Sunday, 22 January 2017

The Five Tibetan Rites

HARNESSING THE GALACTIC ENERGY PART 1

These next few posts are for the purpose of giving you, the reader, an insight into a combination of practises that have made quite a profound impact in their application. Now, by looking at the title it is obvious what the first of these three are. The five Tibetan rites, as they are commonly called, are to me an excellent tool to begin playing with energy, as their practise accelerates the spinning of ones chakra system and therefore the auric field, acting as a great catalyst for the breathwork to follow. The following  breathwork, which shall be discussed in later parts, are the six healing sounds leading into anapana meditation. The form of the six healing sounds practised is quite different from that popularised by Mantak Chia but rather is a version of the sounds as taught by the late Nan, Huai Chin. This version, believed to be the original, is a preparation for meditation intended to release tension so that the mind may be unhindered by discomfort arising from the body, having it's roots in the tantric systems of the Himalayas.

For the reader who has not heard of the Five Tibetan Rites, let me give a brief introduction. Peter Kelder (a pseudonym) wrote a book in 1939 called The Eye of Revelation in which he proceeds to tell the story of ...Read more

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

The Giver of All Life


The Sun to us is the centre and the source of all that we are able to experience through our senses and beyond, apart from the stars (of which the Sun is also a star). All the planets of our solar system revolve around it and were once a part of the same primordial matter that eventually organised itself into what is now the solar system. The Sun, as all other stars, has within itself a singularity that is non-local (transcending time and space) connecting itself with the spiral of creation as it issues forth from the centre of our galaxy, and beyond from the beginning. As the life-force of the Universe (or Spiritus Mundi) is relayed from the First Cause, the spiral of creation manifests from the greatest scale down to the most minute particulate building blocks of life, as seen in the DNA.



We have all heard of how sunlight is necessary for the process of photosynthesis - a process that gives us both food to eat and oxygen to breathe. But what about the energy that keeps us warm, allows our blood to circulate and our cells to carry out their metabolic processes? Far-infrared radiation, in particular  -  a portion of the wavelength range of 4 to 14 microns, is able to be absorbed by and emitted from all life-forms and as a result does not burn the skin (while ultraviolet and near-mid infrared do). Therapies utilising far -infrared, popular in Japan, Korea and Taiwan, have spread across the globe and range from use as part of cancer treatment to the purely cosmetic such as the removal of cellulite. Lin Housheng, a qigong master famous for anaesthetising a thyroid-surgery patient by issuing qi from his fingertips to a pressure point, has worked with Japanese inventors to create a range of therapeutic devices utilising far-infrared radiation.

Far infrared radiation (FIR), because of its wavelength, is able to penetrate approx. two inches into human tissue. If one is continuously exposed to the source of FIR the subject will continue to absorb the rays deeper into the body, increasing microcirculation and detoxification, cellular renewal and healing. The basis for this is that we are composed of mainly water, and FIR causes the bond angles of the water molecules to get smaller and smaller - thus creating an environment in which molecules beneficial to life are more easily structured and absorbed by the cells, whilst toxins are removed. Dr Gerald Pollack, PhD speaks of a fourth phase of water that is highly structured and negatively charged, and is also the form that water molecules take in living things, as well being responsible for cloud formation due to negative charge repelling the earth. This fourth phase he says is caused by the exposure of water to infrared radiation. Once in this hexagonal matrix, the water is able to exclude dissolved particles, hence Pollack coining the term EZ (Exclusion Zone) water. He also found that in this state the water was able to absorb some light:

 (from Mercola.com) - "Testing water samples using a UV-visible spectrometer, which measures light absorption at different wavelengths, Dr. Pollack has discovered that in the UV region of 270 nanometers, just shy of the visible range, the EZ actually absorbs light. The more of the 270 nanometer light the water absorbs, the more EZ water the sample contains. EZ water appears to be quite stable. This means it can hold the structure, even if you leave it sitting around for some time. Water samples from the river Ganges and from the Lourdes in France have been measured, showing spikes in the 270 nanometer region, suggesting these “holy waters” contain high amounts of EZ water. According to Dr. Pollack, there’s compelling evidence that EZ water is indeed lifesaving..".


So from this we can see that infrared organises water molecules into a state whereby it can absorb UV light, specifically just out of the visible range. Why is this important? We often think that life is impossible without water, but fire (or the rays of the Sun) is just as important if not more. The light of the Sun and the two types of radiation just outside of either end of the visible spectrum have an effect on water, and all organisms as they contain water, that creates an environment conducive to life. In this post I have not listed all the many health benefits of FIR therapy or saunas as this is not an advertisement. There are multitudes of other websites doing that, that also try to sell you something that mostly emits Infrared that is not in the safe FIR range. But rather, the purpose of this post is for all to gain a better understanding of the way that the Sun sustains all life.

THE SUN IS NOT YOUR ENEMY

It is a fact that frequent exposure to sunlight has a multitude of health benefits. We all know that we need it to produce vitamin D, and to help us sleep at night by regulating our circadian rhythms. But seeing how the Sun's rays affect the structure and functioning of the most abundant molecule in our bodies -- water -- it is no wonder that the Solar entity was revered by so many ancient cultures. Unfortunately in the modern era we have been told it is a source of cancer, and then we are told to apply aluminium containing lotions to protect us! In previous posts I have mentioned meditating, both standing and sitting, in the morning Sun as a great way to start the day. This is a good time because the UV rays are at their lowest at this time of day and the FIR is more abundant.

Sun gazing is a practise that has gained popularity in western countries since the early millennium. I would advise anyone wishing to do so to proceed with extreme caution. It can be a very empowering practise, though done incorrectly can cause temporary blindness. Gurus that claim that they have become breatharian as a result of sungazing have been caught out lying and even in the act of eating food. These people are cult leaders and only want your money and to have influence over you. If one must sun gaze then I recommend reading this article by Vinny Pinto sungazing.vpinf.com. One can gain significant benefit from gazing at the sun with closed or partially opened eyes--you will still absorb the far-infrared into your eyes. This is utilised in the Bates method to correct eyesight. The theory behind this is that someone with perfect eyesight will not  experience after-images from looking at full sunlight as after-images are a result of eye strain. However, we should only very gradually expose our eyes to sunlight. As in all things, exercise your own judgement and common sense.

It seems that science has a lot of catching up to what the ancients intuitively knew. But when this does happen the implications will be phenomenal. However, we must understand that there are those who would suppress this kind of knowledge as it would turn the power hierarchy upside-down. Therefore it is of vital importance for us to send our best intentions out into the Universe and manifest a better way.







Sunday, 8 January 2017

Zhan Zhuang - The Art of Standing for a More Connected You


[okosai.jpg]Zhan Zhuang, in Chinese means "standing like a post", though it is often called "standing meditation". The most common practise of Zhan Zhuang is the embracing posture, which can be held by practitioners for mere minutes to hours at a time. The claimed benefits of the practise are many, and in this article I hope to expound on these as well as the many levels of intricacy of this practise. But before that lets look at some history, and how it came to be what it is today.

The Zhan Zhuang postures, of which there are many variations, were originally health and longevity practises of the Daoist masters. In more recent centuries these postures were combined with martial arts practises, in particular the neijia, or internal styles such as Tai Chi. Though the practise of Zhan Zhuang is commonly thought of as a Tai Chi training method in western circles (in particular, the non martial oriented practitioners of qigong), it's story of adoption into the martial arts lies with another style, Xingyiquan. Used on the battlefields and adapted from spear fighting techniques, Xingyiquan was revered for it's combat efficacy amongst the neijia, or internal styles. The most fundamental practise of Xingiquan is San Ti Shi (trinity pile standing), which in itself is a form of Zhan Zhuang intended to teach the novice practitioner how to relax in perfect alignment so that he (from an historical context it was only taught to males) may learn to issue maximum force with minimum effort. The other purpose of Zhan Zhuang in the martial arts was that of mental focus. Xingyiquan was originally Xin Yi Quan, which means fighting art of the harmony of Mind and Heart. This is the meditational aspect of Zhan Zhuang in martial arts, and one can see why meditation is important to the fighter in developing quick reflexes by doing away with mental clutter and other inefficient thought forms in both mind and the emotional body.

Wang Xiangzhai
A famous 19th century Xingyiquan master by the name of Guo Yunshen was sent a young Wang Xiangzhai by his parents to learn the art in order to improve his health, being a weak child. Most of the training in martial arts at the time, including Xingyi, consisted mostly of practising choreographed movements in sequence without much spontaneity or practical application. One dark cold morning, a young Wang Xiangzhai woke to find his master missing, and thinking him to be outside, he rushed out to take him his coat. What he witnessed his master practising was unlike any other Xingyi training he had ever seen before. After seeing that the boy had been considerate enough to bring him his coat, Guo Yunshen had respect for the child and decided to teach him these practises, in particular the Zhan Zhuang postures and also other methods by which to train the power of intention in both movement and stillness. Years later, Wang Xiangzhai travelled China learning from many styles, incorporating what he thought was useful, discarding what he thought to be superfluous, and refining what he believed to be the purest essence of Kung Fu. When he began to teach his style he gave it no name as he believed that his style should be formless and therefore nameless, however, his students named it Dacheng quan, which alludes to the greatest achievement in Daoism. Master Wang, being a humble man, later renamed the style Yiquan, meaning fighting style of intention (or willpower), and that name has stuck ever since.


After his younger days had passed him, and he had earned the reputation of being a highly formidable fighter and respected teacher of fighters amongst the Chinese martial arts community, Master Wang began to focus on the health and longevity enhancing aspects of Zhan Zhuang. He taught this along with practising Chinese Medicine, and it was also adopted by Tai Chi practitioners as Qigong began to find a resurgence in China, since the so-called "Cultural Revolution" (a dark blemish on the history of China and humanity as a whole) had finally ended and attitudes somewhat changed.

A SIMPLE GUIDE

Following will be a brief guide to a very basic practise of Zhan Zhuang as a form of meditation. This can also be very useful as a preparation to seated meditation as practising will help to align and quiet the impulsive nature of the mind, especially since the body is the doorway to the subconscious. Here are nine simple steps to follow:

1. Stand upright. Begin to breathe through the diaphragm (ie. - allowing the belly, rather than the chest, to expand on inhalation and contract on exhalation).

2. Separate the feet to around shoulder width, pointing slightly out from forward, with equal distribution of weight.

3. Bend the knees slightly (just enough so that they are not locked out), allowing the centre of gravity to sink. Ensure that the knees are not pinching inward but rather pointing more outward. As you sink your dantian (centre of gravity) into this stance, tuck the pelvis forward so that your butt is not sticking out.  This will create a neutral spinal position, now adjust your head so that it is level and aligned with spine and pelvis. A natural curvature that is firm but not stiff, relaxed and not slack - is the ideal way to stand.

4. Begin to let your arms float up in front of you with your wrists in front of your shoulders, palms down, with your elbows bent around 120 degrees. Continue to raise them until your hands are in front of your neck, around 6 to 8 inches apart.

5. Now turn your palms inward so that they face you, the fingers of each hand pointing to each other and separated as though you have cotton balls between your fingers.

6. Allow your elbows and shoulders to relax down gently as though you are embracing a large soft ball. This "roundness" extends to your ribcage, expanding with every breath.


7. As you relax more into the posture, feel the roundedness harmonise the circle of the arms and ribcage with the circles of pelvis and legs. It may take some time of practise to gain the feel for this, however, by learning to hold the posture by relaxing more into it one can begin to feel how to balance the tension with relaxation against gravity.

8. As you breathe you will find the need to make minor adjustments to your posture. Remember that the point is not to be perfectly still, but to form a connection between the various parts of your body and being. If your posture must expand, then so be it, if it must contract, allow it to contract. Flow with these changes and allow them to be cyclic.

9. Allow yourself to enter a state of meditation. I have outlined some steps in the previous article (scroll down).

At first you will not be able to complete all stages, as it is advisable to only begin practising for two minutes at a time. Also this is to be practised mostly in the morning or throughout the day but not too close to bedtime as it may cause restlessness.

Personally, I like to do this in the Morning Sun, with a little sungazing (mostly with eyes closed or very partially opened) and use it as a time to connect with the Universal spiral of life as it is manifest to us. I also use it in my warm up and cool downs, and during workouts to maintain postural integrity whilst lifting heavy weights, and also to muster up "full-body" functional strength rather than muscular force alone. That is because, over time, Zhan Zhuang teaches one to incorporate into movement the deep muscle fibres that are not under conscious control, but are under the control of the subconscious. It teaches to incorporate the skeletal structure and diaphragm pressure on the thoracic cavity also.

The implications and applications of Zhan Zhuang are so extensive that I couldn't possibly write it all in one article, so it is my intention to expand on this in more articles to come.

Please feel free to comment below






 

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Meditation - The Art of Controlling One's Own Mind



IF YOU DON'T CONTROL YOUR OWN MIND, THEN SOMEONE ELSE WILL...

The mind is our first and last line of defense against the powers that seek to control and manipulate us. In this day and age, advertising, mass media, politicians and their corporate masters constantly bombard us with all their lies and distractions from knowing our true selves purposes. At this time it is more important than ever to take back control of our own destinies - beginning with the mind. Our minds must come to a point of harmony with the emotional self, through quieting the constant thought processes for a deeper understanding of our existence.


What I am seeking to accomplish with this blog is to communicate to a greater audience the tools, both practical and physical, that I have acquired over the years to fortify my own self against all the challenges we face in our modern era. And I shall begin with the foundation of all these practices - meditation.


My first exposure to meditation in my mid teens was Transcendental Meditation. This involves simply mentally repeating a mantra. I have since abandoned this as I believe the goal of meditation is mental silence. There have been times when I have wanted to walk out of meditation classes because the instructor talked too much, and made way too much use of visualisations and chanting. There was even one particular teacher who admitted to having a "monkey mind" - which reminds me of the saying "if you can't do it then just teach it". Anyway, here is a step by step method that works for me.


Preparations:
It is very handy to have a quiet place to practice. Attempting to block out the sounds of a next door neighbour renovating is truly an advanced technique. Also, one useful aid that I have in my possession is an indoor water feature (simply a large bowl with some granite plates, stones and a water pump) that creates the sound of running water. This type of white noise can help one to achieve a state of mental silence, also these water features are known to emit negative ions into the air. Meditating by waterfalls is common in some Japanese traditions - well this is the closest thing that I can have to a waterfall on my coffee table.


Sitting posture can vary from individual. The purpose of yoga postures is to help the yogi to sit in lotus posture for extended periods of time. Personally, if I attempt to sit in this position my legs will eventually go numb (I do lift weights, after all) cutting the practice short. Sitting upright in a cushioned chair is just fine.


The Practice:


1. Sit comfortably, eyes gazing ahead, bringing your attention to the dantian. You may bring your hands to this area (just below the navel) to help.


2.Bring your attention to your breathing. Feel it flow to your lower abdomen. Some beginners may want to count the breaths in cycles of four but as you begin to learn to focus your attention you can begin to simply listen to your own body. Do not attempt to change it's rhythm, but simply listen.


3. Begin to slowly lower your gaze to a point on the floor just in front of you. Slowly lower your eyelids until they are all but closed.


4. Closing your eyes now, listen to the sounds around you. Pass no judgment on what you hear, just listen. Do not try to identify the sounds (this is where the water feature comes in handy).


5. Bring your attention to your body and slightly adjust your posture if necessary to be comfortable.  Usually this can involve the alignment of head, spine, and pelvis. A more advanced technique is to focus on balancing the breath flowing through both nostrils equally, but I shall leave that for a later post.


6. On each exhalation feel your shoulders relax gradually backward, downward and outward.


7. Now there should be no movement except for your breathing. Listen to your breathing, attentive to it's rhythm.


8. As you relax more, your breathing should become longer and deeper. Now take time to remember to smile. Can you feel the pulsation of your heartbeat? If so, listen to this and feel the life force throughout you.


9. If any distracting thoughts arise in your head, do not attempt to force them out, but simply observe them, without judgment or analysis, and release them. If you become really distracted then go back to listening to your environment, then your breath, and your heartbeat.


When you are ready to come out of the meditation, wiggle your fingers and toes and slowly open your eyes, take some big breaths and stretch a little. Take some time to move around slowly before going about your day.


Meditation can be an excellent way to rejuvenate and refresh the mind, and also as a way to manage stress or anxiety. These are the most  obvious benefits of the practise. Over time, however, one can gain so much more by understanding one's role in the Universe by coming into a state of harmony, in which by being in the ever-present, we can then understand our life's purpose. By beginning each day with this time of introspection as we greet the sunrise, each day's business can increasingly bring us into alignment with our universal role.

The above article is an updated and edited version of an article written by the same author, the author of this blog.