…shades of night.
“The sky grew darker, painted blue on blue,
one stroke at a time, into deeper
and deeper shades of night.”
~ Haruki Murakami
Image~Tender is cheetah night by Carlos Santero
Text & image source: Moonlight Serenade https://web.facebook.com/Moonlight-Serenade-228504310532112/
“Monkey King”, also known as “Journey to West” written by Wu Ch’eng-en (1500?-1582) a scholar-official, is one of the renowned classical Chinese novels about an allegorical rendition of the journey, mingled with Chinese fables, fairy tables, legends ,superstitions, popular beliefs, monster stories, and whatever the author could find in the Taoist and Buddhist religions.
It was based on a true story of a famous Chinese monk, Xuan Zang (602-664). After years of trials and tribulations, he travelled on foot, budgeting what resources he could to make it to what is today India, the birthplace of Buddhism, to seek for the Tripitaka, the Buddhist holy teachings. This was before the time of unlimited conference calls, so a great physical journey was necessary and travel to the source of knowledge. When he returned to China, or the Great Tang as was called that time, he started to translate the sutras into Chinese, thus making a great contribution to the development of Buddhism in China.
Monkey King is a rebellious extraordinary being, born out of a rock, fertilized by the grace of Heaven, Being extremely smart and capable, he learned all the magic tricks and gongfu from a master Taoist, Continue reading
Myths and Legends of China
By Edward T.C. Werner, 
Chapter XIV – How the Monkey Became a God
The Hsi Yu Chi
In dealing with the gods of China we noticed the monkey among them. Why and in what manner he attained to that exalted rank is set forth in detail in the Hsi yu chi 1—a work the contents of which have become woven into the fabric of Chinese legendary lore and are known and loved by every intelligent native. Its pages are filled with ghosts, demons, and fairies, good and bad, but “it contains no more than the average Chinese really believes to exist, and his belief in such manifestations is so firm that from the cradle to the grave he lives and moves and has his being in reference to them.” Its characters are said to be allegorical, though it may be doubted whether these implications may rightly be read into the Chinese text. Thus:
Hsüan (or Yüan) Chuang, or T’ang Sêng, is the pilgrim of the Hsi yu chi, who symbolizes conscience, to which all actions are brought for trial. The priestly garment of Hsüan Chuang symbolizes the good work of the rectified human nature. It is held to be a great protection to the new heart from the myriads of evil beings which surround it, seeking its destruction. Continue reading
Where in the World is Dantian?
By Sifu Anthony Korahais, 2012
The Chinese word dantian (丹田) literally means “elixir field”. A better translation is “energy center.” It is the natural center for your body’s energy. Dantian is important not only for energy arts like Qigong, but also for martial arts, especially Tai Chi Chuan and Shaolin Kung Fu.
So where in the world is dantian?
Traditionally, it is located slightly below and slightly behind your belly button. The classical measurement uses a biological inch, which is the width of your own thumb. So your dantian is located 3 thumb-widths below and 2 thumb-widths behind your navel.
But if you go searching for dantian with your thumbs, you’re not likely to find it. First of all, dantian can be in slightly different places for Continue reading
Musashi Miyamoto’s Book of Five Rings
While in reclusion, Miyamoto Musashi wrote the “Go Rin No Sho”, known in English as “The Book Of Five Rings”, which was a text on kenjutsu, martial arts and philosophy.
Many translations of the “Go Rin No Sho” have been made over the years, and it enjoys an audience considerably broader than just those interested in martial arts. For instance, some business leaders find its discussion of conflict and how to take advantage of it to be relevant to their work.
The five “books” refer to the idea that there are different elements of battle, just as there are different physical elements in life, as is believed in Buddhism, Shintoism, and other Eastern religions.
The term “Ichi School”, which is referenced in the Go Rin No Sho, refers to the “Niten No Ichi Ryu”, or “Ni Ten Ichi Ryu”, which when literally translated means “Two Swords, One Heaven”, although the translation could be interpreted as “Two Swords, One Spirit”, or “Two Swords, One Entity”. Continue reading
Five elements (Japanese philosophy)
The five elements philosophy in Japanese Buddhism, godai (五大?, lit. “five great”), is derived from Indian Vastu shastra philosophy and Buddhist beliefs. It is perhaps best known in the Western world for its use in Miyamoto Musashi’s famous text Gorin-no-sho (The Book of Five Rings), in which he explains different aspects of swordsmanship by assigning each aspect to an element.
The five elements are, in ascending order of power, Earth, Water, Fire, Wind, and Void.
地 Chi (or ji) or tsuchi, meaning “Earth”, represents the hard, solid objects of the earth. The most basic example of chi is in a stone. Stones are highly resistant to movement or change, as is anything heavily influenced by chi. In people, the bones, muscles and tissues are represented by chi. Emotionally, chi is predominantly associated with stubbornness, collectivity, stability, physicality, and gravity. It is a desire Continue reading
SHAMANIC TRANCE STATES
By the Wandering
In order to journey to the other dimensions of existence a Shaman induces an altered state of consciousness in himself similar to a state of self-hypnosis called a state of flow. While in this state of flow, or Shamanic Trance, he is in complete control. He is able to take his consciousness and subtle bodies into nonphysical reality where he visits the heavens and hells of existence, communicates with and controls spirits, gains information, retrieves souls, and makes subtle changes in reality which may affect the physical world.
Properties of the Shamanic altered state of consciousness are: Continue reading