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June 25, 2011

10 Days with Wang Liping, a student's experience


In December 2006, David Verdesi, a close friend of many years and an accomplished Taoist teacher, hosted a retreat for a few of his more senior students on the Island of Ko Samui, in the Gulf of Thailand. I knew from David that he had already at that time made contact with Master Wang Liping and had been studying privately with him for close to a year on practically a daily basis. His enthusiasm for Wang Tzu's accomplishments, plus David's evident progress in his personal practice during that period encouraged me to make the long trip from my home in eastern Canada to attend and experience what David could share of what he had learned.

I quickly realized that the year with Master Wang had moved David's practice and teaching ability forward at warp speed. His detailed description of the methods for opening the Golden Flower he had recieved from Wang Tzu were far beyond anything I had imagined. During this period we concentrated on the dissolving and melting (Song) methods of settling the shen, (An Shen) and by the 5th week I had my first experience of what is termed the 'yin convergence'. By the end of the 2nd month, I could reproduce this important milestone consistently in my presonal practice. In early February I returned home with a completely new and greatly renewed practice.

By June 2007, at the next retreat (in Silkeborg Denmark), David had spent a further 6 months with Master Wang. His practice and teaching continued to advance as never before. At this time he brought forward the possibility that Master Wang might be open to presenting the teaching to a group David would bring to Dalian ( although the actual location where the Master was was still a secret at that time ). During this Denmark retreat, I had my first experience of 'dissolving the formless form' and the needle hitting the chihai. This resulted in the tan tien taking on a completely new characteristic. I had a center! I also had my first experience of the coagulation of the shen and the accumulation of some droplets.

In Jan 2008 the promise of a retreat with Master Wang came to realization. I travelled to Dalian to attend this retreat with great anticipation. All of the attendees had been at the previous retreats and so had an excellent preparation for this experience. The retreat as held in David's apartment, close to where Master Wang lived, and where he had been training with him for 2-1/2 years. This was the first open teaching of the An Shen Tzu Chio teachings of Master Wang to western students. We had a professional Chinese translator, and the full support of David's explanations of the teachings after each lecture and practice session.

Master Wang taught the Ling Bao Bi Fa methods of shen training as well as Tree Balancing practice and Shui Gong or sleeping practice. All the students had many amazing experiences during this period. Personally I found the sitting practice very difficult. The Master's 'Yah Li' or 'pressure' made cross legged sitting extremely painful and at times almost unbearable. I have written about this in a previous post. However, the resulting experience of the condensation and settling of the shen made the discomfort well worth while.

The experience I had both of stillness and emptyness where greatly amplified during this time. The sleeping practice was probably the most powerful in giving some glimpse into the real accomplishment of Master Wang. His ability to meet and communicate in the dream state defied logic and description. I felt at times the presence of a almost unbearable light, something I could not really look upon. I was lifted completely outside the realm of ordinary experience.

Toward the end of this retreat I had a moment of intense personal clarity. I realized that I sincerely wanted to organize my life and personal affairs such that I could really have time and the opportunity to study more with Master Wang. I could see the road ahead and the obstacles upon it. In the distance was the mountain ( a pyramid actually ) and blocking the road an enormous accumulation of, let me say, dirt (we often call it 'stuff'). There was no way around this image of personal blockage but the goal was beaconing. I resolved strongly to dissolve away all and everything that was blocking my path to the teachings. I felt I had to get to 'nothing', my own kind of personal emptyness if I was to achieve this.

I spent the following 3 years and 2 months working every day to let it all fall away. By December of 2010, having sold my house, bought another as an investment to sell, virtally disposed of my business of 15 years, my collection of books and marine artifacts and other things almost beyond counting I felt I was approaching my goal. Then magically, just as I was putting my second house on the market, I received an email from Kathy Li, Master Wang's diciple in the USA, asking for permission to use a short post I had made about Master Wang in this blog. She also told me about the on-line hook-up they had arranged with Master Wang during the 2010 Christmas Hot Springs retreat.

The timing of that gave me renewed energy to press through to the end of my 'dissolving'. I signed up for the hook-up, and chatted briefly with Master Wang on Christmas day, 2010. After that I quickly decided I would attend the April Dalian retreat, even if the house was not sold by that time. I also decided to perpare myself properly by spending the 10 days before the retreat in Thailand where I have a condo room at Mantak Chia's Tao Garden Retreat Center near Chiang mai. I left Canada on April 5 after listing my house, my attempts to sell it privately having come to nothing.

Posted by james at June 25, 2011 5:30 PM


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