“It’s quite possible that things will turn out much better than you can possibly imagine.” Courtesy of Evolver Social Movement (via Facebook, 4-5-19)
Well, that is refreshing. This was supposed to come out several weeks ago, and I got a little side tracked.
Random changes have occurred, which I will attribute to the full moon on the Spring Equinox with Mercury in retro on the 25th day of March, Year of the Water Earth Pig, on a day while the Schumann Resonance was spiking. And my Spleen issues. It was a hot mess and by now, it's been a new full moon and a new new moon. A full moon one weekend with the Summer Solstice chasing behind. See what I'm saying? Time really waits for no one.
Okay, I did a little name change for my practice. Energy Eclectics was a good name, I thought at the time, and I have enjoyed it, but it no longer "sparks joy". Over time, it became clear from, um, various feedback, that its meaning is not clear nor does it seem clever anymore; plus it just doesn’t glide off the tongue- it awkwardly trips. It gives people pause- did she misspell electric? Are her lights on, but nobody’s home? Is she mocking me? At least one person thought it meant that I couldn't make up my mind about what I wanted to do. It begins to be too overwhelming, exhausting, even.
So, as we say in the South, I thought on it and prayed on it, slept on it and waited on it. For. Several. Days. By the way, did I say that one serious Spleen issue is obsessiveness? Anyway. I finally did something about it and the name of the practice is now: “3Băo Healing”. Done. Out of the rabbit hole. Sort of.
But, why 3 Băo, you may ask. Well, I had my eye on "3 Treasures", but it was already taken, not surprisingly- it's a very cool name for a Qigong practice. So I looked for other words that could stand in for the word treasure and "bao" came up. Bao is one of the most common Chinese characters -宝 -and it carries multiple meanings, so there are many, many ways to interpret it- it's "eclectic" one could say, therefore, the old name hasn't really died, it has just changed form. Yeah, that's it. It can mean "to contain" -hold something, as in, "...the usefulness of a pot is it's emptiness"- Lao Tzu, or, "to fortify", referring to an actual fort. Other good ones are: to protect, as in baoyang, which means to protect and nourish. A băo can embody or it can embrace, it can envelope. It is a colloquial term for "baby"; also, Bao Bao is the name of a famous panda.
Protection, nourishing, embracing; babies- baby pandas-who doesn't like baby pandas?!
And, I've always liked the number 3.
The Heavens opened, the Divine spoke,
Light shown down upon the waters...
All was good and mighty and righteous.
No- really- a small light shown in the dimmest corner- grace, really. Or a night light.
Quick reference from Wikipedia:
“The Three Treasures or Three Jewels (Chinese: 三寶; pinyin: sānbǎo; Wade–Giles: san-pao) are basic virtues in Taoism. Although the Tao Te Ching originally used sanbao to mean "compassion", "frugality", and "humility", (italics, mine) the term was later used to translate the Three Jewels (Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha) in Chinese Buddhism, and to mean the Three Treasures (jing, qi, and shen) in Traditional Chinese Medicine.” (ref)
3Bǎo, or Sānbǎo, represents three guiding ideals for a new perspective I am cultivating about healing and spiritual practice-
Compassion- "Compassion is to look beyond your own pain to see the pain of others." Yasmin Mogahed
There but for the grace of God go I. Most healers and sages are not especially perfect people, though so often we expect them to be, or we expect ourselves to be as healers. Compassion requires that we connect through our shared human frailty; recognizing this is a great healer's tool. Hopefully, it helps to create a safe healing environment where the darker aspects and pain in healing can be honestly examined and transformed. It also becomes apparent that many times the Dao/God/Universe sets before you many people who share the same types of issues, so healing can often be two way.
Humility -"I pray for humility, honestly, because it's very easy to get caught up in the world." says Katy Perry.
Yes, this. As a healer, I have practiced a few decades-countless hours of study, practice, time and money. I have a few degrees and I have taught other people to do some of this. People could and sometimes do expect things of me. And still I know nothing; I am not wiser than. I am not the one who "does" the healing. Healers aren't fixers, or experts, but if we are lucky, the power of healing will cooperate with us when we call it down. I am a conduit through which the healing light is facilitated- holding the flashlight still so the patient or student can extract their own splinters.
Balance- instead of frugality, I prefer the words moderation or balance- healing is harmony among the layers of mind, body and spirit which are, in Medical Qigong- Jing (material), Qi (mental/emotional) and Shen (spirit)- these are the three treasures of humanity. Harmony requires balance= the perfect amount of what is needed exactly where it is needed. I believe I have worked well when I have gone neither beyond, nor fallen short of the job at any given moment or any given phase of the total.
"Well, when I get out of that groove, then, I'm in trouble." (Propellerheads-listen )
So be it and so it is.
67: Three Treasures
Everybody says my way is great
All greatness is improbable.
is tedious and petty.
I have three treasures
I keep and treasure them
The first, mercy,
The second, moderation,
If you're merciful you can be brave,
If you're moderate you can be generous,
and if you don’t presume to lead
You can lead the high and mighty...”
3 Băo/a Southern-style inauguration:
Compassion- “I’m from the south, darlin’, I will bless your heart and slap the mess out of you. And then bring you a casserole.” (seen on a meme) So, do Bless that heart, do bring that casserole, but, do not slap that mess out. Lord, have mercy.
Moderation – Live simply, love like crazy. Just don’t try to fit three gallons of that crazy in a two-gallon bucket. Too much of not enough is still not enough. Not enough of too much is still not enough. The trick here is to achieve balance so that enough is enough. "Everything in moderation, including moderation." Attributed to either Julia Child, or Oscar Wilde. Don't be a wild child, but then again, don't not be one every once in a while. Oh for God's sake, just move on.
Humility- Don’t get too big for your britches- this is the art of not being uppity (high and mighty). Okay, on this one- I realize that humility might seem like a stretch for someone having a website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, a blog and 200 business cards on the way with a complimentary T-shirt (which, if I like it might be for sale in a bit), but we’ll just say that it’s a work in progress.
And leave that one lyin’ where Jesus flang it.
BTW- I did decide to sell the t-shirt. If you want to have been here, done that AND bought the t-shirt, please do here: https://squareup.com/store/energy-eclectics
While you are at it, consider signing up for one of my Reiki trainings or healing sessions. Love ya! Self-promotion or the Dao moving, you be the judge.
The Qigong practice part:
It bears repeating:
“It’s quite possible that things will turn out much better than you can possibly imagine.”
The Spleen organ system, which includes the stomach and pancreas, represents the Earth element in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Whereas all the other organ systems have a season of the year all to themselves, the Spleen does not. You can imagine from there that besides overthinking and obsessiveness, another Spleen issue is self-esteem or lack thereof. But, not to worry- the spleen energies ramp up during these transition times during the year. Your digestion of both food and ideas may go a little wonky around the changes in seasons, the Solstices and the Equinoxes. The Earth element is a combination of all the other energies, so as they change and re-balance and harmonize, stomach and over fast moving thought (worries/anxieties) can result until things simmer. Fun times. Go easy on yourself and you'll be all right.
"Depressive rumination can feel like you're a lab rat on a running wheel to nowhere. How can you break the cycle of negative rumination? Based on a simple split-brain "up-down" model between the cerebellum and cerebrum...I believe that activities that engage the cerebellum and unclamp the prefrontal cortex might be directly linked to breaking obsessive or compulsive rumination." (Bergland) "Multiple studies have identified that people who are experiencing depression are more prone to rumination and repetitive thoughts of shame, anger, regret, and sorrow." This is the "woulda, shoulda, coulda" dynamic that works like a lasso or a noose, keeping you in fruitless obsessions rather than moving forward. Energetically, as one of my teachers has observed in his work, this is a pathological pattern that does appear energetically as a spinning lasso that is anchored in the Spleen orb and revolves at the top of the chest when it is triggered (see 5VirtuesQigong website for more on energetic patterns). Redirecting your focus by doing an activity that requires you to totally be in the moment, like, as Bergland suggests, climbing a tree or balancing on a beam (proprioceptive activities), disrupts the rumination by forcing you to pay attention to what you are doing now in a whole body way. Like your Mama always told you- when you are stuck, just get your mind off it for a bit and come back. Qigong can take many forms, some of which look like ordinary activities, a.k.a.- Housework (ref please tap for a treat)
Reduce Fear and Obsession also by
-Really any activity that involves a rhythm to challenge the spinning activity of overthinking or obsessing.
Going to extremes, though is not good, you'll be happy to learn. Being overzealous about it can actually cause more anxiety, especially in your children. I love me some Lilly Singh, aka, Superwoman. Remember, moderation, compassion, humility. My house is not perfectly clean because I am so humble.
If you catch yourself mentally looping, the most important thing you can do in the moment to stop it is to immerse yourself into an activity that requires you to fully focus on the task- housework, Qigong or Taichi, do a cartwheel or climb a tree. Studies have shown these kinds of activities have the power to change the rhythm and flow of negative thoughts swirling like a lasso in the mind (these are not the same thing as the mind, but that is for another post), clearing the palate for something else. There are some people for whom the struggle to deal with intrusive, obsessive thoughts is not as easy as this. Those who suffer from Obsessive/Compulsive Disorder (OCD) may find it much harder to break through the cycle of mental looping. It’s nearly impossible for them to automatically stop the flow of negative thoughts because of differences in neural circuitry.
Almost everyone deals with intrusive thoughts, defined as thoughts, which if acted upon, would be socially unacceptable- sexually inappropriate, violent, or excessively harsh actions-i.e., someone cuts you off in traffic and you have a sudden fantasy of cutting off his head. But of course, you don’t do it (most don’t) nor do most of us take it seriously that we actually would. By and large, most of us can dismiss these without taking them seriously. But, when a person suffers from full blown OCD, this process is not so straight forward. For them, these thoughts continue to disturb, causing a neurological feedback loop that is exhausting and leads to terrifying fears about the possibility he/she might actually be a murderer. To read about how OCD plays out in the brain, read here. While the techniques above may work in the short term, OCD sufferers may need extra help to stop the damage of intrusive thinking. Even though conventional talk therapies don’t work as well for OCD sufferers, it is still manageable. Read here for a promising therapy that counselors use to help; of course, hiring a Qigong therapist and coach for your healing team can absolutely enhance skills you need to make life saving and life changing habits.
The Final Băo , The Meridian Circuit of Heart and Spleen:
How the Heart laughs flavors the story of the persona (the Ghost in the Machine): this causes the Spleen to sing a different song. When the Spleen sings, all the Inner World of a person becomes that song and it shows in every aspect of the energy body. Both the Heart and the Spleen combine to make the Mind and that Unified Mind contains the content of the Spirit, plus acquired beliefs and learned or unprocessed emotional patterns. So the question is how does your heart laugh when it tells your body the story of itself?
“Psychologists have long known that the stories we tell ourselves impact our intentions and moods. Depressing tales leave us feeling discouraged and weak, whereas inspiring stories prompt us to be active and successful. We can alter our self-image by rewriting our own stories and narratives with better endings.” Facebook post, Womankind magazine, April, 2019
HT 1- Jiquan- Utmost Source SP21- Dabao- Great Enveloping
“He 1 represents the emergence of something from nothing, like the sun rising out of the ocean (let there be light)... Enduring fullness comes from embracing the whole as one, and as oneself” at Sp 21- Lonny Jarret, L. Ac.
Energy moves through the body in an organized flow that takes 24 hours to complete. That is an interesting subject, but not one to fully discuss here. The main idea I want to discuss is the connection between Heart 1, at the beginning of the circuit, and Spleen 21, the end of the circuit. It is a completion of the circuit of Qi throughout the all Wu Xing organ channels (12 Ordinary Meridians) and it is the sustaining of that flow of energy that maintains the body-both physically and mentally. It starts with the first point on the Heart meridian, referred to as "the Utmost Source", which could be described as a great compelling of personal will to begin. The Great Luo (connecting) point on the Spleen pathway, the very last point, happens to be a touchstone that wraps its nourishing network around the organs in the torso, like a mother hugs a child, integrating and manifesting the Yi (focus or intention) of the Shen (the Heart/Mind or intellect). We become what sort of being our innermost hearts tells the story of. As Lonny Jarrett describes it, this union between these two can be interpreted as a key “…to understand the relationship between autonomy and communion”. (Jarret)
In Qigong therapy, we are always concerned with balance and harmony of the forms and functions of the fields of energy in the body. Harmony is orchestrated by the Heart- the fire element of spirit and intellect; physically this is attained with its beating pulse and psychically with the mental/emotional intent to assert the Spirit's and the Destiny's Will. But the actual manifestation of that impulse, the harmony itself, is embodied in the Earth element, which is a combination of elements unique to each individual. The answer to the assertive call of the Heart is energetically encoded and nurtured in the Spleen. Will the call be a fire out of control that scatters and disorganizes, or will be one that is warm and charismatic? Scorched earth or perfectly warmed? Well, it seems to depend on how the mind interprets its purpose or destiny.
There is a triad of energies at work here- our original Spirit, the clarity of light, exposes knowledge from an infinite source of creation- all of the powers and possibilities contained in the Earth from all times, the celestial planets and stars and that mysterious place that cannot be named- the originator of potentials. This energy streams into the body through the first Kidney point- KD1, called Gushing Spring (Yongquan) at the bottom of the feet. The kidneys water energies also represent Wisdom, Will and Destiny (Zhi) from the Creative Universe and of the individual Will-let Thy Will be my will, let my will be Thy Will. The connection between Heart 1 and Spleen 21 represents a dynamic, fertile exchange; it is a completion of the circuit of Qi throughout the WuXing organ channels and it is the nourishing, continuation of that flow. The Great Luo point of the Spleen is the touchstone, that wraps its nourishing network around the torso, like a mother hugs a child, sharing the Heart’s hopeful prosperity or hopeless poverty with the other organs.
"And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely."
Revelation 21:6 (Christian bible)
Dipping into the universal ocean of consciousness, the mind becomes inspired to produce something of who the person really is, what the person is supposed to be doing. It is said that the fire energy causes a laughing sound from the Heart and earth energy creates the sound of song from the Spleen. It is true that inner conversations are interpreted in the brain as real conversations with sound. If the story told and the laughter is harsh, the song/tone will be bitter; with excessive sweetness makes a song weak and soft; gentle, joyous laughter breaks the tension and the song invites others to join in. “He 1 represents the emergence of something from nothing, like the sun rising out of the ocean (let there be light)". While KD1 may be the source of infinite potential, HE1 is the creative stream. The motivation of HE1 is that “YES!” at the source of creation as it emerges from the void and fuels all subsequent development in time.” Jarrett sees Dabao as the point of “revelation of the 10000 things”, exposing the concept of freedom in renunciation, as opposed to the modern concern of “having options, the ability to do what we want, when we want” without judgment, reprisal or responsibility. The Spleen network distributes the single pointed desire of the Heart- the Yuan Shen- as it interprets the Divine messages of Shen Xian (Immortal Mind). “Enduring fullness comes from embracing the whole as one, and as one’s self.” (Ibid.)
The something from nothing- a single tone pulsation that transmits intangible potential spirit into everything; and the everything as one- the music of the universal creator, the sound, the breath, the wind and thunder; the movement upon the waters that occurred when “then there was Light.” in the Judeo-Christian biblical story. The pulse of the Heart is conductor, prime mover, Creator in this time and space, like an underlying mantra which sets the pace and tone of the song, but the harmony of the spheres (energetic orbs of the Wu Xing) is sung by the manifest Creation that is provided by the Earth element Spleen.
Thoughts, whether or not they are beneficial, are made up of a person’s internal belief structures. When linked with emotional responses (judgments, extreme anger, remorse, etc.), the energetic combination has a force that impacts all other energy moving in the body. This in turn can impact structures in the body that become charged according to the quality of the thought forms or emotional patterns. When a toxic emotion, really any emotion, is held persistently or is prolonged and intense, the patterns created are charged with the energy of the mental form and the energy it takes to hold it. Suppressing or repressing emotions or memories, makes energetic clusters grow and thicken, which then creates a stagnation or a blockage; continued growth of toxic thought forms begins to affect physical cells and tissues and in turn organ function, which becomes the template, or, pattern for disease. When we are under the hold of a toxic emotional pattern, we are not in a state of mind to heal- to paraphrase Einstein- you cannot solve a problem coming at it from the same state of mind that produced it. So the first order of business in releasing the overcharged energy is to activate our parasympathetic nervous systems through proper breathing techniques. This in turn automatically coaxes the scattered, or "Shenned out" Heart energy back to the body, allowing peace and order to dictate the rhythm, not chaos.
A well known phrase Qigong therapy is "Qi follows Yi", meaning energy goes to where the mind is focused. If we are mindless of our thoughts, letting the energy just pool and gather, we could be allowing the creation of tissues or conditions that can harm us. When we hold frantically onto an upsetting memory or are stuck in obsession, when thought seems to hold frantically to us, the Qi can gather, congealing and magnetizing the energy of all other experiences that invoke the same emotions, making the pattern heavier and even sometimes lowering the vibration so that it can become a physical thing. But concentrating on the other of the polarity can produce the same- if we are mindful and focus intent on discharging the energy and cultivating the energy of a virtue like faith or trust, we can heal or even create healthy tissues.
Bergland, Christopher, "The Brain Mechanics of Rumination and Repetitive Thinking", Psychology Today online: www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-athletes-way/201508/the-brain-mechanics-rumination-and-repetitive-thinking
Jarret, Lonny, L. Ac. “Embracing the Absolute: Sp 21 and He 1”, Academia (online journal), Vol. 19, No. 2, Fall/Winter 2008, p.9