I just spent four and a half days with Master Li and 34 practitioners studying Sheng Zhen Gong. What a great time. We practiced mostly Origin of the Heart. Click here for a link to the beginning of this form.
Dr Stephen Hosea was there. Click here for a video of him talking about Sheng Zhen Gong its benefits.
Until I am the Buddha herself I will occasionally feel anger. And that’s OK.
The practice of opening the heart with Sheng Zhen Gong will overcome that anger every time.
I was at an event where the theme was love, unconditional love. After a day or so there was a question/answer session with the main speaker during which a woman expressed that she didn’t feel loved or loving. I had a hard time imagining how that could be at this point in the event. I was feeling all the love at that moment. Later on in an informal conversation with a small group of participants I noted that when I heard her say this I didn’t know whether to feel sad or angry. Someone replied with some force “Oh! Never angry!” I was a little taken aback. She seemed to be angry at my anger or at least judgmental about my being judgmental. There didn’t seem to be any recognition about the inconsistency of this. I was aware that, at an event about unconditional love, anger was an inappropriate response. I was acknowledging this. I was confused at my own feelings. There was no further discussion and the subject quickly changed.
There is a difference between feeling anger, expressing anger and acting on anger. We need to acknowledge when we feel anger. We should probably even examine from where that anger comes. That is how we change and grow. My short lived feeling of anger at the unloving/unloved woman came from a feeling that she was being manipulative in order to receive more attention. Since I know I can’t be manipulated like that against my will, it makes it easier to let go of the anger. Holding onto anger doesn’t hurt the person we are angry at, it only hurts ourselves. But denying or repressing feelings of anger is not the answer. Forgiveness liberates us.
I did get to know the woman who expressed her feelings about love and I realized she was as conflicted as I was about her statement. She just felt safe to express her feelings and isn’t that what unconditional love is supposed to do – make us feel safe? She was feeling the love but maybe she just didn’t recognize it.
The picture is of a Buddha Guardian head that I took at the Buddhist Temple in Nara Japan in 2010.
Isn’t this picture calming? I spent 10 days in this room learning more Sheng Zhen Gong from Master Li Junfeng. It was a spectacular experience of qi gathering and movement, but more importantly heart opening. I will write more about this but I may take some time to absorb the experience. For now, I will just say it was great!!
I have this wonderful, wise qigong friend, Francie. She says the greatest things. She wrote a few days ago on Facebook –
“I choose happiness every time. Once upon a time I wouldn’t or couldn’t. How am I able to choose happiness in the midst of all that happens to me and others? For me, a steady Sheng Zhen practice has helped. Meditation has helped. My mind is stiller and can see more clearly the transitory and the permanent, which is change. It’s impossible really to say how this happened, and it doesn’t mean that I don’t have feelings of sadness, anger, fear . . . these feelings just don’t rule me anymore. They are more like companions along for the ride.”
I’m not quite there yet but I’m on my way and frequently those bad feelings are just along for the ride.
She has a way with words.
As I have noted on this blog before, I am a fan of metaphor.
It works for me! It’s the right energy work for me. It compliments my acupuncture. I feel better when I practice regularly. I love the people I know through qigong. I love Master Li.
I started Sheng Zhen Qigong when my acupuncturist recommended qigong and a local teacher, Kimberly, taught Sheng Zhen Gong. Kimberly was great! The gentle movements of the Sheng Zhen form were pretty and felt pleasing. The other students seemed to be having fun too. The room was filled with really good feelings. It was apparent that everyone had different abilities, yet the movements seemed right for each one of us. The climate in the room was supportive, not competitive at all.
When I started Sheng Zhen Gong my mood was a little anxious and sad. Tai chi (a martial arts form of qigong) which I had practiced for many years before was great for my balance when I practiced. And had helped a bit with anxiety. It still is a quick fix when my balance gets a little off, but that is rare now. What the qigong did for my moods was amazing. The longer I took the class and practiced the better I felt. In the years that I have practiced and studied I have also had some pain problems and also vertigo. Qigong helps with both of those problems. It also keeps me flexible and strong.
I continue to train annually with Master Li Junfeng. After each 10 day training I feel so clear and relaxed, ready to tackle any challenge.
The spiritual benefits are for another blog post. But the feelings of openheartedness that result from this practice are clearly connected to being relaxed and happy.
Check the Classes page for my schedule. Or you can contact me and we can get together anytime. Introductory classes are always free. I would love a group class. If you have space, I have time.
I feel inspired to write a bit about water. I might even say compelled. It was on my blog list in a vague way, but circumstances kept bringing the theme to the top. I seem attracted to water metaphors in picking quotes to inspire me in my blog.
My second blog post, Bad at Meditation, referred to thoughts that interrupt meditation as jetsam on the river. In preparing the most recent photo challenge blog, Home is…, I realized that I think of water as home or at least a large part of home. When I refer to water I tend to refer to it in a natural form – ocean, river, pond. When I practice qigong the movements frequently flow like I am in the water or I am water.
Recently, I read an article that talked about being like water. It suggested being like water to adapt to our environment just as water takes the shape of the vessel it is in. I like the “be like water” idea but I’m not as attracted to the idea of taking the shape of the vessel. I do understand the meaning but it doesn’t resonate with me.
I prefer this quote from a Sheng Zhen booklet Messages of Love. The poem is entitled Stilling the Mind. My favorite part is
Do not keep agitating
The waters of your mind.
Do not hold what you do
Dropping it over and over
Into the clear waters of your mind
Endlessly making ripples
Let go of what you do
Let it go like a pebble dropping, sinking
To the bottom of the lake.
If you do not chase it
If you do not plunge in after it
The ripples of it’s passing
Will once again return to stillness.
This is the kind of metaphor that works for me. “The ripples of it’s passing/Will once again return to stillness” is so clear to me. Different metaphors resonate with different people. Tell me the ones that resonate with you.