In Module 7 (Mingjue Emotional Healing, Spring 2022), Teacher Wei shared about a common conflict each of us may face, no matter where we are on our inner and outer journeys. He cites Dr. Pang Ming, the founder of Zhineng Qigong and the teacher of Teacher Wei:
As people living in the world, we often have two aspects: (1) our desires and (2) wanting to avoid the suffering that often comes with those desires.
As students of mingjue (pure, universal) consciousness, we want to go beyond our desires to experience true freedom. Yet, we are also people living in the world with the same two aspects above.
Dr. Pang described this dilemma with a metaphor. It’s like you’re afloat in the ocean, he said, with your feet standing on two different boats. One foot stands in the boat of desires, the other foot in the boat moving toward freedom. You want both. As you set off into the ocean, it is still possible to stand in both. But as you go deeper and deeper into the ocean, if you’re still standing on two separate boats, you’ll fall into the ocean.
To go deeper into the ocean (to practice at higher levels of mingjue), the ego has to choose one and surrender the other. We have to give up our foot in the boat of desires and stand firmly in the boat that will bring us toward the shore of freedom — to the True Self. On the path to this other shore, we may feel wobbly standing on one boat or another. Or we may feel unsure, moving back and forth, back and forth, from one boat to the other. This is common. Over time, however, we can feel steadier, more confident, and more relaxed.
A state of freedom doesn’t mean we give up everything from our ordinary daily life, no! We still have everything. We still have the physical body. We still eat food and sleep and use our bodies. And we can still enjoy any and all of it.
But we go beyond it, too. Nothing can “fix” (fixate) us, or keep us attached. We just stay in the peaceful mingjue state because we know we are the master of our desires, and not the slave. As master, we can manage our sensory organs. This means we still experience pleasure and other sensations. Our mingjue, however, observes the whole body, keeping centered and stable, while our bodies remain harmonious and comfortable — no matter what the ocean brings.
“I am a poet
and I will not stop
plucking you from the small boat
of your safety
and tossing you into
the thrashing sea
of your light.”
— excerpted from a poem by contemporary mystic poet Chelan Harkin
Study and Practice Mingjue Gongfu with Us
- 10-day Intensive Healing Course, April 16-25, 2022
- Practice with a vibrant global community in our yearlong program, “Awakening the Inner Healer,” beginning June 2022 (individual monthly courses available)
- Meet Teacher Wei on a recent global Awakin Call: a conversation and practice
A Story from the Community
“My mother died and I was in the process of selling the family home and moving onto a boat. Already strained relationships with my siblings reached a fever pitch. However, by using the mingjue practice, I managed to avoid the ‘kicking and screaming,’ which was my usual reaction to such stress, and also avoid the mild disdain that had been my usual reaction to the outside world. The tears I shed almost scalded my face…but my heart felt calm and peaceful. Now I can dissolve the attachments to my family and move into a more positive, more beautiful life.”
Practice in Daily Life
Find a few times during your day to do this (set an alarm if helpful).
Take the sitting posture.
Close your eyes (or soften your gaze).
Draw your consciousness back into shenji palace (the center of your head).
Observe your whole body inside, from the crown — slowly, methodically — down to your feet. No judgments, no attachments, no labels. Just observe.
Continuously observe your whole inner body and the subtle space of the inner body.
At night, before you sleep, repeat the sound “shenji” again and again. As you do, your inner body will become an empty space.
Observe and expand this empty space from the center of the head. Gradually observe and expand this empty space to the neck.
Little by little, expand that space and observe it.
Continue part by part down the body until the whole body becomes empty.
Consciousness merges and harmonizes with the qi body.
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