September 2007 (Part 2)
SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Sifu do you believe or say that reincarnation exist? Do the teachings or teachers or Masters of Zen believe in reincarnation?
When I say reincarnation I mean the belief of some people that the spirit of the body we have in earth right now, after that the body dies the same spirit return to another body that it could be human or animal etc!
I myself don't believe it.
— Hugo, Sweden
I did not answer this question earlier because I did not want to offend your personal belief. So I allowed some time to pass before answering so that you had a little time to cool down and come out of your confusing mental state.
Yes, I believe and say that reincarnation exists. And yes, the teachings and masters of Zen also believe in reincarnation.
There is much evidence from Christian sources to substantiate the truth of reincarnation. The following are only some examples.
Even before Christ, the ancient Jews believed in reincarnation. They believed that Moses was the reincarnation of Abel, who was the son of Adam. And they believed that the Messiah was to be the reincarnation of Adam himself.
It is very significant that the Old Testament closes with the following words:
“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and terrible day of Johovah come.” Malachi 4:5.
Right in the first book of the New Testament, it is mentioned:
“When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I, the Son of man, am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist, some, Elias, and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.” Mathew 16:13:4.
(“Elias” is the Greek term for “Elijah”)
“And as they came down from the mountains, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead.
And the disciples asked him, saying, Why then say the scribes that Elias must first come? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, that Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.” Mathew 17:9:13.
“Now I was a child good by nature, and a good soul fell to my lot. Nay, rather being good, I came into a body undefiled.” The Wisdom of Solomon 8:19:20.
“It is absolutely necessary that the soul should be healed and purified, and if this does not take place during its life on earth it must be accomplished in future lives.” St Gregory.
“As to the origin of the soul, I remember the question of the whole church: whether it be fallen from heaven, as Pathagoras and the Platonists and Origen believe, or be of the proper substance of God, as the Stocis, Manicheans and Priscillian heretics of Spain believe, or whether they are kept in a repository formerly built by god, as some ecclesiastics foolishly believe, or whether they are daily made by God and sent into bodies … or whether by traduction, as Tertullian, Apollinarius, and the greater part of the Westerns believe, i.e. that as body from body so the soul is derived from the soul.” St Jerome.
“The soul which did not quickly return to the heavenly region from which it was sent down to earth had to go through many lives of wandering.” Bishop of Ptolemas.
You are free to choose whatever to believe, but you have to bear the consequences of your beliefs. The latest science has confirmed that thoughts create reality. In fact, the belief that you will go to heaven after this earthly life if you do good and trust Jesus Christ, is a belief in reincarnation. Your soul in your earthly body reincarnates into, or takes the form of, a heavenly being in heaven. If you don't believe in reincarnation, you soul could be lost. Wake up Hugo before it is too late.
Even though I have been training in Taoist Qi Gong, I recently have been experiencing a lot of stress and also feel that I never have enough sleep. My body has lost a lot of weight to the point where I no longer fit into my clothes, especially the size of my legs. I feel very old as well.
— Chris, Australia
I am replying to your questions ahead of the others because yours seem urgent.
It appears that you have practiced wrongly and are suffering from serious adverse effects. All types of chi kung should make you feel fresh and relaxed. The effects from low-level chi kung may not be easily noticeable, but those from high-level chi kung are obvious.
If you feel stressful, tired and old, something is wrong. If you lose a lot of weight, something is seriously wrong. You should stop your current chi kung practice immediately, and consult a doctor, a Chinese physician or a good chi kung master.
I would like to emphasize if you choose to consult a chi kung master, make very sure he is a good one. Nowadays, almost anyone can claim to be a chi kung master. If you consult such a “master” you are more likely to get harm than benefit.
Many patterns in Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng's lineage and in our school are the same as both came from the same source. The two patterns, “Crow Flaps Wings” and “Yun Than Tames Tiger” are found in our Dragon-Tiger Set as well as Grandmaster Lam's Tiger-Crane Set.
I wish I could understand what is happening.
Your problem is due to distorted or blocked chi flow as a result of wrong chi kung practice. Practicing chi kung wrongly is actually not uncommon nowadays, although the side-effects are usually not very serious, or they may be serious but not obvious.
Distorted energy flow can be serious because it effects the daily performance and potential life span of the victims, although it may not surface as clincal illness. This is one important reason why responsible masters ask their students not to teach others unless they are qualified to do so, and advise the public to learn chi kung from qualified teachers.
Problems due to distorted energy flow are best solved by chi kung masters as energy flow is their expertise. The next choice is Chinese physicians as the core of traditional Chinese medicine is energy.
Western doctors may be unable to find anything wrong with you because energy is not in their conceptual framework. Nevertheless, it is adviceable to consult a good Western doctor to make sure that your problem is not due to factors other than energy distortion.
But unfortunately I feel that all I can do is try and sleep more (which I find difficult). I read in one of your replies that it is possible to substitute sleep for meditation, if the practitioner is of a high level.
You need to sleep more to allow your body to rest and regenerate itself, but sleeping alone may not overcome your problem.
Substituting meditation for sleep is for very high-level practitioners only — please note the word “very”. It is certainly not meant for you, or even for high-level practitioners. Meditation and sleep have different functions. Meditation is meant to train the mind, sleep is meant to rest the body.
Performing “Lifting the Sky” in bed is an excellent way to help you go to sleep. Lay in bed comfortably. Perform “Lifting the Sky” about 15 times gently focusing on your breathing in and breathing out. As the head of your bed may be against a wall, you need not raise your hands right above your head, raising them above you as high as you can, is sufficient.
The purpose of the exercise here is not to generate an energy flow, but to relax your body and mind. When you are physically and mentally relaxed after gently focusing on your breathing about 15 times performing “Lifting the Sky”, just drop your hands at your sides and go to sleep.
Please help me to reverse the horrible damage I have done to myself from my excessive lifestyle and constant lack of sleep.
While your problem is severe, it can be overcome quite easily if you learn generating energy flow from a good chi kung master, and practice it regularly on your own. Other types of chi kung, like those that build energy instead of circulating it, are not suitable.
I would recommend that you join a chi kung class tuaght by one of our certified Shaolin Wahnam instructors. Please see /general/instructors-list.html for a list.
If this is not feasible, practice “Lifting the Sky” from my books. Follow the instructions as best as you comfortably can. It is permissable to leave out some instructions due to forgetfulness or carelessness, but do not add anything that is not mentioned. I repeat, do not add anything that is not mentioned.
Sometimes smart Alexes may try to be starter than the master who gave the instructions for his exercise. They imagine, for example, chi flowing in from some planets or sucked in from the earth when such instructions were not mentioned, or they breathe in forcefully when they are asked to breathe in gently. They would harm themselves.
I was thinking about attending your Intensive Taijiquan Course. Do I have to know the Wahnam form sets to attend? Can I participate without knowing these forms? I know the 37 Cheng man ching form. My objective is to learn the martial applications, build internal force and spiritual cultivation.
— Ahmed, UK
I do not offer the Intensive Taijiquan Course now. If you wish to learn Wahnam Taijiquan, please contact Sifu Robin of England. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
When this course was offered, participants needed to have some prior Taijiquan experience before attending the course, which was aimed at developing internal force, combat application and spiritual cultivation. It was not necessary to know the Wahnam Taijiquan forms beforehand, though knowing them first would be an advantage. It would be sufficient that you had learnt the 37-pattern Cheng Man Ching form.
I have had a visitor come during my stance training. Sije Emiko suggested that I had a closer look if he visited again to see which ancestor had been teaching me. This visitor has now come several times during my stance training and I am now quite sure it is Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng who has been helping me with my stance training.
I came across his picture when I was searching the internet of stance training and believe this is the person who has been helping me. I am not sure if his lineage is Shaolin and why he has come to help me. If he is not of the Shaolin lineage should I be accepting his help? I am also quite sure it is Grandmaster Lam and that he was actually adjusting my Golden Bridge. Should I allow this “visitor” to help me during my stance training?
— Andre, Canada
Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng's lineage is from the Venerable Chee Seen, who was one of our first patriarchs.
Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng's lineage is as follows. The Venerable Chee Seen —> Lok Ah Choy —> Wong Kai Ying —> Wong Fei Hoong —> Lam Sai Weng.
Our lineage from the Venerable Chee Seen is as follows. The Venerable Chee Seen —> the Venerable Harng Yein —> Chan Fook —> Ng Yew Loong —> Lai Chin Wah (Uncle Righteousness) —> Wong Kiew Kit.
Therefore, Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng and we come from the same source, i.e. the Venerable Chee Seen, who is regarded as the First Patriarch of Southern Shaolin Kungfu. Many of the kungfu patterns practiced in our school, especially from Uncle Righteousness lineage, are similar to those practiced by schools from Grandmaster Lam's lineage.
While many other people may ridicule us for believing in past masters visiting us, if we are honest with ourselves, courageous to state our beliefs, and — paradoxically — claim to be scientific, we have to accept the fact that past masters and divine beings do visit and teach us!
If a particular phenomenon happens once, it is an isolated occurance. If it happens twice, it may be a co-incidence. If it happens many times, in line with the spirit of science, we have to take the most simple and logical explanation.
In your case and the cases of a few Shaolin Wahnam members, the most simple and logical explanation is that past masters and divine beings sometimes visit and teach us. You did not mention whether you saw Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng's picture before or after he visited you. If it was after, then your case was even more remarkable. (Andre later confirmed that he saw Grandmaster Lam's picture only after he saw him in his visits!)
If Grandmaster Lam Sai Weng visits you again, if you feel comfortable with him, thank him for his gracious help. However, if you do not feel comfortable, thank him too but politely decline his help.
This realm of seeing kung fu ancestors (Grandmaster Lam) and my deceased relatives appears to be occurring more frequently. Any guidance or suggestions you may have would be greatly appreciated.
If you see your deceased relatives, send them some blessings.
If they ever ask you for help, it is important that you should not committe yourself to any promise. It is because spirits of deceased persons and lower spirits expect you to keep your promises if you ever make them.
You have no obligations to make promises, but of course you should help them if you can. In this way, even if you fail to help them despite your intention, they cannot blame you.
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- Stances in Taijiquan and Shaolinquan
- Chi and Internal Force in Genuine, Traditional Taijiquan