It has been almost eight years since my blogging started and this is the 600th article, and having reached a milestone of sorts, it is time to update my profile and things.
What was stated in the first article dated March 26, 2005 on Heaven and Earth remain my ambition to make seemingly profound things (including phenomena) easy and simple for others to understand and to follow.
If making complicated things easy and simple to understand and to follow has worked in my professional undertakings for over three decades, it could also work in the study of the profound Tao and the Book of Changes. Though it may take longer to do so, not because of insufficient knowledge but because many minds have for too long come under the undue influence of ignorant scholars / translators, fake Tao and Yijing ‘masters’, I would still try.
Readers having the caliber would comprehend the simplicity of my second article dated March 27, 2005 on ‘What do the ancients teach?’ which is reproduced below for your easy reference:
“After spending much time on the Ancients’ thoughts, my simple understanding is that the great masters (Laozi, Confucius, Buddha and others) all teach a way to cultivate and return to the Tao. The neo Taoists (including immortals), neo Confucians and neo Buddhists (including Bodhidharma) named this method as the cultivation of both essence and bodily life.
To return to the Tao one therefore has to meditate (essence) and cultivate virtues (bodily life) forming the main part of one’s cultivation.
Lest you forget about the ancient Book of Changes (I Ching or Zhouyi), there are references to the trigrams and hexagrams in inner alchemy texts so it is advisable to study the Zhouyi too. If you do divination it can heighten your spiritual awareness. And if the Zhouyi truly speaks to you, wow!
Writing here may spark intensity to analyze and research the Ancients’ thoughts in a different perspective from what you and I have delved in so far. Learning shall not cease.
Sometimes the truth is in front of you, inside you, or out there.”
And most of the six hundred articles in the blog deal specifically with ancient teachings therefore if readers have any questions on these things, they could probably find an answer from one of these articles.
There are many a time when I pulled the legs of readers by quoting Zhuangzi’ ‘How would I know (that)?’ to cast doubts on my real knowledge especially on neidan (inner alchemy) and/or Tao. While the more discerning among the readers would know if I really knew the topic well or not, others would have to do further research instead of relying on my words to understand what were actually discussed.
Instead of remaining a hidden dragon, and pretending not to know – it is much easier than pretending to be a know-it-all - and to substantiate that what is contained in the Secret of the Golden Flower and the Hui Ming Ching as translated by Richard Wilhelm / Baynes is appropriate for learning the backward flow method for the Circulation of the Light, no matter what pedant scholars or other translators say, my up-to-date profile would now read as:
“Allan Lian, a Malaysian Chinese, started to read the four Confucian books and five Classics at age 19. The Zhouyi has since 1990 bestowed upon him global omens. In 2003 he published on the Web the first of several global omens before their actual unfolding. Their accuracy has probably caught USA’s attention evidenced by her 2010 preparations to protect Americans.
Self-taught, he cultivates his nature (Xing) and fate (Ming) and practises the backward flow method for the Circulation of the Light. He has shared insights since 1993 with a Quanzhen Longmen VIP. While Allan may have witnessed several eternal Tao signposts and has the spiritual clarity to probably penetrate ancient classics and the Changes, he is still learning. The blog title depicts his finite knowledge.”
My self-studying of the ancient four books and five classics have started at the late age of nineteen compared to the renowned Neo Daoists and Neo Confucians who probably have had studied the same received texts from childhood right up to their youth. Except that, I am probably a bit more fortunate than most since the Book of Changes has given me many omens including global ones over the decades.
By studying and cultivating what has been taught by the ancients, and at the mature age of forty, I decided to self practise the ancient meditation taught in the Secret of the Golden Flower by Lu Dongbin (the Daoist text translated by Wilhelm / Baynes). Having attained some success in it, I started to share the insights with my learned Quanzhen friend - an elder who is taught directly by his ancestor master, a Daoist celestial immortal - and have continued to do so over two decades. Over the years, because of his cultivation, dedication, and sacrifices, my friend has been promoted to be a leader in Quanzhen Longmen Pai.
However a word of caution: students should not jump in to learn the backward flow method either from this Daoist text or from real neidan masters in China unless they are already cultivating virtues – also refer to the articles on ‘Right persons for Tao’ and on ‘Of students and masters (12)’. There is actually no need to rush since the eternal signposts of Tao of which some have been blogged over the years will always be there for the right persons. Since the truth is in front of you, inside you, or out there.
Over the years, friends and readers have requested to study under me but since I still have lots to learn and my blogging can benefit more people in the world, I do not take in students. Their questions on neidan, Tao and the Book of Changes would probably be answered by one of the six hundred articles or in future articles, if at all. Please take note of that.
With the explanations in this 600th article, perhaps readers now understand why I seemed to know a touch more on the Book of Changes, neidan, Heaven, and Tao than many. And can be highly critical of those who intend to mislead students in the study and in the practice of these profound subjects.
According to the Book of Changes, a generation has since passed therefore it is time for this dragon to reappear to the multitude once again!
And to follow the guidance of our venerable teacher accordingly is a way for Yijing aficionados to master fate and to change destiny!