One of the salient points to keep in mind during progress through Bardo Realm One, is that essential “balance” between Spirit-Mind-Body that was indicated at the end of the last blog post. Exclusive focus, like ascending the stages to Suramgamasamadhi(or the heroic assent to deep samadhi)—wonderfully portrayed in the Suramgamasamddhisutra (A future blog-series on its own at a future junction)—while a vitally necessary spiritual component, which will be shared in depth during Bardo Realm Three (on meditation and Deep Samadhi), can lead to something analogously akin to a cerebral hemorrhaging of the Mind/Spirit (by this is meant too heavy a reliance on the Suramgamasamddhi-scale to the neglect of the whole awareness mechanism). For instance, the Daoists suggest that this “overweening” of spirit (Shen) to the neglect of the proper-flow of Qi within the Jing (Physical dimension) can lead to adverse affects on overall health and general well-being. In a nutshell—too much Yin that has to overcompensate for the disabled Yang quotient. I’ve experienced this when relying too exclusively on “spiritual” meditations and reflections—they can oftentimes leave one feeling drained of energy, almost zombie-like. We do not live in this saha-realm as disembodied spirits—we need proper “Jing” food as well.
For the past two and a half years, my own health (this was discussed in the blog post, “A Healing Balm”) has been undergoing a recovery from an emergency surgery on my C6-C7 vertebrae. I had gone the “medication” route—and this has only led to more debilitating effects. Also, during this time span, relying on spiritual meditations and reflections—while greatly comforting to the spirit, has not helped to improve my overall well-being; the skin on my feet had been rotting away since March of 2011, and the effects of over-reliance on Prednisone to help see me through my daily functions and responsibilities took an acute toll on my bone-structure and muscle-tone—it literally took me 25 minutes to be able to straighten up after rising from bed in the morning, or rising from any kind of sitting situation. Beginning with the late Spring of this year, however, there has been a noticeable improvement in my over-all health situation—the catalyst—Tai Chi warm-up exercises and my discovery of Primordial Qigong. I used to practice Tai Chi during the early ‘90’s and had came-across an old VHS tape that was made by my instructor. All those warm-up exercises, with their deep bending and stretching proved to be most helpful. Then, Primordial Qigong entered the equation, and—wow—I’m feeling like I’m being born-all-over. All this, accompanied by the warmest summer on record, at least in my lifespan, has healed the skin on my feet and my body is becoming as limber as a 20-year-old. The upcoming blogs will focus more on how Primordial Qigong nicely compliments Unborn Mind Zen; indeed, the ancient Buddhists were foremost in league with forms of Daoism—the two walk admirably hand in hand, and have done so throughout the millennium.
The primary focus in all this is that the psyche and awareness agency needs to become aligned with the Unborn Will—or as the Daoist’s say, “Earth needs to be aligned with Heaven—with the Primordial Tao Itself.” If any one side of this spiritual-psychic equation is missing, then the great Bardo-experiment is doomed to failure as one will only prolong their journey amidst the turbulent Samsaric Seas. Too much “Shen” can actually transport one into the ārūpya-dhātu—or the “Formless Realm”; while this realm is empty of materialistic trappings, what with its majestic-like “boundless space” and empty formal-consciousness, it is in reality “fool’s gold”—devoid of Nirvanic satisfaction. One can be “born” into it through the proper four-fold “dhyana”, but ultimately it’s still a mode of Samsara and one can be “returned-again” to the realms of lesser bhūmis.