Liu He Ba Fa Between the Six and the Eight
By Ben Bar -Liu He Ba Fa – Listening
Ben Bar, LHBF Conference, Dongguan, China 11/2014
Sharing with my students my way of studying LHBF over the years has prompted me to search for ways to develop further our understanding of LHBF. Each of the so called "SIX harmonies" and "EIGHT Methods" (the 6 HE & 8 FA) can be perceived by developing a very important quality in us. As students of this very special and unique "WAY" we need to consider it very seriously
This quality is the ability to listen, namely, the ART OF LISTENING
The key questions that are coming to one's mind are
- Listen to what?
- Why to listen?
- How do we listen?
- What happens when we listen?
Listen to what
Obviously we need to follow our teachers by listening to their instructions and guidelines, follow the path of knowledge and the tradition. This by itself will take us so far and will perhaps allow us to learn the external rules and regulations, external movement and external knowledge. But only when we start to listen to our bodies, to our internal movement, only then we can experience progress
First, we will learn to pay attention to the skeleton, muscular system and the ligaments level by moving in the manner we are being taught by our teachers
As we progress we will become aware and pay attention to our various joints, and as we progress further we will be able to relate to more and more information coming from our muscles, spine, skeleton and joints simultaneously
We will also learn to become familiar with various other sensations like tension in various parts of the body, the torso, the hands and legs, the five terminals and the internal organs
We will be able to pay attention and listen to our opponents, understanding their positioning at a broader level
We may start to explore feelings and sensations associated with the energy work or Chi. The sequence may differ from individual to individual but this phase is a crucial one. Many who quit practicing are doing so because of not being able to understand this stage or not being guided about what is being happening in this stage. The new sensations and feelings may be overwhelming without explanations, without giving it the right context, reasoning and a sense of purpose
Why to listen
Practicing the 6 harmonies and 8 combinations requires us to access the parts in our human body that can simultaneously calculate and contain the many sensations and information in a coherent way
This is done by allowing our system to "listen" and to trust that what we "hear" is what it "is" without allowing the "mind" to interfere and offer (mostly forcing) explanations of which the "mind" also expects us to follow.
In simple words:
Mechanically / Externally: To preform LHBF you need all of your bodily parts working in a unified and synchronized manner, both the internal parts and the external parts
For that we need to allow our system to access and respond to multi signals of which we are normally not responding to. For us, for example, to be able to synchronize few joints together in a 3 dimensional environment requires not the MIND and the Left Brain (realistic, single – sequenced) but the Right Brain (intuitive, associative, with multi parallel sequences capabilities) with the "Lower Brain" the Tan Tian
To develop the ability of accessing the information to the Right Brain and the Tan Tian we need to "enable" the information, to "legitimize" it internally by turning our attention and focus and listening to the information, to the many sensations. This communicates to the Right Brain and the Tan Tian that the information is important, should be accepted and acted upon. Then the body will take it seriously and will follow it and will allow it "in" with assimilation and responses at all levels
Internally: Many are looking in LHBF and other systems to discover their internal world, the way the energy is moving, the way the internals are moving and to learn about the "WAY"
The Paradigm is that the autonomic nervous system (The autonomic nervous system is the subdivision of the peripheral nervous system that regulates body activities that are generally not under conscious control) does not possess direct links to many of our parts - this confuses us when we try to access parts in us via the direct nervous system. In fact the direct access is not necessary, as all the various parts of the body produce sensations that are registered via the autonomic nervous system
But we, by large, were not taught how to interpret the sensations and the feelings. Instead, we were told since childhood to ignore them
Listening is the first stage of allowing the sensations to exist and then to start to understand it as a language which is precise and accurate. Then chi can be practiced in a way which will be progressive
How do we listen
We listen by paying attention to sensations, by not being lazy and by putting attention to details
We start by observing, accepting what is in front of us, what reaches us, what we sense from within, what we feel. Not judging nor ignoring, not suppressing nor amplifying our sensations - only accepting
Then we listen to it, not evaluating - just paying attention to what "is", to what it does, to directions or movement it produces, not classifying it but learning the various levels and shades and forms it creates, to the subtleties
We do so while associating with it the movement we practice, be it external or internal
There is no need to make it an organized academic study but more of a laboratory environments of exploring and remembering and letting our system to explore, to remember, to develop the language and register the information for us - trusting it to become available to us when we will need to recall or to use it or to activate it (… "Body follow Mind follow Intention"..,)
What happens when we listen
This is the beginning, the first hall after the first door. When we start enjoying this process we know that we are on the right path
It could be easy, or take a life time but we were all born as such and with all the facilities to do so. In fact, we are doing it since birth. This is the way the world and nature are working. Now we have the chance to practice it with our consciousness and develop ourselves - freeing ourselves from conditioned mind
In fact the most important secret and the reason all sages and men of knowledge put so much emphasis on these subjects is because listening is changing (Change is made available by listening, change accrues when we listen)
By listening and acting upon it you have the choice to change the course of what you are observing at the time of observing and listening
In fact by observing you are already changing, by putting attention to a situation or an object you are already influencing it and can change it
Engaging your attention through observing and listening allows you to connect at the moment of doing so with the possibility to direct it to new possibilities. This is the freedom of your choice. This is the freedom a practitioner of internal arts such as LHBF seeks to achieve. Listening while following the 6HE allows changing without force, without wasting energy, with respect to the nature of the laws of nature and creation, without forcing anything or on account of any one. This is the true way of the TAO
By Ben Bar
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Liu He Ba Fa - 6 Harmonies 8 Combinations