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Life as a Cauldron

We use a cauldron to store materials. We use a cauldron to cook and we can use a cauldron to keep the meal in. Witches traditionally use a cauldron for making potions, creating magic, transforming ingredients.
The body is also a cauldron. In it we store our energy. In it we also store many of the residues of past experiences. They are our body armours, places where memories of past stress are stored and which, whether we wish to acknowledge it or not, affect our daily function.
In our body we cook our potions, steam our stews and also digest our meals and our daily experiences. Our digestion is good or bad. We provide healthy or unhealthy meals for this cauldron, both literally and metaphorically. We enjoy or suffer the results of this cooking. Some of us are, metaphorically speaking, walking bags of undigested material passing out our flatulence in one way or another, emitting our bad breaths in our interactions with our world.
In our cauldron we can have seething prejudices, unresolved conflicts, past losses and unrealized hopes.
The state of our cauldron is also the state of our awareness. The state of our awareness is also our experience of life. Whatever we do, whatever we aim at, whatever happens and wherever we bring ourselves, to that we bring also the state of our awareness and the quality of the energy we are producing and are. There can be no doubt of this even if we choose to ignore it.
It seems curious to me how many people pursue happiness, social justice, religious growth, psychological integration etc. and tend to ignore the quality of their energy. If you pray you can only pray with the energy that you are. If you practise self-examination you can only do this using your awareness, confused or clear. If you wish the world peace you can only wish from a serene or not so serene mind. You are what you attend to, what you focus on. What you focus on brings you your experiences of life You can only focus with the state of awareness you have, the sort of person you are. Your experiences of life get determined by the quality of energy you bring to your life.
You have to start where you are. No journey commences where you are not. And where you are is in a body, a cauldron of energy, a cauldron which you can use for your advantage or disadvantage. In this cauldron you can refine energy and accumulate power. Taoists call this Self Cultivation or Cultivating Energy.
So if you are a pragmatist and a realist you concern yourself with your inner energy and what you are doing with it.
Your first cauldron is in your belly. There, energy can get accumulated and refined. It is called the first Dantien in Taoist alchemy. There your sexual energies are gathered (the ingredients) and cooked. This accumulated and refined energy (Jing) rises up like cooking vapours (Chi) to the next Dantien in the heart region. There it is again accumulated and refined ( the cooking process) and rises as spiritual energy (Shen) to the top Dantien in the middle of the head. At each stage you can lose or spill some of this energy. The heart to head path is one of ecstasy. You bring to the head all those delicious qualities of the heart. Here you reconcile those two great contradictions, the heart and the head.
In Tantrik understanding in your body is the energy of the Goddess Shakti. She is seeking her mate Shiva to unite with Him in Bliss.
A wise and fortunate student awakens Shakti and encourages Her in Her path upward along the spine (Sushumna) to meet with Shiva in the top of the head. Shakti wants this and will help you. But She will also get impatient if you frustrate Her too much. She can give you a hard time. She can help you purify the paths and cleanse the pot, scouring it out. This is what I call house cleaning and it is indispensable. You don’t pour new wine into old bottles! The old will pollute the new
Whatever you want to do with your life if you give attention to accumulating and refining your energies, transforming them into Power you will bring to your life a balanced, integrated, powerful and expanded sense of Self. It can only help
Love pours out of my steaming cauldron to you,


Taoism

It is a vast subject so this will only be an introduction. Essentially and originally Taoism is not a religion but as the years passed Taoist monks found they needed financial support and the public would pay for rituals, prayers etc. Taoism is about each person’s relationship with the Tao, the All. It is often called the watercourse way because it emphasizes softness, receptivity and relationships and is thus “feminine”. The Taoist Internal Arts have in their repertoire, Tai Chi, Dayan Chi Kung, Hsing I, Lok Hup Ba Fa, Pa Qua, Chi Kung, Internal Alchemy etc.
In order to find one’s proper place in the Universe (relationship with the Tao) one must first find a proper relationship with oneself. In Taoist Health, disease often comes from a wrong relationship between the internal organs. One organ has either too much or too little energy; their yin and yang are not in balance. Taoist exercises aim at stretching the fascia that surrounds the organs so they can move. Then, by doing the form (Tai Chi etc) properly you massage the organs.
Each organ is connected with a meridian, a pathway for chi, energy. If these are blocked chi doesn’t flow properly. There are exercises Taoism teaches and healing sounds and movements that open the meridians.
In a proper relationship with yourself your attitudes are important. How you think about yourself and how you think about others will affect the health of your body and how energy moves. If you always want to be the best in the class so you can shine you are out of balance for your ego is too heavy for right balance. If you always think of yourself first and wish to win you are out of balance in your relationships and this will affect your health.
You have to acquire compassion, love, humility and patience. These allow your body to acquire the energy of De, virtue.
Master Moy, my teacher, said that every move you make paints your state of consciousness. Your biography is reflected in your biology, your body’s health is and how you move. So, in Tai Chi, a change in your attitude will affect how you do a move. Changing your attitude will open up energy flow. This is something you don’t hear in an exercise gym!
Therefore, to work on your body, it is not just enough to do exercise but you must work on your attitudes, to yourself and others.
To practise Taoism is to concern yourself with the world around you; not just the people, but all the animals, insects and plants that make up our world. Being concerned with relationships means just that.
So you become a lover of nature.
To work on attitude you also have to consider the structures in your mental body because there you will find the rigidity of concept that often determines an attitude. Structures in the mental body are determined often by heritage, family issues and cultural restraints.
You learn that to actually be yourself is extremely difficult, for you have all these voices from your parents, teachers, priests or cultural authorities telling you who you are and how to behave.
So if you want to get into a proper relationship with the Tao you have first of all to discover who the “I” really is that is coming to that relationship. If you don’t do that, you will bring a whole truck load of “not I” with you and therefore there is no possibility of a proper relationship.
Internal Alchemy includes meditation which allows the mind to become quiet. It is a quiet and open mind that can focus on the internal energy processes and discover where you are blocked. As we are a holistic and unified energy system any block of energy anywhere in that system affects the energy flow throughout the system. There is no such thing as something that is just local. Everything is related. Any rigidity here affects flow elsewhere.
Taoism gives you a philosophical construction around which you can build a system of action. You do something because you expect results from that action. It gets you up in the morning and motivates you.
However as you progress it all becomes more open ended and the constructions you held so dearly in the beginning (beliefs etc) start to become flexible just as your body is becoming flexible. Finally all supportive conceptual constructs collapse and you accept the Mystery of life and allow that Mystery to live your life.
You have surrendered to the Tao.
Thus, ultimately, the path of Taoism is a path of gradually increasingly surrender, a discarding of all you thought you were, to which you egoistically clung and which, in fact, separated you from the All. The drop becomes the Ocean and you live the Peace that passeth Understanding.
It is a path of increasing energy, increasing Power and finally total surrender.


Sexual Energy

Often when some "seekers" read that they have to raise their energy and that the energy referred to is the sexual energy they try to suppress their sexual desires. The reasoning is why throw the energy away if you need it for Self cultivation? This line of thought is understandable and even reasonable.
However things are often not so simple as we would like.
Suppressing desire is trying to stifle something; it is like strangling a baby. Your whole life is run on desire. It is Passion that makes the journey possible and Passion that allows you to leap across vast chasms. Without some element of passion you won't even get out of bed.
It is Passion that gives your life vitality. Christ said he would spit out the lukewarm. Being lukewarm is to be half-hearted. I see that in my classes. The half-hearted are the hardest students to teach. You have their attention by default until something takes it elsewhere. You need to WANT to grow. It is Passion that makes you .gird your loins. pay attention and tackle a task.
Nevertheless to practise internal alchemy means having something that gets transmuted. You are not working in the make belief world and having imaginings and mere mood making fantasies. What gets transmuted is the sexual energy and if there is none there is none to transmute.
So what to do?
Firstly accept that your journey is not going to be made in one great leap. Being determined is not the same as trying to rush. It is all a process of going a little deeper day by day. As the day by days pass then so do perspectives change and what was difficult once becomes easier now.
Secondly, understand that internal alchemy means turning the senses inwards so that you can feel inside. If you can't even feel outside then you are half dead (the lukewarm) and have little to turn inwards. So the senses need to be alive. Alive senses pay attention to the world outside and they pay attention to the world precisely because they enjoy it. If you don't feel pleasure in your own body then you probably won't feel the pleasure of the senses in your embrace of the world beyond your skin. They go together.
For a number of reasons, sexual abuse for one, people shut down their connection with their body. Whatever has happened has been so traumatic it is better not to feel the body because in the body is great pain. You can do exactly the same thing if you feel obliged to condemn your sexual impulses.
In internal alchemy the body is your friend. The body holds secrets, which are revealed to the lovers of the body. Loving your body is a key to feeling inner energy. In many of my Chi Kung exercises I tell my class that energy follows the hands. As your hands pass up and down your body you can feel the energy moving. It is like your hands are stroking your body, caressing it. This attitude is a loving one and is important for discovering the secrets the body holds. The body won't reveal them through torture.
Loving your body is a way to increase health. Increasing health is to have energy moving vitally, to have energy moving vitally is to have something for your alchemical activities. If there is nothing in your cauldron but the withered leaves dropped from a garden that has never been watered and has died of neglect then there is nothing to transmute.
Suppressing the sexual is to gradually kill your garden. It is to turn what should be a paradise into a clear cut emptiness; to have a desert inside where there could have been a paradise, a tangle of luxuriant growth, twisting climbing vines, rich with flowers, fruit and the exotic colourful wild animals of passion and desire.
Internal alchemy involves turning the attention inwards. Sometimes it is on the outside alive and vital and sometimes on the inside. If most of the time you are trying to stop the attention on the outside by thwarting desire you will deaden yourself. Things have to be in balance and for that there is no strict formula. Live your life .naturally. and don't struggle. The journey is done day by day and step by step.
A problem is created when one sees how someone who has arrived or is near to arriving behaves and one thinks that by copying their behaviour one will be like them. In Tai Chi you learn that mere copying only takes you so far and then you have to learn to be authentically yourself in the move. In life one has to be authentically oneself; not a mere copycat. A copy cat is someone who is only half-heartedly themselves.
In fact trying to be other than yourself is a strain and it is to be a fake. You are trying to live on borrowed knowledge. To be yourself is to be natural, to be without strain, to be relaxed. You are not fighting an inner civil war but are at peace and unified.
It is not always easy in Society to be oneself. As more people are themselves society will change.
Everyone is threatened by difference and change, but it will come, and it will come day by day and step by step.

P.S I am dipping into the poetry of Pablo Neruda in a recent collection edited by Ilan Stavans and to illustrate what a poetic man with great sensuousness (perhaps sensuality) can feel I will quote some lines from various poems.

“To feel you in my veins like God in the rivers
How I would love you, woman, how I would
Love you, love you as no one ever did!
Die and still
Love you more.
And still
Love you more
And more.”
“ Sometimes a piece of sun
burned like a coin between my hands.”
“A long time I have loved the sunned mother-of-pearl of your body.
I will bring you happy flowers from the mountains, bluebells
Dark hazels, and rustic baskets of kisses.
I want
To do with you what spring does with the cherry trees.”
“Love is so short, forgetting is so long.”
“The river mingles its stubborn lament with the sea.”

“the pale day peers out….
…the dawn oozing everywhere.”
“How clear it is that the stones have touched time,
in their fine substance there is the smell of age
And the water that the sea brings from salt and sleep.”
“Into the night of the heart
your name drops slowly
and moves in silence and falls
and breaks and spreads its water.,”

“ And you, like a month of star, like a fixed kiss,
like a structure of wing, or the beginning of autumn,
girl, my advocate, my amorous one,
light makes its bed beneath your big eyelids,
golden as oxen, and the round dove
often makes her white nest in you.”

“ and at times it rains; from the heat of the sky falls an infusion as silent as sweat.”
“And the raucous cats that cross my garden in the dark,
like a necklace of throbbing sexual oysters…
beneath the elegant coconut trees, next to the ocean and the moon,
there is a continual life of trousers and skirts,
a rustle of stroked silk stockings,
and feminine breasts that shine like eyes..”
“like a shipwreck we die inward
like smothering in our hearts.”


Expanding One's Identity

To start at the beginning; we all have bodies. Most of our day revolves around activities related to the concept we might have that “I am the body”. Here we are on a par with all animal life with our needs for physical survival (food and drink, shelter, physical safety and the chance to reproduce).

As we become adept at all this we just raise the stakes. Our food can include well cooked meals or fancy restaurants, our habitation can grow from hovels to student lodgings to an expensive home with a large mortgage. All of which requires money so most people need to acquire this; indeed spend a considerable portion of their lives doing just this so they can satisfy the needs coming from the “I am a body” identity.

Even when we raise our awareness from ”I am a body” to “I have a body” these activities will remain.

If you made a list of how much you do each day precisely because you have a body you will see how body consciousness dominates your life.

So we start exercise programmes, eat properly so we can maintain the good functioning of our body and sleep well etc. We have to make time in our busy life for this. For we have learned, perhaps at our cost, that if the body is not well maintained suffering comes.

If you examine exactly how many of your woes start precisely because you have a body and bodily needs you will find it a long list. I wish I could start a bodiless society for then there would be so much time for other things! Can you imagine angels getting together and moaning over aging joints, sore throats and intestinal discomfort! Not to mention talk of the clothes that no longer fit them because of weight gain, or which are now out of style.

Somewhere down the line you might come across the concept that within the body are energies that most people don;t know how to develop or cultivate. You read about chakras, kundalini, chi, internal energies that can be accumulated, balanced and circulated. You hear talk of a body of light, of the Soul.

This expands the concept of exactly what sort of body I am or have.

When you discover that behind the eyes there is a physical world of internal energy, inner rooms in your own body just waiting to be explored then physical life takes on a new dimension and becomes considerably more interesting. You can begin to FEEL your soul embrace you in a warm cuddle of great love. You can see/feel how you move internal energy, how inside your body and behind your eyes a world of light sparkles and glows;

not only inside, but outside too if the vision opens to that.

To live like that is to begin to explore subtler aspects of physical life. It is fascinating and even sensually pleasant.

The human nervous system is designed for Bliss.

In my School I teach how to raise energies, especially from heart to head which causes a rush of ecstasy. Good health results from balancing internal energy. Personal power and serenity comes from accumulating energy. A chaotic, stressed energy flow inside will manifest in the outer very soon.

You can call this exploring and experiencing God manifest in the world. God immanent. You discover that there is such a great Mystery and you don’t know much of It.

To die, to drop your body before you do this is such a shame. It is to have lived a physical life in its most banal form.

Priotorise your life if you want to do more with your time than wipe off the crumbs from your kitchen table.

We live in a sea of energy. It is up to us to learn how to swim in it.

You can also in your meditation come to point where all is silent, everything about you has dropped away and you feel ‘nothing matters;. This is like saying ‘there is no matter.;

It is an emptiness that seems so very full and so very fulfilling; a feeling that there is nothing to be done. All of your life vanishes into a vast point of unutterable contentment. This can be considered as God Transcendent. It is the Ultimate refuge from the world and you allow yourself to soak in It, to saturate your Self with Its balm.

When you feel this you no longer feel “I am a body” or I have a body”; even “I am” is too much for that implies duality. It is “I” or “Am” and nothing more.

Coming back to your body and your world and its cares you will have been given a wonderful balancing, the sense that despite all the turbulence “All is Well” or “Nothing matters.”

Your life will be what you choose to focus on. If you make no time for all that hidden joy life offers you won’t experience it.


Why Practise Different Forms?

When I first wrote my little essay on Sexual Energy I originally entitled it "Alive Senses", because the idea I wished to convey was that for Internal Alchemy the senses must be vitally alive. If they weren't, then the energy used for Alchemy would be missing. The title "Sexual Energy" was misleading and got many people off on the wrong track, and because it is loaded word probably stopped some from even starting. One website Momma when she posted the essay had next to it a warning "Adult Content". Frankly I wasn't aware that anything I had written was raunchy; indeed some probably would have preferred it if I had been as I got invited to some very adult sites. The "adult" designation by her made me feel good, just like an adult!

You know the joke: What is the difference between men and Canadian bonds?

Canadian bonds mature.

So here I am, an adult, saying I am sorry for the title and wishing to go back a bit.

In my understanding, we are a unitary energy system. In Tai Chi I will demonstrate this by doing what I call a "Bellows Exercise". I sit down and stand up and as I sit down I show how all my energy becomes like a concentrated ball and then as I stand up I expand it into limbs, legs and head. This is to illustrate that as energy expands it fills the whole body equally and at the same time. Furthermore you will learn, eventually, from Tai Chi, that anytime you freeze energy, anywhere, the flow of energy everywhere else also gets affected; which is why in Tai Chi you aim to acquire softness, so that all the blocks that impede energy flow are removed. Softness does not mean flabbiness but that tensions have been worked out of the system so it is relaxed.

This is not an overnight thing nor is it merely physiological as the mind, with all its rigid in-flexibilities, is involved, not to mention the taut ego!

As you become aware of energy and its flows you also note that energy flows up the spine. Along the spine are various points (chakras) the energy has to pass through and as it passes it enlivens them. It also purifies the channel along which it flows and the chakras themselves. If there are blockages it can get stuck in a chakra.

This energy comes very quickly to the sex centre and people can become aroused and very sexually active if a lot of energy flows there. Indeed, if you are sensitive to energy then, when you are next to someone like that you will get a corresponding sensation in the same area. (Adult content!) Being next to most teenage boys will give you this feeling, and some young women overly aware of their breast energy, or a woman (or man too) strongly sexually attracted to you. It can become uncomfortable at times and you learn to shut it off by ignoring it and not responding to it.

My first essay wished to clarify that you have a choice how you use your energy. You can express it sexually. This allows it to repeatedly flow in that way. Or you can freeze that out. However, as we now know, freezing energy anywhere affects the flow of energy through the whole system. We don't want that.

I had a 40 year old woman write me to ask if still being a virgin had thwarted her spiritual growth. From letters she had posted on a chat site I knew she was generous, warm, supportive and kind. I replied that it didn't thwart her spiritual growth, indeed it made her very exceptional as the reason why she had never fully lain with a man was because the loving intimacy she wanted had never been there.

There is a difference between being sexually discriminating, self-disciplined and being frigid; someone who for whatever reasons, abuse say or tortuous religious compunction or psychological problems, has shut down that centre. Many who do this have also closed their senses off so they feel their body less and they feel life less.

As you progress more and more of this energy will go beyond the sex centre and it becomes very fulfilling to have other centres brimming with it. This comes when the full energy has passed through and risen up.

You know the feeling you have in the body when you are full of sexual energy and before you release it how alive the body feels at that moment, well, I can't talk for women, but as man that disappears after the sex act. In Alchemy you try to keep that fullness so that the energy cooks in your cauldron. It is not for nothing that the first cauldron is precisely in the belly. There the energy is accumulated and refined so that sexual energy becomes "jing" and is transformed into chi.

And so the process goes on with accumulation of chi and its refining into "shen" spiritual energy. Moreover the refined energy also goes back down and mingles with the energy there.

How you use your energy is by choosing how you do this. Someone pointed out boxers refrain from sex so they become meaner for a fight. I don't think this implies that the quality of the energy is mean but if you have more of it can flow into the areas where you are mean and make you really mean. Like a Mike Tyson on a rampage.

You can use that energy for anything that attracts you. Being a mean boxer, writing poetry, being compassionate, being passionate about your interests, excessively long posts on chat sites! your Tai Chi or your spiritual growth. Choice and growth. All according to your perspective and attitude

But if that energy is not flowing or has been exhausted then a lot of that will stop, or be curtailed for a while.

My Sexual Energy post was not to encourage sexual activity, but to remind people the way out of any problem is through it. You don't want to shut off the flow by suppression. Until, in time, and with various practices the energy rises, then be natural and normal, and discriminating if you want, about its expression. Don't torture yourself. Pain is a path best avoided.

You know you don't want to become old and then wish you had watered that garden more. (I had some older men write that taking off their clothes and putting them back on again became all too much trouble!) It will be awful to be left with unfulfilled fantasies.

It is a wonderful relief when the energy passes through the sex centre and goes beyond, because, frankly, stuck there it poses many problems. So many people think with their genitals. It is amazing to me to see on these adult sites how people spend this energy. (Do you know I was a little shy to go into them in case I got caught out!)

Of course my post also attracted some humour. Sexual Energy had fun poked at it. Hem Hem!

Taoist Internal Alchemy meets everybody on their level. Saying the same thing in another way, you come to it as you are. As you are so you start, sexually frigid, sexually active, sexually very active, sexually restrained etc. From there you will grow. Orgasm can come to mean something very different. Shakti exploding in your head maybe.

So to the 40 year old virgin I wrote words of encouragement. It is good when passions burn but the passions have moved up in the spine.

We grow through desire. It is by pouring our energy into our passions that we will grow. The senses should be alive, vitally alive so you embrace your world with passion and energy. Then you will stroke pets, hug people, smile on the street, be friendly to cashiers, care about the world and all its little animals and species. You will embrace the physical world with physical hugs. You will be warm about it. As you express the energy thusly so too will Energy flow in you. The key is focus, love and surrender.

Internal Alchemy needs energy for its work. You grow with it; or you stifle it, then you are just slowly dying, a fish flapping in the desert of your making.

We discussed this topic in my School and humorously we decided we would attract more people if we changed our name to the School of Tai Chi & Erotic Arts. My web manager even did a new logo with nude people entwined around the letters Erotic.

In a future post I want to discuss Desire and Shakti. How to honour Her.

Love, David


The Energy that is used for Internal Alchemy

When I first wrote my little essay on Sexual Energy I originally entitled it "Alive Senses", because the idea I wished to convey was that for Internal Alchemy the senses must be vitally alive. If they weren't, then the energy used for Alchemy would be missing. The title "Sexual Energy" was misleading and got many people off on the wrong track, and because it is loaded word probably stopped some from even starting. One website Momma when she posted the essay had next to it a warning "Adult Content". Frankly I wasn't aware that anything I had written was raunchy; indeed some probably would have preferred it if I had been as I got invited to some very adult sites. The "adult" designation by her made me feel good, just like an adult!

You know the joke: What is the difference between men and Canadian bonds?

Canadian bonds mature.

So here I am, an adult, saying I am sorry for the title and wishing to go back a bit.

In my understanding, we are a unitary energy system. In Tai Chi I will demonstrate this by doing what I call a "Bellows Exercise". I sit down and stand up and as I sit down I show how all my energy becomes like a concentrated ball and then as I stand up I expand it into limbs, legs and head. This is to illustrate that as energy expands it fills the whole body equally and at the same time. Furthermore you will learn, eventually, from Tai Chi, that anytime you freeze energy, anywhere, the flow of energy everywhere else also gets affected; which is why in Tai Chi you aim to acquire softness, so that all the blocks that impede energy flow are removed. Softness does not mean flabbiness but that tensions have been worked out of the system so it is relaxed.

This is not an overnight thing nor is it merely physiological as the mind, with all its rigid in-flexibilities, is involved, not to mention the taut ego!

As you become aware of energy and its flows you also note that energy flows up the spine. Along the spine are various points (chakras) the energy has to pass through and as it passes it enlivens them. It also purifies the channel along which it flows and the chakras themselves. If there are blockages it can get stuck in a chakra.

This energy comes very quickly to the sex centre and people can become aroused and very sexually active if a lot of energy flows there. Indeed, if you are sensitive to energy then, when you are next to someone like that you will get a corresponding sensation in the same area. (Adult content!) Being next to most teenage boys will give you this feeling, and some young women overly aware of their breast energy, or a woman (or man too) strongly sexually attracted to you. It can become uncomfortable at times and you learn to shut it off by ignoring it and not responding to it.

My first essay wished to clarify that you have a choice how you use your energy. You can express it sexually. This allows it to repeatedly flow in that way. Or you can freeze that out. However, as we now know, freezing energy anywhere affects the flow of energy through the whole system. We don't want that.

I had a 40 year old woman write me to ask if still being a virgin had thwarted her spiritual growth. From letters she had posted on a chat site I knew she was generous, warm, supportive and kind. I replied that it didn't thwart her spiritual growth, indeed it made her very exceptional as the reason why she had never fully lain with a man was because the loving intimacy she wanted had never been there.

There is a difference between being sexually discriminating, self-disciplined and being frigid; someone who for whatever reasons, abuse say or tortuous religious compunction or psychological problems, has shut down that centre. Many who do this have also closed their senses off so they feel their body less and they feel life less.

As you progress more and more of this energy will go beyond the sex centre and it becomes very fulfilling to have other centres brimming with it. This comes when the full energy has passed through and risen up.

You know the feeling you have in the body when you are full of sexual energy and before you release it how alive the body feels at that moment, well, I can't talk for women, but as man that disappears after the sex act. In Alchemy you try to keep that fullness so that the energy cooks in your cauldron. It is not for nothing that the first cauldron is precisely in the belly. There the energy is accumulated and refined so that sexual energy becomes "jing" and is transformed into chi.

And so the process goes on with accumulation of chi and its refining into "shen" spiritual energy. Moreover the refined energy also goes back down and mingles with the energy there.

How you use your energy is by choosing how you do this. Someone pointed out boxers refrain from sex so they become meaner for a fight. I don't think this implies that the quality of the energy is mean but if you have more of it can flow into the areas where you are mean and make you really mean. Like a Mike Tyson on a rampage.

You can use that energy for anything that attracts you. Being a mean boxer, writing poetry, being compassionate, being passionate about your interests, excessively long posts on chat sites! your Tai Chi or your spiritual growth. Choice and growth. All according to your perspective and attitude

But if that energy is not flowing or has been exhausted then a lot of that will stop, or be curtailed for a while.

My Sexual Energy post was not to encourage sexual activity, but to remind people the way out of any problem is through it. You don't want to shut off the flow by suppression. Until, in time, and with various practices the energy rises, then be natural and normal, and discriminating if you want, about its expression. Don't torture yourself. Pain is a path best avoided.

You know you don't want to become old and then wish you had watered that garden more. (I had some older men write that taking off their clothes and putting them back on again became all too much trouble!) It will be awful to be left with unfulfilled fantasies.

It is a wonderful relief when the energy passes through the sex centre and goes beyond, because, frankly, stuck there it poses many problems. So many people think with their genitals. It is amazing to me to see on these adult sites how people spend this energy. (Do you know I was a little shy to go into them in case I got caught out!)

Of course my post also attracted some humour. Sexual Energy had fun poked at it. Hem Hem!

Taoist Internal Alchemy meets everybody on their level. Saying the same thing in another way, you come to it as you are. As you are so you start, sexually frigid, sexually active, sexually very active, sexually restrained etc. From there you will grow. Orgasm can come to mean something very different. Shakti exploding in your head maybe.

So to the 40 year old virgin I wrote words of encouragement. It is good when passions burn but the passions have moved up in the spine.

We grow through desire. It is by pouring our energy into our passions that we will grow. The senses should be alive, vitally alive so you embrace your world with passion and energy. Then you will stroke pets, hug people, smile on the street, be friendly to cashiers, care about the world and all its little animals and species. You will embrace the physical world with physical hugs. You will be warm about it. As you express the energy thusly so too will Energy flow in you. The key is focus, love and surrender.

Internal Alchemy needs energy for its work. You grow with it; or you stifle it, then you are just slowly dying, a fish flapping in the desert of your making.

We discussed this topic in my School and humorously we decided we would attract more people if we changed our name to the School of Tai Chi & Erotic Arts. My web manager even did a new logo with nude people entwined around the letters Erotic.

In a future post I want to discuss Desire and Shakti. How to honour Her.

Love, David


MASTERY or MSTERY

If one practices something for a long time one often becomes a master of it. My Tai Chi teacher was called master Moy. Whatever the discipline, it starts with some faltering steps, great uncertainty loaded with lots of enthusiastic hope. With each step facility grows and the unfamiliar becomes comfortable. In Tai Chi it is difficult to remember the choreography. Moreover there seems little reason for any of it and the external movements are imposed coercively on the student’s body. However, gradually, as the student’s focus increases and with regularity of practice what was once an imposition becomes natural, what was clumsy becomes graceful.

As I like to tell my students what was before an external movement has, by dint of repeated practice, gone within and effected changes inside. The movements now come from within and get expressed externally. What was once mechanically imposed both in choreography and timing now flows with a rhythm that is determined by the poetry of internal energy.

I think all art is learned in this way. Step by step you master all the keys. Day by day you gain greater control, greater knowledge of the art and you glide into mastery. Your mastery is gained by accumulating experience, by learning something new. At first it seems like almost every day something new is learned. As you become rich in experience some of the new things take longer to learn. You might work on just one aspect for several months before the teacher suggests something new.

It all takes focus and effort. You learn by making aware effort.

However as I always tell beginners Tai Chi is never learned without effort nor is it learned with effort. There is a great paradox in this.

A great conundrum viz. does enlightenment come because you become a Master or does it become because you surrender? I have heard enlightenment endlessly debated. What is enlightenment and who is enlightened? Personally I have never found this too interesting and I like to leave the “what is it?” in the realm of Mystery and who is enlightened is mere gossip. A little like children prattling actually.

The paradox comes because the imagined state of enlightenment is one where the ego has been subsumed into something greater.

Take Tai Chi, the movements of Tai Chi become poetry when you no longer do them. They seem to do you, which is probably why the Chinese call it playing Tai Chi or maybe it should be considered being played.

All that effort and all that control has to reach a point when you STOP and let it happen. There is something of grace in all this, for it seems miraculous. Ego implies effort. There is an “I” that does the move better and better.

The word master if you are gender sensitive implies masculine and indeed the path of mastery could be considered a masculine approach. It requires muscles and effort. I started to wonder what the feminine equivalent of master would be. Mistress? To say she is a real Mistress doesn’t seem to have the right ring. But what about Mster (like in the Feminist Ms)? So you would have Masters and Msters. That started me thinking of Mastery and Mstery and that ultimately Truth is such a Mystery.

When we start an art like Tai Chi we have such definite ideas, so many rules and yet as we grow we find an absence of much of this. It becomes less goal orientated, partakes more of freedom, dwells more in the realms of feeling, becomes more accepting of what is and what is happening, in the Here and the Now. This strikes me as a feminine approach. You are not trying to grab Mastery or Enlightenment but allowing something larger to suffuse Itself into you, allowing the wondrous poetry and sensual pleasure of submitting to an inflow of Grace and Joy.

Then with a big smile I saw Mastery become Mstery as the masculine and feminine become balanced.

I read a book on Zen archery and in it the Sensei said that people who see archery as hitting the bull’s-eye often miss the point. Indeed he said that there is nothing uglier than to see some archers hit the bulls eye time after time, because what they miss is the letting go of themselves in the experience. They might hit the centre of the target but they miss their centre. Not living from your centre is ugly. The beauty comes from being in this centre. In this centre you are in the centre of the Universe, indeed you hardly exist and what exists in and through you is the Power and the Glory.

So if you come across a Master who is not also a Mster run away!


Self Interest

When people start in my School they are generally motivated by self-interest. Often there is something about themselves they wish to change or improve; a bad back, or other health concerns, lack of emotional strength, exploring a gentle martial art or just to get some exercise. I had one group of three women who wanted to get out of the house of an evening and regarded it as a women’s night out, rather like going to watch a male stripper together, but more wholesome, though maybe less fun!

Some come because they have long wanted to meditate or have tried meditation and not succeeded and feel that now is the time to give it another go. Some want to explore esotericism. Some mistake it for eroticism and hope for sensual windows to open. (Joke!) Some, as a friend commented, have got on the wrong bus and give it up immediately.

We are generally best motivated by self-interest. The School promises it can teach certain things, offers certain advantages and people are attracted by this to the extent they will pay for one month and give it a try. There is an exchange of energy, cash from them and a class from me.

For a while I have been thinking of making it obligatory to commit to try out, and perhaps pay, for three months when someone starts. What I teach is not immediately comprehended and it would be wiser to take the time to discover hidden aspects.

I say on my website that my School is not for the casual. Not many people who come would class themselves as casual. It is a question of perspective, theirs or mine! also a question of degree.

I find that a lot of my time gets spent trying to maintain their interest, to keep the enthusiasm at a level that makes the classes worthwhile for them and me. A lot of this is like being an entertainer trying to get the audience to come again. I get students who find it impossible to be regular, come late or leave early; students who fit it in like all other social engagements i.e. when convenient. Some students don’t practice between their weekly classes. To all these I say the longest journey begins with the first step and that as long as they keep taking one step after another they will make progress. I say that practicing once a week is better than nothing but to remember it is right next to nothing!

Self-interest is what gets us up in the morning and the degree of our self-motivation and passion determines how much juice we extract from the mango. Each step a student takes should increase their passion for learning. Once you get a feel for the delight of the spiritual life It won’t let you go, not easily at any rate. Once a student has overcome lethargy, apathy or the discomfort of bad health or irregular habits then there is only one real obstacle, the ego.

On one;s spiritual path one starts to clear out dross or impurities that prevent clarity of perception, awareness and real balance. This house cleaning can make you feel worse. For a start you really see the dirt and, often, that doesn’t make you feel better. The ego can be really resistant to change. No matter how often I tell a student that somewhere down the line they will get an ego challenge from the teachings, when it comes they often up and quit. Something happens they don’t like, something I say or do perhaps. At this stage it is easier to give up than continue. Continuing takes real grit; the casual don’t have this. Being around Master Moy for the long haul took determination and grit. He made sure his long term students worked on their egos. It was never enjoyable but always worthwhile.

If one maintains regular practice and regular contact with the teacher a lot of growth happens by osmosis. A good teacher spreads their energy, embraces their students with their aura, which is one reason that students feel the better for a class. If they are doing ‘housecleaning; then contact with the teacher keeps the pot on the boil; which is to say maintains the level of discomfort!

As growth happens then one also wants to help. This is where self-interest, which got the student there to start with, takes a side turn. They discover that personal growth is inevitably wrapped up with attitudes to other people and their growth. The “Me” packing now expands to include “Us”.

Even your own personal self-growth is seen as valuable for the larger context. As you become more self-aware, more expanded in your consciousness, more balanced in your energies, more serene, tolerant and loving then you spread those qualities around you consciously or unconsciously.

I am one of those people who foresee the world heading to greater conflict, greater tension and greater payback from the environment. One would like to think there is plan in all this that out of catastrophe will come a new age and a new earth for those that survive. That is uncertain. What is certain that the more people there are who are established in their Power and their Peace, who have forged links with the Larger Other, who felt embraced by their Souls, not as a concept but as a sensuous living reality the greater the chance the planet will make it through.

Our initial self interest in taking a class can bring us to that, a transformed world. That makes each step, each smidgeon of interest worthwhile.


There is only Tao

One will see statements like this in much Taoist writing and on Taoist chat forums. It is generally speaking useless advice as far as how to live one’s life. I remember well on a cold drizzly morning when the TM group I led was trying futilely to save a large and carefully constructed cardboard Buckminster Fuller geodesic dome that had collapsed from rain. It was going to be part of our exhibition at some New Age festival in Cape Town. As a replacement we had ordered a large tent. There was some panic amongst those assembling and those preserving. The festival was starting. Someone was energetically, perhaps feverishly hammering in stakes. A Hippie walked by and sweetly commented ”Go with the flow.” That’s the sort of thing I mean. When you are trying to pay off a mortgage or raise bail or get a good seat in a film, concert or a bus, when the roads are iced and you are in a hurry, when you’ve lost your glasses, when your child has gone missing, when you’ve sliced your finger you won’t think of “there is only Tao.” Nor will you appreciate been told this.

But it is good knowledge for good times and it is in the good times you should explore it because life spirals, and things can abruptly become chaotic. Once you get the hang of it it just takes a focussed breath and you are there.

There are schools based on Shankara’s Advaita philosophy. Non dualism. Ramana Maharishi. (I visited his ashram in Tiruvannamalai in ’69). His practice of asking,”Who am I.” Nisargadatta’s (“I am That” is a marvellous, miraculous book) advice to meditate on “I am not the body.”

People walk around muttering ”this is all illusion.” Say that to your bleeding finger or the bailiff! People write little articles on that for chat forums. It is almost common knowledge in certain circles. Probably the person a student told me about who had learned Tai Chi in 3 months believes it.

Nevertheless it is true, even if the proponents may seem flakey.

It is the old problem of claiming knowledge prematurely, knowing Tai Chi after 3 months. That sort of thing.

Kashmir Shaivism teaches Monism. A sort of Glorified Advaita. There is only One. All is Shiva’s dance. Or more accurately The Dance is Shakti, and Shiva Is. It is the Tantric approach, the Toltec approach.

My approach, and what I teach in my classes.

I say,”don’t say you are not the body”. That is fake and artificial. Book learning.

Go into your body and discover who you really are. This is Taoist internal alchemy

It is not a weekend workshop endeavour. It is a lifetime commitment.

I have just finished Bob Dylan’s “Chronicles”. Like all artists I know or have read about he studied his art. He practised. Probably still does. He did his homework and paid his dues. None of it fell into his lap no matter how great his genius. Bob Marley wouldn’t allow laughter at rehearsals. (Dollar Brand told me to keep quiet or get out when I laughed at something humorous he said while his jazz group were rehearsing.) Not everyone is musical or talented in drawing or writing poetry. The world is full of well-meaning mediocrity.

We all have bodies. We all have nervous systems. We all have an inner energy grid. This can be our instrument. We can make of our awareness, our meridians a work of art. How wonderful a work of art depends only on your focus and your passion, the time you put in. You can be a wannabe or you can really become that.

You will discover your internal energy. You will feel how it moves, how it spirals, circulates. You will discover a miraculous thing, by going in you start to feel what is without.

You will have seen photos of our Milky Way galaxy, how the energy moves in a graceful spiral. It is simply beautiful. A few delicate spirals contains billions of stars, and contains us, here on earth, in our own homes, pondering it all. The energy passes through them all and it is clear that it is one system. Seen from a large enough perspective it can be perceived as one system, a unity.

Is any of this relevant? You betcha!

It has been my experience that when the inner energy becomes expanded, balanced, harmonious, luminous, flowing, spiralling (none of these words carelessly chosen) when your energy grid has been purified, when the lights have popped on inside, so you will feel a connection with the lights out there. It is as though the body becomes the earth, becomes part of that great Milky Way Spiral. Something extraordinary happens then. The energy makes me feel so cleansed, so empty that nothing else exists. It is hard to say “I”, to feel “I”. There is only the dancing, the joy.

There is only Tao.
Only
One
!


Kundalini

As you evolve you discover that your own energy is linked to a life force. David Suzuki says,” We are our environment” in that whatever we put out into it we eventually take back into our bodies. It is as though there is one energy on our planet that expresses itself as life here, changing and spiralling. It will go on whether humans survive their own follies or not.

In one sense our growth depends on how we utilise our own energy. Nothing happens without energy. If you want to evolve you need more than energy you need POWER. Power is focussed energy, not a profligate energy that is scattered and wasted, but an energy that is accumulated, cultivated, refined and directed towards a goal.

As you grow you begin to prioritise your desires so instead of fluttering in all directions you try to fly specifically.

As you do this you discover that instead of you toiling with great effort up a slope the path is often graced by the goal lifting you up for a few paces. You get drawn up.

What I am saying is is this. We live in a sea of energy. For a while it seems like we grow by imbibing that energy; what is without is taken within. But sometimes it seems more as if that energy is filling us. As I have repeatedly told my students, “When you enter the Mystery, the Mystery enters you.” Then what seemed without is now living within.

This is what Kundalini achieves.

We have bodies that are ‘wired; for Bliss. We have an energy grid (meridians and channels, nadis) already in place. However the grid has blocks and the energy that flows along it is not at maximum. Our task is to clean up the energy lines. You can call it scouring the system. Purification. Our task is to open up to the energy in the Universe. This is done by what we eat, drink and breathe. Not just that, but how we do them too; with what attitude, with what feeling. How we sit, how we stand, and how we move.

Just recognising that you are an internal energy system is a big step in the right direction. It means you need to feel within. What is within is going to spill out. As I like to quote,” What you think, you will say; what you say, you will do and what you do, you will become.” You lay out your future in this way and when it arrives at your door you can’t blame anyone for the wailing and weeping!

When you start feeling you are an internal energy system you can start cooperating with it. You practise Right intent.

1) Harmonise your body posture

2) Harmonise your breathing

3) Harmonise your mind.

This is the essence of Tai Chi and what I teach.

It is fundamental tenet of mine that there is a Force in life that wants us to evolve. It isn’t trying to make the path unnecessarily hard, to arbitrarily throw obstacles in our way. As you start to feel a harmony within you start to harmonise with this Force. There is an energy that knows better than your small self what you need. At times this energy takes over and gives you a jolt in the right direction. This is Kundalini. Kundalini is that Power which makes the crooked straight, which goes before you to prepare a place, which sweeps through your system. When it is active go along for the ride!

It has been my experience that many of the bliss experiences are purification of the system. As Kundalini cleanses you can feel pleasure, even sensual. Your breathing follows a pattern of its own. Your body can move. You can make sounds. It is like that energy that dog has when it shakes itself dry. A spontaneous cleansing. (The sort of thing our planet is beginning to do, as we seem incapable to doing it ourselves. The earth will shake and we will wonder,; why is this happening?;)

In Tantric terms Kundalini is the Shakti power. It is the Goddess and she wants to unite with Her Lord Shiva in your head. She desires Him. She can become impatient to join with Him. All her movements are to get there; to rise up your spine in a gush of Ecstasy, Light and Power and shimmer in your head.

Energy loops back on Itself. She, Shakti, who is creation returns to the Silent One. There is completion in that Joy.

Kundalini will completely seduce you. She is a jealous lover though. You have to give her your All. You know when you are with someone but they know you are elsewhere. You even look over their shoulders. This will get you nowhere. You know how rejected you feel when this happens to you. There are no half measures with Kundalini. Oh yes you can do it that way. Just as I can have students who regard what I teach as a hobby, something to do once a week, when they are not busy with something else.

Each step is still a step in the right direction. No effort is wasted. Nevertheless to find the All you must give your all. When you do that,

the All comes to you.


The Here and the Tao

Here on earth we live duality.

We live it either badly, or well; or may be, for many of us, with mediocrity, if we are honest. Most of the time, the world with its insistent clamour commands our attention. When we need a break from that we work on our pleasures, or our escape routes. In between we try meditation, massage and spiritual pursuits. We pick up how to books, to find balance, to find soul mates, we practise techniques.

There is an important commercial niche catering for these needs, these compulsions, and this huge absence that fills our days with its nervous energy, running and ruining our lives. The “happy” majority has no time for any of this. Material needs in a needy, or greedy, material world form their daily diet.

It is a tough world for the sensitive, the caring, and the empathetic folk who listen to the news and burst into tears. It is a tough world in which to get our spiritual teeth.

It can be done.

We can feel balance, if not all of the time, then a lot of the time. First we need to make the time to work on the communication lines; the lines to our own souls. This is like learning a new language; like learning a new language while all we mostly hear is the babble of the old, old crappy words that come back like the sorry echoes of our own repetitive screams. It isn’t easy and it requires persistence; but when you have heard the world’s (your) noise long enough you decide to say, ”enough!”

Don’t wait too long. Time might run out for you. As I wrote in my book, “Stalking Personal Power and Peace” don’t wait till you are dead to find out who you are.

One of the things mystics can teach us is that truth is a paradox. It often includes two extremes.

Maharishi taught me that the Infinite is both bigger than the biggest and is also smaller than the smallest. At both ends of the scale lies the infinite.

When in my practices I become smaller, smaller, smallest then suddenly I become nothing. When I do this, this Nothing is the All. When Nothing else exists but “I”, this pure and simple “I”; actually let me rephrase that, when nothing else exists but this unqualified “I” I have expanded to All.

This afternoon as I began my Chi Kung exercises my tongue touching my upper palate, which connects the two main meridians, started to vibrate. I become alive inside. As I become alive inside, my body hums. I also disappear. All that is left is the Now. The Tao. David has vanished, like a falling ripe fruit.

Here and the Tao.
Hearing the Tao

Silence.

What else is there to say?

LISTEN.

Time is gliding by. Moment by moment our lives move into their personal mystery. We move from place to place. But if can attend to where we are, listen to the Silence between thoughts, feel the Gap between breaths then we come to the Here and the Tao.

In my Tai Chi classes I encourage my students to feel that moment between each extreme, at the end of a stretch, at the end of an out breath, at the bottom of a ‘sinking; at the completion of an inhale; in these moments the Eternal can be glimpsed. As this happens more and more the energy system gets soaked in that experience. It is very fulfilling, very complete; it is difficult to move away from it, like saying goodbye to a lover, or your mother or, what the heck, your Self.

You see your life like a tiger stalking its prey. Or the other way round. Life stalking you like a tiger; going round and round you waiting for that moment, that instant of Divine forgetting, when in a momentous Unknowing you let go all you are not, forget it so utterly, so totally and you are embraced by those arms you have sought from the very beginning of time. And oh! the joy of the now.

Of the Here ‘n the Tao.


Inner Smile

This is a simple technique I use and teach that is very effective. It is simple and magical. One great advantage is that each person can play around with it and explore its possibilities on their own and in their own way. There are no lists of rules, no sequence of moves to be remembered, no correct procedures; just start the process and let it develop, as it does. Follow along, like following a stream, innocently, curiously, in wonderment.

If you can, accept the concept, that each person was created by God, or the Universe, or Tao. As the Bible states, God formed clay and “breathed into it”. We have inside us, like a memory, that Pulse of Breath; our Original Breath, just as you might have read of our Original Face or our Original Mind. This is what we were, before….

If you like think of it as the proverbial twinkle in your parents eyes just before they conceived you. That pulse of joy that brought you into existence.

I like to imagine my Original Face as that of a child with a smile on it. It is an easy image for anyone I think, a young face with a smile. While this is not using the inner child concept of New Age psychology, there is value in imagining that happy young energy inside. The original breath inside us is a young child, innocent and open.

Taoist practices try to get us in touch with our own energy. Once one can accept the concept of our own inner energy one can start to feel it. Once you start to feel it you are in a position to cultivate it. This is the aim of the inner smile practice.

The practice:

Shut your eyes and feel your lips. Immediately you should feel the energy on the lips. Now bring them into a slight smile. I think it is impossible to do this and not feel some happy feeling at the same time. A student of my School of Esoteric Arts, a biologist, speculates that as the muscles move into a smile then the wiring of our emotions is such that we feel good; that it is hard to put the lips into a smile and not feel happy.

This good feeling, this sense of a happy energy inside is the basis of all that follows.

Life on earth is sun based. We get the gravitational effect of the moon on the tides etc but our main energy source is the sun. We are energetically linked to the sun. It shines its energy on us and we grow with it. Without it we will become extinct. It is central to our existence.

When I shut my eyes for this practice I like to imagine a big ball of golden energy like the sun just above my head and beaming into my face. I turn the corners of my lips into a slight smile. I breathe into that smile, feeling good. I feel that golden ball of energy. I feel warm on my face. After some breaths I put that stretching smiling energy across my forehead. With each in breath I stretch it across, across each lobe of the brain; with each out breath relax and just feel the energy there. Then I put it so it stretches across my eyes, into the corner of each eyelid. I find this very relaxing.

In this way I move down the body, with each breath feeling that energy of the sun melting me inside, smiling across me.

Spots that can be included are across the throat, from the heart across the chest, across the belly in front and then across the back at belly button level, Ming Men (this links into the belt chi or kidney meridian); from the spine in middle of the shoulders to the shoulders. There is a gate on the spine there where energy gets stuck.

Each in breath a smile then relax and feel.

If you ever lose focus go back to the lips and feel a smile there.

Across inner organs, pelvis, groin, across knees, across soles of feet, across toes, hands.

You can do it just as you like, for as long as you like

I tell my students to love their body. When you smile at your body it is like a boss coming into a place of work and letting the employees know they are appreciated. When you scowl at yourself you are like an intimidating dominating boss making the workers tense. Your organs will function better if they feel appreciated and loved.

Some people go around with an inner scowl and life confirms it. They see all that is wrong and it makes them feel worse. They seek for what is wrong. They are the critics of life. They have the eyes and nose for that, inner scowl at the ready. Some go around with an inner smile. When things go wrong they make them better.

Inside us we have all sorts of different and competing energies. A smile is like saying,

” OK. It is all OK” like a fond mother who watches her children and friends play. We are doing the best we can, so give yourself a smile.

You can beam inside a smile to someone in need of it, someone ill, someone unhappy, to someone with whom you have a problem maybe.

Then end the practice with an inside thank you.

I use it when I practice my moving forms. This is not as easy as sitting with a smile, for, by habit, as one focuses carefully or when tries to remember the sequence one loses a smile. I have students who purse their lips or grimace as they concentrate. When one is trying to concentrate on inner sensations, internal movement one can lose the smile and go blank with concentration.

It is not an external grin. We often grin when we are trying to project something or manipulate somebody. Radiant flashes of teeth.

It is a smile that bubbles up from inside, something essential inside, of contentment. Like when a baby sees someone who loves it. A smile that says, ”Here I am”, ”Here you are”, “Here we are and isn’t it grand?” The sort of smile you hope God has when She sees you doing your best.

You can imagine a very accomplished martial artist who is challenged by someone he knows he can easily beat. He can smile, a smile of total confidence, of knowing his power, a smile of nothing to prove, nothing to do, just sure of it all.

In my forms I often try to maintain that smiling energy and in each move have it flow there. As I extend the smiling energy flows along the arm, the muscles stay relaxed and I imagine the smile extending beyond the fist, beyond the palm, into the world. When I stand up the smile spirals up inside and reaches above my head, stretching into “heaven”. When I sink it goes down into the earth.

So much of our life is spent trying to accomplish something, to get somewhere. The inner smile recognizes that where we are is All,

and All is Good.


Living in the Ruins of Catastrophe

Every day informed citizens have tragedy and turmoil thrown at them. The more informed they are the larger their intake of this. Blogs, alternative news sources, conspiracy groups, earth changes links, all provide a steady trough of fodder at which many feed. We do it voluntarily so that we may know the real truth, “real” because so often the main stream media ignore the facts. Nevertheless even the main stream radio, TV and newspapers pummel us enough with bad news.

We need to know how to deal with this.

Firstly, realise that whatever is outside of you, the bad news, affects you if it finds a resonance inside. Birds of a feather flock together. In other words if you feel like dumping on the world the distribution networks will give you what you want. “It is all going down to ruin” you feel inside and so the outside input provides confirmation of this.

A woman tells a man friend that whatever she tells her husband goes in one ear and out the other. Her friend says his wife is the opposite. Whatever goes in one ear goes immediately out her mouth.

We are mostly like that woman. What interest us, we like to share with others. So when we hear that bird flu will kill 100 million in 2 weeks, or that global warming is irreversible, or that the Bush gang plan to inflict something on the world again or whatever the bad news is we repeat it. We join the network of bad news.

We all know folk who can recite chapter and verse of what went wrong and what will go wrong in their lives and others. The internet is a great place for this. Instant focus on the latest scandal; instant oblivion on that and on to the next; till one reels unsteadily with the weight one now carries.

We really need a skill to handle this or we become the catastrophe.

Read that last sentence again. We will become the catastrophe. Do you want that as your future?

Spiritual vaccination!

I don’t mean living uninformed in a cocoon of isolatory false optimism, but practising good emotional hygiene to rid ourselves from inside of the resonances that latch onto bad news and become fervent spreaders of it. We become what we dwell on and there is a danger we become that awful virus of tragedy contagion.

So daily we need a hygiene that cleanses us. Meditation etc. I have my routines that affirm the beauty of life in me and outside me. (See my website www.esotericarts.org under topics.) I listen to the National CBC news, skim read some of the bad news on the internet, feel worse, shake my head and wonder where it will all lead. Then I take my spiritual bath or I look out over the lake to the trees stretching to the horizon, or the birds at the feeders or the cat snoozing in the sun and feel so lucky to be here. You don’t want to leave the house carrying all that toxicity and spread it. So practise mental and emotional hygiene.

The spiritual vaccination comes from any practice that roots you in joy, not as an escape, but as a fundamental reality.

We have layers of awareness going outside or inside. We can choose our direction. We can choose our focus. Inside we can feel our Bliss body. This is not New Age sweet talk. We have an energy layer to ourselves that is Bliss energy. It is there whether you have one leg, a bad knee, are in danger of bird flu or whatever.

You learn to communicate with it, to FEEL it. Reading about it, talking about it doesn’t cook the meal. You have to do the work to get there, not just imagining, faking or wishing. Many of the people who want this aren’t prepared to do the practicing.

What I teach is how to get in contact with your inner energy. It won’t happen without getting the foundations right. Taoist internal alchemy is not wishy washy. If you want, then you DO. And you keep on practising the doing till you get it right. Each step in the right direction brings the goal nearer.

I intend soon to write an essay on Meditation as work, Meditation as Fun (Play or Bliss). One mustn;t forget that meditation is also work. Take standing meditation. It takes grit to do this. I have put lots of hours experiencing this grit. Now it has become flow and fun. I do 6 different arm positions (see my book under “topics” for instructions) and hold each one for 7 minutes with the knees slightly bent and the pelvis dropped (not tucked please). This can be hard on legs and arms so it takes grit to do. But now I hear the hum and roar of different energies, the lights in the head and the sense, at times, that the body vanishes and all that is left is the absorption into That.

My TM has given a deep sense of inner Silence being touched by The Other. Internal Breathing alchemy allows me with one breath to feel That.

This morning I allowed the energy to come in and move though my energy body, cleansing, opening, a practice called ‘Big Snake uncoils its body. The chakras (energy centres) open. There is a centre I have only read about twice. Not part of the usual 7 chakras. One yogi, into Kundalini, just put it in a diagram, another peripherally mentioned a bit about it but his followers don’t seem to have made a big deal out of it. Several years ago it opened for me, quite spontaneously very blissfully and then I remembered the references. When the attention is there, on it and it glows it is very Blissful. But I don’t hear it mentioned. I am no great shakes so I must assume other mystics have experienced it but don’t talk about it because it is a secret.

When I recently told my class in my School of Esoteric Arts about it, they all sat back and expected to get the information spoon fed and were surprised when I said I was keeping the secret at least until they showed some indication of working harder themselves.

This morning it glowed and I felt wonderful. The energy then moved about in my brain. There are many centres in the brain that can get enlivened. Afterwards I felt like I had antenna inside opened up and tuned to all sorts of Bliss frequencies, like my brain software was generating glowing happiness.

This is Spiritual vaccination. Then you can take on the bad news.

It is your choice; how you spend your time and your energy.

If, as seems very likely, that our world is moving into increasing chaos and tragedy are you ready? Can you get centred in one breath? If knowing your Bliss Body is important to handle the incoming energies you will be ready if you can feel it. If not, maybe you will miss them and the joy or, worse, get fried by them.

The Easter message is “I, if I be lifted up will draw all men unto Me.” Not just Christ but you too. If you can do this lifting, your “I” will be resplendent. Your head will be in Heaven your feet rooted on the earth.

If the world goes into any more chaos you will be needed.

Prepare ye the way of the Lord.

Get Lifted.

Love,

David


I will arise and go to my Father

In most disciplines there is an external verity and then there is a deeper inner truth. Students understand from their level of experience. As their experiences deepen they will understand the same words in a different way. It is all perspective.

In Tai Chi classes Master Moy would tell a student to “sit; more. The student understood sitting to mean bend the knee and thus bring the buttocks lower. So when they sat lower as they understood his instructions to be, they would bend their knees further. This was physically demanding and their practice became a heavy workout. Young men loved that, lots of sweat. If they kept this up long enough the result was that their spine would open. Their vertebra would spread open especially in the lower back. It is the sort of thing that happens when you do pelvic tilt, except in our style we don’t do that as we want the joints at the hip to open in the front and the back. If you do a pelvic tilt the lower spine opens but the front joint closes.

As the spine opened one understood that “sitting” meant exactly that, that opening of the spine. It wasn’t bending the knees more. That is merely squatting. This is exercise, but external exercise. It means stretching the spine down, bringing the pelvis as though on a plate down. In mere squatting the spine goes down in one piece but in “sitting” the legs can bend minimally but the lower spine goes down and the upper spine stretches up. This is sitting with the spine. If the head goes down with the sit you miss that stretch up at the same time as you stretch down.

Stretching down means sinking into the feet, into the earth energy. Stretching up means getting the energy into the head, stretching into the sky or to ‘heaven”.

As the inner energy moves in this way the channel in the spine gets cleansed. Chi flows more easily from the bottom of the spine to the top. So does spinal fluid. The brain is enlivened. Sinking quietens the mind. It is a letting go. Everything drains down to the feet. You become one with earth energy. You die into the earth. Standing up you resurrect yourself and flow into your head, heaven. You are reborn.

As you become cosmically more tuned more cosmic energies flow through you. Earth and sky are not just metaphors for up and down. Your body does not end at your feet and head. There is a continuum of energy going down and going up. You stretch down beyond the feet and you stretch up beyond the head. If you do this you can feel there is a part of you above your head.

Indeed you surround your body like a golden egg. (Ecclesiastes 12.6,”Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken… then shall the dust return to the earth” i.e. you die when that golden egg disperses. The Golden Egg sustains you.

As you communicate better with all that you are you also build and maintain these lines of communication.( Ecclesiastes again 1.6” The wind (Chi) goeth toward the south (the feet) and turneth about unto the north (the head); it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.”) Energy moves along circuits. Eventually a great energy in the base of the spine arises and rushes up the spine in an ecstatic flaming gust of fulfillment.

Till then the energy was playing around in the external, being attracted by this then by that, like a prodigal son. Attention was outside, on all the things of the world, all the situations, the responsibilities, the things that make us rush and get us tense. All our goals and dreams, trying to be happy. Seeking it outside.

And all the time the loving Father waited and waited. Then energy loops back on itself and the son says,” I will arise and go unto my Father.” The Father, Shiva, is in the head, the Sahasrara, waiting for the son. And the son rises up and joins his Father in Heaven, (the head and above the head).

We can be as prodigal as we like, but, at some point, we will say.

” I will arise and go to my Father.”

And I will say ”I have sinned.” But the father will take me in his arms and say,” Child all that I ever had is thine.” Why the instant reconciliation? because the only sin, the original sin is separation. Feeling separate from That which is within we can never find it outside. We only ever find what we are. When the energy has looped back on itself the circle is complete, you are complete. Order has been restored.

I will arise and go to my Father.”

You will be embraced. You have arisen. The energy has risen in you There is nothing more to do but live that, express That.

Arise

She is waiting.

The Joy of that Embrace.


Baptism of Fire

It is Easter Sunday as I write this, the day of the Resurrection, the Risen Christ. Yesterday I fed my bees. Today in the sun of a plus 3C morning they were buzzing around their black winter wrapped hives. All winter it is quiet outside the hives. So quiet you might think they were all dead. But inside they keep it warm and wait for the time of renewal.

Under the mulch my garlic lies ready for the pale shoots to turn green when in a few weeks I will pull the mulch away to give the shoots sun. I have moved my trays of onions, leeks and French shallots to the green house. Inside tomatoes have germinated. On the grass redwing black birds and migrating grackle have found the seeds I put out for them. Two red polls, a couple, got trapped on my porch. I caught them in a tea towel and each lay there so sweetly with their little head sticking out. It made me feel so tender.

As I did my Wild Goose Chi Kung set this morning three flocks of Canadian Geese flew overhead heading north. As above so below! Blessed and miraculous rhythm of life here; the big, the small, all of us creatures living, breathing and finding our spot under the glorious sun. I took off the lid of one of the compost bins scattered around my vegetable garden and peed in the bin. It is a time of renewal, recycling, a rising of the sap and we are a part of it all. Hallelujah!

I return to my quote from Ecclesiastes 1.6 about the energy circuits.

In the Microcosmic orbit we Taoists circulate energy up the spine from the perineum over the head and back down the front to the perineum again with the tongue providing the link between the two meridians. You can also do it in the opposite direction.

In the Macrocosmic orbit you bring it up from the middle toe, under the soles of the feet, up the back of the leg and spine to the head and then back down to the middle toe. In a class I once, by mistake, said I was going to teach the macro orgasmic circuit and got a young woman quite excited. I used to joke that if I had called my School the School of Erotic Arts I would have been more successful than as Esoteric Arts.

“The wind goeth toward the South and turneth about unto the North.” This is the macrocosmic orbit circulating the chi (using the breath) between feet and head. Once you’ve got it is easy to do. There are four ways of doing the loop.

I often sit up in the night and do it a bit before going back to sleep. It beats lying awake.

“It whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to its circuits.”

As long as we are alive breath flows and energy moves. If we know the circuits we can build on and use Nature’s design to augment the flow. A stagnant pond doesn’t support life. It starts to smell, so too with our energy. In moving is renewal and better health.

You can circulate energy from the belly button to the back of the spine (Ming Men) and then in two loops back to the centre of the spine. You can feel the power centre start to glow. The kidney meridian and the chi belt store and cultivate sex energy.

(An aside: I was reading on a chat site about some Ayurvedic herbal medicine for restoring sexual vigour. It is banned in the States partly I think because it contains lead. This mixture is probably based on a recipe contained in that old saying “this will put lead in your pencil”).

I sometimes do the 9 circulations of the Internal Pill and teach this. It isa combination of macrocosmic circulation and some other meridians.

Several years ago my friend Richard drove for three days in a battered old car from New Mexico to teach me the Baptism of Fire circulation. It now forms part of the curriculum in my School but I haven’t taught it to any student yet. They need to show the right attitude, the right interest.

This technique uses a particular energy loop, a particular body position and a particular breathing pattern etc. that allows the energy to build up in the head and the base of the spine charging each side like poles of a battery (positive and negative, North and South again you see). When the charge becomes large enough energy rushes up convulsively between them. Touch both poles of a battery and you will see what I mean. The breathing becomes rapid, the arms move and then the spasm is over. It is, I imagine, like a woman’s orgasm, except this is not sexual. Physical, yes; but not sexual.

This morning I did it over and over again for half an hour and decided to write a short essay on it.

Richard would say that when Shiva (the North, the head) gets charged enough then the charge in the base of the spine will induce Shakti to come to Shiva. Shakti has no choice. The two poles have become so charged that energy has to flow between them once contact is made.

It is being baptized with fire (Matthew 3.11). The rising energy up the spine can be like a fire. Not painful, an ecstatic gush of flames; or just a rush and a quivering, leaving you full and replete.

Isaiah 60.1 “Arise, shine; for thy light has come and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” As the energy rises you see light in the head and you become radiant, you shine, for those who can see. This is the Pentecostal experience of the disciples when their heads were surrounded by flames.

Moving energy purifies the system, purifies the centres through which it passes. The dross gets burnt. There is a price for this. The price is that you have to deal with the ash that is left in the system. For a while the body can feel tired after a tumultuous experience. You will need rest.

The energy loops back on itself. I say this many times. In looping back is completion. One becomes spherical. As a sphere wherever you move you are at rest and centred. Just as in the centre of an axle there is no movement so at the centre of the sphere is stillness. This gives rise to the feeling of the mystic that nothing happens.

Oh yes the wheel turns, bad fortune, good fortune, you can’t stop that, can’t stop the turning for so long as you are part of life and its ebbs and flows, but, if you are at the centre you will be at peace. Taoists say this all the time. But, of course, what we mostly want is getting the wheel to move from bad fortune to good and then to stand still at the peak of our good fortune. No wave stays peaked. Every peak has a trough. We will never know peace that way, hoping to keep the wheel with its apex at good fortune, because we cannot stop the wheel. Each life has its destiny, its parabdha karma that will work itself out. Good fortune, bad fortune, whatever your destiny is. But you can still learn to be serene amidst all that.

The energy passes through the heart, purifies it.

Matthew 5.8 “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.”

What more can you want?

When I finished writing this and went out the back door three deer were on the lawn. We looked at each other a long time and then they took off into the forest, white tails flagging me.

Sometimes, isn’t life just so wonderful!


Taking things as they come

As we organise our life it seems to me we have two choices.

One is to try to guide our life to a future we want. This means to become master of our destiny, to apply our focus, energy and intention on the goals we want to achieve. It is not always easy to know exactly what it is we want, for although happiness is a convenient catch all goal the actual way we will become happy is unclear. So often we find that getting there does not bring the happy results we wanted. Nevertheless, trying is the exercise we set ourselves, the path of effort.

We decide what our priorities are and we aim at them. A lot people find some sort of balance between inner and outer priorities. We work because we want so much of material stuff and also so much of leisure to read, listen to music, exercise and develop our awareness. This is to be privileged and the privilege should be acknowledged and exercised responsibly.

The second choice involves accepting what life gives us based on the notion of seeking first the Kingdom of God and all else will be added to us. It discards the notion that our present is the product of our past and therefore our future will be made by our actions in the present. Or if ‘discards; is too strong a word, it casts its weight on the side of letting the future take care of itself, like the lilies. This world requires endurance. Take what you get and keep your mind on God. The problem with this is that we can become passive welcome mats for whatever the world wants to throw at us.

Taoists try to find the point of balance amidst opposing energies, walking that razor’s edge of effort and surrender. Too much swing either way, and balance is lost. We need some thin branch to hang on to as we balance on the edge of falling.

Balance in a dynamic world requires constant vigilance; to be yang, assertive, at the appropriate moment; but always ready to turn yin, receptive or retreating, when that is advisable. This way we balance our feminine and masculine and become more rounded as individuals.

There is no code book of instructions for this. By making mistakes we learn. All of us learn that way. By paying attention to how things work out, by our falling, we learn first how to re-establish balance when it is lost and then how not to lose that balance. When are we too rigid, when are we too flaccid. All along our intuition gets honed so we start to feel, what is the right response, in any situation.

Gradually we learn where our choices will take us. It becomes complex because we live in a competitive world. Everyone seems to be selling something, or competing for our attention. Finding harmony and right action is a skill, like those graceful parents who can multi task while also dealing with fractious children, which sometimes includes their husband as an extra child.

Sometimes it seems that we live on a planet designed to make it difficult. It seems sad to me how often we will say wryly, “Well that was a learning experience.” This is always when the experience was a tough one. Why can’t our learning experiences be also pleasant ones?

I learned as a young person studying B. Comm LLB at Stellenbosch university to hope for the best but plan for the worst; business advice during a business strategy course. I remain one of those bouncing up persons who can never be knocked down for long; always optimistic and generally enthusiastic, an absolute pain to those who wallow in misery, who go often deeply into mourning like a familiar coat they pull on at the hint of bad news.

I remember telling a friend over 40 years ago that I felt my life was a long ‘thank you; and he replied, “Mine is a constant and loud, ‘Please;”.

One has to find a balance. I’d love to surf, hang glide and fly ultra-lights but don’t have the time. I spend several hours each day doing my inner alchemy. Somehow my life revolves around that. It is what really matters to me. But I also do the shopping, plan the meals and cook them for the family, send the birthday cards and all that. I enjoy the company of others but revel in my own.

I don’t get everything I want. That seems to be life, doesn’t it. The clamors of material life around me get only so much attention and never at the cost of my inner work.

If one can balance inner and outer then life becomes a dance. And you become a joy to know.

Now isn’t that something!

Love,

David

P.S. So what about a cup of green tea? You can click on the green tea button just below to reach a site run by one of my students; very informative on the anti-cancer properties of green tea, the varieties, how to store, how to make etc.


Natural Beauty

When we have souls that enrich our outer lives our inner beauty will create outer beauty. Our inner harmony will well into our lives with waters that are fresh and wholesome. Deep calls unto Deep. The planes of outer activity will have been flooded by the silt that comes coursing in great waves and our projects will flourish. I yearn for a culture of beauty. But just as gardens slowly wither with drought and repeated drought removes all traces of former green, so lives can get patterned by ugliness, the thorns instead of the blossoms, a cactus that never has flowers.

Take sexuality. If a person’s sexual life is not nourished by the lush creative, then water is not sprinkled on the valleys and peaks and gradually all withers and dies from lack of appropriate attention. One becomes without sexual vitality and charm.

I seem to have chosen an ugly time in which to live. It is not all ugly, naturally, but I feel the ugliness creeping in like a cancerous darkness with our cities, our roads, our military machines and the creativity that goes into horror films, into violence and the awful corrupting, banality of much of life.

We create what we are or rather how we see ourselves. How we see ourselves into that we become. The shallow has a culture of mediocrity, the plastic decoration and not the gushing fragrance of real aroma.

I give a sad glance into recent history. Turkey’s massacre in Armenia (1 million), Hitler, Stalin killing the Ukrainians, Pol Pot killing 2 million of his own people, Israel/Palestine, Japan’s invasion of and cruelty in China, China doing the same in Tibet, what the Vietnamese call the American war (2.5 million Vietnamese dead, not to mention the living horror of the birth and genetic defects from Agent Orange), North Korea, Saddam Hussein, the Iraq war, Darfur, the suicide bombers, just ugliness spreading ugliness and strangling lives with hopeless absurdity and degenerate priorities.

We have war driven economies. Utne magazine had a reprint from The Humanist called “The Permanent War,” which was a devastating and gloomy recognition of how the USA has used war or the threat of war (fear of terrorism) to pump money into the military and military driven industries. Eventually the economy knows no other stimulus, a warfare state.

“I am running out of villains ”quipped Colin Powell (before the Iraq war),”I’m down to Castro and Kim11 Sung.” And if Colin Powell felt that imagine what the real hawks felt! Now whenever things get too loose the alert colour can easily be raised.

Money is made from wars and the threat of wars. Money is diverted from flowing into more beautiful channels into channels that make weapons and train violence. How did we come to this? How did we come to accept this? No, even approve it? Where, no matter what Bush did or does he will still remain The Man for most Americans?

Can we no longer recognise ugliness for what it is? A whole country gets ridiculously focussed on how Terry Schiavo lives or dies while at the same time billions of dollars get sucked into killing and maiming. What sort of people have we become? And where will it end?

What is spent on war and destruction is not spent on something else. It is as simple as that. If in your family the priority of spending your income is defending yourselves and not enriching your lives with beauty and harmony and grace, then how did you come to make this decision?

If you watch any theatre of the absurd, after a few minutes you accept the parameters and the absurd is seen as normal. After long enough of dragging chains it becomes impossible to imagine something else. In a family of smokers all smoke, one way or another.

If your soul is rich and full then the ugliness of it all is so evident. We need a revolution of beauty; a culture that extols the natural, the serene, the balance that comes when internal conflict has been resolved, so you don’t fester it on the world.

There comes a time when it is too late, when the garden has finally withered and there is no longer any hope for what could have been. It gets lost in increments. Gradually it dies, not with a scream but in exhaustion.

If we could creatively reduce our population numbers which drives many of our absurdities of excess and imbalance, if we could vote the violent and greedy out of office, and vote for beautiful souls, if we could have hearts and not just heads of corporations and governments then the sort of thing that happens as seen in this link http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/articles/2004/9/1/51972.html

could not occur. The why of that is a shriek. Why do people end up doing such cruel things to other people? Because the ugliness inside becomes manifest outside. Step by step we can go one way, step by step we can go another way.

Taoism flows towards the natural. When you are at peace with yourself then you are not yearning with greed. To be natural is to be relaxed, to be in tune with the waves of creativity that pulse from God’s heart. You feel God’s in and out breathing.

I don’t know what drives your life but if is not that pulse then you might well be one of those that suppurate poisoned ugliness, those toxic personalities that blight life. There are too many of them, just read any newspaper other than the little locals I enjoy. And don’t be fooled, the Ugly can dress itself up and look cocky and smile winningly, but only if you have lost the eye for discerning bullshit.

What sort of life do you want for your children and their children and the children all round the world? Answer honestly and then DO something about it.

Many years ago I read of the theory that the earth has had the function of liver to the Universe for a while. That means that all the poisons (by which was intended unevolved, problematic beings) have been sent here for purifying. We got the violent, the cruel, the greedy and maladjusted. The cleansing function was due to end and be given to some other world. At that time all those still in need of re-education would be sent to that world and those who were well adjusted would create a Heaven on our earth. Maybe?

It seems to me that anyone can, with discipline find harmony and beauty in their hearts. This is to cultivate beauty and eradicate the ugliness inside. When that happens it is intolerable to see the ugliness outside. But when we are ugly inside we don’t notice the contrast. We seek stimulations that are jarring and discordant. Inside we can find that sweet gentle voice of the Eternal that hums with the ever constance of the Always Spring, nourishing waters that lap on our hearts and when we feel that we can weep for all those moments when we didn’t feel That. Then, when we have a choice, we can choose to turn to That for the seduction of the Always I Am. This will be revolution of Beauty. Gradually the Ugly will find no ground inside us for its seeds and our world will have been transformed and the next generation will thank us.


Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Maharishi has been on mind recently.

I have been thinking how much I like him and what a pivotal role he played in my life. I last saw him alone, probably in 1974 late at night, on one of those European ATR courses. He had been messing around with me, then the T.M National Leader in South Africa. He was wont to do this with people, giving contradictory messages. This was making me feel unsettled as to my position and his confidence in me. I raised this with him, as tucked up in his cashmere blanket, he lay ready for sleep and said I was unsure of his love.

He replied "my love for you was established when first we met"

We met in 1962 (Hochgurgl). I had received word that my father was dying in South Africa and I was uncertain about staying for the month’s course. Henry Nyburg (Maharishis European right hand man) organised for me to see him alone, right at the start of the course. Maharishi took both my hands in a warm embrace and asked about my father. It was a special moment for me and set the tone both for the course, my first romance with the Absolute, my Kundalini rising and my subsequent frequent interactions with Maharishi.

My last direct contact, en route as an immigrant to Canada (in 1977), was from a phone booth off a Swiss Autobahn as I was leaving Seelisburg, having been given the run around for several days by Neil Patterson (because I had a moustache!) for the promised videos and a video machine so I could see some of Maharishis recent talks. On the phone Maharishi laughed heartily about this and said I could have gone to Canada as their national leader rather than as a bearded philosopher. My response was that that would have put a few noses there out of joint. It was the sort of thing he liked doing.

By then I was well on my way out from the T.M organization having decided, amongst other things, that if enlightenment meant anything it, at least, meant the freedom to be one’s self as well as the ability to be ones Self.

Some 30 years later he comes to mind and I still feel such affection for him. He was a wonderful person to know and greatly enriched my life.

I do wonder how much of this comes from the Jungian projection one tends to make on such figures and the reluctance to give up seeing ones Soul in them.

My wish is that, when the time for him comes, he makes a happy transition. I am fortunate to have that warm happy feeling I get when, as now, I think of him and feel so grateful he was a part of my life.


Fraying at the Edges or Slipping into Catastrophe

As far as environmental and political disasters go I have spent a lot of time bemoaning all that I think is wrong or misguided. One can spiral down into a depression doing that. I have spent time looking forward to an expected human cull brought on by human foolishness.

However, although I still embrace catastrophe as the human choice as means for change, I have started to believe in a new paradigm. This is that there are 12 time lines of parallel realities i.e 12 futures for those here on earth now. This is more than just a biblical wheat and a chaff division. Compatible energies will have a similar future, incompatible energies will no longer be forced to live together. These 12 time lines seem destined to hive off soon. I take great comfort in the thought that I will no longer be sharing my world with incompatible energies. Therefore I get a warm feeling in my heart for my future and that leaves little room for present bitching. There is SO much that is just not right for me here on earth now I could spend all day complaining. It seems better to think happily of the splitting away of those 12 time lines. Goodbye can be such a cheerful word sometimes dont you think?

Some of these ideas came from www.operationterra.com.

The site has made me realize that someone can be highly intelligent, informed, and intuitive and yet quite possibly be a little mad. However I mostly find the eccentric charming and my life has been greatly enriched by the odd.

What I also like about the 12 futures is that it is not simply a heaven/hell judgement and division. You just go where you are most suited and that seems a good solution. Moreover, as energies for change flood our earth as they currently do, they provide stimulus for the hiving off. They boost what one focuses on, or where ones heart is. Ones life is what one attends to, so what one attends to now will become ones future.

Is all this 12 time lines stuff true? I dont know. Life is mysterious. Do I believe it? Perhaps, and it helps me get through my day.

I just dont recognize the world that so many people seem to be living in as my world any more. If that is to be above the fray then I guess that is where I am.There is some advantage not be passionately engaged with most of what happens Any way I have enough of my own fray to deal with.

In his core, Maharishi has wanted to help and I think he has done so.

He taught me

1) I could do nothing more fundamental to change the world than changing my awareness and he taught me how to do that.

2) Knowledge is structured in consciousness i.e. what you know and what you experience depends on your awareness.

If I look at the facts the world provides this is hard to prove. But if I look at my personal world it seems valid for, apart from some slips and blips, I see a world of love.

This morning I put some more of my large garden to bed. A frog hopped towards its winter bed under a big pile of mulch, from where it will emerge in the Spring to eat slugs. I greeted it with affection as a companero. Chickadees start their own sunflowers in the garden and in Fall eat the seeds therefrom. They are unfrightened as I walk by and as they flit amongst the 8 foot tall plants I call to them hello sweetheart.Deer munch on the left over carrots and beets Bright winter rye is sprouting to suppress weeds and to become a green manure in spring when I till it in.My well tended soil gives me wonderful vegetables and fruit. How can I not see love in all that balance and ripeness?

So it depends on what you want to see.

I have been taught that when something of beauty is seen to love it, for the earth as we know, like the elves in Tolkien, is passing away. This beautiful earth is apparently vanishing in turmoil and catastrophe. That is one view; the splitting off of the time lines. The world that some people inhabit is just not mine at all so why worry about them? They have their future and I have mine. As I think of my future in a world of love I get a delicious feeling in my heart.

I am currently making a sort of study of Wagners magnificent Ring Cycle. Wotan, the head god in order to provide security for his fellow immortals has two giants construct a magnificent palatial castle. In this act he gives life a twist that will lead to the gods’ inevitable destruction. He moves every which way to change things but comes at last to the realisation, which he had always suspected, that the end is destined. All he can do now is to choose to participate in the ending and thus in some way choose his own end.

It seems to me we are faced with important choices about our ending and our earths ending. Trying to pretend it is not going to happen is for me not one?

We have choices. We can yap angrily as life passes by or we can grab it by the handful and love it. I think Maharishi has done the latter. He has taken two huge handfuls of life. And once he took my hands in his warm embrace for a while and that has made all the difference.


Not in Sydenham

For long it has amazed me that there aren't more critical comments on the size of the human population. Few people it seems have read Daniel Quinn ("Ishmael" and "The Story of B", amongst others).

So many of our societal troubles come exactly from too many people competing for too few resources. Where I grew up in South Africa (Western Cape) the population has increased 10 fold since 1947. 400,000 to 4 million. It is now the murder capital of the Western World and is a place I will be happy never to see again as I prefer my happy memories of childhood to remain intact.

How does one deal with the rapidly changing conditions in the world? In 30 years the Arctic will be ice free and the polar bears will be extinct in the wild. This is cause for tears. Nothing can stop this.

Humans next.

Humans will be beset by one crisis after another for we have chosen catastrophe as our way of change.

Read: http://www.bestcyrano.org/THOMASPAINE/?p=281

So my question is how do we emotionally survive as this happens?

I'll tell you what seems wise to me and it came to me some months ago when I started my usual rant on there being too many people to a technician during a bone density test.

She said, “Too many people? Surely not in Sydenham."

And there aren't. I look out over a lake and see forest to the horizon.

View from my home during Fall.

sydenham view

This then is what I do when I get emotionally charged by all that goes on. When talk of bombing Iran, Bush declaring martial Law, this conspiracy that conspiracy depress me I remind myself of where I live.

Here, right now I can see "paradise". I have harvested 113 garlic bulbs, am digging red, white and blue potatoes (my French wife enjoys these colours). My garden is bountiful, full of birds and I live in harmony with my environment. I feel blessed by my situation.

I contribute to Greenpeace, Green Party, David Suzuki and PETA. I send out loving thoughts. The expansion of my Light Body causes itching. I scratch. Meditation takes me to no "I". There is a vast Joyous Space beyond me. Nothing to do, nothing to gain.

The future will be chaotic, but here, in Sydenham, right now, today, it is a beautiful world.

I hope I have done with enduring the downward spiral the negative, tragic news gave me. Humans have made their choice. Suffering will come. Getting depressed before the event doesn't help. In my heart I know peace and joy. Now I would like to be a tonic of good cheer for the world. I have ranted about what is wrong long enough.

There are little miracles. Twice this summer I have heard the most musically charming song from a blue jay. Yes, a blue jay renowned for its unpleasant raucousness sat once in my pear tree and once on the bird feeder and sang so sweetly to me. It was lovely. I thanked it.

So I do my Chi Kung. Circle my hands over my head connecting earth, sky and planets and run the energy down to my feet.

Where I am, where I stand, energy and power are in balance, my heart is at peace, birds sing, the world is beautiful. There is nothing more to be done.


The Wombat and other Musings

Watch Wombat Film

I watched this film, which is good for children, and then thought of my friend Marguerite in Australia. She is a ‘sensitive’, wonderful with animals, and lives on a communal ‘farm’ in the mountains of New South Wales.

One night she came back and saw a wombat near her door. The next evening it was curled up on the steps with the cat snoozing next to it.. The wombat showed no sign of fear and Marguerite had to take a big step (they can get up to three feet in size and weigh 80lbs) to get over it and into the house.

The wombat is, except for occasional cloudy day’s excursions, essentially a nocturnal animal, so she was surprised one morning to see it still on the steps in bright sunshine. It was there all day, and the next morning. It didn’t look well. She took a few photos and went to see her vet who was able to diagnose it with a serious ailment and said that untreated it would die in a few days. It needed a course of injections plus pills for 2 weeks.

Marguerite was very poor at the time but wanted to help the poor animal so she sold her TV set to get the money to buy the medicine without any guarantee she would be able to inject the wombat or get it take the pills for the whole 2 week course

When she came home it was still there and she sat next to it and lovingly explained that it needed a course of treatment which involved a prick and a pill to be swallowed. Plucking up her courage, as she had no idea how it would respond she injected it. It stayed immobile. Then she said,’ now for the pill and you must open your mouth’. She put a hand under its chin,and popped the pill in. By night fall the wombat was walking around and was gone the next morning.

However it came back in the evening, got its injection and voluntarily put its head back for the pill.

Each day it looked better and got its medications..

A few days after they were finished it stopped coming back.

One evening she took a walk to where there was a wombat hole a few hundred yards from her home. She didn’t see it but heard in her head a ‘gravelly’ voice which said,” Little kind missy. I am better now.”

My sister Jenny in South Africa has a way with animals too. She has lived with a donkey called ‘Bojangles’, a gorgeous Rhodesian Ridgeback called ‘Willard’,a blue parrot called “Blue’ who kisses Jenny and puts its whole head into her mouth allowing her to shut her mouth without complaint.

She also had a crow that adopted them called ‘CrowCrow’. It would fly above her daughter’s head when she walked to school and when school ended came back to fly with her as she walked home.

If Jenny slept late CrowCrow would pick up a pebble and let it roll noisily down the tin roof, doing this over and over again till Jenny appeared.

They had an outside shower for washing down after surfing in the sea. Visiting surfers would also brush their teeth there in the morning and CrowCrow began plucking the toothbrushes out of their mouths and flying away with them.

One day Jenny climbed up to its nest and found many toothbrushes, rings and keys that had gone missing. These were CrowCrow’s treasure.

She eventually got very tired of the morning pebbles rattling down the roof so she and her husband put Crow Crow in their van and drove a hundred miles and released him in the wild.

CrowCrow was back a few days later.

These are not singular stories but it is useful to remind ourselves of the rapport humans can have with animals.

A month ago during a stroll in the fields I saw a dead coyote. It was such a beautiful animal but I guess some hunter thought it looked better dead. Where I live in Eastern Ontario coyotes are not often seen or heard and now there is one less one to amaze a walker with its presence.

Humans are good slaughterers. With themselves I suppose one could objectively call it a method of population control. We seem to know few others. Wild animals on the other hand allow the natural cycles of food and its lack to maintain a balance in their numbers.

I think ‘Nature’ is going to teach humans some lessons about this balance and the lack thereof.

For myself I yearn for a world where we are the gentle friends of all the species that inhabit our planet. Maybe after all the coming catastrophic changes we will have such a world.

As we find that deep peace, harmony and joy that inner balance gives we might finally become worthy custodians of this suffering Earth.

This is my hope for 2007.

The last day of the year dawned with a red tinge in the East and a veil of diaphanous clouds that gave the sky that delicate, faint Turneresque colour. 2006 was rung out with rain and rung in with plus 9 and sunshine blessing us all.

As usual I began my forms outside with a centering Chi Kung benediction bringing the energy of the Sky down my body to my feet, and into the Earth, and then up again four times while alternatively facing the four directions, feeling the flow of the Blessing moving gently and ecstatically within.

We live in a simply gorgeous world and many lacking balance, gentleness and the serenity that comes with cultivated internal power do not become it.

T’is a pity!


Feeling the World

We live during times of an amazing clutter of information, ideas and news. It is a gift of mixed blessing as our consciousness can only process so much, can only focus on what is before it, or what is chattering in the mind, overtly or subliminally.

If you tend to anxieties there are tsunamis of facts, of political conspiracies, future catastrophes and economic uncertainty that will overflow into your life.

We not only know so much of what happens in the world we feel obliged to keep informed. What we are fed probably tends to come from a biased source as the news media is far from free.

If you like channelled material there is a plethora of that, much of extremely dubious merit.

If you are an empath then the chaos and stress of the times seeps constantly into your emotional body even when you stop the clamoring news.

It is unsettling.

More than that.

It seems to me we have lost the ability to feel the world, partly as a result of our trying to know it factually, intellectually

As empaths will tell you, they will feel how the person talking to them is, quite apart from the verbal content of the dialogue.

I think humans used to feel the world. We have mostly lost that ability.

I do wonder what the clamour over deteriorating earth changes would be if we actually felt the soil getting dry and hot.

Does the wind still talk to us?

Do you feel kinship with the little species all around you? A rapport with them? Do you feel the tragic burden humans are placing on all life? I don't mean as an idea, an intellectual concept but a physical/emotional embrace of what this feels like.

We are superior in our technological conceits, our muscular resource relationship with life on earth.

Bird song does not flow through us like a poem; if it did we would care more.

Why do I read so often of the need for constant economic progress along with the fear that if humans don't keep breeding ('fucking into extinction' as a friend, Conny Larson, put it) then who will pay the taxes for old age support? It seems so absurd. It FEELS so wrong, so imbalanced, so separate from that wonderful life around us.

If you want to know how bad it is then look at this:

http://www.rainbowbody.net/Finalempire/

If we have lost the ability to feel the world then that has come about because we have closed our heart consciousness. I sometimes cringe when I read all the mushy talk about love and what it can do. It seems to me that love is not an emotional over indulgement but the vibrant fact of that pulsing centre being open. It is a question of the energy flow and how much time gets put into clearing the loops and cultivating the energy. Even love needs the discipline of that.

I daily practise Taoist internal arts. You can read innumerable books, hear countless lectures but it is the daily feeling of how the energy flows that gives growth. It requires discipline and lots of practice. Balance, like energy, is dynamic and is a moment to moment embrace. The ultimate development is not how to hit someone hard but the development of feeling the world. To master fighting is one thing but feeling the world is another and it is superior.

Any top martial artist always cultivates that.

Like bad poetry, talk of love abounds. But read Rumi, stop the talking, start the feeling.

There is often an essential conflict between grasping the world rationally and feeling it like a lover who runs panting after his beloved.

Even while you develop 'your' unlocalised awareness, focus lovingly on the locality of where you are.

That is, Be Apart, but be a part of here too.

Do you realise that the world as you have mostly known it is vanishing? Dying before your eyes. The human empire which has for too long neglected to love and cherish the soil is toppling.

If it is true that your life flashes by as you die then spare a thought for the dying earth. Love what you can while it is here. If you can feel the majesty of a tree, can actually see the glorious gold energy that surrounds it then skyscrapers and highways don't look so grand.

Even if it is too late for the human empire to change it is not too late for you. The future world/s that will come out of catastrophe needs the consciousness of those who can


Our Evolving Lives

It is inevitable that we view our live and the events in it from the perspective of our own lifetime eg between 70 and 90 years. This is our view of a vast span of time sliced to our little perspective. This makes the ups and down more dramatic. Alarmed we discuss global warming or global dimming and a coming ice age, the economic crisis, the violent wars etc from a short term perspective because naturally we are concerned with what will affect us or our children.

It is salubrious to remind ourselves of geological time and of how evolution has fluidly progressed. Catastrophic events like oxygen bubbling into the atmosphere when some bacteria discovered they could extract hydrogen from water and then let the remaining poisonous oxygen flow into the air. Life was nearly wiped out by this. But that crisis allowed bacteria to cooperate in new ways which thus evolved oxygen breathing life. Evolving life dealt with the crisis so that the poison became sustenance. Without that crisis we oxygen lovers would not be here to worry over our current problems.

From a long term perspective we can see that without the challenges (opportunities) evolving life encountered we would have never got here.

For long it has seemed very evident to me that as we evolve we take a wider and wider perspective so that it becomes very possible not only to disidentify with our personal lot, to disidentify even with our fate as a species and to expand our embrace to feel a oneness with all life.

Life will always go on, with or without us, singly or collectively. It is that great stream on which for a brief while we float singing merrily.

Life is evolving with remarkable intelligence am not sure there is a plan but there is certainly a great deal of intelligent creativity. As the product of a church school I sometimes yearn for the days when I could believe in a God with a plan. I have nostalgia for that comfort. However I am not sure such a belief has served life well. It has also allowed us to believe in our non-responsibility.

The glaring fact is that we are our environment. We can make it worse or make it better. The hope that a God will do that for us is childish. Life is evolving through us. Even our errors are steps on the way. To consciously evolve is to accept that as we make more responsible choices evolving life is nudged in a direction or, conversely, as we make poor choices life is nudged in another way.

For instance through meditation and Taoist Internal arts I cultivate energy and open awareness centres for myself. It takes discipline and persistence. I make those choices. But I can well foresee a time when that which I gain slowly and with difficulty future generation might well get born having naturally, just by the fact of being alive. How long did it take the microbial soup to grow into seeing/walking/ feeling/talking/writing entities? And could it have foreseen the eventual result?

If we give a time scale of 100 years since the Big Bang (14 billion years ago) then when the Universe was 67 years old our solar system formed. When it was 71 bacteria started on earth. Worm brains evolved when it was 95. Reptiles followed and the Dinosaurs had their great dominant period in early 98. They vanished a year later and their demise allowed mammals to flourish. Hominids stood up bipedly on Dec 20th of the current year and us homo sapiens have been around for 24 hours on this time scale.

Doesn't this put your life in a bit of a different perspective?

Who knows what will be here in another 24 hours or more of this time scale. And miraculously each of us will have played a part as life flows fluidly on. Life is evolving through us. A great energy expresses itself through me when I chop cabbage for my sauerkraut and eating it gives me a healthier colon and digestive system for my labours. This Universal energy fills my body as I do Chi Kung, not just for me but for those of a future generation that will be more balanced, more intuitive, more loving partly because of what I do.

This morning it was 2c with a drizzle of snow falling. I interrupted my form practice to pick up several handfuls of earth worms on my gravel drive. They must been driven up by the night's rain and were in risk of freezing. I took them carefully (they must have enjoyed my warm hand) and put them under mulch in the garden where my fall seeded spinach had germinated and was now snug awaiting the Spring spurt. One extends loving hands to neighbours doesn't one? And in this vast world we are surrounded by neighbours who will appreciate our love.

Just that small action gave a tiny nudge to life.

And so it is with all of us.

I like to think that our current crises are opportunities for us to create change in our lives for us and for all life on earth.

Despair and anger are possible responses. Revenge on those who precipitated this or that. But life is just too short and precious for such indulgence. You can be a Mandela and rise above the personal to embrace the noble view or become someone angry and violent. Or you can be just wishy washy.

Perhaps it is better not to judge the other but just look to what one can do to nudge life in a direction of which one can approve.

A half black (or half white depending on perspectives) is now President Elect in the U.S.A. Another step in the direction of the realisation that someone's skin colour or ethnicity or gender is no basis for evaluating their worth. Many Americans to their credit made a choice that was valuable for all of us.

It sometimes all seems so vast and each of us so insignificant. That is no excuse for non-action. Isn't it better to grab the moment in front of us and nudge the future? Instead of despair isn't it better to revel in the knowledge of the long term perspective that life has always met a crisis with creative intelligence and that from bad good finally comes?

If one can feel the energy of that evolving life inside ourselves won't we sing our merrily merrily life is but a dream more lustily? And won't that be a grand song for all of us to hear? And what a way for us to end our lives With that song and a big smile on our lips.

It will have been worth waiting for.

All 14 billion years.

Michael Dowd's book "Thank God for evolution" is worth reading.
http://thankgodforevolution.com


Et in Arcadia Ego

Actually I am not sure any more, about the Arcadia or, for that matter, the Ego either, there, in Arcadia or anywhere else in the future. I seem with ageing (evolving?) to be dropping beliefs like drops off a shaking puppy regaining its original integrity. It is unsettling, but also rewarding for I seem to come closer to truth, of sorts.

I was educated at a church school with its once a day and twice on Sunday certainties so I look back with some nostalgia at the lost convictions and feel a pang when, in films, I see communities gathering (as I stopped doing) with all that convivial, family/friendly certainty at a church on Sundays, especially at Christmas.

As far as a personal God that cares about me, my behaviour or my welfare I am pretty much an atheist. I do regret that, partly because the word has such overlays of total disapproval, something dirty, beyond the pale, like a contagious disease contracted through some perversion. It seems the ultimate insult, like 'queer' of bygone times. But the shades of sexual mixing we now live with haven't caused divine lightning or turned offenders into pillars of salt. "Not yet", I hear the die hard (emphasis on die it seems as they approve of the death penalty and war) fundamentalists cry.

But I believe in angels, indeed would claim to have been visited by one who beat energy into my heart centre with wings. So where does that place me? Believing in the messenger but not in the existence of the One who sent them!

I also believe in nature Spirits, fairies, ghosts; over the years some repeated direct experience of one in my home, and the magnificent play of subtle energies.

If I don't believe in heaven why is it I look forward to dying? not merely as an escape from the terrible things humans do on earth , but because I feel it will be a holiday, a change, on to some other adventure in a realm where love and harmony is the gentle, fragrant zephyr and where the body doesn't age as it does here and need so much disciplined daily maintenance. I don't look forward to annihilation in death, but that is often acceptable, when the world's weight is felt, oh too keenly!

When I started TM I embraced the concepts of Cosmic Consciousness, God Consciousness and Unity Consciousness, Enlightenment. But now I see the insistent predilection of humans to have and to possess."I am or want CC, GC and UC and thus own them."

I am nearer to the understanding that there is no "I". When I meditate deeply I don't find any "I", just even, eternal Being, devoid of personality. All waves have subsided and there is just the ocean, One and always One and nothing else, no "me".

But that is a slippery truth and hard to grasp and even harder to live while there is an individual identity with all its my, mine and grasping desires. It is our individual perspectives, our identities that give our lives any zip, whether perspective of pain, fear, longing, obsessions etc.

On the one hand I know that nothing matters and on the other hand everything does. I feel the pain of all the suffering, so so much of it that I wonder what I am doing on such a confused, sad planet. It is as if finding I am living unexpectedly in the pages of a violent story in a bizarre supermarket tabloid. I feel, too, such joy in babies, puppies, kittens, elderly couples holding hands and the delicious taste of my corn in summer. Life is contradictions and paradox.

I am not sure of reincarnation any more either. I see the trap of the "I" clinging to wanting to continue. But why then do I often see myself, after death, meeting my first girlfriend, Lilla from Stellenbosch University, long dead, embracing her, laughing and melting in joy?. It is now 50 years and I still feel love for her. Is it just the projection of the anima on one's first love as the Jungian therapist Marion Woodman explained to me? and the inability or the refusal to reclaim one's soul back from its projection because that is to end the dream, the fantasy? We experience our souls in that projection and mistaking that for love are sold out ever more to be in love with oneself.

But there you are, I still look forward to holding her, and "et in Arcadia Ego".

Humans need signposts, milestones and a map of directions, characters for us to inhabit, clothes to put on and to take off at death. Because we are untrusting we need to feel there is a purpose and so find it, or impose it. Impose it on what? On that magnificent flow of life, of energy that comes from…where? and goes to… where?

The "I' is a temporary illusion that gives form to the formless. We make "I"
important. It is important. It gives a meaning to life for each one of us. Without "I" what meaning does life hold?

When I shut my eyes and go into that silent realm inside that meaning vanishes. It could be a trick of brain chemistry, a self induced state where I sit drunk with the joy of Nothing, and nothing to do, nothing to fear, nothing to gain. Just "me", no not me, that can't be, because me is David Fiske and there is none of him there. He has been totally dropped, discarded, flung aside like the likeable, eccentric illusion he is and for those precious moments he exists only as a body that continues its natural processes while the body possessor lies with and knows the Universe, pulsed by Its Pulse and so has become the Universe or the Universe has become him

The Sea of Energy in which we live, that laps at our feet, that roars in that Silence is there before, during and after every little action of ours. And when all actions cease in meditation or death we become what we always were. Impersonal and Universal. This energy is intelligent, so vast an intelligence that I must call it Wisdom, so creative, a Whole so unknowable by a part that the part must become Whole in an act of total surrender to know It. Surrender... to the Divine? I shrink from the word "God" but we seem to be back in a loop. That Mystery, which is not to be explained in sermons or moral guidance; not to be worshipped or feared, or prayed to. The Mystery that was before and will be after, that enfolds us always is here and for evermore.

When, at death, I drop the illusion of David Fiske it is possible that in the illusion there will be other identities, other worlds and other experiences. Life Energy is rich enough and creative enough to permit my acceptance of that. These other realms make the story better. Flying saucers that take us to another, happier planet, that sort of thing. Even if fiction, they will allow me to go into death calmly, for if they are fiction I will never know that, if no consciousness to know that survives. There is nothing to lose then, as long as these fictions don't prevent me living fully and joyfully.

But if true, what a grand adventure and isn't it wonderful? and aren't we lucky?

Finally it seems possible that all illusions will drop. With a huge sigh the last completing breath will be exhaled by all creation and all the individual breaths luxuriously inhaled into the One. The Mysterious Nothing will be again Alone. With that last exhalation becoming surrenders to Being, all lovers become One, the drop disappears in the Ocean. Just Nothing.

To me that seems, without the "I" like Arcadia, Heaven.

Long may it last.

Until the next mighty quivering, magnificent exhalation from the One; a collective individual inbreath from us and It starts again.

Better get ready!


Footnote.
Jean Hudon of http://www.earthrainbownetwork.com suggested I explain the phrase, "et in Arcadia ego" as he did not understand the meaning or relevance.

"And in Arcadia I exist",

http://www.parnasse.com/etpnt.htm
"Latin phrase found in Virgil's fifth eclogue that translates literally as "Even in Arcady, there am I…..the popular term "Arcadian," describes a utopian garden paradise where serene pastoral folk drink, dance and lounge around in an endless summer. It is here in this untroubled land that Nicolas Poussin's shepherds first encounter the solemn reality that all things must pass. "

I learned the phrase from Evelyn Waugh's book "Brideshead Revisited". I read this wonderful book in 1957 in my first year at Stellenbosch University and for which I have had a nostalgic love ever since as it encapsulates my first University years as a "son of pleasure" in love with boozy conversations, fine dining and beauty. I have understood the phrase to imply the joy ('in heaven') Charles Ryder felt to be in love with Sebastian and the new exciting experiences of University life.

It implies that I (ego) can be in Arcadia (heaven).


Quo Vadis

There is Silence, Nothing.

And there is Light.

Of Light is our world. The membrane between them can become permeable and we experience Silence too.

Silence amidst the living world.

In the living world Light dances.

Mostly we know nothing of any of this. We go busily about our lives.

But if we would take the time to experience the Silence the Light becomes apparent and we twinkle with this knowing.

It is not so much a question of finding ourselves but in stopping to misidentify with what we are not.

Meditation is stopping.

We care too much for the business of living.

And care not enough for the Silence and the Light.

There are ‘moment’ stopping events like looking amazed into the eyes of a speckled fawn when Silence and Light look back.

If we could be kinder the membrane becomes thinner.

If we could be kinder behaviour in the world would change.

Who knows where it could end?

We would be on the wondering, wandering path back to Silence.

Laughing, singing and dancing.

Quo Vadis?


Death, God and Why

I am at an age where people I know, friends, get old, become frail, die. And this often brings one up abruptly to the “Why?” and “is there?”

I find most discussion of God pointless and seldom better than hearsay or traditional dogma. The small trying to find consolation in imagining a BIG; as if the small part could ever comprehend the Whole.

6 months after learning TM, and while on a course in Austria with Maharishi, I clearly saw, in meditation, a golden celestial being. I know his name because he was connected with my mantra. When he vanished leaving me in a vacuum of intense desire I repeated this mantra frantically to bring him back.

Never again.

“Never, never, never”. (Lear)

I have once had an angel beat energy into my heart centre.

I have often seen golden light around trees.

I had a fire of light come from pine trees I had planted pierce my heart with such love that I exclaimed “I love you too.”

But most of my life has had none of that. The reality has been what you see is what you have and what you see is the usual and the banal.

The evidence is not for a God but against. No evidence of a personal god taking an interest in my life, encouraging when things go wrong, saving me from sin and illness and despair, threatening me with an after death punishment.

When one of a lifetime string of pets died recently our vet sweetly sent a card with a letter called “the rainbow bridge” which said my dog was waiting on the other side to greet me with a wagging tail. As I dearly loved all my pets and can still cry thinking of them and was amazed how each time I forgot how integrally they were a part of my life until they died it is a comforting thought; but in my case would make heaven a busy spot. How could I cuddle them all? And what about all those incredible number of animals, unloved and that died not mourned?

With maturity I seem to abandon the value of comfort beliefs for good sense.

“Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do.”

“Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.”
-- Bertrand Russell.

And yet, even so, one gets left with the mystery;

gets left with the sense that all life is mysterious, in a wondrous way, so that it is better to allow for mystery than to seek explanations.

I recall:

“Unless the eye catch fire, God will not be seen
Unless the ear catch fire, God will not be heard
Unless the tongue catch fire, God will not be named
Unless the heart catch fire, God will not be loved
Unless the mind catch fire, God will not be known”

William Blake, Pentecost

Much of Rumi is a poem about this.

“Close both eyes
To see with the other eye.”

“But listen to me: for one moment
Quit being sad. Hear blessings
Dropping their blossoms
Around you.”

“Whatever I was looking for
Was always you.”

“Be melting snow
Wash yourself of yourself.”

“I want this music and this dawn
And the warmth of your cheek against mine.”

“Escape.
Walk out like someone suddenly born into colour...
Your old life was a frantic running
From silence.
The speechless full moon
Comes out now.” (The essential Rumi, Coleman Barks.)

 How wonderful to cross the rainbow bridge and find him there.

Rumi was a man of great passion. He loved what he wanted and he wanted what he loved, before all else. That is the difference, the chasm that runs between us, being only half hearted, being what I term ‘sunny day meditators’ that fit it in when convenient. If what we want is the Fundament of Life then how can we make a hobby of our search for it?

Boehme “to know God you must become God”.

And do you think we can become the All puttering about on half holidays?

My meditations and Taoist practices have made me certain of a vast energy that runs through everything. This energy has the characteristic of joy, self-containment and a bubbling consciousness that pushes life on. There is something about life that wants growth, wants to express delight and joy and wonder. It is the most fulfilling part of my day when It is there.

“Beware the barrenness of the busy life”.  Socrates.

But our lives are so busy and thus barren of that Mystery that could give them fulfilment.

Yes, it is not easy; precisely because we have conflicting desires. We want the All, but we so constantly want many of the parts that our desire for the All gets clogged with tiny things. I am not promoting asceticism, even though the simplicity of a desert father has great attraction for me, but rather keeping alive in our heart what we most want.

For there is no reason why the All shouldn’t leap like a young foal in the realm of parts, that we should take great joy and have great focus in our dances. What would be the point of creation if not for that?

But I think there comes a time when one has skipped around so much that one yearns to slowly merge with Silence and then one can start to prioritise one’s life. If one’s life is too full of all those little cycles of taking garbage out, watching police thrillers it becomes cluttered. It is not that desire is wrong because it is desire that takes one to the All, but one must recognise that the desire for the All is one’s consuming desire. Then maybe life will start co operating with one to grant space for that. Just as a dear friend whom we have often befriended, even when it was difficult, makes time for us.

When people see my garden they admire the productivity. I tell them it is just hard work. And with the hard work comes the privilege of walking through and plucking at whim a juicy sweet cherry tomato. What a taste! And how grateful I am that I can do that! So much better than a packet of French fries!

My private drive runs off a turn around and High School kids park there. I find coffee containers, cigarette packs, condom packets, even a pregnancy test kit on the ground. I put a garbage bin where most of the rubbish gets dumped, but still litter comes. How can the world change till people feel the pain from doing this?

To feel the All we must be responsive to All. We can’t turn our beautiful earth into a litter bin.

But above all be gentle with the world and with yourself.

Things on our planet takes time. It is dreadful but we must recognise that. Some people create a vibration that just drags you down. We all create two pulls, one up, one down. Just some people create mainly downs and we all get affected by that.

We live in times of great change. How will it all end?

I’d like to live in a world where humans didn’t eat meat, where humans lived in harmonious balance with each other and all the rest of our neighbouring species, where we didn’t work for money. Where we deeply felt each other and each species and what we felt was joy.

Such a gap!

Amidst all our grumbles of how bad it is remind yourself also how beautiful it is. When you are too busy remind yourself that there will still be moments when everything passes and you can sink into inner Silence.

A useful tool is to take 3 sharp in breaths and lift your energy with them. First to take it to the tummy, second to the heart centre and third into the head. Then exhale with a long sigh through the mouth thinking “HU” pronounced “who”. You can do this as a deep relaxation, letting go all that is bothering you. Or you can do as a breathing of love into the world. A HU to spread benevolence into life and to awaken all that is not awakened to that ultimate truth.

 Once you are a practised meditator this can remind you immediately who you really are. And who you are and what your life is outside of that can be so dramatically different. One day, hopefully, they will harmonise.

I use the breath a lot in my energy moving and meditation practices.

“The souls lives there in the silent breath” Rumi

I think the All embraces you with a Love you can’t comprehend and it waits with Infinite patience.
Ah, but is so difficult to have patience oneself when what one wants is incandescence.

Now!
You put a log in
the fire and for a while it gets accommodated by the Fire.

Till it starts smoking, sparks and finally becomes the Fire.

To live forever in eternal bliss.

?

No.

To live Forever As Eternal Bliss.

There you go,go,go

Till

You GONE.

And that is, perhaps, the

!


Hope Smiles

There is so much wrong with me; so much I lack, patience, other virtues. The aging body no longer has that enviable youthful vitality and flexibility; so much I greedily want; but this is not to be a confession.

There is so much wrong in the world. So much I would have changed, that I disagree with; so much that causes despair and sadness; but this is not going to be a dump on humanity.

Yesterday on a minus 8 C day I dug up some leeks and beneath the top inch of frozen earth were glistening worms which I carefully buried again. So wonderful that they continue their beneficial activities unnoticed.

I smiled.

This morning on the top of my compost pile tall beautiful braids of hoar frost sparkling in the morning sun and me about to do my daily Taoist exercises.

I smiled again.

In busy supermarkets I always stop when I see a baby and, after checking with the mother, bend over and often get a big smile which enters my heart, sparkles in my eyes and gets sent all over the world when I, later, smile at someone else. Think how easily smiles can spread.

Sometimes when I do my forms I suddenly discover something new in a move, and realise how it can be different when energy moves this way. Without any effort I am given a gift.

Things can go wrong abruptly, but, miraculously, things can suddenly go right.

In Namaqualand in some special years after brief winter rains the red earth blooms with multi coloured flowers. Humans have nothing to do with this. It happens and we can only recognise the blessing and smile.
http://www.namaqualand.com/flowers/#/content/Flowers/

We try and try and try and then suddenly with Grace we might succeed.

On the internet I do my rounds each day of the gloomy news, the threats of war, the propagandas, the conspiracies, the cheating, the manipulations of politicians, the catastrophes. So what else is new?

Will it ever change?

I don’t know, but it can’t continue.

We need to build up the energy of Good and stop wailing over the bad.

No one else will do this, but us.

Each Sunday morning I do a synchronised meditation with a great number of people organised by my friend Jean Hudon.

http://www.EarthRainbowNetwork.com/FocusArchives/MeditationFocus229.htm

http://www.earthrainbownetwork.com/FocusArchives/MeditationFocus214.htm

We link up, conscire and conspire. Our awareness merges in a larger whole. The vibration of the planet gets raised. One hour a week is not too much to ask of a person. That’s how a smile gets spread.

As an older man I often wake at night, which can be tiresome. Often I sit up in bed and draw my 3 breaths, belly, heart, then head and breathe the joy out into the world. I allow the inner smile to spread on my lips and feel oh so happy! What does not sleeping matter then? It has become a gift. The quiet of night is special and in that hush when joy gets birthed what Grace!

Nelson my web manager moved away some years ago and I did not know how to upload essays so none got written.

Out of the blue someone, Joe McCarthy, who had bought my e book and read all the essays several times wrote me asking if I wanted to converse. I immediately thought he might offer to upload essays. However I replied I was rather busy with harvesting crops but asked was there anything specific on his mind? Brief letters back and when I sent him “Quo Vadis?” explaining why I hadn’t written any essays he offered to upload any that I did.

So here we are, me writing and Joe, who had a lot trouble learning how to do this task, graciously said it made him want to dance, to sing, to smile.

Me in tiny,remote Sydenham, Canada and Joe in Kent making each other smile.
www.josephmccarthy.co.uk

 Aren't’ the threads that bind the far distant a miracle?

Much is wrong. No doubt about that. The powerful cling on. The news is largely propaganda. The climate deteriorates. Humans continue over breed. Precious resources disappear. Tyrants linger.

But then we see the smile of that little baby.

Isn’t Christmas the season for that? Letting smiles drop around us like blossoms from a well cared for tree.

Spreading

a

Smile.


Passion Utterly in Love with its own Beauty

I can look forwards, backwards, to the left and right, up and down. This gives me the directions for action. In the world of action, of personal activity I focus on what I am doing. The more pressing the action the more present I am likely to be, concentrating on what I am doing.

To each action I will probably bring an emotion, which is probably involved around the goal, what I want to achieve.

This is how we mostly live our lives.

In my mind I can look forward, to the future, to something I want to create or to avoid. It will please me if I achieve my goals and make me disappointed or sad if I don't.

We are all much the same as far that goes.

In my mind I can also look to the past, to memory, to things I want to remember or wish I could forget.

In happy moments we tend to focus on the present. We are busy enjoying.

In novels, as in our lives, all sorts of ramifications, complications, twists and turns get added.

As a youth I was full of enthusiasm, inventiveness and had a great joy in being myself and doing exciting things. Despite what, from a certain perspective, was a very troubled home life I remembered this as a period of happy achievement at school and at University. I was enthusiastic, infectiously so, always smiling, ready for a game or a laugh.

But at a certain point the desire to live and the desire to die became pretty equal. I was never depressed but often the thought of death seemed quite appealing.

I have continued like this and it has started to bother me. Why, when I embrace life with such enthusiasm, am so interested in such a variety of things, have so much to look forward to can I allow this brooding on death to be so ever near? Indeed Armageddon talk pleases me, for like Wotan in the Ring I look forward to 'the end', to the pulling down of the world I live in. It seems extreme hubris to desire the world's end because I wish my own! (However this should be a subject of another essay for I think we live in peculiar times.)

A few days ago I had a sudden insight.

My death desire only started some years after I began meditation.

We can look outwards or inwards. Outwards is the world of ordinary action. Inwards we go into the realm of subtler action. What we see inwards is still in the realm of activity and can take us into subtle experience of subtle worlds. But if we proceed, as in TM, we go beyond activity into pure consciousness. Transcendental Meditation allowed me to experience an inner state of awareness that was right beyond activity, transcendental awareness of the "I" without identity. It was very fulfilling and I could sit in that state so blissfully.

It made me realise that beyond action was a realm of Silence and Completeness which swallowed up desire, gain, loss, conflict and all those concerns of our lives. It was very tempting to want to return there again and again.

The mind gets habituated to meditative Bliss. I am told it is not an addiction as it is a beneficial experience; but I am reminded that Jung felt that alcoholics were incurable unless they sought the refuge of a larger power to which they could surrender, for their disease of wanting to destroy the 'self' was in fact a perverted desire for transcendence, for God. The only solution for them was to find themselves via a larger identity, something beyond the every day. Moreover, I believe, many dry alcoholics become subsequently addicted to religion.

After some time of transcending I found my little life seemed so very tiny with its concerns and problems. The annihilation of 'self' in death became a pleasing contemplation. I often thought that if I was given the choice of a huge win on the lottery or my death in sleep it would be a tough decision.

Mulling over all this recently I came to a happy resolution of my conflict of why this seeming morbid fascination.

In death I will merge with that Silent Bliss. That is assured. It can't be avoided or escaped. It is what is waiting for me, perhaps very soon too. I look forward to it and thus have no problem with it whatsoever, just a hope it comes painlessly while I am mobile, keenly conscious and that it doesn't drag its feet, but comes all of a sudden, with a quick leap, the death that stalks me.

That it will come no matter what is like knowing that no matter how much I spend I will have money in my account at the end. I can therefore spend as I like, in whatever way gives me enjoyment. Whatever I do my ultimate swallowing up into Silence will still come and hurrah to that. Please understand this metaphorically. It is not a prescription for financial folly. It describes an emotional tone of feeling care free in the world.

It is as if I need no longer worry about retirement and can enjoy the years before it; a very happy state, not so?

I feel liberated from fears of the future because I know what my future will be, my own happy death.

Thus liberated I can apply myself to allowing my life to unfold as it does and by practising right action.

When I light my wood cook stove in the kitchen there is that lovely moment sitting in the chair that I feel the delicious warmth caressing my shoulders. It settles over me like a warm blanket and allows me to contemplate the icy view from the window with aesthetic pleasure. If I was shivering it is doubtful I would enjoy this snowy view so much. But pleasantly warm I can see the snow and the scratching turkeys as lovely. Indeed, being warm I can feel inclined to tog up and do some Tai Chi on my drive as I know I will come afterwards back in to the warmth.

In other words knowing the 'warmth' of the Absolute All is waiting for me can allow me to be industrious and brave in the outside world.

While it is true that as the Ultimate end is Silent Bliss nothing really matters, on the other hand in the world of action every action has consequences. If I consume more calories than I expend in activity I will put on weight. An absolute certainty. If I don't tidy my office it will stay messy. I know of no elves that are going to help.

This being so I might as well live and act in a way that sows the seeds I want. Why scatter inedible weeds in my garden if I can plant what will nourish and delight me?

The realities of the world of action are rather dreamlike when compared with the Nothing of Transcendence but there is no need for our dream to be a dreadful nightmare!

In this 'dream' as each action has consequences then each action is important. And once I understand the consequences of actions I live my life accordingly.

People misunderstand the mystics if they believe the only importance is that Ultimate All and once you are 'there' you are indifferent to the facts of your life. That is as much of a half life as it is to live as if there is nothing else beyond.

Not understanding, they try to remove the 'self' to find the 'Self', the unbounded but surely it is with the little self that all the joys on earth lie. For so long as the body is alive this little self is present. Why not allow it its pleasures? There is little merit in pain and suffering for just their own sake.

Once you are certain of the All then life can be so deliciously tempting you can embrace it whole heartedly, just for the sheer joy of it. I think the Unbounded Nothing adds a spice to the relative. It certainly gives one endurance, for in the Sufi proverb 'all things will pass', no suffering is forever. A small adversity today doesn't mean a future of only that. Problems seek solutions.

While my wife has been away I have been doing a lot of standing Chi Kung. This requires being rooted in one spot, knees slightly bent and holding static arm postures for 10 minutes or more. It takes some grit to do this for 1hour and 40 minutes. The aim is purely relative, to purify the energy channels, circulate energy and accumulate it in the Dan Tien's. The aim is to sow the right seeds for me personally, to cultivate my own personal power, to accumulate as much internal energy as I can. Even though Death waits I can at least keep my health and energy till the last moment.

No one can do this for me.

We are faced with choice; the world of activity and the world of Silence. When you know the world of Silence underpins the world of activity it is wise to include it. Why be so busy all the time? Especially when some greater efficiency will come from entering activity with a clear tranquil mind. Joy is not easy for a fevered mind. Inner unrest forces one to see only problems and task after task piling up, on and on.

It is easy to place yourself on this treadmill and never get off it, blinkered and bothered, goals always ahead. What sort of life is that? Problem/solution, problem/solution over and over again, to the very edge of eternity.

On the other hand why deny the beauty and love of being alive by withdrawing too much in pretence that only the Silent All matters? There is sheer delight in feeling the waves of love spring up inside as you interact with all the points of consciousness around one, all the living things on this splendid earth. The joy is enhanced by bringing the All to it. Indeed that might be the very point of individual human life. Laughingly to walk through this beautiful garden, seeing the petals budding, blooming, plentifully falling, hearing the birds singing, singing oneself, sounding one's note, one's tone, a participant and an observer both. To honestly acknowledge this privilege. To walk in kindness and sensitivity to all living things. To delight in it all. That is life.

The All that is Passion, so utterly in love with its own Beauty.

Is the head of your Government like that? Why not?

It seems thus that one can poise oneself gracefully, joyously on the edge of the chasm. On the one side the world of activity and the other the world of Silence.

To be Passion that is so utterly in love with its own Beauty.

Is there really a choice?

Now where are you?


Reflections On Cosmology

I have been watching a Great Course DVD on Cosmology.

It has been so engrossing I want to share some of the enthusiasm of Prof Whittle with you.

Several of his comments reverberate through my memory

“If the orbit of our earth around the sun were the size of a pinhead our milky way galaxy would span the United States”.

“Our sun is about 25,000 light-years from our Galaxy’s centre.”  A light year is 9.47 x 10 to the 12th km.  94700000000000 x 25,000 km away from us. So our Galaxy is huge, almost beyond comprehension. And yet it is but one of very many and our life giving sun is by Universe standards rather ordinary and our miniscule earth rather lost in a by water of the galaxy.

“Let’s now get a sense of scale for visible Universe by making our galaxy 20 yards across. With this scale, the nearest big galaxy is 600 yards away, other galaxies are dotted about every few hundred yards, while the 14 billion light year visible Universe spans the United States.” That is 14 billion x that huge number for a light year in the previous paragraph. It can only be explored by telescopes and imagination.

If you shrank every Galaxy into the size of a grain of beach sand the sand would fill one cubic meter. Try to imagine all those galaxies and in each Galaxy just as many stars again.

“The Universe is homogeneous (smooth) on scales larger than 200 million light- years and inhomogeneous (lumpy) on scales smaller than that”.

You are one of those lumps, as are all the other 6,973,738,433 (2011) humans. Does this make you feel special? Probably not.

And when you think a human life span is often not more than 80 years and that the universe is 13.7 billion years old it is a wonder we take ourselves so seriously! Human existence on a cosmic time scale is not even a click of the fingers.

We are here so briefly and spend so much time in pettiness, politics, etc and not often enough in gasping wonder at the stunningly awesome, vast, beautiful, incomprehensibly amazing Universe In which our little speck of an earth and our even tinier little lump are situated. We should feel worshipful about our temporary place on this tiny planet surrounded, at a distance, by nebula and spectacular displays of cosmic energy.

If we were able to be in the young Universe (400,000 years old) we would have seen the sky colour change from intense blue (hot enough to instantly fry you) finally to red, going through the rainbow sequence spending about 80,000 years in each colour. How magnificent. The Universe was putting on a light show; but just for itself.

There is no centre to this vast universe. It is isotropic. Every spot is, for itself, centre to the All. So you, gorgeous little lump, can feel at the centre of things. Take your place responsibly.

Live it with grace and loving compassion while you are here.

What is it about us that we are so ignorant and focused on selfish self interests?

What you focus on is what you’ve got as a life. There is nothing other than that for you. Focus on greedy accumulation and that is your world. Focus on politics, difference and animosity then you will have conflict, wars and terrible suffering.

Sorry. But that’s the truth.

Focus on the immense joy of being here, and share that joy and love with all you meet and that would be the world we would create.

http://www.facebook.com/thelovefoundation

And, in our Universe, what you see is also what you’ve got. There is nothing other than those galaxies, spiraling gases forming into stars etc, no realms of lustrous gods, no hells full of tormenting devils.

There is just you and all those others (6 billion plus) and what all of you make of life.

No gods to save you; just your own energy and focus. No devils to trip and tempt you; just your own energy and others energies. If these are mal focused then you can live in a hell.

And you haven’t got much more than those 80 years to exist as a lump and you will dissolve into the stardust you once were. Everything was formed by the energy of the Big Bang. Don’t think other’s memory will be your immortality. The memory some have of you will not persist far beyond their 80 years of being a lump. It will be as if you had never existed. No cosmologist is going to study you. So you have some 80 years to make a difference.

Use it well.

Try to be worthy of being stardust. You have been formed from the very fabric that expanded out from the Big Bang at stunning speed 14.7 billion years ago. You belong here just as much as a Galaxy does. There is so much to learn of your world and it can fill you with delight and love. How can all this have come from that super concentrated speck of intensely dense matter, like a dot, a nothing, that mysteriously inflated?

Most of you know that matter is composed of electrons and protons etc whirling around at great speed and that most matter, apart from these tiny energies, is totally empty space. Brian Greene in “The Elegant Universe” wrote that if you removed all the space from the atoms composing the Empire State building you would be left with a highly dense piece of matter the size of a grain of rice! This grain would, of course, weigh as much as the Empire state Building.

What a miracle that that grain of rice has become such a tall building.

All of our vast Universe, and by now you have an idea of how vast it is, was at the moment of the Big Bang compressed into some tiny point. That should give you something to gasp about!

Your origins lie 14.7 billion years ago when extraordinary processes formed a link to you now. Incredible expansion (inflation) and awesome heat and violence spread into gases that formed stars, planets and finally, by Jimmy, you too. You are linked back to the very origin of Everything. This makes you a very special lump. Cosmic forces made you and fill you, and surround you every step you take. You developed Self Awareness, the capacity for joy, empathy. You can modify your actions. You can sing and dance, write poetry, create art, study Cosmology. In the vastness of it all this is special; special that atomic matter has combined to form you with all your amazing possibilities.

Be special! Be yourself in as big and vast a way as you can imagine yourself to be. Don’t be stingy with your talents. Create a world worthy of this gift.

Do you think the Taliban, to name just one violent group, ever think like this?

Petty politics is just that, petty. So many people spend so much energy and so much of our resources being either petty or destructive of harmony.

Our politics should be of awe and love. Life is too wonderful and too short to spend it doing anything else. Why be less?

When your heart is full of the colossal beauty of the Universe it can also take note of the poetry of our earth. It should give us a perspective. In our brief time here we can sing our song of joy too, sound our tone of all’s right with the world and I’m glad to be here thank you Universe very much.

Why did the Big Bang occur?

Large question!

Maybe so that dot could become you,

So that, if you dare,

YOUcould express in your own way the wonder of itAll


Relaxed Tai Ch

Just before Master Moy died he told me in front of a class at D'arcy st that after many years of hard work I now had my foundation and need only to relax now. As he didn't easily hand out bouquets I should have paid greater attention to what he said. That was many years ago and I am only now starting to appreciate quite what he meant. In our style we practice sitting low, stretching out and doing this regularly is how the foundation is created.

It is hard to break the habit. Even though he once, with his limited English, said to me 'stretch/relax'. But I have found in the past few months that in stretching I now focus on the internal energy stretching along my arm into my fingers. No effort to stretch the muscles and tendons. So in ward off I can feel a gentle Chi energy along the forefront of the pushing arm. When I scoop to hold the ball I can feel the Chi in the belly.

When I do the double hand push, the energy comes from the belly, lifts along the spine into the head, flows along the arm into the hands and fingers. When I drop elbows to turn into single whip the Chi comes back from my hands into my belly and then pushes out again into the hands.

It is, in fact, a very sensual feeling, delightful.

In Brush Hands and in the Punch as my top hand glides over the down pushing hand it is a lovely feeling. In Wave Hands as I stand up to push out right the right hand lifts up in the middle of the body and the Chi lifts from the heart into the head. Turning left and remaining in the 'sit' in the middle the left lifting hand gets the energy into the head and at the same time with Master Moy's 'up down same time' instruction it drops into the feet so the stretch (Chi) goes both ways. I think many people miss this. In Fair Lady Weaves the Shuttles when you push out the Chi comes from the back foot and into the pushing palm, a straight, strong but relaxed line.

I am discovering so much on my own. It is an endless mine this energy work. All it requires is to relax and pay attention to the feelings.

I am so glad that when I was younger I did the hard work and now that I can't do that I can enjoy the fruits of it in feeling the flow of Chi.

It is simply delicious, in ways I never expected.

It is too bad I don't have students any more but if you read this try to profit from my experience. However if you haven't got your foundation yet you still need to do the hard work. This is not an exercise in imagination; that would simply fool yourself. But once you get the feelings let the feelings guide you. They will be your teacher. All you need to do is to relax and be gently focused on them. I do my forms nearly every day. It is a delight so the discipline has become easy and even easier when you feel the progress for this excitement adds incentive.

And be grateful for this great Taoist tradition. It is an ever flowering tree with wonderful fruit. You can taste this till the day you die.

Thank you Master Moy.


A Breath of Fresh Air..

Imagine yourself in an extremely hot stuffy room with absolutely no ventilation, surrounded by a large group of people discussing some important issue, global warming, modern agriculture, the Israel/ Palestine situation, Islam, not discussing actually but heatedly debating, loudly, angrily. You have your hand up as you want to state your opinion; eagerly you wave it hoping to catch the moderator's attention. Suddenly someone opens windows and doors and a cross current of cool fresh air waves over everyone. There is a hush and a collective in breath and a loud exclamation of 'Ooh that's better', causing for the first time a unity in the room. For one brief moment there is a unanimous sense of relief.

United in gratitude we are a brief moment relieved of our discordant irritation.

We live in such a world.

So many conflicts, so many wars, so much suffering, so much talking. So many people trying to survive in difficult situations. So much tension in just ordinary living, debts, pressures, relationship problems "the whole disaster". (Zorba the Greek)

So many different 'solutions'.

So much negativity.

Such a hot stuffy room.

And then there is you.

What to do?

Well, be a breath of fresh air to everyone you meet.

Drop your opinions, your perspective, your part in the struggle

Be a happy, smiling person to all you meet. They will relax. Maybe think there is more to life than this tense struggle.

There is fresh air all around you. They feel it. They feel happy in your presence. You leave them better than you found them. It is a 'darshan' for them.

Try not to engage in the negativity. To add to the stuffy atmosphere. Open a window. Another perspective.

You glide through life relaxed, a point of light, an inner chuckle, something new.

Wouldn't you like to meet someone like this?

Perhaps one day all in our world can live like this.

Be
A Breath of Fresh Air
For all you meet.


Courtesy as a Spiritual Practice

If you have a Britta water filter you probably know that some members of a household use it but never, or seldom, fill it. Sometimes it is only one person who does the household this courtesy of filling immediately after using, so that it is always ready for use, for everyone. It is a small thing but a Spiritual life is full of the discipline of attending to small things.

As my Tai Chi Master Moy would say," Eyes see, hands do." When you notice something needs to be done do it.

He would carefully notice those who while seated lifted their legs out of the way so someone didn't trip over them and those who didn't.

Those who always had to win in push hands and those who allowed someone to learn. So often we think it is the larger efforts that will take us 'there'.

Raise your kundalini for instance. Mine rose in 1962 bottom to top, sheer Bliss but I don't think it made me a nicer person. Clear your chakras. It seems to be an ongoing process. Meet your soul mate; going on courses designed to help you. Well are you trying to fool yourself? Excuse my laugh! Enjoy friendship, instead, with those around you.

Go to Zillions of improvement courses, classes, holy tours, guru traps, etc and throw your money away. Too many people focus on these efforts and neglect to be polite, to be courteous, to be sensitive to the needs of those around them.

"Practising the presence of God" means surely paying attention to all the small things, saying the kind words, smiling to cashiers.

Canadians are particularly good at keeping a door open for some one else coming. It is almost a national characteristic. I see this happening most days. Courtesy is the grease that makes society pleasant.

As Wordsworth wrote so beautifully in Tintern Abbey:

"As have no slight or trivial influence
On that best portion of a good man's life,

His little, nameless, unremembered, acts

Of kindness and of love."

It is a poem I have long loved.

We have no idea how little things we have done or neglected to do affects others. As a young man I would often notice how attractive a date was but didn't say so. Now I compliment everyone.

As a Tai Chi teacher I noticed that I would remember what corrections I had given a student. This meant that later I could see if they had paid attention and were doing it and also let them know I had paid them the courtesy of remembering. This is useful now I don't teach but practice on my own. I can remember when a move done differently felt good and use that feeling to learn from my own experience.

At my Cape Town school I was taught to take off my hat to adults and on a bus give up my seat to them. A simple courtesy but it defined how we were in the world. This training has stayed. I see so little of it in the local High School where I live. It is the courtesy of a bygone era.

In my village the kids walk back to school after shopping for snacks at the food store and scatter their wrappings as they go.

I spoke to a teacher and she said there is absolutely no discipline at school.

I spoke to someone who is a Township representative on the council and said our village shouldn't stand for it and should throw the book at the School insisting they institute some weekly clean up. What sort of world are we creating with such careless attitudes? There's much indifference in the world now. And the pity of that.

Meditation allows you withdraw into that space of 'Nothing', living allows you to behave with Awareness, showing kindness and courtesy to all that live on the earth.

We rank the importance of creatures, humans more important than ants, but really all are an expression of that "All" that fills all with the whisper of Joy, Light, Love. We are born into Life from It and hummed to throughout our lives by It. It is; everything else is passing. But while these pass we can show them the courtesy of attention, of kindness, or respect.

Courtesy is such a simple thing. It whispers we all matter. You matter and I love you. Avoid harm. At least show that minimal respect if you don't actually love.

All is Love, Light and Joy.

So tread this earth with awareness.

If we can't show the courtesy of compassion to what is around us how will compassion get reflected back to us?

Humans do such terrible things. Killing hundreds of whales for 'scientific research'. Specious self interest. Those who care just don't have enough tears. It tears one apart. I can only read just a little of the bad news, from Peta etc. It doesn't have to be like this.

Behave as if the Light, Love, Joy in all things really matters. We can't heal it all at once. But we can at least do what we say we are going to do and we can be on time. That is spirituality.

There is too much sloppiness to many lives. Courtesy is not casual. If you can live with focused courtesy you will act like a divine flame. Nothing less is 'demanded' of you.

Humans are reaping storms, floods of unprecedented magnitude. Just wait for the coming hurricane season and hear the wide spread wailings of "why?'. It is all our fault for not showing appropriate courtesy to the Earth, not living in balance.

Just as a scowl on a face can turn suddenly into a smile, a frown into a laugh in an instant when a stern grumpy attitude gets replaced by one more, uplifting so too can life on earth be changed.

 

It is all up to us,
to you!


Don't Worry. Be Happy

Sometimes the world seems full of such disturbing news. Great actors, like Hoffman over dosing,

Woody Allen misbehaving, Stuart Wilde who was once so puckish and funny turning dead rotten.

http://www.mind-futures.com/r-i-p-stuart-wilde-a-cautionary-tale

California has 100 days of water left. Sochi Olympics under threat of bombs. Japanese killing dolphins and whales. Black rhino extinct. And so on.

And yet I have never been happier.

What?

Oh yes my 75 year old body is ageing but when I do my Tai Chi, and other Taoist Arts and feel the Chi lifting from heel to head, uniting earth with heaven and heaven with earth I feel such inner vitality, serenity and joy, that in my world nothing is wrong at all. Man who can stretch between Heaven and earth, can bridge them, what a wonder this is! I meditate, as I do several times a day, and I can feel that Total silence embracing me till I vanish into

What is there to fear?

What can cause one concern?

As Tawalla Baba told us in Rishikesh “The world is as you are.” From the perspective of Oneness all these trouble are just tiny noises in an emptiness, or lines drawn on the Ocean as Maharishi would say, seen and instantly erased. No trace left. Just the always Immense Ocean undisturbed by the line.

Rumi says 'I have dropped duality like a dirty dish cloth”.

But we so often bemoan the dirt on the dishrag. Our whole life can be that dirty dishrag. We read news on how dirty it is. We gossip how someone's is dirtier than others.

On the internet people come together, compare and share terrible news. I just can't stomach more news of a suicide bombing. They go and on. What is in these people's hearts and minds that they can do such things?

And do the greedy 1% really think they are laying up for themselves treasures in heaven? They are going to find themselves winnowed with the chaff, dressed in dirty dishrags.

You don't need me to tell you that something is up on our earth; that we are in a phase of transition with no happy end in sight. Humans are out of balance with themselves and out of balance with

Universal energy.

We are getting ready to drink a cup full of bitter gall. Many cups of it. To the last drop I fear. As I see it, often posted by Les Visible, Mr Apocalypse is stalking our earth. We can't stop this. It is his time now. From East to West and North to South. He is moving and all that hidden muck in humanity comes frothing out. For it is also a cleansing time, a moment to detoxify, to become pure. No one knows when it will end or how it will end. It is blowing in the wind. Perhaps sometimes more like a typhoon! And yet the world is still beautiful. You can see love in the eyes of babies, and little animals. Indeed you can see golden light from trees. Flowing out of the earth where they are rooted and singing praises of the divine, the celestial.

A colossal Thank you for this life.

No matter how dense the pollution this light is always there for the sensitive. We could have lived in a Paradise, in harmony with each other and all our animal neighbours. We have rather trampled this all down with sullen, heavy, uncaring boots.

Are you singing your joy of being alive?

I have a formula for you.

Let it all go.

No worry can help.

Live in as best of harmony as you can. Be compassionate and kind. And just let that gnashing of teeth be mere noise in an emptiness. There is peace inside you; there is a joy inside you when you close your eyes and surrender to it. All spiritual progress is just a letting go, not so much a gaining.

You drop this and then you drop that. One dirty dishrag after another. And as I wrote in my book “Stalking Personal Power and Peace” the trick when you drop the rag is to not pick it up again. Ever. And then all will be well and will never stop being well. Without end. It is not so much gaining this or that but getting rid of all that is not you. There is great joy in not striving. Such relief in Surrender. You learn in the Taoist Arts to give up your notions and opinions, how it is or how it should be.

Toltec stalking, as I wrote, means being focused, on being open to 'what is'.

You can't stay enjoying each success. That is to be static. Fluidity. As light flows. Like water trickles down. Always.

Don't compare yourself to anyone, to try to emulate them. No baby copies another baby's smile. The smile radiates out from within, from an essential joy.

All the seasons change, nothing is static. Life is a cycle, a spiral.

Surrender to it.

That is the grease that makes action stress free. For in the world we need to act.

To do.

What we are born to do.

But we are born from non doing. From that ever fresh, ever present Silent Now. Times may become more turbulent. We don't know. But if you remain in that still small space of your Soul, in that Light which is your light, which is you, then that light will shine out like those radiantly golden trees I sometimes see. We are all it seems a little trapped by our backgrounds and often unaware of this. And we forget that Total Silence that wraps us every moment with such love.

Let your cares go.

Be Happy.

Then the earth will get better. You will have done this. Or the All that flows through you will have done it. There is no other formula that will work.

Surrender to Joy.

Live well and feel thankful.

All is counting on you.


Tasting the Absolute - Consuming the World.

In Taoist internal practices when the tip of the tongue touches the upper palate a link is created between two internal meridians of energy, the Du and the Ren. Then the tip of the tongue vibrates with energy. It has been like this with me for a long time and I have paid it scant attention, just something that occurs 'on the way'. But recently it has taken some of my focus. As soon as I am 'There' the tongue tingles until the mid point of the tongue. It gives a sensation of taste. So I call it 'tasting' the Absolute. It can happen most of the day, even now as I write.

Probably not strictly the Absolute which is more like 'Nothing'; but just before It in those subtle realms where awareness has become so refined that it is about to enter the Silence and in the process I am aware of going in and deep, like you have no choice and the experience of depth takes you over. But now what was a 'deep' experience happens on the surface or what is 'deep' is not overwhelmed by the waves on the surface mind. It is indeed a calming experience because the dancing waves do not obliterate the Silence. Silence coexists with activity. And it seems that the Silence grows in strength. The Silence gives meaning to me and my life.

I'd like to think the Silence is giving a hug to whatever I see. I seem to be overcome with joy and love when I see the little things that live with me here. I say 'hello sweetheart' to them, little frogs hopping through the lawn grass, the little birds at the feeders. Such joy and love. It makes the world such a vibrantly happy place. Energy connections between us all.

How could one wish any harm.

I thank my peas as I taste them, telling the plant they are delicious. It is like being in Eden, harvesting my things for a salad lunch. Such a privilege. And then eating it looking out over the lake and seeing trees to the horizon.

For long I have also heard the hum, the Om vibration underlying the world. 'The Thunder of Silence' Joel Goldsmith called it. Also something well known to Satsangis. 'Hearing' the Absolute too.

It is curious to me that none of my family, none of my friends know any of this. But I shared it with a friend over our lunch today. She is having a bad time and I supposed I got prodded into letting her know what could be her experience too. I told her bad habits are like a heavy weight and one day one suddenly opens one's hand and lets them fall. I wrote of this in my e book. The trick is to not pick them up again. Holding them is a form of addiction. It is also so curious and so sad that while the earth seems to be heading for so many possible disasters humans continue on their crazy paths. The 1% try to accumulate more wealth as if the money will make any difference to them now, or later if the disasters come.

So much sectarian strife, so much cruelty and such awful indignity to the glory of life.

I won't dwell on it. It hurts too much.

I go into old age I should say I 'plod' into old age well aware of my blessings. And yet plod is not accurate as I did most of 2/3 vegetable acre garden this year without a young assistant. However there were times after being on my knees for an hour that I wondered if I would be able to get back up. I call being on my knees like this praying. Probably a form of penance or tapas austerity too.

For some time I broke with God belief and then I heard a podcast on 'Anatheism' and have ordered the book as it seemed to describe me and where I am; God, surprisingly, comes back in, in a more profound way. One lets the concept of a personal god go as childish, lives like that for a while and then suddenly find that God and the need to experience God and rejoice in God's Presence become stronger and stronger. It becomes a sort of epiphany; Hildegard von Bingen would have music for it surely. If everything comes out of that Om, that Silence, then indeed consuming the world is like the sacrament of Communion.

One should pay attention to all one does.

'Courtesy' and 'focus' as I have written in my essays, but also now, more recently, ecstatic; the world consumed in flames of love. Just at the moment here in my office I feel very close to the Divine.

May the divine stay close to me.

Amen!


Don't Worry. Be Happy

Sometimes the world seems full of such disturbing news. Great actors, like Hoffman over dosing,

Woody Allen misbehaving, Stuart Wilde who was once so puckish and funny turning dead rotten.

http://www.mind-futures.com/r-i-p-stuart-wilde-a-cautionary-tale

California has 100 days of water left. Sochi Olympics under threat of bombs. Japanese killing dolphins and whales. Black rhino extinct. And so on.

And yet I have never been happier.

What?

Oh yes my 75 year old body is ageing but when I do my Tai Chi, and other Taoist Arts and feel the Chi lifting from heel to head, uniting earth with heaven and heaven with earth I feel such inner vitality, serenity and joy, that in my world nothing is wrong at all. Man who can stretch between Heaven and earth, can bridge them, what a wonder this is! I meditate, as I do several times a day, and I can feel that Total silence embracing me till I vanish into

What is there to fear?

What can cause one concern?

As Tawalla Baba told us in Rishikesh “The world is as you are.” From the perspective of Oneness all these trouble are just tiny noises in an emptiness, or lines drawn on the Ocean as Maharishi would say, seen and instantly erased. No trace left. Just the always Immense Ocean undisturbed by the line.

Rumi says 'I have dropped duality like a dirty dish cloth”.

But we so often bemoan the dirt on the dishrag. Our whole life can be that dirty dishrag. We read news on how dirty it is. We gossip how someone's is dirtier than others.

On the internet people come together, compare and share terrible news. I just can't stomach more news of a suicide bombing. They go and on. What is in these people's hearts and minds that they can do such things?

And do the greedy 1% really think they are laying up for themselves treasures in heaven? They are going to find themselves winnowed with the chaff, dressed in dirty dishrags.

You don't need me to tell you that something is up on our earth; that we are in a phase of transition with no happy end in sight. Humans are out of balance with themselves and out of balance with

Universal energy.

We are getting ready to drink a cup full of bitter gall. Many cups of it. To the last drop I fear. As I see it, often posted by Les Visible, Mr Apocalypse is stalking our earth. We can't stop this. It is his time now. From East to West and North to South. He is moving and all that hidden muck in humanity comes frothing out. For it is also a cleansing time, a moment to detoxify, to become pure. No one knows when it will end or how it will end. It is blowing in the wind. Perhaps sometimes more like a typhoon! And yet the world is still beautiful. You can see love in the eyes of babies, and little animals. Indeed you can see golden light from trees. Flowing out of the earth where they are rooted and singing praises of the divine, the celestial.

A colossal Thank you for this life.

No matter how dense the pollution this light is always there for the sensitive. We could have lived in a Paradise, in harmony with each other and all our animal neighbours. We have rather trampled this all down with sullen, heavy, uncaring boots.

Are you singing your joy of being alive?

I have a formula for you.

Let it all go.

No worry can help.

Live in as best of harmony as you can. Be compassionate and kind. And just let that gnashing of teeth be mere noise in an emptiness. There is peace inside you; there is a joy inside you when you close your eyes and surrender to it. All spiritual progress is just a letting go, not so much a gaining.

You drop this and then you drop that. One dirty dishrag after another. And as I wrote in my book “Stalking Personal Power and Peace” the trick when you drop the rag is to not pick it up again. Ever. And then all will be well and will never stop being well. Without end. It is not so much gaining this or that but getting rid of all that is not you. There is great joy in not striving. Such relief in Surrender. You learn in the Taoist Arts to give up your notions and opinions, how it is or how it should be.

Toltec stalking, as I wrote, means being focused, on being open to 'what is'.

You can't stay enjoying each success. That is to be static. Fluidity. As light flows. Like water trickles down. Always.

Don't compare yourself to anyone, to try to emulate them. No baby copies another baby's smile. The smile radiates out from within, from an essential joy.

All the seasons change, nothing is static. Life is a cycle, a spiral.

Surrender to it.

That is the grease that makes action stress free. For in the world we need to act.

To do.

What we are born to do.

But we are born from non doing. From that ever fresh, ever present Silent Now. Times may become more turbulent. We don't know. But if you remain in that still small space of your Soul, in that Light which is your light, which is you, then that light will shine out like those radiantly golden trees I sometimes see. We are all it seems a little trapped by our backgrounds and often unaware of this. And we forget that Total Silence that wraps us every moment with such love.

Let your cares go.

Be Happy.

Then the earth will get better. You will have done this. Or the All that flows through you will have done it. There is no other formula that will work.

Surrender to Joy.

Live well and feel thankful.

All is counting on you.


Hearing God's Laughter Converging towards Ecstasy

We are on myriad winding paths, begun from differing positions, paths losing themselves in circuity, climbing hills only to have to descend, traversing arid deserts or tramping land swamped by floods. This is humanity as it struggles to evolve, pay its bills and stay alive. Humanity in all its splendour, all its degradation, shuffling, crawling, slipping backwards, falling down and then finally leaping for joy
So many religious teachers bogged in dogma, so many false gurus, so many charismatic cheats, so many dead end dead beat authorities, obese in body light in wisdom or with heads in false clouds of impracticability.
We have probably sat at most of their tables, and got up to meander, to walk, to jog, to trot, whatever, to find fulfilment, meaning; or just to stop feeling miserable, sad or confused.
And that is many of us.
Not all. Many are just too bemused to do anything but moan and whine over their life's lot.
Not many think of their life's journey as one going towards fulfilment. Fulfilling a pleasure yes, escaping a misery yes.
And yet a great mystery is that we are all on this fated path; just on varying spots on it.
And the saying is that all paths lead to Rome. Rome being at the historic time the Central power, the focal point.
So now all paths lead to where?
Where is your path taking you? Do you feel you are going somewhere? It is not always easy to know. People with rigid dogmatic faiths aren't really getting anywhere. They have closed off to free exploration. Their souls don't breath.
Tai Chi has taught me that one must constantly move into the unknown. The known is past, dead, not a budding bloom, not nourished by the delicious waters that is life's gift to us.
Oh yes I have felt sure, convinced, firmly on the way. But if you meet a good teacher he'll rock your boat till you jump off.
One needs some abandonment. This doesn't mean more trying or more effort, just a letting go into the Great Force and less reliance on your puny will.
You will get there, but the journey might be longer that you might wish.
Grace is earned by effort, by discipline but Grace needs also to be accepted humbly and, as I am now finding, ecstatically.
A month ago after writing “Tasting the Absolute” I walked one afternoon in the field near us. On the path a deer, wild, was walking towards me. She looked at me and continued till she was 5 yards from me and then stepped off the path to circle round me 5 yards away. It felt so wonderful, magical to be trusted by her. I think in some other time when people are different, more loving, perhaps this is how all species will live with us.
In rescue centres on the web I often see stories and photos of diverse animals striking up friendships. A tortoise cuddling with dogs. All life needs affection.
In the meantime I hear the hunter's guns each evening and morning shooting the migrating ducks. And I shudder.

In the gorgeous Fall weather we are having I watch how the leaves detach and spiral, fluttering down. All falling to the earth, to the Mother, to their ultimate home. Falling to where they now belong. No effort, a joyous letting go when it is the time to do so.

Just so it can be with us.

You might not hear it but we are being called “Home”. And all roads eventually lead there. To “Home”.

Listen with your heart. It is what you desire. Throw away the keys to your chests of misery. Don't unlock them over and over. Obsessively reliving it all.

Open your heart chest of Joy.

Your heart is in resonance with Love. It is what it does best; resonate with Love.

Feet love dancing, lips love singing, eyes love twinkling.

Just as a horse picks up speed near its stable so do we as we fall away dancing, laughing into Bliss.

Just a little bit more and it will happen for you too.

I can't tell you exactly what to do. You can read of my path, in my essays and my book.

We are each different; each must sniff out their own path until eventually all Fall down, down, down.

Meister Eckhart's famous lines:

“My Lord told me a joke. And seeing Him laugh has done more for me than any scripture I will ever read.”

How mischievous. How startling. What a total surprise.
His Lord told him a joke.
Why?
He must have been ripe and ready for it.
“Ripeness is All”.

I must be ripe for things have picked up for me. The slog seems over. It is so exciting. Falling, falling down and Falling into Love.

When I breath and look inside I am breathing in Light. I am breathing in Joy. I am breathing in what God exhaled when he laughed.

I don't know what I have done to deserve this. It is all I want to do.

Just breath in God's Laughter.

When the Soul wants to experience something she throws out an image in front of her and then steps into it.” Meister Eckhart.
It is just that. I throw out love and then breath it in.
When I had my kundalini rising all those years ago on a course with Maharishi (you can read of this in my book) I could only giggle. Nothing mattered.

Please note that Meister Eckhart wrote that it is the 'Soul” that throws out the image. Nothing that you can do. The Soul. Anything you do will only be a hindrance when the time is 'ripe'. And before it is ripe you long and you long and you long for what is missing.

You pummel and knead the bread and then leave it to rise. You stop doing. When God calls you just fall, to your knees, to Bliss.

So here I am. I feel Blessed.

Nothing more to be said.

Just listen to the Laughter.

And the Eternal Silence.

We are One.

That is all.

Dancing.


Honour your path
Feel grateful
Till you come Home

Most students think their spiritual path is the best.
Until near the 'end', when they realise there are other paths that also work well.
I have watched a few of the interviews on Rick Archer's http://batgap.com where he skilfully interviews many different people. So many come from different starts and end up in the same place.
A few just imagine they're there; make a mood of it.
Teachers are often very protective of their path. This prevent students from trying to mix and match and making an awful muddy, muddled mess. Becoming tar babies.
My path has been thoroughly discussed in my e book and essays.
It involves meditation and moving energy.
It is hard for me to see how I came to where I am without considering the inner energy system of the body.
I honour all my teachers and their traditions. I am grateful.
Today as I practised outside, feeling the energy moving, I was again reminded what a great teacher internal energy (Chi) is. It guides very subtly if you pay attention. As I move through my sets I feel what is happening, alert to nuances, being aware of 'oh that's new'. What did I just do to cause that?
That's how I learn and how I progress. The Chi wants to get expressed, to be felt; just as love leaps on objects to love. If you feel loving you will love what is front of you. You can't abstain from doing that, from loving.
You have become the loving. And if you don't feel loving no amount of coercion can make you. You can't beat yourself into loving, persuade yourself, delude yourself. You are either loving or you aren't.
Chi the ultimate teacher. Not a mood of Chi. This is just make belief. Though it helps maybe to sustain you and keep you going, so has its place. But it is a bad place if you remain stuck there. Imagining delight but remaining apart from it.
I am honouring my path. Indeed gratitude can often be overwhelming.
Writing these essays is an act of gratitude. I write only of what I have experienced, am experiencing.
Full of that experience, in love with it I write about it. I don't write of theoretical experiences. I write of the fullness of where I am. I write just of what is happening.
It should have this immediacy for you. A sameness.
As though I took your hand in mine as I experience.
A call to come on the journey, dive into the Ocean.
Splash and laugh.
Don't hesitate.
Let the water wash over you. Become thoroughly wet.
Soaked.
No arid dryness left.
I hope the vibration finds a resonance in the reader. As I write I often feel in an altered state of consciousness. Taken over. The words have to come out.
The experiences says 'yes yes like that write it'.
The words come out and I feel
grateful.
Communed and in communion.
The commonness of wet.
Wet all wet.
Soaked. The past dry and gone.
Just the present fullness.
It is a churlish host who when you praise the cake doesn't offer you a second slice.
To those who have will be given. Bible quote.
It doesn't seem fair.
But that's how it is.
When you are there you are no longer not there.
Only the beneficiaries inherit. Not the stray outside the door.
If you're in the bath you can swirl your hands and feel the warm water caress you. So loving, so delicious. Like a cuddle from the beloved.
Walking hand in hand along a flower petalled path.
Going nowhere.
But being everywhere.
Now.
But only in the bath will this happen.
Preparation of running the water. Doing your practices.
Your particular sadhana.
Over and over and over,
Day after day.
Don't become slip shod.
The Beloved likes to see you steadfast.
Longing all the time.
Ultimately every wave gets guided to the shore by the ocean. Love guides us Home. At every step of the way, obscurely perhaps, It is there with each of us. Small or big we can only express the Ocean.
All traditions flow to and from the Ocean. Even when we extol our particular patch of beach it is the one Ocean playing there.
Pulling your anus in on the inbreath can send energy into the third eye. It is a way to move it upward.
So too three focused sharp in breaths expand the awareness. On each little inbreath move the energy higher.
1) to belly 2) to heart 3) into head.
And then feel gratitude.
This opens the heart.
It is like saying here I am and here You are and isn't it all just so wonderful.
The world recedes as you do this.
No noise of waves
just Silent Ocean.
Not enough attention gets paid. There is too much competition. In the noise of desire and fear longing goes unnoticed. We all have a deep profound longing in us.
A longing for Home.
You can shut it out but it will never ever go away. It will lie there underlying all your triumphs, all your failures; like a big hole saying 'fill me'.
Longing will guide you Home.
And you can try casting all the stuff of the world into the hole to quieten the roar, no addiction to anything can silence it.
Can you imagine the 'hole' if the Whole Ocean just vanished. Like that,
GONE!
And you
all alone on the beach
building sand castles with a silly plastic spade.
No mummy watching.
All alone.
That's longing and it will never,
can never
leave you.
Until you come
Home.
So don't try to quiet your longing.
Longing leads to belonging.
Be Longing.
Let longing lead you.
Never be satistfied with the ersatz.
Don't think a mud puddle is the Ocean.
Seek the pearl.
It is inside you.
It has always been there.
The glowing pearl, the jewel,
In the cave of your heart.
It wants you just as much.
With your lover at last,
Become the Caress.
Hold nothing back,
Abandon yourself
The self gets lost in the caressing.
Three sharp breaths
pull it up and in.
Remember your longing.
Pour your longing into your desire.
What else is there?
Yes you have duties, responsibilities.
We all have.
But don't let them silence your longing,
Your crying in the night.
The moon overhead.
But you in your room
Dark.
The world is full of the middling half hearted.
Wishy washy.
Become an ardent lover.
When the chaff gets separated where do you wish to be?
Time passes
You get older
But the longing will not pass
It will haunt you forever
Until you find
your Home.
Ultimately every wave gets guided to the shore by the ocean.
Nothing anyone can say can convince you.
Stop your ears.
Silence your mind.
Taste the Absolute.
Ultimately every wave gets guided to the shore by the ocean.
Can't you hear it now.
Three breaths in
Now
and forever.
Till love overwhelms yourself
You are only that
Once The Beloved has looked into your eyes
You will never be the same
The longing has ended.
Kissing.

I sing the body energetic

I sing the body energetic.

Most people don't care. Not profoundly.
A care that eats at the Soul.
Gives lonely, sheet tossing, midnight wakings
Torments. Like a bad liver or wheezy breathing.
Ravages you,
or worse.
The banality of despair, the every day grind
Makes you limp, weighted on one side, with a lumpy bucket of troubles in one arm, seeking some balance, some ease.
These people just live. Their existence is need driven. Eat, sleep etc.
Then spirituality enters their awareness, the need for it and how to to get 'there'.
They read books, self help, seek out gurus, go on weekend retreats.
Some also make progress.
They can see and feel the difference.
They talk about their journey.
Promote their path.
Maybe you are one of these.
Myriad ways to grow. Diets, exercises, therapy, meditation, chi kung.
You must know the list.
You also probably know how you might mix and match, abandon one teacher, find another.
Feel sometimes hopeless.
Feel sometimes encouraged.
Feel you are almost there.
Be deceived by that.
Hear talks that it is all an illusion. You are already there, just don't know it.
Nothing to do or to be done.
For a while think that is, perhaps, true.
All the while life goes on and you deal with its problems.
Nothing new there: sex, money and power
or combinations and lacks of.
If life is a dream yours is a mixture of happy and bad, or blessed forgetfulness.
When you forget yourself for a brief while.
Probably any way. We each have our own sack on our backs.
Unsmiling we've packed up our troubles there.
You read how followers got cheated or abused or misled.
Maybe dabble in cynicism.
But that need remains.
The need to be at peace, find joy, live in serenity.
It won't leave you alone.
You envy those who don't have it at all
But not really. Not really.
Really you know they are just so asleep
And their journey into misery has yet to start.
For trying to evolve causes its own pain.
The blisters of the lonely, stoney path.
That never seems to end. You wonder if you have even begun.
It circles around and around
and returns always, always to you.
You know that all too well.
Join the club of hyenas and vultures. Scavenging truth where they can.
Ripping hungrily into others experiences.
You are not alone. Seekers unite.
Nothing new under the sun.
What crack of light comes from under those apparently never ending clouds?
Seeping in, colouring your world
Like a surprise.
It catches your breath with a sharp intake.
You discover
What you have been seeking is also eagerly seeking you.
With just as much passion and longing as yours.
No, in fact, much more.
And you thought it was your journey of self evolving.
Your special journey.
Surprised!
and then an energy draws you in,
reels you in, flapping like a helpless fish that longs for the leafed creel,
on the hip of the patient Fisherman
who has stalked you for so long.
You!
and for so long.
This energy, vibrantly alert to your every move.
Your breath becomes so fine in meditation you don't notice it is not there,
till you give a sharp long in breath.
Where were you? In Lighted Bliss! For how long?
This is certainly a grand co-operative venture.
You are not alone.
Energy surrounds you in every moment. We,
I
live in a sea of energy.
It permeates me.
Love surrounds me.
Is me.
Like that elusive 'self' of Advaita, it always has.
It is just more joyous than I imagined.
It scoops me up on to life's carousel
Speeding up,
Playing with me,
Reeling me in as I said.
They were right when they said there is nothing to do.
Well, not quite right.
Avoid evil,
Silly practices.
Avoid moralizing, judging.
This is not my function.
Not at all.
What's that about the 'everlasting arms'?
It certainly feels like such an embrace.
Those loving arms are an energy loop.
They feel so good,
So comforting.
They say you are Mine,
you always were.
Always will be.
Nothing you could do or not do can take that away.
Such a long loop away and then back.
The comfort of Home for weary travellers.
Teary travellers.
For joy brings tears too.
You've read articles on kundalini, on chakras.
Some right,
Some way off, fantasies,
Some just book knowledge.
Once in those arms, those energy arms
and you know.
Know it is physical
and beyond physical.
The energetic body is above all
Blissful.
Nothing to do.
Really.
Nothing!
Just surrender.
And sing your song.
Who knows who will hear it?
This doesn't matter at all.
Like a bird in early dawn on a branch singing to the breeze
Just singing.
Joy, abandonment.
Why? You might ask.
I don't know.
This is just the way it is.
Here, there and everywhere else.
Everywhere else!

Welcome to the discovery.
To the Song of the body energetic.

*The title is a riff on Walt Whitman's line “I sing the body electric”.


RETURN TO WHERE YOU ARE

Rumi; “Someone once asked a great sheikh what sufism was.”
'The feeling of joy when sudden disappointment come.'
“When misfortune comes you must quickly praise.”*
I have pondered this a lot recently.
I had car accident 5 weeks ago, my fault and the detritus from this, police, insurance, car a write off, get another car (I had just spent $3000 on my old car hoping to keep it another 5 years) and having to redo my licence test and failing the first time as the new standards to pass the test are extreme (eg turning the head left and right to check the mirrors every 10 seconds) the after shock was enormous and surprising.
I was unable to drive without a licensed driver alongside me for a month.
I felt that I was walking along as usual and had suddenly fallen into an unforeseen hole out of which I was struggling to get out.
My ego, it was my first and only accident after 58 years of driving, took a pounding.
I felt quite sad too.
But often I turned to the Light inside which was there but alongside it was constant tension and a fear I'd fail the next test too.
I took some driving lessons to see where I had failed the test.
Then yesterday I passed.
Such relief.
As I walked the fields yesterday evening revelling in the wonderful sunset and feeling such joy I realised the joy came from returning to exactly where I had been 5 weeks ago.
And yet it all seemed so new.
This seemed to me a wonderful metaphor for life.
We all have our journeys, happy, sad, tumultuous, what ever,
And just to return,
To return to our original spot.
A big circle.
To arrive from where we started.
Of course we get caught up in our journey
our dramas
and feel little for our beginning
our start
that point of Oneness
that is closer than our shadow
which we carry at every step
on our backs
in our heart
under our very feet.
We don't feel Its embrace
Its loving comfort
The kisses It wants to give.
No.
We are in drama
missing It as we whine and groan
have knots in our stomach
ask that foolish question why?
Why me?
Why any of it?
Well here is the answer:
To empty you of all resistance
To throw away the fact you are the driver of your life
You aren't
You just think so.
And you will continue to think this
Until some heavy bangs break you of this foolish habit.
How much pain do you want?
How many small joys, small triumphs?
So small!
When It is so big
and
is Always
and for You.
You are not in this alone
Never have been.
It has just seemed to you that way.
From the heart inside me waves of Light
circle out
radiating out to the world.
Awakened Kundalini Shakti again in the heart.
They crush my smallness.
This pain of being crushed is Bliss.
Ultimate is
just
that.
Ultimate.
I disappear into 'That'.
Throw away your petty identity.
Take the gift God gives.
New shining clothes
A body so full of energy
so full of wisdom
Humming with God.
So much inner Chi
coursing through the meridians.
It is really as though you have died and gone to Paradise.
Every breath a Hallelujah
Nothing but Praise.
But if inside you lurks a hidden resistance
'It” is pitilessly merciful.
It will be brought out with a whacking.
When this happens
Remember what it is to be a Sufi.
Immediate praise
and the feeling of Joy at the sudden disappointment.
You will return to where you ARE.

* Rumi in the Coleman Barks translation.


YES!

Look without and what do you see? so much turmoil and conflict. Check the internet and see confirmation of doom. I do follow the news. I admit it. But my interest, my real interest my loving focus is 180 degrees away.
Within.
I look within and what do I see?
Joy and love.
Certainty.
No confusion. No fears. No anxieties.
Just clarity of Being.
That vast expanse of untilled soil, of ocean without waves.
That Blissful Silence in which I seem merged.
How long can this all go on?
Listening to the news.
Turmoil. Only bad news, seldom happy events.
But wait!
Look without
here
where I am,
now,
in the spot I love, in the village I love
I see beauty, birds singing, snow falling. People being friendly to a forgetful old man
a little unsteady now on his feet.
I can see myself doing my forms
even in winter
outside.
Rejoicing in the circulating Chi.
I see squirrel tracks in the snow, rabbits, and deer who do their 'dance' like me on untouched snow.
Who share my world
My little 'neighbours'.
It is very strange the jabber of the radio news
and then the happy songs of birds.
The Silence in my heart
That wants to expand to enfold all.
An invitation is extended.
Come into the Warmth there.
Please.
Leave off the fighting and all those cruelties.
Let go of those addictive compulsions.
Like a cat snoozing in the sun
head tucked between its paws
let the world go its own way.
The world is changing.
The news doesn't say so
The newspapers don't write about this
But my heart says it is so.
My heart tells me of my future.
It is not of conflict and turmoil
of competitive want.
No!
It is that Eternal Song that everyone can hear
will hear
once the conditions are met.
Let go, let loose, quieten down
Close your eyes
and let the mind follow its inclinations and
in time
you will hear it.
Just STOP
That is meditation.
STOP.
One you are There
you will realise you always were There.
You were born out of It,
born into It.
It is your Mother and Father
All your children
Your lullaby
and also the song at your death.
It is never ending and ever pleasing.
The pangs of the world so loud at the moment
So obvious
are just birth pains.
Not obvious it is true
But if you feel the joy of It
giving birth to It
That is what you will feel.
And what you will hear
is
The affirmation of bird song.
Yes!

* You are invited to listen to Matt Kahn's marvellous talk at:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMa-ri-2XWg


It is what it is and then some

My life seems to me to be an island of tranquillity in an increasingly troubled world.
I was having lunch today on my porch. It was so quiet. Just nothing.
I dislike using the word palpable. I dislike reading it too.
But there you are, today the Silence touched me.
I felt like Silence was coming out to me from the lawn, from out of the earth.
I looked at the blades of grass. Silence.
Rising up.
Form.
But not to engulf me
as I was already right there Centred in it.
In and out round and about nothing but
Silence.
And Gratitude filled me.
And Love filled me
The world news is so troubling, the images so disturbing.
WHAT IS GOING ON?
and
WHY?
Years ago I read Gwynne Dyer's articles on the looming water wars. He seems to have been right. Migrations from the middle of Africa to the North, and then from the middle to the South.
It seems so far away from my world.
Each day I 'play' my Tai Chi forms and I keep discovering new feelings of how the energy moves.
So wonderful.
I feel 'air' move from inside my body out. I feel the soft constant tingle on my upper plate letting me know Chi moves in the meridians.
When I go to bed to sleep I hear the Silence like the wind is blowing.
Sometimes I wonder if it is.
One day It will pick me up and carry me away.
It will all be Good.
In a sense there is nowhere to go.
But if Silence can move then it can experience other things on other worlds.
So I'll go there.
I'm not sure that life is what you make of it.
I think life is what is and sometimes then some.
I could not have envisaged 40 years ago I'd be sitting at a computer typing these words.
Life has come to me,
and it seems right now that it has always caressed me
cherished me
born me like a bubbling stream.
Who knows where deserve comes in.
Who deserves what is happening in Europe with the migrants?
At 76 I, naturally, can see it apocalyptically.
But each age has seemed so to some.
I don't have comfort to give.
In the final result comfort can only come from within.
I have seen joy in the eyes of some poor people in Peru
and nothing but sadness in the eyes of some very wealthy and apparently successful.
To feel loved is special.
To know that love is at the centre of life is unusual
but true.
Mostly this is lost in the turbulence.
I try to live with compassion, carefully scooping up the little spiders that might come in with my vegetables from my garden and put them outside.
Is there something wrong with our social system that corrupts it?
Certainly excessive population has strained it.
I feel so sorry for all the other species humans have put at risk.
Look at a little animal and all you see and feel is love and tenderness.
I'd like to give the World a hug.
Nice song
and if you feel hugged yourself then you can do it.
To feel cherished we need to cherish.
After every bath I rub myself dry with my hands. Started when I began yoga all those years ago at Stellenbosch University. I feel good about and for my body.
Playing Tai Chi is the same. You let the good feelings move inside, be expressed
It is like a boomerang.
What you throw out circles back.
Is this Karma?


The Sensuous movement of Internal energy

As one's practice goes deeper and the relaxation more profound Chi moves inside one and it can be extremely pleasurable.

This morning I derived a lot of joy from Chi, especially the move after single whip and when waves hands as clouds commences. The fingers make a 'chicken beak' and as they move upward I suddenly got delicious sensations into my heart.
It is as though Bliss had been sent to the heart chakra.
Even as I write I do this little move and feel the happy energy.
Like an in breath of joy. I breath joy into my heart.
Or joy gets breathed into the heart.
I feel so grateful.
The Universe can be so grand.
So Mysterious.
Suddenly
Joy.
Where does it come from and to where will it go?
I ask, but does the question matter?
A lot of practice and then suddenly Grace opens a flood of bliss. Practice is the key.
Once a week will probably not allow this to happen.
And when it does happen I reflect how many time I have done this movement and never felt the joy like this.
Master Moy told me I had my foundation and only need to relax now.
All honour and respect to his memory.
No trying,
doing the set like a beginner
but
FEELING
INSIDE.
Feeling is an energy that explores you.
Guided by the Universe probably.
It has a deeper knowledge than the rational mind.
And when 'it' happens the thinking mind exclaims" Gosh THAT was new.
I want to repeat the same move for the joy again but, instead, just file what happened away for later savouring and keep on the with the form.
My disciplined nature.
This morning I felt I was moving through an energy field, as though unseen presences were there.
I wondered whether I would again suddenly see the crowd of people waving at me to come to them as had happened once some years ago. I was practising on my driveway well in isolation.
All smiling and beckoning." Come, come!'
At that time I just kept on with the form and have since wondered what would have happened if I had attempted a form of communication.
Why did they want me to come? and where to?
They were all very happy in themselves and to see me.
A lovely welcome for whenever I 'cross over'.
We live in an ocean of energy and energies and these energies can have a personal form when you see them.
It is wonderful to be surprised by joy.
Just doing the same old form over and over again and then suddenly
something quite new
and unexpected.
Especially as my body has aged, my balance not as good as it was, legs certainly not as strong.
Not the vigorous young man I was when I started Tai Chi.
And yet here I am entering the domain of a Master.
What!?
Humbled by this.
But it is true I think.
Not that I am a Master but the energy has become my teacher.
And that is a sort of mastery.
I have no students now. So this serves as a sort of teaching to whomever reads this.
My advice. Practise daily and don't look for anything.
Just do the form and let the form do its work.
Don't brag when something happens.
Just be grateful for it.
Our journey here continues on its own special way, like a river meandering round bends and
suddenly
coming to waterfalls
rapids
or people on the bank beckoning and smiling.


The Mind's Ability to Remember.

I have been reading Anthony Osler's "Zen Dust" in which he lovingly evokes the pleasure he enjoys living where he does and where he has lived for a long time. I left my home country of South Africa to come to Canada. I lived in a paradise when I grew up, so lovely that going back there in 2006 was a shock and I decided never to go back again as my memories were so precious. I didn't want to sully them.

It must be so wonderful to grow old in the familiar, trees, plants, turns in the road, all the geography hold affectionate memories. It is hard for me to accept that I will age and die in a new country, not walk down the lane where I lived, next to the little river, bump into old friends, chat and reminisce.

I began remembering my past and was amazed at how many images can come out the of the mind. It's like a memory stick containing many gigabytes. What a miracle, and as one ages one can dip into it, again and again!

I miss the dead; family, friends, pets. But I can find them all again in my memory.

We have such richness in our heads, such wonder in our lives.

We have circled around.  Circled around what?

?

Now we come to it.

!

Circled the silent non dancing part of ourselves. 'The still point of the turning world'

All movement forward takes us back to our beginning. It can't be avoided.

I have been reading with delight T.S Eliot's 4 quartets where he tackles time, memory, salvation and all that.

In the 60's I feasted on "The Cloud of Unknowing",The Bhagavad Gita, Evelyn Underhill, St John of the Cross, etc all influences for Eliot. It was fun revisiting my youth while reading about memory and time.

It is wonderful to be at peace. To be at peace now. To be at peace with the past. To be at peace with the future.

I am so happy. The circle seems to be coming back to its beginning.

For a brief while we dance and sing forgetting we came from Silence.

But then Silence has never forgotten us. It has waited.

Lovingly I think.

For the circle round.

What else could it do?

It has the patience of the Eternal, of Eternity.

It has seen the dance many times. The triumphs, the failures, the ups and downs.

The agonies yes, but also what ecstasies!

And now that I can feel how the circle completes I yearn with some beseeching for it.

The Universe is vast and so indeed am I.

Not limited to old legs, shaky balance.

But a vastness of Light inside.

Light and Laughter.

Joy.

What is there to fear? My end is my beginning.

And a beginning in vastness.

What a miracle our mind and our body of energy!

When I was about 18 months having an after noon nap in our Kenilworth 2nd floor apartment porch I felt my mattress being pushed. I looked down and saw my father who had stuck match sticks in his eye lids to keep them wide and matches in his nostrils to flare them and was trying to scare me. I remember distinctly thinking," what a stupid thing for an adult to do to a little baby".

How can you explain that?

I can see it even now, pulled out of the memory.

I must have been an old soul. Born with knowing.

And then left to dance (and weep a little) in my own way.

Circling around in my end to my beginning.

I don't know how life is for you.

How much you remember of your beginning. How much Silence sings your path.

Does your path unfold with grace and is soft under your feet, lift to meet you and lift you up with love?

But do you know grace surrounds us at every step?

And waits for our final leap into the 'beyond'.

But you must seek Silence too.

Find time for it.

Be a lover of the inner solitude.

Constant in what you yearn for.

All the rest is simply noise.

Not quite, no. The noise is also music.

It depends how it is for you.

Some people are just healthy. Naturally. Many have to seek it, cultivate it.

So too harmony.

We have to learn to see it.

To have the grace to smile at those we meet.

Offer them love.

We sow. We grow. We reap.

Such is our harvest then.

Don't complain.

Today as I fed a deer and it watched me putting the seeds out I swear it wagged its tail like a friendly dog.

It is nice to see life like that.

Not every one does.

I know that. I hear it on the news very day.

It is a sad thing to co habit such a beautiful world with the hard, ugly and the cruel.

But there must be other worlds to inhabit.
I look forward to that.

I am no Buddha waiting for all the world to become enlightened.

Sorry.

Maybe next time round.

If there is one.

Till then be kind.

Always


Contraction and Expansion.

Take the Tai Chi pose for the start of the set, feet parallel and about shoulder width apart, arms in front of legs, palms facing thighs. The first movement is the raising of the arms. Fell the pressure of air on the top of the palm as you raise arms and as you raise them sink buttocks down into what we call a sit. This allows the lower back to stretch. How far you go down depends on leg strength.
However once you are open the sit can remain high as you can open up the lower vertebra at will.
As you raise arms bend at the elbow and breathe in to the belly.
Straighten legs and push hands down breathing out and pushing air into the ground.
In the up and down of arms allows wrist to flex naturally. Arms should float and be relaxed.
Energy in spine moves down and up, tail bone to top of head.
As you raise arms lower vertebra stretch and energy accumulates in belly.
As you lower arms and stand up this energy moves through whole body.
Whole body relaxed, soft but alert.
All organs in belly get massaged.
Tongue touches top palate and energy vibration is felt.
(read Tasting the Absolute). http://esotericarts.org/Essays.html#tasting
Mind is very silent and calm.
It expands into ground and sky.
The I seems to disappear.
There is only the movement.
Happening
and flowing.
Repeat this as often as you like.
or
If you know the 108 movements maintain this feeling throughout the set.
It will take practice though.
Contract with the in breath, expand on the out.
Gradually you will change, soften, become calmer.
If you go for a walk feel how the belly expands and contracts as you walk. Focus on this.
In the car take three sequential in breaths pulling anus in slightly; energy to belly, heart and then head.
Then breathe out through the mouth and feeling calming energy expanding through body.
As you breathe in the Divine breathes out into you.
You breathe the Divine in.
As you breathe out the Divine breathes you in.
You sort of disappear.
You will probably wish you could stay in this state.
But It waits for you to come
again and again.
When you drop the body It will be there
Waiting to embrace you.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Contraction and expansion.
A rhythm of life.
Nothing to it.
Just being natural.
Letting go.
and
Letting It fill you to your capacity.
Love in action.
Now share this

Love.

Meditation

Meditation is stopping.

The fist that is holding, that is closed

opens into a palm which is receiving.

You don't hold on to your identity and its interests, desires or fears.

You let the Universe come to you. The palm is open

so not grabbing;

But open to receive

whatever comes.

You stop the outward focus and sink inside, letting go.

It is also being graced.

Graced with Being.

As you sink down it is highly pleasing to the body.

It relaxes.

Giving it all away is so easy and so pleasurable.

David Fiske stops.

Becomes a vibration

So delicious

so enticing.

That vibration seems to have no beginning

no end.

And there I stay

hovering between Is and Is not.

If I need to scratch or some thought comes in I just swing back into that state.

It is so natural

So effortless.

Nothing to do

Nothing to want.

Just for this to go on and on forever.

A thought that was!

Gently back.

Times ceases

Time passes.

I wonder how long in fact.

A thought!

Strange how time passing can be important.

So alluring it pulls me out of timelessness.

Back into the Depths or is it the Heights?

Always the same,

Always new

Always there

a foundation to my life.

Meditation is a skill, a technique

An Art.

That comes to one who seeks

Seeks assiduously

Day by day

Day after day.

Eventually you don't do it.

It does you.

It is floating in the clouds

Wafting with the wind.

It is the inside and the outside of all that I am

all that I want.

It brings the Lover you always wished for

The Kisses yearned.

The cave in the chest opens

is radiant.

Ah the Bliss of This!

This is True.

All the rest mere shadows blowing across water.

The Mere where we bob too often

Chasing our dreams.

To utterly dissolve and be only This.

And then the big joke.

I get up off my chair and get on with the chores

like everyone else.

Except

something

so foreign

so Other

still vibrates for a while in my chest.

like the perfume of a lover on my chest

to remind me where I've been

and

who I am.

 


A Life of Joyous Silence

This is a letter to you.

Yes to YOU.

Stop,

and read it.

You need a hug

to feel what I am feeling.

Feeling right NOW.

There is much weirdness going on. The "venal Clintons" as a friend described them, greedy for power and money, the bizarre Donald Trump, terrorism, strange weather patterns, the internet full of chatter and also much nonsense about this

and then also about that,

whatever.

Awake, we need to be the still point in the midst of chaos.

Often after sleep I just lie there like a blank, like Silence, empty, no desire to do anything but lie there.

Eternity on my eye lids.

The world can seem like a sad mad bad house. The news we so often get indicates that.

I was thinking a few days ago that I don't know what lessons are for me here now. Hanging on is a little like endurance to me. I could happily leave it all behind. It is a lovely thought in fact. I think of my own death a lot,

rapturously too.

Disappearing into The All.

No "I"

thus no doing.

No Past.

No Future

Just Now.

And the Silence in the Now

I find now that most of the day I feel I'm not really here any more. If I stop what I'm doing I feel I've disappeared. Just Empty Silence. Being active in the garden, picking my peas and so on I keep busy but I can well imagine doing simply nothing and feeling very content, no more than just content,

completely fulfilled.

What is to be done after what in front of you has been done?

The world is full of nonsense. I watch it on the news and read it on line, but more by force of habit than keen interest.

I haven't bought a paper for many many years, realising it was addictive and I was reading all sort of stuff that was interesting but not necessary.

Now I read Calvin and Hobbes having, for Father's day, treated myself with the 4 volume Complete Edition. I smile every time I pick a volume up, in anticipation.

My engagement in the world is mainly with what happens around me.

On my knees weeding, noticing the bugs, spiders etc that share my garden. A tomato that is almost ripe.

The smell of the tomato leaves on my fingers.

A part of the wholeness of Life. Wind in the trees, birds singing. The hot humid weather soaking my shirt; peas to pod, watermelon in the fridge. Heart quiet, heart singing.

We have a week old fawn around. Dainty on thin legs and spotted.

When I stop what I am doing where am I now?

There is action

and there is Silence.

Even now my head is full of Silence. Can Silence go anywhere? Wish for anything?

Silence is not active

not a doing.

And yet my life goes on.

It is a mystery.

A Mystery that reaches out and pulls me in,

hugs me, loves me

and with soft says care "There, there."

and

"I'm Here".

"Forever".