other to improve our understanding. After a period of careful study and practice, I began to appreciate the breath and depth of "Spiritual Jewels Zhineng Neigong", whether it was the theory or the actual implementation, the system is complete and strong in every aspect. By comparing what we learned in the seminar to the actual "Spiritual Jewels Zhineng Neigong" (SPZN), we had only learned one method and one art and they weren't even complete. To compare SPZN with other system, it was clear that it is several levels higher than anything else. Armed with this knowledge, i stopped doing all other practices and instead concentrated on SPZN only. Surprisingly, after only two months of practice, I reached an important step of the practice.

(*) daoyin : to lead and to induce. When a master is practicing with the students, the verbal instructions on the ways to breath and other internal/external maneuvers are called daoyin.

(**) daigong : to lead a class with qi. An accomplished master can create a qi (energy) field in the surrounding to let his/her students to sit in. The qi can help squeezing and opening up the channels and points of the students.

(***) fa : method. I will use this word a lot.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

1987 - My fortunate destiny with Dao.

Due to some of the success I had with the departmental sport club, the student union wanted me to work for them, I made a surprising choice, I joined the university's qigong club as the communication director. My responsibility was to contact and negotiate with outside qigong masters. This surprising choice has given me a surprising reward.

In 1985, before I took a leave of absence, I started practicing the HeXianZhuang qigong to improve my poor health condition. After a few days, I began to experience spontaneous movements. I was a bit scared and so stopped practicing it. After i had gone home, I took a correspondence course on Mr. Lu Gin Tang's "Ultimate Silence Qigong", after a few months of meditation, I noticed the following phenomenon : when I meditate, I felt that my body was very light, just liked floating in the air, my brain went blank, just liked entering into nothingness. I experienced this three times in a row, I didn't know what it meant and I was worried that there might be some problem and so I stopped practicing it as well.

After half a year of resting at home and meditation, my body had basically recovered. I became interested in qigong and after i had returned to the university, i practiced the beginner and advanced level of "Shaolin One Finger Zen" , i worked on it for almost a year. The student qigong club of the Xian Transportation University was a volunteer group of enthusiasts, we were officially affiliated with the Shaanxi County Qigong Association. Before my graduation, the association had organized over 20 qigong classes, over 10 huge open forums and public demonstrations, participants totaled over 4000. Our principle was that we would only invite master with authentic transmission or creator of new schools. The most fortunate event was that we were able to invite Master Wang Liping.

The first time I heard about Master Wang was in March 1987. At that time, I stumbled upon a report at a friend's place, it detailed stories of Master Wang where he stopped rain, summoned animals, demonstrated invisibility and used his third eye and others. After I read the report, I told myself that it would be great if I could meet Master Wang. In September of the same year, The China Qigong Science Research Committee was established in Xian. When we found out that Master Wang would be attending the meeting and that our qigong club's president and a graduate student would also be there, we used our advantage as the host together with the help of the Shaanxi Qigong Association to arrange our club president and the graduate student to stay in the same dorm as Master Wang. The plan worked and the two students got on really well with Master Wang. When they invited Master Wang to teach a class at Xian Transportation university, Master Wang gladly accepted. We immediately prepared for Master Wang class. After the meeting at Xian had concluded. Master Wang taught an eight days long class on "Spiritual Jewels Zhineng Neigong". However there was a small interlude: during the meeting, the Shaanxi Qigong association and the Shaanxi Daoist Association also invited Master Wang to teach a class but Master Wang had already agreed to teach at our university qigong club and so the County association felt that they had lost face. They came to negotiate with us since we are officially part of the county association. As a compromise, the class was officially organized by the county association, our university was designated as the contractor for the event. Due to the space limitation of the venue and the need to accommodate outside participants. It was decided to limit the number of student participants. As a result, no more than 30 Xian Transportation University students were admitted to Master Wang's class.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

8 years in university

Childhood should be a fun and joyful time. Unfortunately the color of my childhood was gray, the same color as the society at that time.

My father was convicted as a "counter-revolutionary" in 1957, it was not until 1979 that his name was cleared.

I was born in 1963 at the city of Yumen in the Gansu County, a small town built on the Gobi Desert. That was the year immediately after the 3 years of country-wide natural disasters. Due to lack of nutrients, it was no wonder that I was sick all the time. The oppressive political situation, the heavy burden of just maintaining life's bare essentials, contempt from other people and the lack of any proper extracurricular activity, all these could hardly be associated with a wonderful childhood. Anyhow, this was how i spent my childhood, compassionate, love to help the others, weak, cowardly, lack of self-esteem, patient and persevere.

Not until the year 1979, when I was 16 years old and in my first year of high school, when many previously convicted political exiles in my neighborhood had their names cleared and a lot of young people were busy with the just reestablished national high school exam, that i started to think for myself. I began contemplating for my future----I want to study at a university.

1980, second year in high school, I took the national high school exam, I failed for the first time.

1981, third year in high school, I failed again.

1982, i took one year out to study hard. Unfortunately a month before the exam, i fell from a 1.6 meters high gymnastic parallel bar, the back of my head hit the floor first. I had a concussion and i failed the national high school exam for the third time.

1983, I was finally admitted to the Xian Transportation University to study mechanical engineering.

Successive failures in the national exams and the concussion accident had left my body and mind completely exhausted. I didn't have energy to do much, i had headaches when I tried to read, I slept in my classes and I had recurrent nightmares. The doctor said my condition was due to a combination of neurosis and the concussion i had. In 1985, my second year at university, I was forced to take a leave of absence to rest at home. I have graduated from the university for more than a dozen years now, in all these years, the most common dreams I have were taking classes, taking exams, taking exams and taking classes.

After I got into the university , i set a goal for myself : when i graduate, I need to have another skill besides my major, I need to learn how to walk with both of my feet. After some thought, i decided to take on management, one reason was to develop my competence, another reason was to overcome the weakness in my personality, weak, cowardly and lack of self-esteem. I was a committee member of my class literature club, the class president, the secretary and vice-secretary of the departmental sport club and the vice-chair of the departmental student union. When i was in charge of the sport club, our departmental team achieve their best result of all time : we were the champion in the overall men team event in the campus Olympic for three successive years, and hence we got to keep the cup permanently ; the men volley ball team was the university champion, they even beat the university men volleyball team ; the women volleyball team was also champion for 1 year ; the women soccer team were champion for 2 years. I participated as an organizer, an athlete and a team coach in all the events above, from these great results and awards, I felt the greatest pride in my life and more importantly, i got rid of my lack of self-esteem, built up a lot of self confidence, this was extremely important to me during that period of my life.

In conclusion, though lacking some essential qualities for success, both innate and environmental, I had overcame them with my perseverance. Most people spent 4 years in university, i have used 8. But it was in the beginning of the 8th year at my university that the course of my life was changed completely.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Things I want to say

I have been learning and practicing Dandao(*) now for more than 20 years. I have experienced and collected a lot of informations on different aspects of the practice. There were moments of joy, there were moments of sadness. I have decided to share these experiences with my readers and if the opportunity arises, perhaps we can walk on the great path together.

The essays will be divided into two types : one type will be in chronological order detailing my experience with Dandao over the last 20 years ; the other type will be topical essays ranging on different topics related to daoism, I will write on whatever come to my mind at the moment.

(A) 20 years of experience in studying Dao (the Way).
1. 1987 - My fortunate destiny with Dao.
2. 1988 - Sealed my fate with Dao at Louguan.
3. 1989 - Direct transmission.
4. 1990 - Discussion of Dao at the Police University.
5. 1991 - Helping my Master to transmit Dao.
6. 1992 - The Formation practice.
7. 1993 - Writing "Walk on the Great Path"
8. 1994 - Publication of "Walk on the Great Path".
9. 1995 - To become an indoor student.
10. 1996 - Immersion in the classics.
11. 1997 - The first joyous moment.
12. 1998 - Retreat at Shangri-La.
13. 1999 - Result from the 100-persons experiment.
14. 2000 - Detailed research.
15. 2001 - Revision of the book.
16. 2002 - Annotation of the 3 classic texts.
17. 2003 - Transcension of oneself.
18. 2004 - Study and Research
19. 2005 - Research in the body meridians.
20. 2006 - Crossed the ocean to meet my Master.
21. 2007 - Dawn of the new journey.

(B) Topical essays.
1. Teaching Experiences.
2. How to enter the door of taoism.
3. Building the foundation.
4. Female Practice.
5. Health and wellness.

(*) Translator's note : Dao, or the Way, is perhaps the most ineffable word in the world. One can find hundreds of interpretation of what Dao means. The daoist believe that Dao is kind of the ultimate truth, but yet is still more than that. The Daoist believe that the practice of internal alchemy, the Neidan (it's not qigong, it's much more than that) can lead one into the Dao. These practise are collectively called Dandao. The particular strand of Dandao that Mr. Shen practises is transmitted within the Longmen Pai.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Translator's Introduction.

Thank you for visiting. In the coming months, I will start translating essays by Shen Laoshi who is a senior student of Master Wang Liping, the 18th generation transmitter of the Longmen Pai ( Dragon Gate Sect). Mr. Shen will share with you his experience in learning and teaching the Spiritual Jewels Exercises (SJE) , either as an assistant to Master Wang or on his own. Mr. Shen is the only one in the world certified by Master Wang as an "Advanced Instructor of Spiritual Jewels Exercises".

In the future, if there is no mention of "translator" in the title of the post, it means that it is a translation of an essay and hence the "I"s and "me"s will be refering to Mr. Shen.