Concept of Qigong

Concept of Qigong

Concept of Qigong

‘…training mind to direct qi to produce phenomena and healing result…’

Qi is the vital energy or the life force on the inside and the outside of the body. Gong means to make it work and to produce energy. Qigong means practitioner training mind to direct Qi on the inside and the outside of the obdy to produce phenomena and healing result.

 

Being an art of self-training both body and mind as well as sending forth external Qi, Qigong created by Chinese people in the long process of life, labor and fight against disease and aging, has the function of preventing and curing disease; protecting and strengthening health and longevity.

 

Qigong is an art and skill to train Qi to be exact. It is a method by which the practitioner gets his/her physical and mental self-exercise through bringing into plays his/her subjective initiative. To achieve this goal, the practitioner must associate his/her mind, postures and breathing and act on the whole organism. On the other hand, it actively self-regulates the functional activity of the organism and maintains a dynamic balance. It enables the body to produce an energy-storing reaction, reducing energy consumption and increasing energy accumulation producing the effect of regulating yin and yang, smoothing the meridian channel and emitting external Qi.

 

Qigong is part of Wu Chi (Wu Ji) cultivation. It is a way to produce elixir and it eventually leads to immortality.

Entering the Tao- The Long Journey Home- Part Two

Entering the Tao- The Long Journey Home- Part Two

Losing the Way- The Rise of Ego

 

  1. The Mind

The mind is the faculty of the soul.  It receives the sights and sounds of the world ‘out there,’ as they come ‘in here’ through the eyes. We put all those sights and sounds on a screen of our mind in here. It is in the mind where we create thoughts, ideas, and images, which we radiate from ‘in here’ out into the world ‘out there’, through our attitudes and actions.

Over time, we start to become attached to and trapped in the ideas and images that we have created in our mind. Attachment to any idea or image creates fear. Fear is love distorted by attachment. The vibration of the energy of love is ‘distorted’ on the way out by the object [image or idea] to which the self has become attached. Thus, we experience different feelings of fear, such as worry, tension, anxiety, and panic.

One minute you are able to feel open and loving towards someone, the next minute you create hate towards them when they do not do, say, or be, exactly the way YOU  want。The vibration of love that you were giving one minute turns into hate-fear only moments later, because you have an image in your mind of how you would like them to do/say/be.

It’s as if you ‘shrink-wrap’ yourself in the image/idea in the mind. You ‘shrink’ to the size of the image and you are ‘wrapped’ in the image, which means you are attached to the image. You expect them to be the way you have created them in your mind. When they do not live up to that image, when your expectation of them is not fulfilled, you get fearful, angry and upset.

It’s your attachment to that image that is converting the vibration of your energy from love to fear/anger. If you can drop the attachment, meaning, if you can break away from and dissolve the image on your mind, you can return naturally to the heart of your being. Once the attachments come down, the energy you give is restored to its original and highest vibration–which is love.

 

  1. The Power of Ego

But this is not so easy, because the ego is established the moment you attach to a false sense of self and does not want to release its false sense of identity. The ego attaches to what you are not—and this is the root cause of all suffering. It attaches to an idea/image/belief; it is not connected to the soul. It is not unconditionally loving, but ruthlessly attached…to an illusion!

As we attempt to detach from somebody or something, we learn one of the most discomfiting and painful of truths—attachment is the source of ALL of our emotional suffering. It is not the attachment to a person or thing that causes our suffering; it is the idea/belief/image or memory that we attach to that person or thing that causes our suffering.

 

  1. The True Cause of Suffering

It is the EGO and MIND that cause ALL of our emotional suffering. Pain is compulsory, but suffering is optional. Suffering is a choice. Pain is what we feel when something happens to the body we occupy. Pain is physical and suffering is mental-emotional. Pain is a signal your body sends to your brain. The message is you need to change something within the energies of your physical form.

Suffering is what we create at a mental and emotional level in ‘response’ to what happens to our body, and to what we perceive is happening in and to the world around us. Our body could be in pain but we could choose not to suffer.

Suffering is an emotional message that says you have lost control of your perceptions, thoughts and feelings, and if you want not to suffer you need to change the way you ‘perceive and think’ about what is going on around you.

Suffering is a sign that we have forgotten that no one else is responsible for our thoughts and emotions that we create and feel. “It’s always me and not them who make me think and feel this way”, is an insight that can ultimately allow you to free yourself from all suffering- if you want to!

 

  1. Misconceptions

Is it natural to suffer, is it human nature, and is it what makes us human, or is it a misconception? Misidentification, meaning we do not see who we really are, is the root cause of our suffering. All suffering is human created; we are not helpless victims.

We can use our emotional suffering to form the basis of our sense of who we are. They can range from a quiet feeling of uneasiness at one end to states of extreme stress that might include anything from deep sorrow, insomnia, to rage to terror.

 

  1. Attachment

Attachment happens when we lose our self in what is on the mind. We don’t even realize we are doing it. We then identify with what we are attaching to and that is the moment the ego is born. At this point, we let an idea, image or belief to shape who we ‘think’ we are.

 

  1. The Birth of Ego

The ego arises when we let a false sense of identity- through an idea/image/ or belief shape us. At this point, we are no longer the ‘free spirit’ or soul, and we become trapped in a mental form.

 

  1. Ego Defined

EGO is the attachment to and identification with an image/idea/concept/belief in your mind. All emotions arise from the ego.

Some of the signs that we are letting a false sense of identity- ego- rule us are, feelings of being:

-small

-inadequate

-threatened

-fearful

-saddened

-stressed

-angry

-arrogant

-feelings of superiority/inferiority

Because of these ‘unhealthy’ emotions, we suffer. As such, the ego, and the misidentification of who we really are is the underlying cause of all dis-ease, all suffering.

 

  1. Cause of Suffering

Ego is not the direct cause of pain, which is natural, but it is the direct cause of suffering, which is unnatural. But it can indirectly cause pain, as with cancer. Emotions and the emotional instability we feel as a result [energy in motion], is the price we pay today for our attachments [misidentifications] yesterday. Emotions arise within consciousness when the self becomes attached to what is on the mind.

 

  1. What is the Soul?

The Soul is generally linked with the Consciousness, the Self, and Being. They all refer to the “I” that says, “I am”, as distinct from the body that we occupy.

 

  1. Spirit

While the energy of the physical body is what we call ‘matter’, the energy of the soul/self is what is sometimes called ‘spirit’. One is visible and tangible, and the other is invisible and intangible. Spirit is the being that I am/you are.

You don’t have a soul; you are the soul. You don’t have a consciousness; you are consciousness. You don’t have a spirit hovering around you; you are the spiritual being that animates and radiates from the form you occupy.

The immune system of the soul is within you, the soul! It cannot be separated from you. It manifests as ‘a specific movements of consciousness’.

When the immune system of the soul springs into action, it manifests in the three movements of consciousness, which are:

Awareness

Realization

Transformation

The first movement is awareness. Awareness comes when you have an uneasy feeling- you are AWARE- that something is not right, but you can’t put your finger on the cause. The second movement- realization- comes when you REALIZE that you are going in the wrong direction. The third movement- transformation- comes when you ‘change’, TRANSFORM, the direction in which you are traveling. You become somebody-something else, and go somewhere else.

 

  1. The Soul’s Reaction to Dis- ease

When the soul reacts to dis-ease, you first become AWARE of the dis-ease. Then you look into and REALIZE the ‘casual belief’. Lastly, you look deeper and realize ‘truth’ and you TRANSFORM your state of being.

 

  1. Belief- the Greatest Virus

Belief is the virus that infects and disrupts our consciousness, i.e., our soul/self. ALL dis-eases of consciousness are caused by viruses of different beliefs and our conscious and unconscious ‘attachment’ to those beliefs. Belief is not a truth.

 

  1. The Truth Will Set You Free

Only the realization of the TRUTH can free us from our attachment to those beliefs and free us from suffering, which will cure us from our dis-ease.

The three phases of the soul’s immune system- Awareness, Realization and Transformation- are the three components of the healing process.

The first phase of the healing process take place when you notice- realize- there is dis-ease occurring within your consciousness i.e. within you! This means being aware of anything from a quiet sense of uneasiness to negative and unhealthy thoughts and feelings about anything or anyone.

Being in this state we know- are  aware of- what is going on inside of us, what is going on within our consciousness, within our self- the emotions within our consciousness.

 

  1. Unhealthy Beliefs

When we don’t avoid the emotions that we feel, and look into and through those emotions, we ‘see’ exactly which unhealthy belief sits behind the emotion and which is causing the dis-ease. Seeing the underlying belief, which is shaping all the thoughts and emotions, and being AWARE of it, is the first step in getting well.

The second stage is seeing through the feelings of dis-ease and realizing the ‘unhealthy belief’ that has ‘infected’ our consciousness-soul- and which is shaping these unhealthy thoughts and emotions. REALIZATION in this context means seeing, and realizing, the exact belief within our consciousness that is causing whatever dis-ease [emotion] we are feeling at any given moment.

 

  1. Emotions

All our dis-eases of the soul have symptoms called ‘EMOTIONS’. All emotion is a form of suffering. There are no positive or negative emotions. There is just emotion, or not. Emotion is not to be confused with states of being. For example, Love is not an emotion; it’s a state of being. Authentic happiness is not an emotion, either; it’s a state of being. And pure joy is not an emotion; it’s a state of being.

Emotion happens when the energy of our consciousness is distorted and distracted from its highest vibration, which is its natural state. The highest vibration is love and it radiates from the soul.

Examples of distorting the energy of our consciousness are if we believe- have the belief- that life is about survival and only the strong survive. This could engender the emotion of fear that we are not strong enough or we do not have enough money to survive.

 

  1. Rediscovering Truth

Transformation takes place within the self through the rediscovery of what is ‘true’. Only the realization of ‘the truth’ can overpower and replace an ‘unhealthy belief’ that is always the cause of dis-ease.

 

  1. Healing 

True healing means restoring the energy of consciousness to its ‘true’ state or vibration. When this happens feelings of dis-ease are replaced by feelings such as peace, contentment, compassion and cooperation, and intentions such as caring and understanding.

These are emotionless movements of consciousness which shape attitudes and behaviors that create harmonious connections and healthy relationships with others.

 

  1. Perception Shift

When a truth is realized by the self, it produces a shift in perception, which in turn changes our thoughts and actions. Each of these realizations then has the power to change our state of being and the consequent behavior. They have power to heal the soul, which means to eliminate the many kinds of dis-ease that we are habitually creating and feeling within our soul.

When your consciousness is in states of peace, love, joy, it is the energy of [the real] YOU- the Soul- vibrating at a certain frequency. As you do, you will ‘feel’ it first yourself. As you do, you will be able to vibrate that feeling/vibration outwards.

When you are in a loving state of being, you will be able to adapt that energy of love into perhaps compassion for one person or caring for another or patience towards another.  So you FEEL the STATE you are in and can alter your feeling at will within that state.

To be able to alter your feelings, to adjust the way you use the energy of you, then you need to remain free within your consciousness; free means non-attached.

 

  1. The Core States

The CORE STATES are states that are prior to any emotion; they are [pure] states of being such as love, peace and joy.

  • A Loving State

In a LOVING ‘state’, when you are being loving [not wanting love], then you are in your most natural state of consciousness. You are at peace within yourself and giving of your energy.

  • A Joyful State

This is not an excited state or an extroverted state; it’s quiet, like subtle song singing in your heart.  You ‘feel’ this way because you are in a state of joy; because there is no emotion in the way.

Most of the time when we use the word ‘love’, we really mean ‘attachment ‘ and ‘emotion,’ which means it will be conditional and relative. It is false love. For us to give pure love we must be free, otherwise it is not unconditional -and real- love. Free in this sense means ‘unattached.’

As soon as we attach our self to somebody or something, we are no longer free and our ‘love’ cannot be pure and unconditional. It is relative.

 

  1. Beliefs, Attachments, Suffering

Beliefs are not chemicals; they are ideas and concepts from which we have made into forms as our ‘formed’ belief system. The effect of our attachments to this ‘belief programming’ is much emotional suffering and confusion, or the cause of All our stress and unhappiness.

An attachment precedes an emotion; attachment happens first and the emotion follows. For example, when our favorite team loses or another team loses, do we feel the same emotion? We only feel an emotion to that which we are attached- like when our favorite team wins or loses.

 

  1. Loss of Freedom

As soon as you attach yourself to something [something, some person] then you are no longer free. If whatever you are attached to is damaged or threatened in any way, that’s when you lose the core state of being, and you generate a disturbance within you called emotion.

 

  1. The Main Emotions

The three main emotions in our lives are:

  1. Fear
  2. Anger
  3. Sadness

When we are creating and feeling any of these emotions we are no longer in a ‘core state’ of being. Our being is in a sorry state! That means an emotional state.

  • Sadness

SADNESS is what we usually call unhappiness. It always follows the belief that we have lost something. Sometimes we imagine we are going to lose something and we feel sad- in advance!

Sadness is a consequence, of the belief in possession and ownership. First, we are attached to the belief that things and people are MINE! Then we are attached to the actual things and people.

But the TRUTH [not a belief] is that NOTHING is ever mine because everything comes and goes. This is a fact of life- and why the pursuit of this kind of happiness ends in suffering and tears. Forms of sadness are melancholy, depression, disappointment, sentimentality and hopelessness.

  • Fear

FEAR is associated with the fear of ‘future’ loss. It is never the fear of the unknown. You cannot fear what you do not know. It is ALWAYS the fear that you are going to lose what you know or what you believe you have. It’s not the tangible things we fear losing; it’s the intangible things- and what losing the tangible things mean and represent to us, emotionally- that we fear losing.

Forms of fear are anxiety [fearfulness about something that may be lost now or in the near future], tension, worry, panic, and terror.

  • Anger 

ANGER is the disturbance that we create when we believe someone else is to blame for our loss in the past, or that stands in the way of our desires and will therefore, be responsible for our imagined loss in the future!

ANGER usually follows sadness as we project our suffering onto another person or an event, both of which we cannot control. ANGER is the currency of conflict. Forms of anger are irritation, frustration, resentment, annoyance, hostility, bitterness, spite, loathing and scorn.

All forms of anger arise from the belief that ‘I am not getting or keeping what I want.’ That is then translated into our heads as ‘you are responsible for my unhappiness therefore, you have hurt me.’

No one hurts you. They may have hurt your body, but not YOU. They hurt your ego perhaps, but not YOU. Only the realization of that inner reality can free us from being infected by the current global contagion of angriness, sadness and fearfulness felt worldwide.

  • Guilt

GUILT- is a mix of sadness, anger and fear. I believe I have done something wrong and I am therefore bad, so I am SAD at losing my self-image based on ‘I am good.’ I then become ANGRY with myself for doing so. And I FEAR someone will find out and then I will lose my reputation in the eyes of others.

You ‘will feel’ each of these emotions as they arise, as you create them. But no one else is responsible for their creation. While each of these emotions is flaring in your consciousness, you are helpless to choose and change what you feel.

Only when the emotion ‘dies down’, and is no longer present in your consciousness, can you choose and change your feelings. The more self- aware you become, the more you will see, feel and know this for yourself.

 

  1. The Great Liberator 

Transformation is the liberator from ‘unnatural’ forms that the self has created and adopted within the mind. It is when we are able to overcome the false identification of ego and its attachments.

You start to ‘come out’ of [false] beliefs; as you do you are transforming. You are returning yourself to your true form as a free spirit, no longer trapped in anything on your mind. This is also the moment when the unhealthy emotions of fear and anger, start to fade away.

 

  1. Transcendence

The action of transcending form takes place within consciousness. It is the moment ‘the self’ stops being shaped by whatever form [image/idea, belief] is on the mind. The self comes out of the mind and thereby rises above [transcends] what is on the mind.

The freedom of the self is restored as it returns to its original form as the radiant, invisible, undistorted energy of consciousness and soul. The feeling is one of peace and freedom. The true intention of the self, giving of one’s self without condition, without wanting something in return, is restored.

All the actions are felt and seen by others to be kind and benevolent…at ALL times.

 

  1. Outward sign

The main outward sign of transformation is the absence of emotion and restoration of our capacity to respond creatively instead of react emotionally.

So when someone breaks an expensive thing, you respond with peace and forgiveness- because you do not attach yourself and its image to the things and people anymore; the thing is a thing and you are you.

 

  1. Pure Love

When you are peaceful and forgiving, you are not emotional, you are at peace [with yourself] and extending love [of yourself] as forgiveness of the other. You are pure… LOVE

 

ILLNESS AND HEALING AND MASTER NICHOLAS’ WAY

ILLNESS AND HEALING AND MASTER NICHOLAS’ WAY

Master Nicholas is a Qigong healer, which is an energy and spirit-based healing modality originating from China and based on the concept of Qi [“chee”], or life force, that animates all living things. In order to remain healthy, one must balance this energy [Qi] and ensure that it flows freely and naturally throughout the body.

Disease occurs when the flow of this vital energy is blocked [stagnant] or unbalanced. Energy therapies like Qigong place great emphasis on regulating the Qi, breath, mind and body so as to balance and direct energy and spirit within the body, to activate self-healing, and create homeostasis.

Master Nicholas has spent many years living as a hermit in the mountains of China working on and cultivating his own vital energy and life force [Qi] and learning how to channel it in order to help others who are in need. He has studied Tai Chi/Qigong with great Masters and teachers, all for the purpose of increasing his ability to help and educate others to learn about and facilitate their own Qi and its freedom to flow naturally and unimpeded. After many years of study, practice and healing he is convinced that most disease comes about as a result of blocked [stagnant] Qi in the body, or an unbalanced flow of Qi circulating in the system.

In Chinese medicine, there is a saying: “Where there is pain there is blocked communication. Where there is open communication there is no pain.” Pain for the Chinese comes from both a physical and mental origin. The primary purpose of any of the healing arts is to maintain a free and flowing communication within the body and mind. Qi is the leading facilitator of body-mind communication. Qi follows the mind; what you think and concentrate upon directs the flow of Qi. If the mind is calm and clear, the flow of Qi will be calm and clear too and, as a result, the communication between mind and body will be free flowing and naturally healthy.

But if the mind is agitated or depressed, the flow of energy will be agitated and depressed respectively, negatively affecting the body and its health and wellbeing. By the same token, if the body organs are sick this will affect the blood and Qi flow, which will in turn affect the states of one’s mental and emotional health and well being.

It is impossible to separate one from the other; each forms an inextricable link in the matrix of life, in which all is holistically connected and dependent upon the other. If the Qi is in any way blocked or imbalanced, it will affect the internal flow of Qi, which will adversely affect the internal organs and, consequently, all forms of communication. Nothing can be seen in isolation or separate from the whole—neither from a somatic level nor a psychological one.

As far as Master Nicholas is concerned, not only is blocked communication the cause of all illness and disorder, but all healing techniques and therapies should be judged on their ability to enhance communication, whether within ourselves, with others, or in our relationship to the world.

As he sees it, inherently blocked communication is blocked energy and blocked energy arises from either or both the mind and physical body. Whether the source [of illness] is mental or physical trauma, habitual dietary indiscretions, an emotion such as fear, living outside of nature’s natural environment and rhythms, the day-to-day stresses in one’s life, or something else, ultimately an energetic blockage is created. Unless resolved, blockages do in time become more problematic and, as a result, disease ensues.

Pain is the main indicator that an energy blockage exists. Pain can be very subtle in nature, such as a feeling of anxiety, worry or mild distress, or it can be very physical and extremely debilitating, such as the pain from a fractured bone or wound. Pain is the mind’s and body’s way of drawing awareness to an area in need of healing.

But sometimes the awareness of pain becomes suppressed when survival is at stake or when the survival instinct becomes distorted by chronic unconscious emotional patterns such as fear and shame. These emotional patterns are usually potent and habitual. Whenever energy is blocked, there probably exists an underlying feeling or thought in need of releasing. So making a person aware is an effective form of refining and integrating the mind with the body and an essential component of the healing process.

According to Master Nicholas it is the person who gets sick first; the body follows suit. Thus, it is the healer’s responsibility to look into and investigate the person first and get to know the ‘root’ cause of the disease and then to treat those affected areas that are consequently blocked or unbalanced whatever their origin, be it psychological, physical, emotional, or spiritual.

As he sees it, it is impossible to look at and diagnose somebody without looking at the ‘whole’ person. Rather than reducing a cause of disease down to its singular symptom, or location, he believes it is imperative to look at and analyze a person in his or her entirety, which one can only do by looking at all aspects of a person, i.e. his/her emotional, mental and physical well being and how they are influencing and impacting each other.

But not all responsibility for healing should fall on the shoulders of the healer. Master Nicholas also maintains that the patients have a great responsibility in healing themselves as well. The patient should not passively submit to treatment, but instead should be an active participant in the healing process. A person can actively participate by focusing upon and integrating the mental, emotional, or physical impressions that arise in a healing session.

By consciously becoming aware of the mental, emotional and physical impressions, followed by their acceptance and integration, the underlying blockages can be completely released. Generally this does not happen all at once, but rather over time while focusing on the particular blockage. For unless the underlying cause or pattern can be discovered and integrated into the patient’s awareness and as a result his/her patterns of behavior and habits are changed, one can expect a reappearance of the same or even more intensified blockage and disease.

In Chinese martial arts it is said that spirit leads the mind, the mind leads the Qi, the Qi leads the breath, the breath leads the body, and the body leads the spirit. If one is to be healthy, each one must be balanced and properly working in unity with the others. But if something goes wrong and the sequence and balance are disturbed, then there is a communication breakdown, which is usually followed by disease and illness. So if one wants good health, then one must be aware of the interaction of the above and do everything to maintain and regulate their equilibrium. For this reason, the healing process requires different treatment for different illnesses.

Master Nicholas offers an integral approach to health, the understanding of illness and restoration of wellbeing, as well as the relationship between mind and body. In practice, this means that he incorporates energetic theory, numerology, and acupressure, hands-on Qigong healing techniques, Tai Chi and Qigong exercises, diet, natural therapeutics and strong intuitive skills.

Basically speaking, his healing focuses on removing blockages externally and internally. Once removed, the qi can flow uninterruptedly and the patient can heal himself naturally. These practices are primarily adapted from traditional Chinese medicine, internal alchemy, spirituality and ancient sources.

Entering the Tao- The Long Journey Home-Part One

Entering the Tao- The Long Journey Home-Part One

“Just as a candle cannot exist with a flame, man cannot live without a spiritual life”. —Lord Buddha

WHAT IS SELF

Lord Buddha said, “You can conquer armies, but the greatest conquest of all is the conquest over yourself.” What did he mean? Why do we have to conquer our self? We live in a world that is all about aggrandizing the self, that does everything to exalt the self, how is it harming us? What is the self?

According to spiritual traditions, there are two manifestations of self- a material form and an immaterial one. The material form occupies the body and governs our concerns on earth in the mundane world. It is controlled by the personality and the physical – rational and logical- side of the mind.

The immaterial self is otherworldly. It is considered the energy that occupies the material form. It is controlled by the spirit, conscience, and the intuitive side of the mind and it governs our concerns about evolving spiritually and with returning to the Source, or going ‘home.’

As the spiritual self is entirely non-physical, we cannot ‘scientifically’ prove our existence as a being of consciousness and ‘no thing’ else. But we can prove it to ourselves by becoming ‘aware’ that we are the being within the form.

Some people in the scientific world may refer to this ethereal consciousness as the ‘ghost’ in the body/machine, since there seems to be something, albeit immaterial, that animates the body. But what is it? What brings the body- the machine- to life? What enlivens the body and keeps it alive? In the spiritual traditions, this is considered the spirit of man.

 

Spirit Consciousness

In most spiritual traditions, that ‘ghost’ is understood to be the soul or spirit, the invisible, intangible aspect of Self, internally situated in the brain. It is the spirit consciousness, but it’s not the brain itself. It is said to reside in an area close to the pituitary gland.

Realization of the spirit is helped by meditation and contemplation. In a state of spirit consciousness you remain aware that you don’t have a spirit; you ‘are’ the spirit! You are not the body; you are the animator of the body.

The self of the body/mind sees you in terms of the body you occupy, your ideas, your values, your dreams and your desires, all of which are happening in the material world.

But the spirit self feels lost and out of sorts, because it has no such ideas and desires and, as such, does not feel that it belongs in this material and artificial world; it belongs in nature and outside of this world, a world of desire and greed.

The material self- or ego- feels outside of nature and others. Indeed, it finds a sense of identity precisely because of its sense of uniqueness and individuality. It defines itself by its personal values, attitudes and beliefs and distinguishes itself as separate from all others by its ‘this-worldly’ ties and identifications.

But the spirit self does not feel separate from or outside of anything; it feels or longs to be connected to nature and a higher source. When the self of the body is in control, the spirit self feels lost; it wants to go home, to its homeland, and the source of its existence. It seeks oneness.

 

Body Consciousness

Body consciousness is a state in which you believe [your ego believes] you are just a body with a personality, and that personality is determined and defined by one’s beliefs, values and attitudes and the image one has of himself based on those beliefs, values and attitudes. This is the basis of ego.

According to the spiritual traditions this is an illusion, because it’s a belief, not real. Anything that is not permanent cannot be real and since beliefs are by nature impermanent, they are not real, but illusory, perpetrated by ego.

We are much more than a body, a mind, and an ego- which defines its existence by its beliefs; we are part of, equal to, and one with the universal Spirit- the Tao. But if and when we all share this single illusion, that the body, the mind and the ego are real, it results in the resulting modes of behavior:

  1. We become obsessed with all things material. Possession and ownership become the key words in daily life. This drives us to collectively co-create a world of continuous consumption and accumulation.
  1. This creates almost continuous conflict, extreme suffering and tremendous competition and inequality. It makes us live by material values alone.
  1. “I am just this body” is a belief that kills our ability to interact in ways that are truthful, virtuous and loving.
  1. It ensures that we will act mostly in self-serving ways, with selfish intentions, in order to survive and thrive at the physical level.

 

Some examples of the beliefs “I am just a body” are, “You have to be strong to survive”; “God takes care of those who take care of themselves”; “ You have to be rich, beautiful and powerful to be happy”; ‘You have to look out for number one.”

 

Ego

What is ego? Ego can be loosely defined as the attachment to and identification with an image/idea/concept/belief. Whenever we identify with something, like a personality, a value, an attitude, or an image of a permanent self, we are creating ego. Ego is the illusory sense of self that we create within our consciousness.  It distorts the energy of consciousness.

 

Conscience

What is conscience? Conscience is an in-built capacity that allows humans to sense, feel, and know the accurate thing to do or to avoid doing. It is a manifestation of spirit and is an inner guide that all humans have, or should have. It is referred to as the innate knowing of the good, our soul/essence, or our inner nature- and the way of the Tao.

Conscience turns up in almost all spiritual traditions. It is generally recognized to be that aspect of our ‘consciousness’ [spirit] that is our source of goodness, our virtuous intentions, and our inner compass.  It keeps us on the straight and accurate path, known as ‘being true to you.’

This is not truth in an objective, narrow and absolutist sense, but it is a ‘truth’ in a subjective sense, where we are living our life moment- by- moment from an accurate awareness of our self as spirit, not form, or body. When guided by our conscience, we are aligned with our truth, which really means our ‘true nature’, our ‘trueness,’ or innate nature.

When this happens, we are open, loving and joyful, unattached to nothing and nobody, and therefore our decision-making is free from the emotions of fear, anger and sadness. These emotions arise from the ego and its attachments, which in turn makes it harder to hear our conscience and follow its voice.

We use the word ‘conscience’ mostly in reference to right and wrong. When we listen to our conscience, we are said to be doing the ‘right thing,’ while the wrong thing is seen as an action or decision against our conscience. We often refer to someone who lives their life with great honesty and integrity as a person with ‘good conscience.

 

Our Trueness

Our trueness- or our true nature, the nature of goodness- is natural and associated with peace, love and joy. It manifests morally in the form of conscience. It’s function is to influence us by ‘keeping us honest’, which is does by letting us know when we have created thought and action that is out of alignment with our ‘trueness’, and out of alignment with our true nature, which is loving and good.

The ‘goodness’ that is often referred to as conscience –or the innate nature of man- has no opposite. There are only ‘degrees of alignment or misalignment with the inherent ‘trueness’ of our inherent- and true- nature.

In reality, the true self- spirit- is ‘prior to’ any and all mental images, therefore prior to the ‘ideas’ of good and bad, and therefore prior to judgments of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’. The true self- spirit- has no image and is not an idea, either; it is beyond the duality of all concepts. It is truth, the only truth.

 

World of Spirit

In the world of the spirit there is no right and wrong. This is hard to understand because we have been so deeply conditioned to ‘believe’ in right and wrong, since we have been told what is good and bad virtually since birth.

But the ideas of right and wrong are functions of ‘duality’ and ‘artificiality’ [man-made definitions], which is a condition of the outer material world. A spirit, however, is prior to this duality and artificiality; there are no opposites in spirit. And spirit is what we are.

 

Our True Self     

Our spirit consciousness is our innate awareness of what is true, which in the context of the self, is, BEING OUR TRUE SELF. This does not refer to truth in an absolute or philosophical sense, but true in the sense of being natural, one with our spiritual nature, which is peaceful, loving and joyful; and sincere in our words, our intentions and our deeds. It is achieved in a state of oneness when word and deed are one.

Unfortunately, because we are under the influence of the ego and its way of interpreting its own version of reality, in terms of right and wrong and good and bad, we get in the habit of ignoring and even suppressing the voice of conscience coming from our spirit.

 

What is Spirit?

From a purely spiritual perspective, it is the eternal, unchanging, true state of the energy of the self. It is the ‘still core’ of our being that is untouched by and unattached to anything; it manifests on earth as soul and in the form of pure joy, love, and peace.

As soon as we use our energy in such a way that contradicts or disturbs the pure energy of the spirit, it sends out a subtle message, which ordinarily gets us to reflect on our thoughts and actions. We then either listen to that message and let it guide us back into alignment with our true nature, or we ignore and suppress it.

When we go against our ‘spiritual’ nature, when we do not listen to, or when we ignore the silent voice of conscience and the subtle feeling that this action we are doing goes against the grain of our truth- our true nature- our true vibration, then we get a signal and we feel a moment of discomfort.

There is no opposite to this ‘spirituality and trueness’, this true vibration at our core, only degrees of misalignment, only shades of emotional irrationality that cloud our judgment and our ability to be aware of where the compass of our conscience is pointing us.

 

Distortions of the Emotions

The signals of our conscience are distorted by our emotions. When we are feeling emotional, it is harder to hear and be guided by our conscience, by the true vibration of our spirit. In this case, we often ignore the signals coming from our conscience in favor of experiencing some pleasurable emotion. For example, when we seek excitement, believing it to be happiness, it sabotages our ability to see clearly in terms of our motivations and intentions.

 

From within our spirit, our conscience will draw our attention to our desire and our selfishness  indicating that they are out of harmony or alignment with our true nature, our spirit, which is loving and selfless, and signal for us to desist from such behavior.

If we continue looking inward and listen further to the voice coming from within, we may even realize something more significant, which is that we are confusing excitement with happiness. In reality, excitement is just another form of sensorial stimulation

 

How Conscience is ignored

We ignore our conscience because we are distracted by our emotions and desires. When we ignore our conscience, we act against our innate awareness of what would be the truest action, the accurate and right action.

For example, there are usually three reasons why people have desire and want to possess something; three beliefs from their egos that ‘distract’ them from acting contrary to their conscience and their true nature:

  1. They believe that if they can have the object they desire, it will in some way complete them;
  2. They believe that when they get the object they desire, it will make them happy;
  3. They believe they can possess the object.

 

Spiritual Truths

All of these beliefs are not true in the universe of the Spirit. Spiritual truths- or just truths- are:

  1. We are already complete and that completeness can never be lost, but we may temporarily lose our ‘awareness’ of it;
  2. No material object can give us authentic happiness, only a temporary stimulation, because authentic happiness truly comes from inside out;
  3. It’s impossible to possess anything, because everything is free.

 

Unfortunately, we live in an age filled with the belief that acquiring things brings completeness, happiness and fulfillment and are given to us as truths at a young age. Hence our confusion when we do get what we want and we still fell incomplete, still feel unhappy, and live in fear of losing [what we mistakenly believe] we now possess.

So, in truth, when we do something inappropriate, it’s not BAD or WRONG, as opposed to GOOD and RIGHT.  It’s just that we have lost our spiritual compass, our awareness of our truth [our true nature] and we are therefore acting out of harmony and out of alignment with our truth –our true nature.

At this time, the spirit ‘speaks to us’ to remind us that we are acting out of harmony with our true nature, not because society- or our parents- says so, but because we are denying and suppressing the truth of our spiritual reality, that we are by nature virtuous and because of our innate nature, we are ALREADY complete, loving and joyful.

Our spirits are signaling to us that we have fallen under the ILLUSION that we are incomplete, unhappy, and unfulfilled. But we ignore and suppress this message, from the heart of our being, especially if others definition of happiness is artificial and materialistic.

 

The Spirit and a Light Bulb

A room is illuminated by a light bulb. The room also has a light sensor. If the light of the bulb fluctuates and dims below a certain intensity/brightness, the sensor will go automatically go off.

In a similar fashion, if something like a belief or a desire obscures our light or darkens and distorts our light to compromise our true [radiant] nature, which is peaceful, joyful and loving, our spirit will set off a signal, usually in the form of a feeling, like uneasiness. It is letting us know that we are thinking and acting out of harmony and out of alignment with our trueness.

The curtains and veils of beliefs, the distractions of desires, the attachment to images and memories in our minds, all serve to dim the true brightness- and true nature- of the light of our spirits. They veil our true spirit and our conscience- they are NEGATIVE.

But when we are in the state of our true brightness, the radiance of our spirit, when nothing is blocking, distorting or distracting the radiance of our spirits, there is not anything, or any thought, that is out of harmony and out of alignment with that state.  We are one and the same! There is only one way of being, which is the way of light, and the way of virtue- and that is the POSITIVE way.

Being the way of light, the way of virtue, is considered the Way, and the Way of Entering the Tao. But few are of the light, on the way of virtue, entering the Tao, simply because most are controlled by the ego and the illusions it fosters. In this condition, the light of spirit is not only dimmed but for all intents and purposes extinguished.

 

If we hope to be of the light, the way of spirit and virtue, then we must discover our true self. But before doing that we must first understand the mind and what we are not; only then can we enter the Tao and begin the long journey home- only after conquering the ego.

 

End Part One

 

The Cracked Pot

The Cracked Pot

An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of
a pole which she carried across her neck.
 
One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.
At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water.
Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.
But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.
After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to
the woman one day by the stream.
‘I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.’
The old woman smiled, ‘Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side?’
‘That’s because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.’
For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to
decorate the table.
Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.’
Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it’s the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding.
You’ve just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.
SO, to all of my cracked pot friends, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!
 
Post Curated From: The Sai Divine Inspirations

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