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Thread: Eastern Concepts of Ascension and Alchemy

  1. #21
    As far as any other training or association goes, I have only the formal training in martial arts I mentioned and my instructor very avidly avoided anything that wasn't practically applicable. It was very Zen like, perhaps I could say I trained at a back alley zen studio until an Adept who trained in the East aligned me internally, activated my Merkaba and eventually lead me to a direct confrontation with Hu.

    All that I have done has been done otherwise informally, under my own Intuition and by my own Reason, guided by what I would refer to as an open relationship with Spirit.

    But no schools or teachers can I claim. I enjoy Dogen Zenji and Alan Watts very much though.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiorionis View Post
    I'll offer my explanation for this, or at least the one I've found most reasonable, and most practical. The Surangama Sutra outlines five basic philosophies behind meditation to achieve arhatship (to become a perfected person), and one of these is 'Meditation on the Perception of Objects of Touch': (...)

    There are also passages in this Sutra corresponding to the other analogies of 'Touch'. The sense of touch, the organ of touch, meditation on the body as well as meditation on the element earth.

    I find athletics to be very important in my own mystical practices, much like the quote by Visceral states, depending on the type of practice it is possible to conduct high frequency energy through the body. In the West it is more commonly known as Invocation. If the nervous system isn't strong enough, the body will burn out from over heating of the nervous system. I've experienced this personally before I knew what I was doing. For two weeks I couldn't do anything besides lay in bed, feeling quite brain dead with migraines and body ache.

    The best way to train the nervous system is to push the physical body as far as it goes, and then push it further. To illustrate this point, one of my favorite quotes (paraphrased here) from an old Japanese martial artist:

    "The only way to surpass our physical limitations is with strength and fortitude of Mind. Strength and fortitude of Mind do not begin to develop until the body begins to fail."
    Now I get what you mean.... somehow.
    I know 2 different meditation techniques that lead to a heating of the nervous system... or to put it in simple words, it feels as if the spine becomes incredibly cold or incredibly hot (the sense of touch is tricky, sometimes it's hard to differentiate between touching something too hot or too cold). The first times it felt like being cut in the back with a red hot knife.

    One of them involves breathing techniques, the other one involves something similar to Mantras and it works better if it's done collectively, but not exactly because of the collective strength, but because it's possible to add several "layers" of Mantras (I assume that with a recording it would be the same). The one involving breathing techniques is stronger... and I have seen persons having to "give up". None of the methods I know is, however, specially "athletic".

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    I believe all practices upon proper inspection would chime as amazingly "alchemical" to anyone who has been sufficiently Initiated into the Mysteries, as language itself is alchemical. All of them. Some are closer to the root language that was used by the ancients to work wonders and some of those sounds survive to this day. Schum has provided more information already on those fragments than I can but to get back to the point, ALL symbols and secrets of any sort relate back to THE original secret society. I am not educated enough in the specifics of "western" alchemy that so many seem to have mastered here and so I cannot be sure I relate the exact meaning of the symbol you mention, but I do believe my grasp of Philosophy allows me to grasp enough of the essence to understand your surprise at encountering the symbol seemingly out of place.
    This symbol is just an example, the whole thing in the Cultists Yoga School was filled with Western Alchemical symbolism that was very explicit, but the students and the teachers had no idea of such thing. Then again, it is the weirdest school I have ever seen... and somehow it was a scam (i.e, the general concept was that you entered to study Yoga, but as soon as you became a student, you became encouraged to study to be a Trainer, and the "trainers" had to recruit their own students, besides from paying monthly for being a trainer and getting 50% of the monthly payment of their own students... and the general concept was that you had to leave your job as to train all the time and become an official trainer... and there was some pressure to abandon invite your friends to study there too and consider unworthy of your friendship or "unevolved" the ones who didn't like the idea... in short, a cult -I stayed there for 3 months only because I was dating the main responsible of such nightmare, though I had no idea of the kind of madness she was into when we meet for the first time). The school itself was incredibly weird, it was 100% non racist, but it had (and has) a strange policy: only "good looking" / "attractive" people were accepted, persons who were/are "ugly" for the conventional standards were systematically rejected. I can only describe such place as an insane asylum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    I recognize the symbol from this figure, but do not know the origins or commonly understod meaning given by alchemical Adepts. I understand it as portraying the "as above, so below" concept and also the circling the square riddle beloved by Far Eastern mystics, but perhaps you could espound upon this?
    It is simply the starting matter in the center, its rotation through the 4 elements, it's interaction as the 3 principles and its final solidification as something bigger than it was when it began. It is taken from Maier's "Atalanta Fugiens".

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    There's yoga, and there's Yoga. The difference, as in most things, is understanding the objective. WHY are you doing yoga. WHAT is yoga. WHERE will yoga supposedly get you. Yoga means literally "to yoke". To yoke what? Your spiritual growth to your physical actions. There are many styles of aggressive stretching that haven't the slightest true spirit or slightest grasp of the original goal. This is because (as you have witnessed yourself) any one part of the Truth is so Powerful, so Mind blowing, so Real, that to even have a slightest part of it is to hold immeasurable over those sleeping, unprotected minds we might call Plebs and even those absurd reductionists we could call Philistines. This is because both of those things have their Root and Source in a common place, that is the Truth.
    Yeah, I saw 2 styles of Yoga... one in this "weird cult", the second one was by a teacher who was a more or less traditional Hinduist with a special interest in Shiva, a very pleasant person.

    As to answer your question, the first time I studied Yoga was simply because of a relationship that finished because I don't like cults. The second time I studied Yoga was EXACTLY for the reason that you ask: I went to a non-cultist school and I stayed there for some 3 years. My reason was to find out WHY I was studying yoga, but I never found the answer. I never understood the sense of it. That's why I am asking you questions, probably trying to find out a different point of view, and your answers are interesting.
    For some reason I don't understand the link between mysticism and complex athletic disciplines (I get the link when it's a meditation, but the ones I know need no athletic skills at all, nor they provide athletic skills).

    But... in short: I decided to study Yoga to find out WHY I was studying Yoga... in 3 years I didn't "get" it and I decided to abandon it. It didn't make any sense to me... Though it's an issue that always makes me scratch my head. Pardon me for asking so many questions, it's simply a "link" that I don't get (the link between athleticism and mysticism), but I find it interesting. Well, I enjoy to talk with persons who are nice and have very different perspectives... I learn a lot.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    II think part of the issue is it sounds like you were training a style of martial arts that is considered "soft" or mostly theoretical. With a very few exceptions (shotokan, kempo, some schools of judo) Eastern styles are considered "soft" and western styles "hard". Or in alchemical language, Feminine vs Male, Silver vs Gold etc. The trick (just as in alchemy) is to give birth to the Androgynous Child, or as I sometimes say utilize Western technique with an Eastern philosophy. You sound as if your mind is heavily leaned towards one end of the scale and I would say the experiment failed because you were trying to mix "like with like" alone.
    I don't think so, but you don't know me quite well. I enjoy a lot to participate in several Hermetic Orders with incredibly different styles. Some of them are very "hard" (I don't mean in the sense of difficulty, but "hard" as in "very rigid")... whilst some others are the opposite, very "soft" and "gentle". I like both styles.

    I think my problem was or is that I never understood the relationship with all this "athleticism" and anything related to "mysticism"... That's why I ask a lot of questions, probably trying to understand it, because I get that there is "something" that I am missing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    Let us imagine you were really, really into "leaving the body behind". To the point where you were trying to maximize that exploration fully. The more well conditioned your body or "anchor" the longer and deeper that voyage can become. If we consider the thing that drives the mind to be the nourishment of the Body or its own Animus Mundi, then when we "leave" the body, to the degree with "leave", to that same degree we remove the nourishment. A body strengthened through consistent influx of that same Animus Mundi will be much less vulnerable when left unattended and take much longer to begin to suffer ill effects from this neglect than a body is only at best regularly receiving the minimum dribble of this Animus Mundi it needs to hold its existence together.
    I can agree there, this is where we agree. On the other hand, my experience has been that the body is nourished with the spirit by very different means (completely unrelated to any kind of athleticism). Though I am not trying to suppress your idea with my idea, but trying to understand through you something that I couldn't understand when I did it myself.

    During the last months I have been visiting again and again the same Museum to see a temporary exhibition with the works of one of my favorite artists, Yves Klein. He was very open about the link between his works and Alchemy and Rosicrucianism (his big inspiration to create art was Alchemy and he was explicit about it). Something interesting about him is that he devoted more time to Judo than he devoted to Art. He even spent some years in Japan as to improve his Judo... and whilst he was in the peak of his fame as an artist, he wrote a book about judo techniques (without mentioning any kind of relation with art, it was strictly for students of Judo). Another weird fact is that he created an artistic movement with other artists, but they had something in common: they all knew each other because they studied Judo together since they were teens.

    One of the main concepts he investigated was the concept of the Void and how to manifest its offspring through art. As an artist he was very delicate, so I find it strange that he loved Judo so much (I am quite ignorant of the martial Arts, but I think Judo is one of the less "delicate" ones).

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    IBy not maintaining the body, or by neglecting our Anchor, we shorten both the length of time and quality of operation of the Mind.
    That's true, though I use a different logic and a different concept of "nourishing the body"... But I get your idea and I think it's worthy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    IMost importantly, when the Mind and Body are centered and engaged together in mutual, difficult activity requiring absolute concentration, AT THAT MOMENT there will be an awareness of the Thing which the Void which NEITHER the MIND NOR the BODY. With experience, this can be made manifest in every day experience. Your female companion was familiar with the practice while being ignorant of nearly every application available therewith aside from what I would call the obvious physical "tricks".
    The grammar of the first part is confusing, but I think you meant the experience of the Void... which is fascinating.
    Yes, I saw her doing many athletic "tricks" that made me think that she was almost an X-Men.... supporting her weight in one finger was one of them. A perfect control of each muscle was another (what she could do was, in the parts of the body where there are muscles -i.e, she couldn't do it on her elbows or other parts without muscles- is creating a "ball" instantly. I could point at any part of her body and she could create a "ball" without moving the other muscles... a perfect dissociation of the muscles and a perfect control of each one of them.
    The strange thing is that this person, actually the whole "school", was Atheist in a militant way... and the whole philosophy was quite strange because it contained a lot of "mysticism", but the whole of it was directed to the founder (who was worshipped daily as if he was a God, though he didn't claim to be a God). Well, it was quite a lunacy, but it wasn't any kind of "traditional" Yoga, but mostly a lunacy with an excellent "athletic" side (and a horrible philosophy).

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    It sounds as if your female friend had gone much further along that particular path than I have, but I do not focus on them in particular for the aforementioned caution of the Wise. I'm not surprised as all cults are formed from essentially obsessing over a small fragment of the Truth to the complete Ignorance of the Entire Work. I do however have video and picture evidence of myself doing the Siddhis I mentioned I have before, mostly because it's easier to post a picture than argue with people.
    Well, there is no need to convince me with a video... I have seen something that is mostly identical to what you describe, so I am assuming that you know how to do it too. Though I get what you mean, if I hadn't seen it before, I would probably assume that you are mentally insane... because it is completely mind blowing to see such things and the "common sense" leads to BELIEVE that it's not possible. I don't need to be "convinced" with a video because I have seen another person doing the same.

    Here's a video with an example:


    ... Though what I saw was by far more impressive mostly due to seemingly the lack of effort, the long time she could keep herself on just one finger, and the easy way in which she could switch from vertical position to horizontal position and then to "sitting" position (without touching the floor except for the finger) and even keep a conversation about absolutely random things.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    Perhaps eventually I would be willing to share this with a mod or someone else for verification purposes, but I have no interest in posting anything for a "wow" effect. (beyond getting the likes of my usual handful of friends and family who don't really know or understand a thing about what I spend my time doing or why I can do what I can)
    LOL... I guess that something similar happens to almost 90% of the "population" of this forum with different issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    My life has been a series of the most absurdly beneficial accidents (even accounting for all the personal karmic garbage that comes with any Incarnation)
    That's nice to hear, I've had the same experience thus far... though in other "paths".

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    If I could give you any one piece of advice to take home about martial arts, it would be to watch "Choke"

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjvzJO-6ESc

    Rickson Gracie is the the son of the founder of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and unanimously known as the best of the legendary Gracie family. He happens to be a devout practitioner of a form of yoga that produces similar results to Kundalini or Zen practice, in that he consciously summons a "zero point" as he calls it. Or a flow state, or a moving delta wave state. All practitioners of any legitimate martial art are familiar with this "zone" to some degree, and it can be found among any devoted practitioner of any path. As a child I found it playing video games. The best description ever is Musashi Miyamotos Book of Five Rings, which I cannot recommend enough.
    Thank you, I will watch it.
    I have mentioned my absurd good luck in life (even my friends have created an expression for it), but the physical "athletic" disciplines have not been part of that "good luck", in that area I only had bizarre and mediocre experiences. I am interested in giving it another try and what you are suggesting can be useful.
    Other than that, my current girlfriend (with whom I plan to stay for the whole of my life) is into Martial Arts, Kung-Fu and Tae-Kwon-Do (black belt in both of them and the former national champion in one of them -I have forgotten if it was in Tae-Kwon-Do or Kung-Fu), and she is very good (though she is having a hiatus with such things right now)... HOWEVER she is a bit disappointed with the fact that there is a "spiritual side" in those Martial Arts, but the 2 schools in which she learnt them didn't teach a single thing about that "spiritual side" and were simply focused on combating techniques. So she doesn't know the "spiritual part" of those Martial Arts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    My advice if you're interested would be to go to a local Jiu Jitsu gym (gi or no gi doesn't matter if you're not going pro) and commit to a solid year of it. Research your gym first, bullshido.com can help you there and mostly know what to look for. Medals on the wall and pictures with people in the community. The martial arts community is very, very small and if a school is ostracized from the legitimate schools there is a reason for it. Most schools offer a free class or week of classes to try out. Immediate contracts are a bad sign.
    Thanks for the advice... Jiu Jitsu. I will definitely give it a try, it's an area that I don't understand and I would like to understand.

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    What does legitimate mean for a martial arts school? In a word: competition. Active competition. Thats why you look for medals and pictures of the instructor on podiums. Not all great teachers competed extensively, but if they didn't they trained under someone who did and that lineage extends all the way back (whether they know it or not) to Bodhidharma and that Shaolin Temple. What may interest you is later on when I show this "Bodhidharma" is our same Hermes (or a very close disciple) and these arts originate actually in much more familiar territory, most probably near the Mediterranean or turkey.
    Well... it can be a good sign or a bad sign, it's relative. My girlfriend is the former national champion of Kung-Fu (if I am not wrong, if I am wrong, then it's Tae-Kwon-Do)... but she was never taught the "spiritual part" at all. Again, just like the other person I mentioned, probably ONE of the reasons for her good skills in Kung-Fu and Tae-Kwon-Do is that she trained a lot (several hours per day).

    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    You won't need to "roll" as they say in the first week, or even month. Nobody will make you do anything beyond regular light drills with the class (which you can observe your first time if you want). But eventually you will want to, and you will learn it doesn't hurt (unless there's an accident, very rare in grappling arts) and you didn't die and it was actually a lot of fun.

    edit. I fear I have rambled at length and may have missed the intention of your question. Apologies if so, this is not only what I consider a crucial part of the path but also a personal hobby and lifetime obsession. Left to my own devices I could and would ramble endlessly about lineage and famous matches and Artists and where which technique developed and who used it when to beat who.
    No, no need to apologize at all... I feel the need to apologize for rambling a lot... and you answered my questions very well.
    I wanted to listen to your point of view and I am glad that you explained it so extensively. As I've said, I live with a black belt in 2 Martial Arts, but she was never taught the "spiritual part" of them (as to give such thing a name... I don't know much about them, so I use the expressions that may be a bit awkward for someone who knows them).
    I am glad that you suggested something and I would certainly give it a try. My experiences with physical disciplines (Yoga, Martial arts) have been quite mediocre, but I would like to explore that area... especially in a school that doesn't disregard or ignore the "spiritual side" of them. So your post has been very helpful. Thanks a lot.

    I will let you talk with Kio now as to avoid interfering, because it's an area of ignorance for me and I assume that it's more fun to talk with someone who knows. What I had was questions, but you answered them very well.

  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by zoas23 View Post
    It is simply the starting matter in the center, its rotation through the 4 elements, it's interaction as the 3 principles and its final solidification as something bigger than it was when it began. It is taken from Maier's "Atalanta Fugiens".
    Alas for this curse of Babel, for what appears so clear to me remains a mystery to you, and what you consider cursory knowledge is yet out of my reach. I believe I have found at least half of the starting matter...but as far as its applications or necessary treatments I am utterly befuddled.


    Yeah, I saw 2 styles of Yoga... one in this "weird cult", the second one was by a teacher who was a more or less traditional Hinduist with a special interest in Shiva, a very pleasant person.

    As to answer your question, the first time I studied Yoga was simply because of a relationship that finished because I don't like cults. The second time I studied Yoga was EXACTLY for the reason that you ask: I went to a non-cultist school and I stayed there for some 3 years. My reason was to find out WHY I was studying yoga, but I never found the answer. I never understood the sense of it. That's why I am asking you questions, probably trying to find out a different point of view, and your answers are interesting.
    For some reason I don't understand the link between mysticism and complex athletic disciplines (I get the link when it's a meditation, but the ones I know need no athletic skills at all, nor they provide athletic skills).
    I always find that when one wants the truth of the WHY of a thing, it is best to investigate that things source. The Root will explain the Branch and Flower. Without an adept guide, or someone who wants to specifically answer your question, it can be very difficult understand the WHY of a thing, I would say impossible without a proper investigation of the Source.

    One of the best ways, I understand Fulcanelli recommended a similar sort of approach although I don't fully comprehend the totality of his method, is to trace the etymology of the word you're questioning. This will often reveal more about the thing itself, especially the WHYS and WHERE's and WHEN's, than the people who most commonly use the phrase or language are even aware of. Indeed, their particular cultural bias will usually blind them to any investigation of such roots. Most cultures assume their pieces of cultural identity are uniquely theirs, and have always existed as such, and never question the origins and would almost certainly take it as sacrilege should you ever suggest any origin aside from their (uninvestigated) presumption. I'm sure you witnessed this in the cult you mention if you ever brought up what you're telling us here.

    Anywho:

    In Sanskrit, the word yoga comes from the root yuj which means "to add", "to join", "to unite", or "to attach" in its most common senses. By figurative extension from the yoking or harnessing of oxen or horses, the word took on broader meanings such as "employment, use, application, performance" (compare the figurative uses of "to harness" as in "to put something to some use"). All further developments of the sense of this word are post-Vedic. More prosaic moods such as "exertion", "endeavour", "zeal", and "diligence" are also found in Indian epic poetry.[22]
    There are very many compound words containing yoga in Sanskrit. Yoga can take on meanings such as "connection", "contact", "union", "method", "application", "addition" and "performance". In simpler words, Yoga also means "combined". For example, guṇáyoga means "contact with a cord"; chakráyoga has a medical sense of "applying a splint or similar instrument by means of pulleys (in case of dislocation of the thigh)"; chandráyoga has the astronomical sense of "conjunction of the moon with a constellation"; puṃyoga is a grammatical term expressing "connection or relation with a man", etc. Thus, bhaktiyoga means "devoted attachment" in the monotheistic Bhakti movement. The term kriyāyoga has a grammatical sense, meaning "connection with a verb". But the same compound is also given a technical meaning in the Yoga Sutras (2.1), designating the "practical" aspects of the philosophy, i.e. the "union with the supreme" due to performance of duties in everyday life[23]
    According to Pāṇini, a 6th-century BCE Sanskrit grammarian, the term yoga can be derived from either of two roots, yujir yoga (to yoke) or yuj samādhau (to concentrate).[24] In the context of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, the root yuj samādhau (to concentrate) is considered by traditional commentators as the correct etymology.[25] In accordance with Pāṇini, Vyasa who wrote the first commentary on the Yoga Sutras,[26] states that yoga means samādhi (concentration).[27]
    According to Dasgupta, the term yoga can be derived from either of two roots, yujir yoga (to yoke) or yuj samādhau (to concentrate).[24] Someone who practices yoga or follows the yoga philosophy with a high level of commitment is called a yogi (may be applied to a man or a woman) or yogini (traditionally denoting a woman).
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoga

    However there are nearly an infinite variation of yogas. But, in the same way that there are nearly as many alchemical procedures as there are alchemists, yet there is one true aim to alchemy and one common goal to all alchemists, upon which they conduct their experiments according to the completeness of their understanding of that ONE ORIGINAL, COMMON goal. In the same way, all yogas in straighter or wider or shorter or longer or clearer or more muddled ways seek the SAME THING, and this original thing is the same as the goal of alchemists, albeit in what we could call a different Realm or Kingdom. It is my position that the TRUE STONE of Wisdom requires a mastery of both of these, or any construction will necessarily be considered incomplete.

    Specifically, the type of yoga one needs, the one most closely related to the original, complete Art handed down by our beloved Hermes/Thoth, is known today as Kundalini Yoga. This is a specific application of one of the original branches of Vedic yoga known as Hatha yoga, which is what the Western mind is generally in need of.

    According to Mallinson, an Oxford scholar known for his studies on Hatha yoga, its techniques can be traced back to the 1st millennium BCE(in) texts such as the Sanskrit epics (Hinduism) and the Pali canon (Buddhism0
    Ancient Sanskrit texts do not use the phrase "Hatha yoga", but their verses describe physical exercises and postures (asanas) that appear in later Hatha yoga texts, though sometimes in a different poetic meter.[12] For example, the Agama texts of Vaishnavism called Pancaratrika teach non-seated asanas such as mayurasana in section 96 of Vimanarcanakalpa patala (9th-century[13])
    In the earliest texts, Hatha Yoga is not opposed to Patanjali Yoga, nor is it ranked superior or inferior as it was presented in the 19th century.[3]:770-771 Rather it is supplementary, with a different aim. Hatha Yoga in these texts aim to conserve physical essence of life, which these texts call as bindu (semen) and far less discussed rajas (menstrual fluid). In contrast, later texts describe kundalini energy through a system of chakras. The texts state that being able to preserve and use this energy through Yoga is a means to achieve various siddhi (special powers).[
    I believe the bindu and raja mistranslation to be a corruption of the original teaching, being replaced by a later master with a correction and transposition of the universally applicable "kundalini" energy so as to help would be students avoid the trap and debate of obsessing over bindu vs raja. There is a masculine/feminine division in the kundalini practice, the difference in use is minimal. The Merkaba meditation activates both in the correct way without any need of the person receiving the meditation needing any prior knowledge or training, just what we might call a proper Vessel or Receptacle. Without such a thing this particular practice will simply fail and leave you feeling light and fuzzy and perhaps slightly warm, but not uncomfortably so. Back to hatha yoga:

    Hatha yoga practice has many elements, both behavioral and of practice. The Hatha yoga texts state that a successful yogi has certain characteristics. Section 1.16 of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, for example, states these characteristics to be utsaha (enthusiasm, fortitude), sahasa (courage, optimistic attitude), dhairya (patience, persistence), jnana tattva (essence for knowledge), nishcaya (resolve, determination) and tyaga (solitude, renunciation).[41]
    In the Western culture, Hatha yoga is typically understood as asanas and it can be practiced as such.[63] In the Indian and Tibetan traditions, Hatha yoga is much more. It extends well beyond being a sophisticated physical exercise system, and integrates ideas of ethics, diet, cleansing, pranayama (breathing exercises), meditation and a system for spiritual development of the yogi
    So you can see how a person can meet these criteria and not even be aware that yoga itself exists. This happens all the time. As Dogen puts it, "Do not think you will necessarily be aware of your enlightenment."

    He has another point here that was very useful to me that sealed his place as near and dear to my heart, that if you followed my earlier hint you would have eventually found that I will share with you here. Dogen has a great deal to share with everyone interested in anything, but as with all the Masters he had ONE goal in reality and hoped to help lead you to it also. His idea was called zazen, but the exact principle applies to the connection I am trying to make as clear to you as it is to me:

    This point was succinctly stressed by Dōgen in the Fukan Zazengi, the first text that he composed upon his return to Japan from China:

    To practice the Way singleheartedly is, in itself, enlightenment. There is no gap between practice and enlightenment or zazen and daily life
    Zazen has been described as "just sitting" but the same concept applies to whatsoever activity one finds oneself engaged in. Or as Dogen himself says(again in the FZ):

    For zazen, a quiet room is suitable. Eat and drink moderately. Cast aside all involvements and cease all affairs. Do not think good or bad. Do not administer pros and cons. Cease all the movements of the conscious mind, the gauging of all thoughts and views. Have no designs on becoming a Buddha. Zazen has nothing whatever to do with sitting or lying down.
    back to hatha yoga

    In later formulations(Visceral-read:after corrections), they developed the concept of kundalini (sleeping serpent goddess) and a system of chakras within the body, and the exercises were a means to awaken the sleeping kundalini and rejuvenate the body.[101] The idea of vital energy or principle was linked to jiva (prana, life force), and the aim was to move this "vital energy" with mudras, access amṛta – the stated nectar of immortality(Visceral-I believe this refers to the required Internal component, of which I believe Western Alchemy holds the key to creating the External component. Obviously either one would confer tremendous advantages, as I said earlier any one piece or shard of the True Thing is immensely powerful) – situated in the head and flooding it into the body.[99][102] The later formulations(Visceral-read: corrupted versions of even earlier teachings) of Hatha yoga thus differed from the early hatha yoga aims of preserving bindu]
    in the future I will enter my own commentary into my passages with the shorthand VN for Viscerals Notes

    The aims of Hatha yoga in various Indian traditions have been the same as those of other varieties of yoga. These include physical siddhis (special powers, bodily benefits such as slowing age effects, magical powers) and spiritual liberation (moksha, mukti).[2][9] According to Mikel Burley, some of the siddhis are symbolic references to the cherished soteriological goals of Indian religions. For example, the Vayu Siddhi or "conquest of the air" literally implies rising into the air as in levitation, but it likely has symbolic meaning of "a state of consciousness into a vast ocean of space" or "voidness" ideas found respectively in Hinduism and Buddhism.[106]
    Some traditions such as the Kaula tantric sect of Hinduism and Sahajiya tantric sect of Buddhism pursued more esoteric goals such as alchemy (Nagarjuna, Carpita), magic, kalavancana (cheating death) and parakayapravesa (entering another's body).[2][107][108] James Mallinson, however, disagrees and suggests that such fringe practices are far removed from the mainstream Yoga's goal as meditation-driven means to liberation in Indian religions.[109] The majority of historic Hatha yoga texts do not give any importance to siddhis.[110] The mainstream practice considered the pursuit of magical powers as a distraction or hindrance (VN- As I said any decent teacher will tell you not to waste your time on these, they are traps at best used to quickly and easily hold the attention of a potential student) to Hatha yoga's ultimate aim of spiritual liberation, self knowledge or release from rebirth that the Indian traditions call mukti or moksha.[2][9]
    The goals of Hatha yoga, in its earliest texts, were linked to mumukshu (seeker of liberation, moksha).(VN- the confused or fragmented self0 The later texts added and experimented with the goals of bubhukshu (seeker of enjoyment, bhoga)(VN- because eventually the seeker finds what it is looking for, it is not in pain or fragmented any longer and yoga is also a true Joy).[
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hatha_yoga

    But... in short: I decided to study Yoga to find out WHY I was studying Yoga... in 3 years I didn't "get" it and I decided to abandon it. It didn't make any sense to me... Though it's an issue that always makes me scratch my head. Pardon me for asking so many questions, it's simply a "link" that I don't get (the link between athleticism and mysticism), but I find it interesting. Well, I enjoy to talk with persons who are nice and have very different perspectives... I learn a lot.
    I don't think so, but you don't know me quite well. I enjoy a lot to participate in several Hermetic Orders with incredibly different styles. Some of them are very "hard" (I don't mean in the sense of difficulty, but "hard" as in "very rigid")... whilst some others are the opposite, very "soft" and "gentle". I like both styles.
    I don't need to know you well to read your words. You yourself said you are inexperienced in this area. I will switch to using the terms Yin and Yang. Mental practices and mediations such as you provide descriptions of are all nearly exlusively Yin. You yourself said they involved dropping the Body(physical, Yang) component as soon as possible. Hatha yoga, specifically Kundalini yoga and the Merkaba practice all involve going IN to the Body, or merging as much as of the Yin into as much as of the Yang as one possibly can. What your female friend was doing when you pointed to a spot on her body was channeling Yin energy (Chi) through her Body and converting it into Yang energy (Ki) on the spot and at will. This is all something anyone can learn to do and the reason why she was able to do it with no formal training in the Mysteries as we might know them is because these are Natural energy systems, and if you investigate you will find neither Yin nor Yang is itself the originating essence or force. Your friend did not possess a secret warehouse of Chi stored up somehow and there is no secret supply house of Ki energy available either, although one is interchangeable for the other infinitely. The Root energy is what makes the Kundalini and Merkaba practices work.

    I think my problem was or is that I never understood the relationship with all this "athleticism" and anything related to "mysticism"... That's why I ask a lot of questions, probably trying to understand it, because I get that there is "something" that I am missing.
    Zoas, you are truly among the Wise and I hope I have aided you in this, or at least allowed your intuition or inner Muse to perhaps speak more clearly to you.



    I can agree there, this is where we agree. On the other hand, my experience has been that the body is nourished with the spirit by very different means (completely unrelated to any kind of athleticism). Though I am not trying to suppress your idea with my idea, but trying to understand through you something that I couldn't understand when I did it myself.

    During the last months I have been visiting again and again the same Museum to see a temporary exhibition with the works of one of my favorite artists, Yves Klein. He was very open about the link between his works and Alchemy and Rosicrucianism (his big inspiration to create art was Alchemy and he was explicit about it). Something interesting about him is that he devoted more time to Judo than he devoted to Art. He even spent some years in Japan as to improve his Judo... and whilst he was in the peak of his fame as an artist, he wrote a book about judo techniques (without mentioning any kind of relation with art, it was strictly for students of Judo). Another weird fact is that he created an artistic movement with other artists, but they had something in common: they all knew each other because they studied Judo together since they were teens.

    One of the main concepts he investigated was the concept of the Void and how to manifest its offspring through art. As an artist he was very delicate, so I find it strange that he loved Judo so much (I am quite ignorant of the martial Arts, but I think Judo is one of the less "delicate" ones).
    Less delicate, or more realistic, or involves ACTIVE use of the techniques, all of which makes it closer to Source. There are many many many fantastic minds that are addicted to martial arts precisely because Judo, or Jiu Jitsu, or wrestling or boxing or muay thai will all, without exception, provide the exact same Void state that their creativity flows from, and all creative people are most certainly addicted to being creative.

    You would find Jiu Jitsu especially is full of super polite nerds with absurd video game stats who have no problem rolling you into a pretzel and making it fun. xD



    That's true, though I use a different logic and a different concept of "nourishing the body"... But I get your idea and I think it's worthy.



    The grammar of the first part is confusing, but I think you meant the experience of the Void... which is fascinating.
    Yes indeed I am, although Musashi Miyamoto puts it better than I ever can. I cannot recommend his Book of Five Rings enough. I will have to conduct a separate post upon it I suppose but it is only 5 chapters long, probably less than 100 pages and it will contain different wisdom every time you read it. The quotes that come to mind bearing to the topic at hand are when he says that

    One who understand the Way broadly will see it in all things
    and
    It is said the warriors is the twofold Way of Pen and Sword and he should have a taste for both Ways. Even if a man has no natural ability he can be a warrior by sticking assiduously to the Way.


    ... Though what I saw was by far more impressive mostly due to seemingly the lack of effort, the long time she could keep herself on just one finger, and the easy way in which she could switch from vertical position to horizontal position and then to "sitting" position (without touching the floor except for the finger) and even keep a conversation about absolutely random things.
    I doubt very much those things were random. Cults utilizing siddhis will use them as a distraction much like a hypnotists watch. There are thought scattering and manipulation techniques that are very easy to slip in to a persons head in such a maintained hypnotized state (yes even being lightly mesmerized counts) and most of those cults will further specialize in spreading their propaganda this way. Probably the most famous example is how Charles Manson manipulated people this way (taking advantage of drug and sex induced states to provide "suggestions") all the way to murder on his behalf.


    That's nice to hear, I've had the same experience thus far... though in other "paths".
    I would love to know all about them


    Thank you, I will watch it.
    I have mentioned my absurd good luck in life (even my friends have created an expression for it), but the physical "athletic" disciplines have not been part of that "good luck", in that area I only had bizarre and mediocre experiences. I am interested in giving it another try and what you are suggesting can be useful.
    Other than that, my current girlfriend (with whom I plan to stay for the whole of my life) is into Martial Arts, Kung-Fu and Tae-Kwon-Do (black belt in both of them and the former national champion in one of them -I have forgotten if it was in Tae-Kwon-Do or Kung-Fu), and she is very good (though she is having a hiatus with such things right now)... HOWEVER she is a bit disappointed with the fact that there is a "spiritual side" in those Martial Arts, but the 2 schools in which she learnt them didn't teach a single thing about that "spiritual side" and were simply focused on combating techniques. So she doesn't know the "spiritual part" of those Martial Arts.
    The most spiritually advanced persons I have ever met myself were without exception martial artists and aside from Erik they all avidly avoided (or were plain ignorant of) anything to do with spirituality. It's like they give you half the equation and you need to go out and find general philosophy yourself (works the other way as well). Martial arts is known to be (philosophically) the Path by Fire. I have also heard it described as a short path to the Source, in that if you're practicing the arts I mentioned (or the ones your girlfriend did if done at a VERY high level, not generally speaking) you will be face to face with Source on a daily basis, in that you will be face to face with Reality daily, in that martial arts (and yes yoga too in a less intense way) is a very It-Did-or It-Didn't happen. Much like chemical or alchemical labwork, no?


    Well... it can be a good sign or a bad sign, it's relative. My girlfriend is the former national champion of Kung-Fu (if I am not wrong, if I am wrong, then it's Tae-Kwon-Do)... but she was never taught the "spiritual part" at all. Again, just like the other person I mentioned, probably ONE of the reasons for her good skills in Kung-Fu and Tae-Kwon-Do is that she trained a lot (several hours per day).
    I believe if one knows what to look for God can be found on the mats or in the gym more often than one might expect. Obviously if you don't know what to look for (are not somehow or another "trained" in philosophy) you aren't going to see it. Or at least recognize it for what it is.

    After all, the Body is His also

    Know ye not that ye be Gods Temple and the Spirit of the LORD dwells in thee?
    -Corinthians, 3-16



    No, no need to apologize at all... I feel the need to apologize for rambling a lot... and you answered my questions very well.
    I wanted to listen to your point of view and I am glad that you explained it so extensively. As I've said, I live with a black belt in 2 Martial Arts, but she was never taught the "spiritual part" of them (as to give such thing a name... I don't know much about them, so I use the expressions that may be a bit awkward for someone who knows them).
    I am glad that you suggested something and I would certainly give it a try. My experiences with physical disciplines (Yoga, Martial arts) have been quite mediocre, but I would like to explore that area... especially in a school that doesn't disregard or ignore the "spiritual side" of them. So your post has been very helpful. Thanks a lot.

    I will let you talk with Kio now as to avoid interfering, because it's an area of ignorance for me and I assume that it's more fun to talk with someone who knows. What I had was questions, but you answered them very well.
    I wouldn't say you're interfering at all, Kio has already shown he understands the link itself perfectly and I would be willing to bet he even has some interesting notions himself about how they relate to alchemy.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral
    There is a masculine/feminine division in the kundalini practice, the difference in use is minimal.
    Would you mind expanding on this division? I don't want to misinterpret your understanding of Kundalini, because at the moment I do not consider the use of this polarity of kundalini as just 'minimal'. I find it's a very important division, the roots and trunk, if you will.
    Art is Nature in the flask; Nature is a vial thing.

  5. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiorionis View Post
    Would you mind expanding on this division? I don't want to misinterpret your understanding of Kundalini, because at the moment I do not consider the use of this polarity of kundalini as just 'minimal'. I find it's a very important division, the roots and trunk, if you will.
    I said the difference in use in minimal, not the difference itself. I know not what specific practices you're referring to, but the Root of the practice that we know as Kundalini is about connecting the Root Chakra to the Crown Chakra and nothing else. The way this is done is by simply clearing the channels this energy wants to travel naturally anyway. This is the double spiral of the caduceus and also one application of the Kabblah Tree of Life



    The difference in the use of Masculine or Feminine aspects of the Kundalini is itself minimal, while the difference in effect or application can and usually does vary extremely widely depending on what school of thought you're receiving the transmission from, how much does that person understand about what they're doing
    (in the BIG picture kind of way).

    In the same way that Yin holds no advantage over Yang nor Yang any advantage over Yin, there is no advantage to be gained by studying one aspect of anything to the exclusion of anything else. Zoas female friend had tremendous control over her Yin and Yang with no conception of where either was actually coming from. That the Root of Yin and Yang and Masculine/Feminine Gold/Silver etc are the same is why the Kundalini can be activated without even a mention of the different aspects of the energies.

    For precise control and specific application one should understand the differences between Yin and Yang in depth. For the general Way, or the broad path, or the very specific practice of uniting the self with the Self, no understanding of the difference is necessary as the manifestations of the differences are themselves negligible, automatic and easily overlooked when the Root energy is being channeled.

    edit. In short the Root and branch may have different applications separately, and these are good to know, but it is also important to remember these applications are not the True Purpose of the Tree, and in fact there is no separation whatsoever from Root to branch or even in reality from Root to branch to Seed to Root again.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    the Root of the practice that we know as Kundalini is about connecting the Root Chakra to the Crown Chakra and nothing else.
    I personally disagree, based on my own work with Kundalini. I would say the Root/First phase of the kundalini practice is opening Muladhara to the "Serpent Power" found in the Earth.

    The next stage is not only the sublimation of the sexual essence found near the Muladhara chakra up into the pituitary gland, but the essence must necessarily be connected with all glands in the endocrine system (which happens in stages as the Shakti-Sexual energy sublimates).

    The Shakti-Sexual essence union is the polarity/division I was referring to, which I have found to be quite interesting to study

    At least, that has been my experience with it
    Last edited by Kiorionis; 05-11-2017 at 07:15 PM.
    Art is Nature in the flask; Nature is a vial thing.

  7. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiorionis View Post
    I personally disagree, based on my own work with Kundalini. I would say the Root/First phase of the kundalini practice is opening Muladhara to the "Serpent Power" found in the Earth.

    The next stage is not only the sublimation of the sexual essence found near the Muladhara chakra up into the pituitary gland, but the essence must necessarily be connected with all glands in the endocrine system (which happens in stages as the Shakti-Sexual energy sublimates).

    The Shakti-Sexual essence union is the polarity/division I was referring to, which I have found to be quite interesting to study

    At least, that has been my experience with it
    Ah yes! We are indeed talking about the same thing, but I am painting in broad strokes. You describe specific practices and functions whereas I was merely outlining. Connecting the Root to the Crown very much involves channeling the sexual or creative energy you speak of up and through the body, activating the sets of "lesser" chakras that western science knows as "glands". Or we could say we need to unkink and unblock the pathways this energy naturally wants to travel anyway. This involves the active use of the Body to root out unconcious mental kinks that manifest as tensions in the Body. As these tensions are mental blind spots we will not be able to discover these unresolved knots of mental tension without a practice specifically aimed towards finding and fixing them.

    I would love to read a more in depth technical breakdown of the process if you'd be willing to provide it, I'm sure many here would benefit from it and I'm willing to assume you have a more technical background to the practice than I do. As I said, I have no teachers or masters and all that I have learned has been learned intuitively. My yoga is a lot like when I play guitar, which I've also never had a lesson in. I can play I don't know how many songs and scales but if you asked me what chord or scale I'm playing I couldn't possibly tell you. If you asked me how to play something I'm playing I would teach it you in a "your fingers go here, then here, then here" formula. The end result is the same.

    So to further clarify, what you bring up is in the nature of further detail work upon my point, the end goal is still the union of Heavenly and Earthly energies, made manifest as One awesome presence.

    edit: Could you elaborate on this Serpent Power you mention? I'm familiar with grounding and earthing practices, but don't know specifically what you mean
    Last edited by Visceral; 05-12-2017 at 05:28 AM.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    Or we could say we need to unkink and unblock the pathways this energy naturally wants to travel anyway. This involves the active use of the Body to root out unconcious mental kinks that manifest as tensions in the Body.
    I've personally found the Breath to be more active and productive in raising the energy, and clearing the blockages.
    Art is Nature in the flask; Nature is a vial thing.

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiorionis View Post
    I've personally found the Breath to be more active and productive in raising the energy, and clearing the blockages.
    When we focus the Mind to direct it's Attention upon the breath, we are stepping outside of our normal consciousness and thereby rerouting our energies out of the pathways we normally travel via habit.

    This, in a very similar way to how zazen alows one to "get out of one's own way", allows the natural flow of energy to be reestablished. I very strongly believe that an activated kundalini is the natural state of humanity and all of the bends and kinks that prevent our Serpent from completing it's journey are due to bad habits and a lack of education.

    I will attempt to illustrate this same point in a purely physical sense: posture.

    From the earliest days of our own independent movement (unless you are very lucky and born into precisely the right family) we are essentially left to ruin our own joints. As a habit people insist on smashing their heels into the ground with every step, with locked knees and no attention to an activated core. After years of this we have epidemics of ankle/knee/hip/back problems requiring total replacement of the joint. This is not a natural sort of arrangement.

    Neglecting our kundalini or Chakra pathways results in a similar sort of energetic decay. Could you elaborate more on your specific practice of using the breath to clear these channels? I would imagine many parts of it mirror the merkaba meditation, as it also involves the active direction of both masculine and feminine energies acting as one cohesive force.

    I will note here that while I am interested in specific practices and techniques, I view them much the same way as I view kata practice in martial arts, in that they are nice for practice or increasing familiarity with the necessary motions but should not be confused for first hand applicable, real world implementation. The map, as they say, is not the territory.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral View Post
    [. . .] acting as one cohesive force.

    I will note here that while I am interested in specific practices and techniques, I view them much the same way as I view kata practice in martial arts, in that they are nice for practice or increasing familiarity with the necessary motions but should not be confused for first hand applicable, real world implementation. The map, as they say, is not the territory.
    I have heard differently, but it's probably depends on the style. In the ones I've heard about and study, the kata are to develop specific muscle memories, so that during competition or 'real-life' applications the body can respond without thinking. It is a matter of merging the map with the landscape so that the two become one.

    The same is utilized in static breathing meditations. Breath + lower dantian. This new 'Breath' is then circulated through the channels. Bringing fresh air into the body is vitalizing, physicall, energetically and mentally


    Edit.

    But I agree that posture is able to augment the breath, after its inhaled, and that the posture pre-breath determines/fixes a higher frequency breath.
    Last edited by Kiorionis; 05-13-2017 at 02:58 AM.
    Art is Nature in the flask; Nature is a vial thing.

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