Meditation Course

2 replies [Last post]
Alexander Medawar
Last: 4 years 15 weeks ago
Joined: 6 Oct 2010

Recently Bruce sent out emails about an online meditation practice. In it he stressed that in order to reap the benefits of the course a minimum of 20 minutes practice a day would be a good time to aim for. Although I'm attracted to the idea of meditating for many reasons I know from previous experience that interest alone is not enough to make the most of the course.
Currently I practice about 20-25 minutes a day of a combination of Gods Playing in The Clouds and or Tai-chi. I can immediately feel the energetic benefits of this practice and doing both Qigong and Tai-chi appears to have beneficial and synergistic effects. In other words they build on each other regardless of which order one practices them in. Its an excellent way to prepare for the day and greatly influences the way in which I can deal with people during a busy day. But by the end of the day, dealing with people's problems in a retail environment has worn me to a frazzle again,.
During these practices my mind is in a kind of free float. Often issues will come up with no premeditation to do with every day situations in which I have some kind of emotional investment. More often than not something I have been unconciously puzzling over will suddenly and effortlessly be shown in a new light that allows better understanding of a given situation. However its also very easy to become sidetracked by these thoughts and lose track of the particular form. It then takes a concious effort to calm the mind and continue the form.
My question is whether the meditation course Bruce is offering can be added to this daily practice or whether it is something that might eventually replace it. I guess in general I want to find out more about it on an rational level before commiting to immersion into the practice.

Taokua B
Last: 6 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 6 Oct 2010
Hello Alexander M. I saw

Hello Alexander M.

I saw your post and it seemed to relate to a question I've focused on, so I felt driven to respond- my comment is just from my perspective (one that has found the base issue of "what is this practice all about?"..)

I think the element of what "pop-culture" (even "informed" sub-culture use of the word) meditation, has some scope, as Bruce has mentioned before: some things are Meditative, other are meditation-like, or even preparatory to meditating, while "Meditation" (in the context used here- elsewhere may differ) is in terms of working "with/upon" the level of Mind/Con.. the energy "of" the Heart-Mind (Hsin) (perhaps like re-coding machine level of a computer, while that computer is running- vs at a "higher" application or even OS level.. )
to stir up dormant stuff- is like iceburgs arising... thus "preparatory" meditative techniques are useful/needed? to be able to soothe and integrate those shifts. Being able to "Check In" and see what is there (and even notice-compare/contrast, what has changed) is an important skill in this.. but clearly only a skill used in looking at the "picture" one is painting, (checking-in so to speak) but isn't the "painting itself" (to stretch a metaphor- ie meditative; stirring up, as well as integrating more clarity into..) and thereby Quiet-Sitting could be a part of this (while other groups might term that itself "meditation").. and as one develops, clearly one is Sitting "from" a different place...

as a comparison- I find doing a set of G.Playing (especially doing the phy motions very gentle- just enough movement to get a sense of qi flowing, and sense where that "movement" arises from, and-simul feeds back into that movement)- almost being able to "see" the eddies and swirls in the Waters of Con that are stirred by the movements as well as which guide and drive the "movements" them selves. -doing such, and stopping at the end, there seems to be some parts of mind I can sense, other parts are consciously engaged (but "unknown"/un-iden parts), and there is a sense of movement in Mind that is fully Unconscious (or I can be Aware of something I can't become Conscious of.. in the sense that it is in the "un-con" part of mind.. and yet still me... one can sense this dividing line- as well as a sense of depth(s) (the "stuff" which forms "thought-waves" as well as in which they float and move...

Above is awkward as I don't find expressing such topics in "everyday words" something that clicks.. but perhaps in above different areas (in my exper) might add something..

lastly- your comment about noting how about 20mins seems to be a chigung "warmup" phase... and thus circulation of the whole engaged.. can add to the concept of "minimum" meditation (obviously if one has only a few mins.. it wouldn't be "useless"- whatever one can, just that with enough to build a momentum, and reach a baseline in a practice session, one can touch a deeper plateau (and as one experiences and develops skill- one can open up circ faster, and reach a deeper integ faster... and yet still not meaning that min time, as thereby likewise reach a deeper "new plateau")
-also, one can't really do a skill in meditation until one can sort-of do it all the time (ie with barely any focus... and thus with full attenion- deeper; ex holding onto a mental focal point ~inner dissolving... to the degree one can continue that mental Attn Connection even if "partly" distracted... to that degree one can sit and be present... contrasted to sitting and yet still spacing-out and returning.. jumping and recovering focus [it is relative, just as in Phy NeiGung.. what can feel smooth and even, can later feel unsmooth.. and yet may just be a result of "raised standards"]

Also- even just sitting (or standing or whatever one is doing as "meditating") that is still NeiGung and meditation is Upon that (thus there is still a warmup phase: the breathing, settling it, stability of one's "seat" vs wavering vs holding tension (to really feel the "inward pulling" postural holding... and let it go, yet with the alignment-structure tensegrity creates a different mind-space (as well as allows stuff to rise.. resistance to which is often tension or else a numbness... feel into that= opening, etc. Reeval: who (or rather: "how") am I?

anyway- not sure if that addresses your comment:
"My question is whether the meditation course Bruce is offering can be added to this daily practice or whether it is something that might eventually replace it."
-Can it? of course, in general (the moving practice, stir up and access deeper, then be still (sit or stand or small movement) to work with that... then other moving/energetic practice.. etc. Bagua Zhang Neigung uses this: but I think the big issue is how these tems of "practices" are understood, as well as "can it" in particular (vs in general) for certain persons, how to adapt and ease these practices into working at different depths..

in short- as on this website where Bruce writes of Meditation: being more peaceful, vs amping up the mind/energy capacities, vs Recognizing Who/What one is... vs "Waking up" (recog what "the All" is)... each of those are very big steps, and each is different and not the same... best wishes

Janak Sanariya
jakattack's picture
Last: 16 weeks 15 hours ago
Joined: 6 Oct 2010
Hey Alexander, All these

Hey Alexander,

All these subjects (Meditation, Chi Gung, Tai Chi) are interrelated. Practicing one subject will affect the other subjects that you practice.

For example, you talked about how "it's very easy to become sidetracked by these thoughts and lose track of the particular form". For both Tai Chi and Chi Gung you will get more benefit from your practice time if your mind does not wander. Bruce often times uses the example of earning money. "Do you want to be more efficient with your practice time, or less efficient? Do you want to make $1/hour or $10/hour?"

If you just do your practice and your mind mostly wanders around, then you are still getting a benefit from practicing. Let's say you getting $1 of benefit for each hour that you practice. Now, if you could figure out a way to really be present most of the time, you would get more benefit. You might get as much as $10 of benefit for each hour that you practice.

Staying present to what you are doing is actually very hard to do. The ability to stay present is a skill like any other and with practice you can get better and better at it. The beginning of Bruce's meditation system spends a lot of time helping students get better at staying present to whatever they are practicing.

So, in short - Yes, I think practicing Meditation would help your Tai Chi and Gods Playing in the Clouds practices =)

Hope this helps,

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