February 2009 (Part 1)
SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
I have a friend's mother who suffered from a stroke and is in hospital now. I enquired on the Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum about whether Wong Shifu treats patients who suffer from strokes. The answer I got was to check with you regarding this case. Could I enquire if Wong Shifu still does healing for people with stroke?
— Gabriel, Singapore
If the patient is paralyzed or cannot move about at all, it is not suitable for her to learn from me.
If she can stand on her own and move her hands, she can attend my Personalized Chi Kung Course. Such a course is on a one-to-one basis, and is tailored to the patient's particular needs. The duration of the course is 5 days, including the days of arrival and departure. The lessons will be from 8.00 to 10.00 in the morning, and 5.00 to 7.00 in the evening. The fee is 5000 euros. Please contact my secretary at email@example.com for details and arrangement if the patient is interested to attend the course.
According to chi kung philosophy, stroke is due to energy not flowing smoothly resulting in loss of natural functions, like movements and speech. The blockage of energy flow may or may not be at the brain.
The therapeutic principle is simple, although the actual process in recovery many not be easy. The main task is to clear the blockage and restore the energy flow. If this can be achieved, the patient will recover as a matter of course. Practicing high level chi kung is a good way to achieve this.
Please note that the patient has to continue to practice on her own the exercises she has learnt in the course. If the patient is bed-ridden or cannot stand on her own and move her hands, which are necessary to practice the exercises, the course is not suitable. Please also note that while I believe she has a good chance to recover if she continues to practice for a few months, no one can guarantee that recovery is certain.
I notice that you have stated your fees of 5000 euros. I have no issues with that and have personally paid similar amounts or more to receive spiritual teachings as I feel it is worth it.
I am glad that you are ready to pay an appropriate price if you desire high-level teaching. It speaks well for your intelligence and good judgment.
It is only sensible and logical that the price one is willing to pay reflects the worth he places on the teaching or any service he receives.
However, I have observed on forums where people feel healing or spiritual teachings should be free, cheap or at least appropriate to their level of income.
Healing or spiritual teaching is priceless, i.e. it may be free or it may cost a lot of money. Personally I have given healing or spiritual teaching for free, and at other times I also have charged my patients or students a lot of money.
The decision whether to give free healing or teaching, or to charge a lot of money is the right and privilege of the healer or teacher, and not that of the patients or students. But irrespective of whether the healing or teaching is free or expensive, the patients or students have the right and privilege to accept or reject it.
Some argue that charging money to cover the costs for the master's daily expenses is ok, but beyond that is not right.
These people can have their opinion and argument, but they have no right to tell healers or teachers how much to charge or whether they should charge at all. It is they who seek the healers' or teachers' help, not the healers and teachers who seek their patronage.
I am curious to seek your opinion on this line of thought against charging huge amounts of money for healing or spiritual teachings.
My opinion is that these people do not really know the value of the healing or teaching they are talking about. They do not know that recovering from a so-called incurable disease or attaining cosmic wisdom and spiritual joys is worth much more than 5000 euros.
5000 euros is of course not a small sum of money, but many people can earn 5000 euros over and over again many, many times. An opportunity to recover from a so-called incurable disease or attain cosmic wisdom and spiritual joys may occur only once in a lifetime.
I would also like to add that an important reason for charging someone 5000 euros to help him (or her) overcome a so-called incurable disease is for his interest. I would not accept any patient to my Personalized Chi Kung Course if I have any doubt that he cannot recover.
But much of the recovery process depends on the patient himself. From my many years of experience, it is clear to me that if someone with a so-called incurable disease is unwilling to pay 5000 euros to get well, he is unlikely to. I would not want to waste my time and his.
It is reasonable that someone paying 5000 euros would wonder whether the healer or teacher is genuine or a fraud. The patient or student himself should find out. Usually a healer or teacher at a level where he can charge 5000 euros would not bother to waste his time proving to enquirers.
It is actually not difficult to find out whether a healer or teacher is worth what he claims, though it would involve some time and effort. Firstly, you can check his credentials. Then you check his track-record. Find out, for example, his rate of successful healing or teaching. Find out from those who have learnt from him what they say about his healing or teaching. If you have any doubt, don't learn from him.
I recently read your excellent answer on abstinence of sex at http://www.shaolin.org/answers/sp-issues/sex.html. Lets assume I wanted to pursue Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung for spiritual cultivation. What difference would it make (if any), if I had regular sexual activity whilst doing Chi Kung every day compared to if I chose abstinence whilst doing Chi Kung every day?
— Michael, USA
Generally, if you abstain from regular sex you will have faster and better results. How much faster and better the results are will depend on a number of variables, such as from whom you learn the Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung, your age and other physical, emotional and mental conditions, your developmental stage and the strength of your determination to attain the highest goal.
Let us take an ideal condition. You had learnt from me not only at the Intensive Chi Kung Course but also advanced courses like the Specialized Shaolin Kungfu Course and the “Small and Big Universe”, you were about 50 years old, had radiant health, were emotionally detached, had high-level spiritual wisdom, were at the height of your spiritual development, and absolutely considered that attaining Enlightenment was the only thing important to you. If you abstained from sex, you would attain Enlightenment here and now, or at the most in this life time.
If you had all these ideal qualities except that you still enjoyed sex, you could not attain Enlightenment because you still had desires. Any desires would weigh you down in the phenomenal world, and sex is one of the strongest, if not the strongest, desire. To attain Enlightenment, you had to erase all desires, including good desires like enjoying wholesome sex and helping others. Hence, Bodhisattvas who have great compassion to help others, postpone attaining Buddhahood or temporarily leave Buddhahood if they already attained it previously, to return to the phenomenal realm to help others.
One may ask whether wishing to attain Enlightenment is a desire. Yes, if you crave for Enlightenment, it is a desire. But if you are emotionally detached and cultivate non-chalantly, then it is not a desire. At a lower level but with the same principles, Shaolin Wahnam students practice their chi kung without craving for benefits. The benefits will come as a matter of course. But if they crave for benefits, they may hinder their result.
Obviously you are not in this ideal condition. Generally speaking, in your case where your reason for practicing Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung is for spiritual cultivation, it makes no difference whether you abstain from sex or not. If you don't abstain from sex, you are not likely to attain Enlightenment or have experience that you and the generally public associate with spiritual cultivation. Even if you abstain from sex, you are unlikely to have these results too.
However, for a detailed answer, there may be some difference, and it depends on some variables.
If you are scared to have sex, for whatever reasons, it is better for you not to have it. After all, unless you have no choice, why should you have sex when you are scared of it? Abstinance from sex while practicing Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung is good for your spiritual cultivation as it makes your spirit calm, and having sex is detrimental as it makes your spirit nervous.
If you feel tired after just walking for a while, it is better for you to abstain from sex while practicing chi kung so that the energy you need for sex can be used to strengthen your body and nourish your spirit. If you spend the little energy you have for sex, even when you enjoy it, at a time when you do not have enough energy even to walk, you will weaken your body harmfully, which will lead to a weakening of your spirit.
However, if you practice Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung correctly you will feel that not only you have enough energy to walk for a long time without feeling tired but also to enjoy wholesome sex without feeling nervous, two of the many benefits you will soon discover if you learn personally from us. Then you should not abstain from sex while practicing our chi kung, because having sex will nourish your spirit making you happy.
At the moment it scares me to have regular sexual activity as I feel tired now even after just walking for a while, so would prefer abstinence even it means missing out on the beauty of a meaningful relationship and having children. Also I plan to attend your course as soon as I can save enough.
You are in a serious condition, not because you are scared of sex but because you feel tired after just walking for a while. For you now, abstinence from sex is not just a choice but a necessity. Appreciating the beauty of a meaningful relationship and having children are wonderful, but for you for the time being, having enough energy to perform daily tasks like walking is more urgent.
Feeling tired after just a short walk is a clear indication that your organs, especially your internal organs like your heart and kidneys, do not have enough energy to maintain their normal functions. Even if you are not clinically sick, you are unhealthy.
Or you can learn from one of our certified instructors. You will find learning chi kung from us one of the best things you have ever done in your life. You will find that not only you have better results in but also enjoy whatever you do, including having sex and a walk.
I met an old Chinese man who showed me what he called Vagabond kung fu. I loved it but try as I may, no one I have spoken to could put me in touch with anyone who knows anything about it. I hope that you can help.
— Paul, England
Vagabond Kungfu is not a definitive kungfu style like Eagle Claw or Wing Choon with a specific First Patriarch from whom the style developed, and with coherent systems of philosophy and techniques, but rather it is a collective name given to the type or types of kungfu widely practiced by vagabonds, which is a polite term referring to beggars.
Although there were many people practicing Vagabond Kungfu, it was a lesser-known style. In kungfu circles, it was also considered a “chor pai” (Cantonese pronunciation) or “left style”, meaning unorthodox style as opposed to “meng moon jing pai” or “established, righteous style” like Shaolin, Taijiquan or Praying Mantis.
As vagabonds or beggars were found all over China, the type of kungfu practiced by vagabonds in one area might be different from that of another area. The practitioners also borrowed freely from other established kungfu styles. Hence, Vagabond Kungfu in north China would have sophisticated kicks borrowed from Praying Mantis Kungfu in the north, and Vagabond Kungfu in south China would have palm strikes borrowed from White Crane Kungfu in the south.
Nevertheless, different types of Vagabond Kungfu also have special characteristics that are common to them, such as short, vicious strikes to vital points to defeat opponents quickly rather than more elaborated chin-na techniques to subdue opponents in a compassionate way. Vagabond Kungfu is also known for its cunning and often underhand methods.
As its practitioners were mainly beggars who were of a low social class, winning combat in an open and honorable manner was not demnaded or expected from them. For example a beggar might put poison in his nail or hide a secret weapon under his sleeves to increase his chance of victory in combat. Such actions would be inthinkable by a master of an established school.
Practitioners of Vagabond Kungfu were also well known for demonstrating spectacular feats like stroking red-hot iron chains with their bare hands, bending spears on their throat, and having piles of granite broken on their chest by a sledge hammer while lying over a bed of nails. While some of these practitioners had genuine internal force, many of the feats were actually stunt-man shows.
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