Friday, November 16, 2012

The form of the substance

To understand the purpose of this discussion, it is worth remembering a few simple concepts of Taoist metaphysics.

Yang, volatile and intangible, can only remain stable in a manifestation (like a human) if the yin and structural materials is proportionally present: basically, I can only put in a bucket (yin) the volume of liquid (yang) that fills this space. A low or limited yin only permits a little stable yang: the body (yin) should be worked in order to hold the energy (yang).

The structural (yin) must be leak free for the yang (function) to be at its maximum potential. The physical (yin) holds the spirit (yang); the essence (yin) is the root of the mind (yang).

It is said in a text of the fourth century that the internal force is not trained, it only depends on the work of the external form: energy is abundant when the form is just.

We give a completely fair importance between the three facets of our human incarnation: the physical, the breath and the spirit (jing, qi and shen): it is a real specificity of the Taoist arts and Chinese thought.

To develop strength of mind, it is necessary to have eliminated the limitations and bottlenecks of the physical form, otherwise these will be the reasons for the stagnation in our practice. The ability to develop and maintain the energy (the breath) generated during the exercises depends directly on the state of strength, rootedness and relaxation of our body ... The yin is the root of the yang.

To ensure this, we are advised to work the form to such a level that the substance is there: the qualities of the physical form will allow the qualities of the energetic function.

What this means in simple terms?

My body shape should be conducted towards perfection and this search guarantees me abundant energy. My physical movements must be trained in a continuous search for strength, rootedness and relaxation to accommodate the inner strength, the strength of qi. My movements and forms must be beautiful and must give an impression of strength in my actions!

That is why it is good to work complex and detailed forms: it is easier to fix and see its flaws. When I work a form too stripped or even static positions, it is very difficult to see what is wrong: these forms are ideal when the level of practice is already high. And in general, those who have more work to do on their body form are those who choose a simplified form: they can thus ignore their flaws.

The work of the forms of Taijiquan or Baguazhang are ideal for seeing and correcting our imperfections: it suffices to look to see them. The work of the old forms (daxuan) or of the static positions do not allow this: it is easier not to make any progress and stay in a comfortable mediocrity.

However, after a mastery of the physical qualities, the work of complex forms is an obstacle to energy work. To continually evolve and be able to correct oneself easily and see our flaws every day, it is important to keep a work of the complex forms: the constant improvement of one's body shape allows a continuous and stable evolution.

The sublimated Yin will enable to "keep" the yang: the daily exercises will be a great source of vitality that will be kept in the trained body.

In order to progress, to correct one's yin, it is important to see one's faults and the complex forms (Taijiquan, Baguazhang, water boxing...) allow this.

It is also possible to hide behind advanced forms and thus go nowhere.

In the perfection of the dominated external lies the root of true internal practice.

That's it.

Friday, November 2, 2012

We must try to be happy, if only to lead by example

Prévert was right.

The spiritual path has only one purpose: to find true happiness in the discovery of our nature and in harmony with our world. Happiness can only come from within these voids filled by a continuous and complete introspection.

We need to explore every aspect of our nature, to look closely at how we function, to firmly affirm our values ​​and commit in our world to prevail in our evolution.

The work of our body, in order to sustain us during our lives, seeks to strengthen our roots in the world and to provide a simple and fluid life.

The breathing work enables us to acquire more vitality in order to live well and  to be available to our lives and the people who fill it.

The energy work gives us the opportunity to interact with our universe, to make an exchange with every breath with the forces of our world.

The emotional work gives us an emotional stability that makes us available to our lives and to others, a stability which allows us to calm the tensions of everyday life.

The work of the mind is a royal road to spirituality, an education that teaches us the workings of our ego and of our mental, a possible door towards "the one we really are."

The whole of this work, this Way; is only there to make us  the "most ideal human that we can be.". Bringing us closer to this ideal, the work of development and evolution brings us true happiness, the deep joy that is inherent in our True Nature.

We live in extraordinary times where for the first time since the beginning of humanity, all the  traditions and all the spiritual teachings are available to us: we need to honor that chance by our own research and our efforts to become accomplished human beings.

Everyone can see that today we can no longer ignore our spiritual needs, even if it is a philosophy of life or a civil moral. Religion is a choice, we can choose how to celebrate and give thanks to life, but we must realize that we can not ignore the spiritual aspect that is within us.

Happiness is within our reach and nothing prevents us to reach it , but for that we need to make efforts.

This research allows us to have an appropriate behavior with people around us, our family and give us the opportunity to make real choices in our lives: this research can also be a way of philosophy or morality, but we need to take this path. Voltaire also told us "it is polite to be happy" ... and this is a reality for the world around us: our joy creates a peaceful and pleasant world , while complaints and whining rotten our universe.

Let's go together towards a world where personal and individual development, is the mold for a comprehensive and profound change: we are responsible for this world and what is happening, we must all participate.

The Way is a clear plan of what to do, in the action and reality, after choosing one's level of participation. Go towards a Way, a philosophical tradition or a spirituality, seek and find it, do not let your life slip. For those who are already in this process, it is time to do more, to learn to make choices and deal with what is happening around you.

We must try to be happy, if only to help the world, to give the example that changes everything.