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Thread: The Gratitude Thread

  1. #311
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    with thanks

    Today I'm grateful for God always being by my side guiding me, my family and my shaolin Sifu Joan and Sigeung and for feeling that right now my journey will be on a good route

  2. #312
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
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    Per the request of my dear Sisook Charles! With great gratitude I have obliged his invitation to show gratefulness for gratitude.

    Why is thankfulness and gratitude so valuable for spiritual development? If one possessively focuses on pleasure and engrossing/affective positive emotions, he experiences anguish when his mind wanders off the target and witnesses other mental landscapes. Consentration practice is a very demanding affair and many times ends up in a sense of struggle because of the need to generate and hold on to something particular, but thankfulness takes a different route: the way of Zen. On that path we are not concerned over either the outcome of our actions or fretting about our current welfare, but express our intimate satisfaction for whatever we may have. In its most profound level, being grateful is a most supreme way of being respectful of the Cosmos instead of putting the limited self and its wayward desires on the pedestal. Allow your life to become constant benediction: be thankful.

    Thankfulness is the best antitode for worrying. If something disturbing arises, a gentle and sincere thanks giving is often a powerful remedy to let the stray thought or emotion go away with a sweet sense of goodbye. Gratefulness creates peace and easily lends to more dignified ways we can relate to other people because we appreciate them as they are without issuing needless judgement. This way gratitude also incorporates mercy.

    Personally I believe that I have started to get at least three times more benefit from chi kung when I started to take gratitude and mercy as my moral beacons which I entertain habitually throughout the day. Thankfulness seems to work better for opening my heart than just smiling from the heart which I mostly reserve for chi kung. It is not infrequently that gratitude activates a gentle and subtle chi flow, though there has been one occasion when it actually created a large burst of internal force. The effects mostly concentrate around areas of painful tension that are prominiently in my chest, hands, and the head up of cheeks. In my head region, where most of the soothing currently takes place, the chi flow gently massages my eyes all around the sockets (oooh), rubs beneath the forehead (aaah), and the scalp feels invigorated with a sense as if someone is pulling my hair (oh yes!). All these make my nerves make feel fantastically relieved.

    Is gratitude already an integral aspect of our training? Indirectly, yes:

    5. Forbidden to be ungrateful and unscrupulous, ignoring the Laws of man and heaven.
    If we look at the 10 Shaolin Laws, we can clearly see that there is nothing explicitly commanding you to be grateful, but all these different phrases give perspectives and a variety of chances to discover our spiritual maturity when we start applying them dutifully! Like 10,000 reflections of the moon in puddles, there is the real thing which can't be fully captivated by any list detailing its incomplete appearances. When we realize the actual moon or gratitude in question, then we understand the beauty of what we had been given by the means of a moral way and to what a magnificient treasure we had been led to! Glory to the Shaolin Arts and the past Masters! Thank you Sifu and Sigung!

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  3. #313
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    Aug 2015
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    Dear Family and guests,

    My first week with Taijiquan has been very intense: I have felt like a prodigal son coming back home on many levels. The relief and closure are palpable like Sun rising at last after a feverish night. My guardians and benefactors both past and present deserve my deepest gratitude. Thank you everyone!

    Yesterday I tried to cry out loud to the profound sadness and joy of life, but it turned out with just laughter welling up from my heart. Everything is so very beautiful. Life is so beatiful. You too, my dear audience, are even sweeter and more beautiful than you could ever imagine. But that is fine because we can realize and experience this beauty instead of just chasing the shadows of our wishful thinking.

    I have recently come to recognize that my whole consciousness and all the conscious experiences are completely and utterly undeserved gifts. How wonderful it is to receive such articles without any strings attached? Where is suffering in that picture, or rather how could there be any? How could that be anything but unconditional love? Now it's starting to become difficult to discern whether practicing Chi Kung or expressing gratefulness brings better benefits. It's as if my spirit is constantly growing in volume and arrows of light shoot out of me when I thank, plead for mercy, or bless. Yet still, thanking for this newly found "giftedness" feels a very subtle and powerful blessing for which I am eternally grateful, as it has given me an even more solid reason and target to be grateful for.

    Thank you everyone who has contributed to this special thread, reading it has been a true joy. Siguma Joan knows how to cultivate the best in us, so my cordial thanks to her for having the foresight to encourage us to appreciate the wonder of gratitude.

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  4. #314
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    Aug 2015
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    UK Summer Camp Harvest

    Today I tried for the first time at home how the skill of Phenomenal Opening of the Heart works. What a great way to start a new week. Thank you Sigung!

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  5. #315
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    Aug 2015
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    Talking Helsinki Chi Kung Courses were really excellent!

    Dear Shaolin Wahnam Family and visitors,

    I'm glad that once again I'm really wanting to reply in my favorite thread!

    Here's a diagram depicting my Shaolin Journey so far:
    (Without Shaolin Wahnam Chi Kung) -> (Introduced to SWCK) -> (3 months of SWCK) -> (6 months of SWCK) -> (10 months of SWCK)

    I'm yet to witness the full depth of the cleansing which the recent Helsinki courses have provided me with, but WOW how my sense of satisfaction and ability to enjoy scaled up in a single weekend! If this what we practice is not a blessed Art, then I've got no idea what is.

    What an amazing and rewarding path to tread on. Thank you Sifu and Sigung for continuing to teach these magnificient arts!

    Hopefully I can reply with another set of well justified smilies very soon.

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    Last edited by understanding; 10th August 2016 at 07:30 AM. Reason: Future is looking good.
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  6. #316
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    Aug 2015
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    My attempts at restful sleep were suddenly stopped when I realized (again) how lucky and blessed I am to be part of the Shaolin Wahnam Family.

    I am gratefully forever indebted by the blessings, kindness, and beauty that you have shown me. I love you all so very much.

    Everything seems immensely beautiful and wonderful. I find it hard to believe that this is still the same world I was born into.

    Whatever expectations I have had for happiness, pleasure, and welfare were all skeptic's delusions. The truth turned out to be much more sweeter than any of my attempts to imagine what it would be like to actually enjoy them without effort -- just to be here and now.

    Thank you for giving me the chance to actualize that I still could be the upright person I always wanted to be and enjoy the fruits of righteousness. I vow to uphold the Shaolin Laws and help everyone realize their perfect nature.

    I bow to you Sifu, Sipak, and Sigung!

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  7. #317
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    Aug 2015
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    Simple, Direct, and Effective

    Last night I was again suddenly visited by warm feelings that were way too special to leave unshared.

    I love you Sifu, Sipak, and Sigung!

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  8. #318
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Hamphire, UK
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    138

    Deepest gratitude

    Dear Sifu,

    I want to take this opportunity to wish you and your beautiful family a very happy Christmas and a happy new year. And also to the wider Shaolin brothers and sisters and family!

    I feel privileged to have discovered these arts and such an incredible teacher in you, and so lucky to be practicing them. I believe it has been part of my Divine timing on my journey and I can't express in words my gratitude for the benefits and changes these arts have brought. They have been my wake up call to broader awareness bringing me out of a low place, and they have been expanding my awareness ever since. It's such a wonderful adventure!

    Thank you for sharing these arts with me, for which I feel so blessed and lucky to practice. Thank you for inspiring me by your example and leaving me in awe at your knowledge, understanding, practice and transmission of these amazing arts.

    Bless you.

    Happy Christmas.

    With love and Shaolin salute /o
    Matthew
    With love and Shaolin salute /o

    "Your purpose in life is to find your purpose & give your whole heart and soul to it." - Buddha

    Gate gate pāragate pārasaṃgate bodhi svāhā.

  9. #319
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    Aug 2015
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    Dear Family and guests,

    Yesterday there was a new experience and very special moment in my life. Instead of looking into the eyes of people, I directly realized that I was looking into the window of their souls. The sense of connection and intimacy was unbeliavable.

    Bottomless thaks to the precious arts and all the kind teachers that have enabled me to realize this!

    With sincere gratitude,
    Olli
    On my way to understanding the greatness of gratitude.
    Thank you Sifu, Sigung, and Past Masters!

  10. #320
    Emiko H's Avatar
    Emiko H is offline Sifu Emiko Hsuen - Chief Instructor, SHaolin Wahnam Japan
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Toronto, Canada
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    Dear Family and Friends,

    I wrote this on my new blog on the Shaolin Wahnam Japan website, but also thought to post it here since it is an expression of my heartfelt gratitude to Sifu.

    From the heart,

    Emiko

    Feb. 12, 2017

    Dear Friends,

    Thank you for checking in and reading here today.

    It's hard to imagine how long ago it was when I first met Sifu in Malaysia in December 2000 and attended his Intensive Shaolin Kung Fu Course. What a life-changing course that was - I am so grateful - and I have never looked back since.

    Today, I wake up each morning, still pinching myself on my "good luck" to be initiated into the Flow, that this enables me to enjoy good health, and that I receive such an abundance of energy from the training that gives me zest and vitality for life.

    When I was much younger, I used to wake up with a heavy feeling in my heart and stomach, almost with a 'sense of dread' for what the day would bring. It seemed that each day merged into the next, and it required much effort to get out of bed and prepare myself to go to work. Once I was into the activities of the day, I could smile and interact well with others, but that first waking moment of the day was always a battle of will for me.

    I wondered if others felt the same way as I did. I recalled how, as a child, I would wake up with eagerness and anticipation for the day, and I genuinely thought that those days were a happy childhood phase that had unfortunately been 'outgrown', and that adult life was all about struggle and determination.

    Yet, here I am today, in February 2017, and I can honestly say that the wonders of these Shaolin arts never cease. I look back, and somehow, somewhere along the line, my adult life took a subtle yet profound turn towards 'possibility', 'opportunity' and 'hope'. Somehow, the childlike curiosity and enthusiasm for life returned.

    I do not recall exactly when it was that I began to wake up with that keen, alert, fresh interest for what the day could bring. But, through daily training, I can honestly say that it has been the 'new normal' for more than fifteen years.

    I am so grateful for the opportunity to train and disseminate the authentic Shaolin arts, the arts that have opened me up to the joys of a life lived with freedom of spirit, in increasing harmony with the laws of the universe.

    How incredible this gift called Life is. Wishing everyone 'happy training, happy life'!

    Best wishes,

    Hsuen, Emiko

    Greetings and thanks to Sifu, Shaolin masters past and present, and all of those who have gone before.

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