SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
MAY 2014 PART 3
What is the difference between the internal force developed from Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks and from Golden Bridge?
— Douglas, France
Both are excellent methods to develop internal force. As they are powerful exercises, they should be learned from a competent teacher.
Learning them from an incompetent teacher who himself has no internal force will result in students practicing them as physical exercis and not as internal exercise, as that is what the teacher himself does which explains why he has no internal force. In the case of Golden Bridge it will also turn out to be an endurance exercise which will bring adverse effects.
It is more demanding to perform Golden Bridge than Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks. As it is more demanding, it is more likely for students to tense their muscles, resulting in adverse effects. In our case in Shaolin Wahnam, the adverse effects will be washed away in the subsequent chi flow, but most other students do not have chi flow and therefore the adverse effects will accumulate.
It also takes more time to practice Golden Bridge than Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks. As a rough guide, presuming all other factors being equal, if a student develops a certain amount of internal force by practicing Golden Bridge for 5 minutes, he can develop the same amount by practicing Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks for 2 minutes.
But it real life other factors are not equal. It needs more skill to teach Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks. You all have such good result in just one session of practice because, without false modesty, I am a good teacher. For most other students, they may not have any result. But if they practice Golden Bridge, even when their teacher may not be good, they can have some result.
If other students practice Golden Bridge daily for six months, they can have some internal force. If they practice Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks daily for six months, they may not have any internal force. This explains why Golden Bridge is more commonly taught than Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks.
The internal force developed in Golden Bridge is consolidated. The internal force developed in Reverse Hanging of Double Hooks is also consolidated, more consolidated than all other exercises in the Eighteen-Lohan Art, perhaps with the exception of Big Boss Lifts Bronze Vessel. But compared to Golden Bridge, the internal force in Reverse Hanging of Double Hook is more flowing.
Is there any difference between energy flowing at the meridian level in Bone Marrow Cleansing and the Phenomenal Big Universe?
Although in both exercises, energy is guided to flow along all the 12 primary meridians, there are differences between Meridian Level in Bone Marrow Cleansing and Phenomenal Big Universe.
We may look at the differences from the aspect of method, attainment level, purpose and result.
We approach the Meridian Level of energy flow by means of dynamic patterns. Pushing Mountains and Carrying the Moon are excellent choices. We approach the Phenomenal Big Universe using Abdominal Breathing or Reverse Breathing first to attain a Small Universe. Then we direct energy to flow to all the 12 meridians to attain the Phenomenal Big Universe.
The attainment level is vastly different. The Phenomenal Big Universe is of a much higher level than the Meridian Level. This difference may not be obvious to you because you already have the Phenomenal Big Universe. Because of your Big Universe skill, your attainment in the Meridian Level is much higher than what it should have been.
A student who first learns the Meridian Levels and later the Phenomenal Big Universe will feel the vast difference. It is like changing from driving a small Fiat to a Mercedes.
The purpose of the two exercises is different. The Meridian Level is for health, whereas the Phenomenal Big Universe is for spiritual development. The main purpose of the Meridian Level is to overcome pain and illness, and to attain good health. The main purpose of the Phenomenal Big Universe is to prepare for the Transcendental Big Universe to expand into the Cosmos.
The higher level art includes benefits of the lower level art. In other words, by practicing the Phenomenal Big Universe practitioners can also overcome pain and illness. But a lower level art does not have the benefits of a higher level art. By practicing Meridian Level practitioners may not expand into the Cosmos, unless a competent teacher transmit this skill into them.
The purpose of the exercises leads to their expected results. By practicing the Meridian Level practitioners attain good health, vitality and longevity. By practicing the Phenomenal Big Universe practitioners attain spiritual fulfillment like expanding into the Cosmos and experiencing a spiritual awakening.
I know you through your books.
I started to feel some tension that I guess accumulates and provokes some urinate problems. Due to that I have some fear to go on public transport or big trips because of the sensation to urinate but I guess that is a pathological problem that affects my stomach.
I read your books and remember some basic exercises to practice myself. I would like to know which exercises are better for my system
— Claudia, Portugal
Your problems were quite common among some of my students, but they overcome the problems after practicing chi kung learned from us.
Two helpful exercises are Lifting the Sky and Merry-Go-Round.
But it is not the exercises that overcome your problems, it is the chi flow that does so. If you do not generate a chi flow, you only perform the chi kung patterns as gentle physical exercise and not as chi kung.
I would suggest you attend the chi kung courses when I come to Portugal for the Portugal Summer Camp. Please contact Sifu Riccardo Salvatore for details. Or you can learn from Sifu Riccardo Salvatore.
If you can attend my Intensive Chi Kung Course, it will even be better. Please see my website for details.
I discovered I could move my dan tian (it feels like a hard ball in my intestines) -- I had someone touch the right side of my abdomen and I moved the ball there and vibrated it.
Is moving the dantian just a trick or does it have some purpose. I'm asking this because when I moved it to the huiyin, I got an electric type reaction and felt a new type of energy flowing -- but I didn't hold it there for more than a few seconds. What is your opinion on this?
— Ausar, England
Moving the dan tian can be a trick or may have some purpose. In your case it was a trick. For some masters in the past, like Pak Mei, it was to prevent opponents hitting it.
There are a few ways to move the dan tian, and what you did was one of the ways.
But it is not advisable to move your dan tian. Here are three good reasosns.
1. While you did it correctly the last time, you may make mistakes in future. Mistakes regarding the dan tian can be serious. You should not take the risk, especially when you do not know what you are doing.
2. There is no good reason why you should move your dan tian except some novelty. The time and effort could be better spent for something more rewarding.
3. Your dan tian is where chi gathers naturally. By moving it elsewhere, even temporary, is relocating it to a position which does not give you the best benefit, even when we leave aside possible harm.
Do you recommend Iron Body training by hitting oneself?
I took a steak knife with a jagged edge and tried to cut my arm. When I didn't use chi it hurt a lot -- but when i used 50 % of my chi I was surprised that the knife didn't cut my skin at all and I didn't feel pain. Still I think my skin could have been cut if I used more force with the knife but I didn't feel like depleting my chi to withstand it.
No, I wouldn't recommend Iron Shirt training. Hence, although I know the method and did some Iron Shirt training in my younger days, it is not part of our Shaolin Wahnam syllabus.
Yet, many of our instructors and some of our advanced students have Golden Bell, which is of a higher level that Iron Shirt. They did not train Golden Bell particularly; they developed it spontaneously as part of our chi kung and kungfu training.
If you hit yourself regularly and consistently, you can develop some form of Iron Shirt, but you also cause internal injury to yourself often without your knowing. The internal injury may not result in direct illness, but indirectly it affects your vitality and longevity. As you live in a civilized society where fighting almost never happens, it is unwise of you to train an art which you probably never use but which may harm you insidiously.
What is the method to withstand knife slashes?
How I did was to inhale to the dan tian, condense and focus the chi there, then "blow" the chi out of my skin on my arm to try and cancel out the knife cut. I'm wondering if there is a better technique.
Your method may cause energy blockage. Your condensed chi and chi focused at where you wished to withstand the knife slash may stagnate and affect your health insidiously.
Your method is also draining. You will become tired easily.
It is a good example of what people should not attempt to meddle with internal arts on their own.
Basically, Iron Shirt training involves systematically conditioning the body from outside in with the help of medication. If practitioners practice chi kung, it is better than taking medication. Take note of the two requirements: systematically conditioning and medication.
If one merely hit himself randomly, or does not take medication, he is likely to harm himself in the long run. This is often the case for those who learn from books.
On the other hand, Golden Bell involves building chi from inside out so that the chi acts as a buffer against attack. Often, Iron Shirt method is used to test or reinforce Golden Bell ability.
I'm thinking I should start conditioning my skin because otherwise I have really soft skin!
Do you want to have thick skin or rough skin? Having soft skin is a benefit. Value it.
Having soft skin does not mean that the skin is weak or unhealthy. Many of my students have reported that they feel like having silk wrapped over iron, particularly having performing Bone Marrow Cleansing at the skin and the flesh levels.
Did you do the Iron Body training when you were training under Uncle Righteousness or Sifu Ho Fatt Nam?
I did my Iron Shirt as a supplement of my Golden Bell training under Sifu Ho Fatt Nam.
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