Thursday, April 27, 2006

The germinal vesicle

The MSN Encarta Dictionary defines a germinal vesicle as the enlarged nucleus of an egg before it develops into an ovum. No, one is not trying to discuss a medical term or something sexual or bisexual here, but the germinal vesicle means something totally different in inner alchemy (neidan) practice.

In the Book of Consciousness and Life (Hui Ming Ching) Richard Wilhelm and Cary Baines translation:

The germinal vesicle is an invisible cavern which has neither form nor image. When the vital breath stirs, the seed of this vesicle comes into being; when it ceases it disappears again. It is the place that harbors truth, the altar upon which consciousness and life are made. It is called the dragon castle at the bottom of the sea, the boundary region of the snow mountains, the primordial pass, the kingdom of greatest joy, the boundless country. All these different names mean this germinal vesicle.If a dying man does not know this germinal vesicle, he will not find the unity of consciousness and life in a thousand births, or in ten thousand a eons.”

About two years ago, a young overseas Chinese from a South East Asian country had asked in a Daoist forum whether the germinal vesicle actually exists. He had by chance overheard the elders in his Daoist temple discussing about it. Since no one answered his query, I had said yes.

It exists in man. Those who practise neidan may notice or be aware of it after several years of continual correct practice.

What has been explained in the Hui Ming Ching as highlighted above contains the key to the understanding and awareness of where the germinal vesicle is located. Here could be some hints:

When the neidan practitioner is at rest, he or she may at times be aware of a bulge near the location indicated by the neidan adepts. If one touches the bulge before it disappears, which it will within a short period of time, it would immediately flatten. The bulge has the same shape when it appears now and then over the years at the same location.

Therefore the adepts were not wrong when they described the germinal vesicle as an invisible cavern which has neither form nor image. And when the vital breath stirs, the seed of this vesicle comes into being, when it ceases it disappears again. They had also indicated the exact location too; whether we can find it as usual is entirely up to our own practice.

According to the author of the Hui Ming Ching and the elders of the particular Daoist temple, it is important to know the germinal vesicle. Perhaps it is one of the signposts along the far journey to Tao. Well I do not know, but do watch out for it, there will be many other signposts, if you happen to walk along the same route as my Daoist friend and me. The signpost(s) will remain there forever and you cannot miss them unless you have used other paths for the neidan practice.

Note: The Hui Ming Ching is included in The Secret of The Golden Flower translated by W/B.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Update on Hidden Treasures

In the entry on Hidden Treasures (Hexagram 26 Da Chu) on August 28 2005 one had mentioned that the shares GT may double from its lifetime low reached in mid 2005 and that one will continue to accumulate the shares notwithstanding heavy selling by the former chief executive officer of the company.

While the shares did not double as hoped for last year, the share price did rebound 80% from the low before drifting lower. Still one was accumulating over the months at various prices and has since more than tripled the initial investment. Yesterday the GT shares finally reached the target price (doubling of its lifetime low) four months late and with big volume. Today GT shares closed 25% higher from yesterday’s closing price. Whoopee!

As one told a close friend of mine, the profits from this share investment alone could be enough for my retirement fund; one was still buying the shares today. The Yi did indicate that one has to accumulate together with others while practising charioting. If one reveals the final target price here, readers may think I am crazy, therefore one target level at a time. The next expected target for the GT shares is a fivefold increase from its lifetime low or a twofold increase from its closing price today.

Meanwhile you can also check on the October, the month of Splitting Apart (Hexagram 23) entry on Oct 24 2005 on what was indicated then and discern from hindsight whether one’s expectations of the performance of the world share markets were indeed correct or was just a guess.

Does this not go some way to prove that the Yi is indeed profound if we really understand the hexagrams, and the oracles given?

Thursday, April 20, 2006

A simple circle

The circle, a round enclosure, written as a zero or the alphabet O, is used to represent many things by various cultures in the world. In the study of metaphysics, the simple circle is often used to signify completion and/or perfection. Of course the circle can also mean zero or nothing.

One recalled a question from an elderly Chinese gentleman about the circle and what it actually symbolized in Chinese thoughts. At the time, he was having an animated conversation with a mutual friend, AK about the bagua (the eight trigrams) and about how much his professor friend knows about the I Ching when one happened to drop in to pay a visit. The elderly man oblivious of my presence emphasized that the professor has even written a book on bagua and that according to him the best book out of China is the Book of Changes. AK, whom I had given a W/B translated copy of the Zhouyi years earlier, introduced me and said that I know something about the Book of Changes.

Thereupon one was tested about what the circle represents when people say that the circle appears now empty and now filled; the elderly man had cupped a circle with both thumbs and fingers to emphasize the point. I cannot recall the exact answer given back then but it seemed to have satisfied him and he left shortly thereafter. It pays not to claim to know too many things. One had browsed through the bagua book of his friend in a bookstore. The contents were rather basic and the author could not clearly explain the concepts. With seemingly endless changes, the bagua is not easy even for masters to understand.(Think Lu Hsun of Wu who was trapped by Kungming's Eight Arrays.)

In Zhouyi studies, the circle is taken to represent Heaven and the square to represent Earth. Heaven is round and Earth is square and we can see these representations in the old Chinese coins. The yarrow stalks (and coins) are round, while the hexagrams are square. In line with this understanding, inner alchemy (neidan) adepts use the circle to represent Heaven and a few other things such as the Gold Pill (Jindan – the Golden Elixir), and the Center (Zhong, a bisected circle later symbolized by the Taiji - the Supreme Ultimate).

The Circulation of the Light meditation also evolves around a circle of breath and light. The breath when inhaled is made to flow down the front part of the body to Kun / Earth (bottom) and reversed up the back to Qian / Heaven (top). This is known as the backward flow. Upon exhalation, remnants of breath will continue downwards to Kun to complete a circle. Once a circular connection has been made, the rest is easy and simple through continual practice and spontaneity.

If we discuss the Wuji tu (Chart of the Infinite) we can say that the circle was originally empty and silent. Then after an eternity, there was chaos and the circle became filled with yin yang (Earth and Heaven) and the ten thousand things. Therefore to return to Tao we have to go back the same way through the empty circle (Wuji). But firstly we have to reach and pass through the center (the filled circle - Taiji) before we can proceed further. The center is what the great sages pointed to in their Daoist texts, Confucian books and Buddhist sutras.

If you can see the circle filled with yin yang, it is full as depicted in the Taiji; when yin yang is no longer present the circle is empty (Wuji). In the absence of duality, the silvery moon is the empty circle.

Meanwhile, if some readers think that the simple circle is nothing spectacular or important, perhaps they would understand why all the planets in Heaven are round or circular in shape. Planet Earth is round too. Of course we have to listen to the scientists, since science is also important. And my knowledge of science is minimal.

If only the Hubble space telescope was invented before the Tao Te Ching was written. Probably after seeing the pictures, Laozi can be a bit more descriptive in some of the chapters. Ha, what can be proven to people if things can only be witnessed within? Even if Laozi had explained the sights in full, there will still be scholars and Daoists who would dispute what they have not seen or cannot see. (A joke often shared between my Daoist friend and me.) If only they follow the right path and cultivate, they may be able to see for themselves the simple circles within. Perhaps, only then will there be some lasting peace.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The System

In The Concise Oxford Dictionary, a system means a complex whole, set of connected things or parts, organized body of material or immaterial things; the established political or social order. In modern times almost everything we do seems to have a system or a connection to systems in some form or other. But systems tend to break down if connections are lost. (Think computers)

Or invariably when a system is not properly implemented or followed through, things do not work well out as expected. Therefore it is necessary to have a proper guide or coordinator for the smooth implementation of a new or existing system and one who can rectify or improve upon it wherever required. (Banking system, accounting system, tax system, computer system, etc)

In war, The Art of War remains a great system for generals during the Spring and Autumn era and arguably down till today. With or without teachers, those who truly understood its thirteen chapters thoroughly and had properly implemented the system in wars; achieved great success for their states or countries. Think Sunzi/Han Hsin/Cao Cao/Mao Zedong/General Vo Nguyen Giap. The last two named modern leaders, Mao of China and Giap of Vietnam, employed guerilla tactics to great effect to wear down and demoralize better armed and larger enemy forces that they faced before finally emerging victorious.

Can the same reasoning be applied to The Way?

Obviously the same reasoning can apply. If we reread the Tao Te Ching in detail, we may find that Laozi seemed to have written an entire system in the Classic on how to cultivate and return to Tao. A system made known by Laozi and in an almost similar fashion by two other great sages, Confucius and Buddha all circa 2,500 ago.

The TTC is actually quite well structured if we analyze and understand existing religious Daoist practices taught by immortals, and not allow idiosyncrasies to set in. Similar to military leaders not able to fully grasp the Art of War, Daoists may not have thoroughly understood and/or correctly followed what is written in the TTC. It could be too profound or some do not have the required learning or practice. When we misunderstand what Laozi meant or chose to follow seemingly easier bypaths and our own idiosyncrasy, the system purportedly breaks down. Without fixing or repairing our understanding we may continue to tread onto bypaths just like what Laozi, Confucius and Buddha had said. Please refer to the TTC, Analects and Dhammapada if you are not too particular about different doctrines and/or religions to expand your studies of the system.

Therefore it is often recommended by past masters in Daoist texts that we seek out real teachers (which may include Daoist immortals) to correct or fine-tune our thoughts and to guide us through the practice in order to return to the Way (Tao). With earnestness and sincerity, Daoists, Buddhists and Confucians can still benefit much from a clear and continual practice even if they do not get to the Centre of a great system!

Meanwhile fellow travelers and I plod on along the far journey none the wiser whether we can ever reach the final destination.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

On waging war

Ancient thoughts on waging war are perhaps still relevant today. The ideal situation envisaged by Sunzi in The Art of War is to overcome the enemy without a fight through diplomatic and other means to frustrate the enemy’s plans, isolate and demoralized the enemy to break his will.

The ancients had always exhorted that arms should only be used as a last resort. Just because a state has great military power, it should not bully a weaker state. To the ancients, benevolence and righteousness are requisite in waging a war otherwise there can be no complete victory. But leaders today tend to think differently. What Sunzi wrote more than 2,500 years ago could be relevant to waging modern wars of today:

By Tao, I mean that which causes the people to be in harmony with their leaders, so that they will accompany them in life and unto death without fear of mortal peril. (Harmony arising from the leaders’ benevolence and righteousness – Chang Yu) (In happiness at overcoming difficulties, people forget the danger of death – Book of Changes)

By command I mean the general’s qualities of wisdom, sincerity, humanity, courage, and strictness.” (Chapter I Estimates) [Also refer to the second line of Hexagram 7 Shi / The Army]

“Victory is the main object in war. If this is long delayed, weapons are blunted and morale depressed. When the army engages in protracted campaigns the resources of the state will not suffice. Thus, while we have heard of blundering swiftness in war, we have not seen a clever operation that was prolonged. There has never been a protracted war from which a country has benefited.

Thus those unable to understand the dangers inherent in employing troops are equally unable to understand the advantageous ways of doing so. Those adept in waging war do not require a second levy of conscripts or more than one provisioning. They carry their equipment from the homeland; they rely for provisions on the enemy. Thus the army is plentifully provided with food.

Treat the captives well, and care for them. This is called ‘winning a battle and becoming stronger’.

Hence what is essential in war is victory, not prolonged operations. And therefore the general who understands war is the Minister of the people’s fate and arbiter of the nation’s destiny.
(Chapter II, Waging War [Sun Tzu, The Art of War translated by Samuel B Griffith])

Winning a war without winning the hearts of your own people and that of the conquered people cannot be considered a complete victory. Resentment and resistance will arise especially from unrighteous wars. Think Afghanistan in the 1980s and Iraq recently.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

An example of Righteousness/Justice (Yi)

In the Commentaries on Hexagram 1 Qian / The Creative in the Book of Changes on righteousness/justice it is said:

Because he furthers all beings, he is able to bring them into harmony through justice.

Richard Wilhelm in the translation of the Zhouyi followed up with this explanation on righteousness: “Furthermore, as the foundation of social life there must be the greatest possible freedom and the greatest possible advantage for all. These are guaranteed by justice, which curtails individual freedom no more than is absolutely necessary for the general welfare.” [W/B Book III]

Although righteousness (Yi) also comes from the heart/mind (Hsin), it is more difficult to understand than benevolence (Ren). The uninitiated at times may think acts by the righteous outright foolhardy.

Since one has often quoted the Analects of Confucius and the Tao Te Ching on the subject, perhaps the following quite ‘well known’ episode more than seven centuries later can help some readers better understand righteousness:

After losing many men in the river battle at Red Cliff, Cao Cao had to beat a hasty retreat back to the Eastern Han capital. Chuko Liang (Kungming) having foreseen the likely routes that Cao would take, had placed generals and troops to block his attempts to escape. However Kungming did not allocate Guan Yu any place to guard. Since he knew Guan would allow Cao to pass because Cao was once very kind to him and Guan cannot help feeling grateful. When Guan insisted on guarding an escape route, to emphasize the seriousness of the matter, Kungming made him put in writing that he will be executed if he allowed Cao to pass.

Just as Kungming has foreseen Cao and his remnant troops were blocked at various escape routes and had to finally go through at Huayang Valley. When they saw Guan Yu and his men barring the way, Cao’s adviser, Cheng Yu said:

I have always heard that Guan Yu is haughty to the proud but kindly to the humble; he despises the strong, but is gentle to the weak. He discriminates between love and hate and is always righteous and true. You, O Minister, have shown him kindness, and if you will remind him of that we shall escape this evil.

Cao Cao managed to convince Guan Yu to allow him and his troops to pass unscathed. Upon receiving his report of his failure to kill Cao Cao and had instead allowed him free passage, Kungming called in the lictors and told them to take away Guan Yu and put him to death. Only when his elder brother Liu Bei spoke up for Guan Yu, was the sentence remitted.

Two poems honored Guan Yu for what he did:

“Cao Cao, his army lost, fled to the Huayung Valley;
There in the throat of the gorge met he Guan Yu.
Grateful was Guan, and mindful of former kindness,
Wherefor slipped he the bolt and freed the imprisoned dragon.”

“Guan Yu risked his life when he spared Cao
In direst need,
And age-long admiration gained
For kindly deed.”

Guan Yu later became a favorite Daoist deity, The God of War, honored for his righteousness (Yi). Although none became as famous as Guan Yu, many chivalrous heroes in ancient or later times had given up their lives for righteousness/justice.

This entry is written especially for a regular reader who has recently taken up a noble cause to further justice. Good luck.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Selected wisdoms from the Yi (Hexagrams 43 and 47)

While going through a journal to find a particular divination, one had in mind to discuss about, I chanced upon some highlighted wisdoms in a February 1998 oracle given by the Yi in answer to a personal question, months after the Asian financial crisis in 1997.

In Hexagram 43 Guai / Break-through, the commentary after the Image reads:

"When water of a lake has risen up to heaven, there is reason to fear a cloudburst. Taking this as a warning; the Junzi forestalls a violent collapse. If a man were to pile up riches for himself alone, without considering others, he would certainly experience a collapse. For all gathering is followed by dispersion. Therefore the Junzi begins to distribute while he is accumulating."

"In the same way, in developing his character he takes care not to hardened in obstinacy but to remain receptive to impressions by help of strict and continuous self-examination."

With two moving lines, the first and the third, it changed to Hexagram 47 K’un / Oppression. And the commentary after the Judgment reads:

"Times of adversity are the reverse of times of success, but they can lead to success if they befall the right man. When a strong man meets with adversity, he remains cheerful despite all danger, and this cheerfulness is the source of later successes; it is that stability which is stronger than fate. He who lets his spirit be broken by exhaustion certainly has no success. But if adversity only bends a man, it creates in him power to react that is bound in time to manifest itself. No inferior man is capable of this. Only the great man brings about good fortune and remains blameless."

"It is true that for the time being outward influence is denied him, because his words have no effect. Therefore in times of adversity it is important to be strong within and sparing of words."

From 1998 onwards, notwithstanding a drastic reduction of income and available funds, I increased the quantum of donations annually to my favorite charity (with the money/gifts distributed among orphanages and old folk homes countrywide) and one has also taken on the annual donation to the Society of the Blind after my father died. Since one had encouraged him to donate to the Society years earlier.

In a way, by writing this blog one may also be distributing while accumulating knowledge and experience.

For the first few years after the oracle, the message, ’Be cheerful’ appeared on the screen of my mobile phone whenever it was switched on. One no longer required that reminder since changing the outdated analogue phone with another free mobile.

It has been eight long years running with variable degrees of adversity and oppression. Of late, there have been some encouraging signs of recovery. In continuing to follow the Yi’s guidance and its wisdoms, one may finally see the light at the end of the tunnel this year or the next. Hopefully the recovery will big enough to allow one to once again become a flying dragon in the heavens!

Meanwhile, Cheerio!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Instances of Heaven’s Will (Tian Yi)

Just the other day, my son switched on the television to watch via satellite the Hong Kong serials titled, ‘The Conqueror's Story’. The show is set during the times of popular uprising against the Chin and after its fall, the battles between Chu and Han for supremacy. Since the storyline followed quite closely to that of the Records of the Historian (Shiji), one could provide a running commentary on how Hsiang Yu became so powerful and the reasons why he appointed and demoted kings to later kill them at will. And why he lost popular support from the nobles and the people.

One has also provided a commentary on how Liu Pang, his adopted brother who became his main adversary, attracted the best strategist, Chang Liang and the top general, Han Hsin because of his benevolence and generosity. The characters of both Hsiang Yu and Liu Pang were also contrasted and why Liu Pang was able to gain popular support and the Mandate of Heaven (Tian Ming).

To answer his question on how Hsiang Yu with just 30,000 picked troops can overcome a force of 560,000 allied soldiers led by Liu Pang in Pengcheng, one had to refer back to the Shiji to confirm and explain. After reading the relevant incident in the chapter on Hsiang Yu, one had also spotted this:

"The pursuers threw three cordons round the king of Han. But just then a great wind sprang up from the northwest. It blew down trees and houses and raised swirling clouds of sand so that all grew dark and day turned into night. This storm beat against the army of Chu and threw it into confusion. Their ranks broke, enabling the king of Han to escape with several dozen horsemen."

More than four centuries later, decades after the fall of the Han dynasty, an almost similar intervention by Heaven happened during the Three Kingdoms:

"As he spoke there arose a great shout and from the hillside came many torches, which fell all around them and set fire to the straw, so that soon the entrance to the valley was lost in smoke and flame. They tried to get away from the fire, but no road led up the hillside. Then fire-arrows came shooting down, and the earth-mines exploded, and the straw and firewood blazed as high as the heavens. Ssuma I, scared and helpless, dismounted, clasped his arms about his two sons and wept, saying, ‘My sons, we three are doomed.’ But suddenly a fierce gale sprang up, black clouds gathered, a peal of thunder followed and rain poured down in torrents, speedily extinguishing the fire all through the valley. The mines no longer exploded and all the fiery contrivance ceased to work mischief. The father and the two sons made a dash for the outlet. As they broke out of the valley they came upon reinforcements from their army and so were once more safe."

"Hearing this news, Chuko Kungming sighed, saying, ‘Man proposes; God disposes. We cannot wrest events to our will.’"

Indeed the ancients before the wise Kungming knew that when Heaven favors some one what can Man do to him. For this reason Laozi said in the TTC, Heaven is on the side of the good. And on an occasion where his students had feared for his life, Confucius has said, since Heaven does not intend culture to disappear, what can the men of Kuang do to him? (Shiji)

Therefore is it not beneficial to have Heaven on our side?

Is it really harmful to become good and sincere again? (Think baby, or on the contrary you can think Bush, if you like.)

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Rationale for discussing heaven secrets and investments

Two previous visitors to this blog have remarked in Daoist forums that to include the revelation of heaven secrets in my profile depicts my arrogance. One of them had also questioned why I consult the Zhouyi on investments. Although what one writes in the profile and in the blog is of no concern or consequences to them, perhaps their remarks need addressing not only in those forums but here too.

The main purpose of writing this blog is to share experiences with fellow students of the Yi and the Tao. To highlight that on occasion heaven secrets (and/or omens) can be revealed by the Yi is part and parcel of this sharing. How else could Yi students and the general public get to know about that possibility?

If one has made false and unsupported claims or claimed that only I can obtain such heaven secrets then perhaps one would seem arrogant. But that is not the case.

Time and again, one has referred readers to: the ancient Confucian book, Doctrine of the Mean (Chung Yung) which said that by using the tortoise and the yarrow, the most entire sincere can foreknow both happy and unlucky omens. And to the Great Treatise (Da Chuan) which indicates what can be known by consulting the Yi with yarrow stalks. If Yi diviners and others can obtain such secrets through other means, then bully for them.

On the question of investments, perhaps the peculiar young female visitor may not understand my profession. A professional accountant is familiar with and can advise on a variety of investments especially those of public quoted shares and companies. One does not have to profile various work experiences which include directors of subsidiary companies/investments reporting to me or on the successful handling of deals worth hundreds of millions ringgit. What relevance does it have on readers or the entries here?

Since the 1970s till now, investments in quoted shares, landed properties, foreign currencies and gold bullion formed the majority of my Yi consultations. After doing the necessary homework, I consult the Yi for guidance on the investment. From decades of experience one has managed to set up a table to determine with certain accuracy which of the 64 hexagrams are good for such investments. Of course every Yi diviner has their own interests or hobby on what to divine over the years. Perhaps only when we are quite good at certain things can we discuss and share the experiences in a more meaningful way. Otherwise what is discussed or shared can appear shallow, twisted or wanting.

Therefore one does not see anything wrong in consulting the Yi on investments or for heaven secrets. Perhaps some readers may not be aware that a few major investment institutions and/or government agencies in the West employ expert astrologers and/or psychics for predictions on investments and for foreknowledge of events or major crises that can affect their country or the world?

I take this opportunity to offer my services to consult the Yi for any major investment institutions and/or government agencies in return for a reasonable fee or on a retainer basis. Whether one has the necessary qualifications is left to be seen; after all they do not advertise for such positions. Therefore one has to write about oracles on investments, omens and heaven secrets to start the ball rolling.

I am a mortal not a Daoist sage or immortal. One still need money to continue living and do good deeds and perhaps leave behind something for the wife and kids before one eventually goes wandering in the mountains or leave this earth.

Is it not more beneficial to use this blog to share experiences with fellow travelers for free and to publicize one’s skills in Yi consultations and interpretations to potential clients worldwide?

Perhaps you can tell me.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Basic breath control

We breathe in through our nose and breathe out though our mouth. Normal breathing is done through the lungs. Whereas in Chinese meditation and Kung Fu (martial arts) it usually involves some basic breath control where breath is made to sink down to the lower dantien (a point about two fingers width or one and half inches below the navel).

The Chinese consider the lower dantien the centre of a human body. Therefore when breath (Qi) is stored there it helps weigh down the martial arts exponent’s centre of gravity, which allows for a lower stance and a firmer footing. And the meditation practitioner derives more health benefits from a meditation where such breath control is involved as compared to no breath control at all.

The reason one links up the martial arts practice with the meditation practice is because quite a number of students of meditation often are unable to sink their Qi down to the lower dantien, even after a few years of practice under ‘masters’ of meditation. Not only are the students wasting their time and money, they may end up frustrated or get ill because of incorrect meditation practice.

One has corrected such students before – who happen to be some friends and relatives – and it only took a few minutes of explanation and practice and they could sink the Qi down to the lower dantien. A martial arts exponent can perhaps tell you how to do it too. It is easy and simple yet many including the ‘masters’ in this day and age seem to make heavy weather of it.

For those feeling a bit adventurous or those who are doing breath control exercises (through meditation or martial arts like qigong or taijiquan) they can try this basic breath control meditation.

You can use the sitting posture described in the simple sitting meditation (March 31 2006) entry. The steps are the same except for #11. This time the breathing will be like this:

1) Slowly draw in a deep breath to your stomach through your nose

(You would be able to feel your stomach extending)

2) Keep the breath in the stomach for about ten seconds

(Mentally count one to twelve until you get used to the timing)

3) Then slowly exhale through your nose

(You would be able to feel your stomach retracting)

4) Repeat the breathing as above for the duration of the meditation

(Minimum 15 minutes duration)

If you follow and regularly practise the breathing technique as described here and the other steps in the March 31 entry correctly, remnants of the Qi will reach and stay in your lower dantien for the duration of the meditation. But heed this warning: if you feel dizzy or your heart beat very fast because of the breath control, please stop the meditation immediately.

Back in 1997, after my father in his mid seventies had a major heart bypass and was unable to fully recover from a mild stroke even with acupuncture, one taught him this basic breath control and the simple sitting meditation. Together with the application of ‘thermal healing’ (refer July 27 entry) he regained full usage of his right arm and leg a few weeks later and was able to stay up and play mahjong for 72 hours non stop. You cannot really fault him; he had been stuck in bed in the hospital for the operation and in the house for months. Obviously my mum was annoyed with him and had blamed me for his quick and full recovery.

You see, it is never easy to remain blameless.

Take note that I do not recommend those below the age of 26 to learn this basic breath control without proper guidance.

Meanwhile if you find the basic breath control helpful continue the meditation practice. It could prove good for your health and your mind. How much further you can or want to go after that is up to you.