SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
JANUARY 2021 PART 3
I've been going through a very powerful and painful cleansing process which had been prompted by my decision of finally overcome my mental blockages regarding money and wealth.
— Sifu Angel Perez, Shaolin Wahnam Puerto Rico
AnswerCongratulations for your rapid progress.
It is great that you have found your cleansing is related to your mental problems, especially concerning money. Please remember that a typical Shaolin Wahnam student can achieve in one month what I would need a year to achieve in my students' days.
I was a very good student. Especially after learning from my third sifu, Sifu Ho Fatt Nam, I could defeat masters quite comfortably.
Over-training is a big problem among our students (including instructors) in our school. Most students over-train. The results are more than their physical bodies can bear. This is inevitable because I have to intensify in a few hours in my regional and intensive courses what I took months or years to attain. Hence, I have to remind our instructors that my regional and intensive courses are different from the regular classes they teach.
Money is very important in life, though it is not the most important. You are in a very rare position to give two of the most important things in life -- health and happiness. If you follow my suggestions of how we set up Shaolin Wahnam, you should be successful. I believe that instructors who fail, do not actually follow my suggestions faithfully, though they think they do. They do not persevere enough.
I do not know how much a successful doctor earns in Puerto Rico, but he certainly earns a lot of money. He spends 5-7 years to get his basic degree, and another 3-5 years to be a specialist. I ask our instructors to spend just 4-5 hours every day -- I repeat, every day -- for a year, or perhaps 2-3 years for those who are slow. If he is as successful as a doctor, he will earn as much, but work far less hours.
I read your book "Chi Kung for Health and Vitality" and am practicing "Ten Shaolin Dynamic Patterns". It is very beneficial to my health. I feel having more energy to do daily activities.
Can I practice ten dynamic patterns along with meditation only without self manifested chi and abdominal breathing?
— Homeshwar, USA
Practicing genuine chi kung is one of the best things anyone can do.
You can practice the ten dynamic patterns without "Self-Manifested Chi Movement" and "Abdominal Breathing".
"Self-Manifested Chi Movement" is actually a very good exercise. In our school, Shaolin Wahnam, it is the "platinum chi kung" to overcome any illness. "Abdominal Breathing" is an advanced exercise. You should not attempt these two exercises unless you are supervised by a competent teacher.
Here is part of a passage: "Essentially, in superior virtue one's body is intact and one's virtue is full."
Can you please explain what are superior virtue and inferior virtue?
— Kristian, USA
I don't know what the author means by "Superior Virtue" and "Inferior Virtue".
In our school, "superior virtue" is high-level chi kung and high-level kungfu which produce a lot of results in a short time, whereas "inferior virtue" is low-level chi kung and low-level kungfu which produce a little results in a long time.
We do not consider physical exercise as chi kung, and we do not consider bouncing about and hurting each other as kungfu.
What is meant by precelestial "Yang of Qian"? Is it correct to take this as a reference to prenatal vs postnatal chi?
In philosophy, there are two sets of "bagua", or "pakua" in English -- the pre-heaven "bagua" and the post-heaven "bagua".
In pre-heaven "bagua", "qian" which represnts "heaven" is placed on top, which is the south in Chinese culture. In post-heaven "bagua", "li" which represents "fire", is placed on top.
Pre-natal chi is fixed, but we can work on post-natal chi. Pre-natal chi is like DNA in Western science. If a person is born a Caucasian, for example, he cannot change the colour of his skin. Post-natal chi is the energy after birth. By practicing chi kung or kungfu, for example, we can greatly improve our energy.
Let us take intellect as an example. Our intellect is fixed by pre-natal chi. A not so clever person will remain not so clever. He can't be a genius. But by studying and persistence, which fall in the province of post-natal chi, he can improve his intellect.
Most people will degenerate at middle age, but by practicing chi kung and kungfu, which involve post-natal chi, he can maintain or even be better than, in his intellect. His physical body will be better than most people.
"Natural true fire" and "yin breath of the entire body" can mean the flow of chi and the pulsation of the dan tian (or abdominal energy-field). They may mean other things in other contacts. For example, "natural true fire" can mean a person becomes angry, and "yin breath of the entire body" can mean his ordinary breathing.
Most people do not have the chance to practice chi kung, or even physical exercise, and to practice the Small Universe and the Big Universe, or the small and big universal orbits, are very rare.
Could Sifu illuminate the meaning of "keeping one's form intact by means of Tao"?
"Keeping one's form intact by means of Tao" can be interpreted in many ways.
Most people may have a job and lead a normal life. That is keeping one's form by means of Tao. If a person gambles or womanizes, that is not keeping his form intact by means of Tao, which means the Way or the usually way of leading a normal life.
For a monk in a monastery, it is meditation, or spiritual cultivation. If he drinks cola cola and drives a fast car, he is not keeping his form intact by means of Tao.
In Shaolin Wahnam, a student practices chi kung or kungfu regularly, which will give him good health, vitality, longevity, peak performance and spiritual joys. If he practices physical exercise or exchanges blows generously, he is not keeping his form intact by means of Tao.
I believe the joining of kan and li is related to the result of Heart Yang and Kidney Yin meeting at the dan tien to generate the elixir/pearl, usually conducted by the achievement of the small universe and some applied meditative techniques and skill. Could Sifu illuminate why such a thing, if this is the correct understanding on my part, would still be termed "inferior virtue"?
The "joining of kan and li" and attaining the Small Universe is one way of interpreting "Rhapsody of the Yellow Crane", a Taoist text purportedly writtern by Lu Dong Bin when he was a man in the 16th century during the Tang Dynasty. He becomes a famous Taoist immortal.
"Kan" which represents "water", and "li" which represents "fire", means the kidneys and the heart in Taoist philosophy. To ordinary people, if their kidneys and their hearts are healthy, they will be very happy. Kidney disorders and heart disorders are quite common nowadays, especially at middle age.
Attaining the Small Universe is very, very rare, where the kidneys and the hearts of practitioners are healthier than those half their age. I would consider it a "superior virtue". We still live in the phenomenal world where having good health, vitality, longevity, peak performance and spiritual joys, are superior.
In the Art of Flexibility, we use the breathing method "follow" for "Touching Toes". Does this apply to "Immortal Takes Off Shoes" and "Dragonfly Plays with Water" as well?
— Sifu Leonard Lackinger, Shaolin Wahnam Austria
In "Touching Toes" in the Art of Flexibility, breathe out when you touch your toes, breathe in when you are upright. It is the same with "Immortal Takes off Shoes" and "Dragonfly Plays with Water", i.e. breathing out as you touch your toes and breathing in when you sit upright.
You breathe out as your body is bent forward, and you breathe in when you are upright. For those who already have the Small Universe, i.e. chi going round the ren and the du meridians, it may generate the Small Universe.
I am currently reviewing the videos of the wonderful Wudang Sword course. In our poise pattern "Breeze Sways Floating Green", does the tip of sword look slightly down or is the sword held horizontally?
If I pierce the sword out in the Yang manner (palm and inside of arm facing upwards), which edge is the Yang edge (left or right)?
You mentioned to let the chi flow to the tip of the sword during chi flow? Should students do this right at the beginning of their sword training?
Does this apply to other weapons too?
In sparring with the sword and the sabre, is "holding the bridge" recommended or is it generally better to leave the connection of the weapons to start a separate attack?
The Wudang Sword is lovely.
In Pattern 14 of the Wudang Sword, "Breeze Sways Floating Breeze", the sword is held horizontally. It is not just a poise pattern. There are martial functions. For example, when someone chops you with a heavy weapon like a Guan Dao, you can cut his hand using this pattern.
When you piece the sword out in a "yang" manner (palm facing upward), both blades are "yang" edges. The edge, i.e. whether "yin" or "yang", follows the hand. In other words, if your hand is "yin" (palm facing downward) the blades are "yin"; if your hand is "yang" (palm facing upward), the blades are "yang".
A master swordsman will let chi flow to the tip of the sword. His sword becomes part of his body.
Students should not do this at the beginning, i.e. letting chi flow to the tip of the sword. They will be occupied with the techniques of the sword. Only a master swordsman does this.
If it is a bladed weapon, like a sabre or a Guan Dao, chi should flow to the sharp edge of the blade. If it is a pointed weapon, like a spear, chi should flow to the point. If it is a short, heavy weapon, like a round hammer, chi should flow to add weight. This is for those who are already very advanced.
"Holding the bridge", i.e. your weapon and the opponent's weapon are in contact, if you are good at holding the bridge. If you are not good, it is better to "break" the bridge.
Sifu Leonard Lackinger's questions are continued at February 2021 Part 1.
If you have any questions, please e-mail them to Grandmaster Wong via his Secretary at stating your name, country and e-mail address.
- Some Remarkable of Chi Kung Recovering
- The Various Eighteen Lohan Arts
- Kungfu Forms for Fighting?
- Wonderful Valentine Courses in Ireland 2013
- Arrival at Chennai, the Old Madras