Sunday, August 30, 2009

Teaching Experience (1) - Being the teaching assistant for the first time.

It was by chance that I began cultivation, it was by chance that I met Master Wang and it was by chance that I became his assistant...

In 1991, I participated Master Wang's seminar as his teaching assistant for the first time, my main responsibilities were daoyin, daigong and answering students' queries.

Daoyin refers to the verbal instruction given by the teacher, the students follows the daoyin to do their practice. The one who gives daoyin is equivalent to a commander, his thought and ability directly influence the quality and levels of the practice.

Daigong means that the teacher use his own energy (qi) to calibrate and control the entire classroom, the teacher's gongfu and technique can directly affect the result of the practice.

Around that time, I had already followed Master Wang for 3 or 4 years, I had received the Master's daoyin and daigong multiple times, Therefore i just imitated Master Wang's way of daoyin and daigong. On the surface, this didn't appear to be that difficult but in reality to achieve a high quality of daoyin and daigong is extremely difficult.

During that first time, I was just imitating Master Wang's style in order to gain experience. My main problem though was my personalities : I was a rather modest and shy at that time, I was a bit intimidated by the prospect of suddenly became the instructor of several hundreds people. To be honest, my confident was a bit lacking at that time. Fortunately Master Wang was always encouraging, he said, "When you daoyin, you are the leader, we will listen to whatever you say." It was difficult at first but eventually I became more accustomed to the role.

The seminar in 1991 was divided into 2 sessions, 10 days each for a total of 20 days. There were 1000 participants in total. I was the only official teaching assistant. There were 2 daoyin per day, each lasted for about 90 minutes and sometimes it could go on for 120 minutes. My main feeling was tired, extremely tired. I was so tired once that I was still napping after the afternoon class began, the students had to wake me up by throwing small stones onto my body through the windows.

Why was I so tired? This is the difference between practice and teaching. To put it simply, practice is the mean to accumulate internal strength and qi, the teacher who daigong helps you to accumulate the qi, the process is very slow. Teaching and daigong on the other hand is to release the internal strength and qi to help others, especially in a large class, in order to really calibrate the entire qi field, the consumption of the internal strength is enormous. As an analogy, it is like you spent more than everything you have saved in your bank account over the years, not only did you lose everything, you also over-drafted. Another reason is that in a large class, when you are standing between several hundreds students, everyone of them was thinking about you and they all want your help and hence they are all draining on your strength, it's not possible to not give up some qi. The way daigong drains on the body cannot be recouped by simply eating some nice food, it needs sleep and it needs more practice. It's hard to accumulate some internal strength, not to say to recoup the loss. No one can really comprehend this type of experience unless they actually try to teach and diagong.

Before I became the teaching assistant, I could feel that I had some internal strength. Once, I was able to break up another person's kidney stones from 1 meter away using my neigong. In 1990, I was able to get into full lotus without hands (my internal qi was full and my joints were flexible). When I got back home after the 1991 seminar, I couldn't feel any qi at all in my body, it felt like my body was a hollow shell. All i wanted to do was sleep. I was like that for almost a year. After I recovered, I felt that my internal strength was much stronger than before, I believe this was because of the huge out flux and influx of qi associated with teaching neigong.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Brief introduction to Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu

There are many different branches of Daoist neigong systems, the one being transmitted by Master Wang Liping of the Quanzhen Longmen Pai was one of the main branch passed down from the Five Northern Patriarchs which specializes in "Ling Bao Bi Fa", the Complete Method of the Spiritual Jewels. The full name of the system is known as "Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu", the meaning of the terms are:

"Ling Bao Tong", it means the system is based on the theory of Ling Bao Bi Fa.

"Zhineng", it refers to the Zhineng Fa, one of the nine daoist magic techniques within Longmen pai.

"Neigong", it means the internal cultivation process which begins from the whole body to several surfaces, then from several surfaces to several lines and finally from a line to a point; then beginning from a point to a line, to surfaces and to the whole body again. Utilizing internal qi to carve out corresponding channels between the human body and the universe. When neigong get to higher levels, it becomes "Shu", technique. (i.e. applications of qi)

"Shu", it means the arts and techniques that are based on the principles of Yijing. There are five main Daoist Arts: Ming Shu (the art of life), Bu Shu (the art of divination), Xiang Shu (the art of fortune telling), Yi Shu (the art of healing) and Shan Shu (the art of the mountain). Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu can be divided into Three practices and nine methods.

Three practices: Moving Practice, Sitting Practice and Supplementary Practice.

Moving Practice: The main moving practice is "Ping Heng Gong" which includes practices between human and trees, human and humans, humans and the universe. And practices for opening the meridians and vessels. Using different moving practices and zhan zhuang to refine the connections between human and the universe, these are methods to cultivate the abilities to take in external qi for internal use, and internal qi for external use such as healing.

Sitting practice: The main sitting practice are Yin Xian Fa (Methods to Elicit Immortal), The Three Immortals Method and Nu Dan Gong (Female Practice) for women.

Yin Xian Fa: the methods to repair leakage, build the foundation and return to the source. The prerequisite for the Three Immortal Methods and Female Practice.

Three Immortal Methods: the actual cultivation methods in Ling Bao Bi Fa, also known as the Grand Method of Golden Elixir, this the true method to cultivate the Dao.

Female Practice: this is the female version of the Ling Bao Bi Fa.

Supplementary Methods: this include Sleeping Practice, the method to exchange qi naturally, the method of stealing essence from the Sun and Moon etc.

Sleeping practice: practices that one can do while sleeping, which include healing methods, practice to control dreams and transmitting and spiritual signals.

Method to exchange qi naturally: walking practice for healing, transmitting qi etc.

Method of stealing essence from the Sun and Moon: the method to connect to the human body to the universe, through the principle of the Heaven and man become one i to recharge the yuan qi lost from the body, to cultivate the Sun and Moon of our own body.

Nine Methods: the nine Daoist magic techniques. These are the applications of the internal cultivation, also known as supernatural abilities.

Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu is based on the interactions and fusions between neigong, daoist arts and Yijing. It needs nine years facing the wall, ten years to complete and two years for bath to cultivate Ling Bao Bi Fa .... this is the ultimate method of the Daoist Golden Elixir. From a macroscopic point of view, it is a complete system that include the best elements from Daoism; from a microscopic point of view, the methods combine movement and stillness, xing and ming cultivations and the heaven and man become one; from the point of view of the practice itself, it involves the refinement of different levels of qi, moving spirits, converting essence and harmonizing the Hun and Po, it reveal the multi-facet and multi-level nature of life itself and it is the ultimate way to explore the mysteries of the human body and the universe.

In conclusion, Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu is a high quality heritage of the Chinese civilization. It can push the boundary of our knowledge of the world and it provide the possibilities for us to unlock the mystery of life itself.

Ling Bao Tong Zhineng Neigong Shu can be divided into 5 different stages:

Refine the body to accumulate qi (entering the door), conversion of essence to qi (foundation), conversion of qi to shen (condensation of the cinnabar (dan)), refinement of shen to void (completion of cinnabar) and refinement of void to Dao (application of the cinnabar).