Life Lessons from a Taoist Martial Arts Master

Often we do not realize the brilliant lessons we’ve learned until some years later, then, clarity reigns.

Why do we love the old masters?

I think it’s because their disciplined life shows self-mastery and a way of being that is beyond how ordinary people live. Their mastery forms a foundation and formula for success.

I immersed myself into learning the energy arts for years however, it was not until I spent two-years with Sifu Chen while on a consulting project did I see into it all.

To live and work here at the Dao House high in the mountains of Colorado was an honor.

Sifu Chen is a 25th generation Taoist Priest originally from Wudang Mountain in China.

I lived in a curiously small cabin in the woods, big enough for a bed and bathroom. The little windows were laden with snow 8 months of the year and my view looked towards layers of majestic mountains - all in brilliant 3-D dimension.

Here, hard work, focus, and wide-eyed learning were the norm as we trained our infinite potential.

I learned through observation.

When you train your body and mind for a lifetime – it shows. Sifu looks like a master. My conclusion is that you cannot TRY to look powerful – others will see right into your whole fake scene.

Sifu says:

"We spend years to train the inside of the body to be more powerful than the outside. If the outside demeanor looks impressive, that becomes an indication of the real power you have on the inside.

We train with clarity to become present, which projects Personal Power.

Being present starts with how you stand.

In our fast paced world, it takes a new paradigm of working and operating - you not only need to be mentally fit, but also physically fit.

All parts of you need to be operating together like a fine-tuned machine, not as a bunch of scattered pieces."

On Business - Sifu says

When negotiating, let others start first. Their egos are usually in full force like a tumbling boulder. Their untrained minds think this is power. It is not.

As others make the first move, you are passive and saving your energy and looking at the dynamics of the situation.

Your mind is in every cell of your body.

Because you are skilled and have clarity, others will fall into your strategy.

Every phase of life demands a different you. Confidence and freedom are what you gain after you’ve earned it.

The Three-Month Rule

While working with Sifu to hire new people he never thought of having to let them go. He relied on the fact that people will eliminate themselves.

The time frame was three-months. It always works.

The premise is, you’ll never need to let someone go, as within the three-month time frame, people will either leap ahead, or eliminate themselves before you have to ask.

Watch for Repeating Patterns

The key is to watch how people form repeating patterns in all situations. Identifying repeating patterns is key to seeing into the future of a situation.

When you observe a pattern, look for the energy within that pattern.

When you observe the situation in this manner, you can then change the energy of the situation, or the people or yourself to ultimately position yourself the right way.

Think in Seasons

Chen looked at life (including business) as measured by seasons and other natural cycles. Instead of trying to accomplish goals quicker, the thought is to slow things down to be more aware of the patterns and energy of what you are doing.

The wisdom is to build “space” or “time gaps” in your projects so you gain clarity as the project grows.

Seeing with the Mind

Sifu would look at a situation from the deepest level and then layer his conclusions thinking how it will play out far into the future.

It is an art form from practicing extreme clarity. It comes from being a master of observation. It’s the art of deciphering the state of mind of the people around you.

The dynamics are made up of all the elements that others are caught up in. Alertness to these dynamics will encompass all aspects of a situation and show you the path to take.

The key point of seeing with the mind is to understand the essence of what the energy is.

This is a warriors art.

It’s about slowing yourself down so all situations originate from a grounded point of view not from an emotional point of view.

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