Calmness (Jing, 靜) is an essential element for a good state and the benefits of a calm state are beyond measure. It plays a vital role in health and supports the development of realization and wisdom. When a calm state is absent in life, problems of all sorts can be expected. Working on calmness is the first step to bring balance and order back to life. The cultivation of calmness is a process of discovery. Every bit of progress renews life and opens up to a new experience of life. It is a fascinating process as you can keep discovering new things about yourself and what you are capable of. There is no end to this beautiful process.
Calmness is predominantly a state we feel in our hearts. Staying in the heart in every moment of life so that we are aware of how we feel, is a prerequisite for cultivating calmness. Actively adjusting our state to attain calmness is a necessary ongoing effort. When on the path to attaining calmness as a natural state of life, we may go through a few stages that are characterized by different qualities of calmness. We can work towards these stages by working on the aspects that can specifically help achieve them.
Ping Jing (平靜) – the state of balance and stability (little disturbance) is the initial calmness we experience as we start working on our state. Tools such as Yuan Gong can be very useful for achieving it. It helps improve Qi by increasing the amount of Qi in the body and creates a better flow of Qi. A better Qi condition will better nourish the consciousness and heart, which will help them remain stable. Furthermore, being calm and focused is a requirement for Yuan Gong practice. The practice itself will greatly cultivate calmness, especially during practice. However, one would likely find that the calm state may not last outside practice time. So, work on the subsequent stages would be necessary to attain lasting calmness.
Ning Jing (寧靜) – the state of joy, content, peace and harmony This is the calmness we feel when any one of Five Xin (trust, openness, love, gratitude and Gongjing—true respect) is fully present and can be achieved by cultivating the heart. The work on the heart can start with cultivating Five Xin and transforming the patterns of opposite qualities of Five Xin.
Ji Jing (寂靜) – the state of deep calmness and openness accompanied by clarity and wisdom, a state of unification and harmony, an experience of totality This is the calm state of the True Self. It can be achieved by removing the obstacles that block the manifestation of the True Self, such as unhealthy patterns.
I wish you a calm Full Moon day, and as you work through the essential element of calm, I hope you reach more and more new discoveries on this adventure.
If you would like to learn more from Yuan Tze about the being calm check out our Learn REN XUE website for the Replay of his online workshop on Calm that was six-part of the Be the Master of Your State workshop series run in 2020.