Way

Shun Yuan, the author of the lovely poem above, is a student of the Tao (also called the Way), an Adept of  Taiji martial arts, and the primary subject of Robert Shaeffer’s truly remarkable forthcoming book, 10 Methods of the Heavenly Dragon.  I asked him to enhance the experience of the poem with his commentary, which is below:

My Journey
As a novice I was convinced that I was living in darkness.  I was “looking” everywhere for “enlightenment”.  I knew intellectually that I was “in the forest of the Tao” and might even have had a vague sensation of the forest all around me, but this was drowned out by the insistent urge to “keep looking”, caused by the notion that “I haven’t found it yet”.  Even while making progress forwards I berated myself for the fact that it was “stumbling” and blamed my own “blindness” for the state of darkness I was living in.  If only I could “see” the truth!

It was through an entirely unexpected avenue that the first hint of awareness came.  As far from my preconceived notions as my foot is from my eyes.  So strange and unexpected it was that it felt as if it had happened by “pure luck”.  I did not then have the understanding that my every step and my stumbling gait were intimately part of my foot meeting that root.  Even less did I understand the significance of a seed falling in a certain place ages ago and the effect on the growth of the tree that the passage of the seasons ever since had had.  Nor did I have the experience of long years of reliance on the Tao to recognize that these moments of magnificent good fortune are all around and demonstrate the abundance of the Tao.

Stopped in my tracks, stillness came to me then at that perfect moment.  I still name it a magnificent gift!

Penetrating deep into me in that quiet state, yet another blossoming of awareness, yet again through an entirely unexpected but intoxicating way.  Then suddenly the life of the forest is revealed all around me and in that same instant I gaze upon the shining star which had always been there for the eye to see, had my head not been lowered to the dirt looking for “something precious”.

The Methods
In the physical methods of my Order, one talks of three “levels” or perhaps more correctly “modes” of work.  The tree represents the first mode called the “fixed way”.  Novices spend a lot of time working on their physical structure.  The exercises are strictly defined and “feeling wooden” is a very common statement to hear from them.

After some time, the body learns to relax into the new form which it is taking on.  The movements become much looser and more fluid.  This “living way” is represented by the leaping stag.

Ultimately, one sheds any notion of a predetermined form and allows the energy to flow freely.  This “changing way” is represented by the light of the star.

With much love,

Shun Yuan

Ya Haqq!

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3 Responses to Way

  1. Josef Sefton says:

    God commanded Adam and Eve not to eat of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. In Genesis 2:17 we read, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

    Adam and Eve didn’t die physically the day they ate the forbidden fruit and disobeyed God’s command, but they did die spiritually.

    Sin had entered the human race. The holy Bible teaches that from Adam until our present time, mankind has been born spiritually dead. This is why humanity must be born-again. This is why Jesus said to Nicodemus: “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again” (See John 3).

    Bless You LORD God for guiding us, comforting us, teaching us, rebuking us, chastising us, convicting us, encouraging us, empowering us, loving us, forgiving us and strengthening us.
    Bless You most holy Creator for graciously blessing those who put their faith wholeheartedly in You and Your Beloved with the glorious gift of being born again, so that true believers can love and serve You to your glory.

    May God bless you, precious readers, with a greater and greater desire to listen to the words of Jesus and to trust and obey them.

  2. Irving says:

    Thank you, dear Brother Joseph, for your always lovely comments :)

    Ya Haqq!

  3. Josef Sefton says:

    Search us, O God, and know our heart, test us and know our thoughts; See if there is any wicked way in us, and lead us in the way everlasting.

    Friends, it takes just one voice, a holy voice, God’s voice to give you a new fresh song of faith, hope and love to sing.

    Holy God, take our lips and speak through them; take our mind and think through it, take our heart and set it on fire with the purity of your life-enhancing words.

    Friends, God’s words are comforting, consoling, healing and life-transforming. Sing with me now how great is the giver of life, how great is He- All His creation are invited to taste His truth and discover how so very great and gracious is He!

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