Flowering Light

3/1/21, 5:25 PM

Watch Flowering Light on Video

The Secret of the Golden Flower is an ancient Taoist text that inspires inner alchemy. Because it is meant to be a personal and silent journey, it is described by some as 'Zen with details.' We become aware of the light within and use the breath to observe and circulate qi.

"Master Lii Tzu said : That which exists through itself is called Meaning (Tao). Meaning has neither name nor force. It is the one essence, the one primordial spirit. Essence and life cannot be seen. It is contained in the Light of Heaven. The Light of Heaven cannot be seen. It is contained in the two eyes."

The entire text is a meditative exercise meant to be practiced over a long period of time to achieve enlightenment. Blending Kabbalah, Buddhist and Taoist teachings, the Flowering Light honors the power of the breath to center in stillness and activate the light of qi within. 

I use the word 'flowering' because the breath can lead us away from embroiling and to our center, so we can allow the light to blosssom from this center - out into the world.

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There is only this breath

like the wind,

     it is born of an irresistible power

     to sustain life.

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               We live on a sphere

that moves in a circle.

Everywhere we look are circles.

              No matter how far we travel

out into the world

in search of answers,

the circle always leads us back to ourselves.

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              The road between non-existence and beingness,

is separated

by only this breath.

              When we live and die in this breath,

we are no longer lost,

we arrive.

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 There is a diffusion of light

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               it reveals

what cannot be held in the hand

      because the light is not of this world…

And yet, everything

borrows its existence

       from this light.

             It shoots through

our time here

just so,

in a way that time collapses into it.

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              It takes form in the early morning darkness.

It created the trees.

And because it is warm,

     it entices the song of the wind

     to speak in the language of rustling leaves.

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              We can trace it in the shadows

when mountains crawl across a desert landscape

bowed down in supplication to the light.

              When we give it a name...

it is the name that comes to separate us. 

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              It is the exhalation, inhalation, and animation

of the one

    into the many,

and each song is sung in its own way.  

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               We look back at ourselves

through each other.

              We seek a connection

the reassurance that what we sense is real

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 because through each other - 

 we feel the presence of the light.

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              Our sense of separation,

the illusion.

Words become thoughts

and thoughts become things

that enclose us.

              It is the emptiness of the mind that makes it useful

the light flowing in and out –

like the breath.

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              We can spend our days searching for answers

or simply allow the mystery

to lead us deeper into the question,

until we let the question go.

              There is only this beingness

and this breath.

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         This is the gift

we can wrap and give to ourselves.

It is the gift nature gave to us

that can be anything

until we open it

and look inside.

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Within the emptiness

is a presence…

the stillness

        of not striving

our center...

our liberation.

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As easy as water becomes ice

and ice melts back into water,

the simplicity of being

because only the world is turning.

What is the mind

when there are no questions?

When there is nothing to contain us

nothing to search for?

Through the breath,

   we return

   to all that is.