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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Day 6 - Saying Goodbye is Hard to Do

September 24, 2014

The final day of China Excursion 2014 began on a bittersweet note. For most part, we were excited about the places we were going to visit but at the same time, we felt a bit melancholic because the excursion had finally coming to an end.

On this final day, we had 3 sites on the agenda - the legendary Shaolin Temple, Bodhidharma's Cave and Zhongyue Temple. Although everyone was excited about visiting the Shaolin Temple, the highlight of the trip was Bodhidharma's Cave, where we were going to search for the spot where Bodhidharma attained enlightenment.

Bodhidharma was a Buddhist monk who lived during the 5th or 6th century, who is credited for bring Zhen Buddhism to China. Zhen Buddhism later spread to Japan. According to legend, Bodhidharma was also the one who was responsible for beginning the physical training of the Shaolin monks which lead to the creation of Shaolin Kung Fu. We're sure that the spot of his enlightenment would be an incredible site.

Shaolin Temple

Our first stop was the Shaolin Temple. Upon our arrival at the famous temple, Dato' Joey once again put us to the test. We were to study the area surrounding the entrance of the Shaolin Temple and identify the various Feng Shui formations. We all gave our best shot based on everything that we've learned over the past 5 days.

After everyone had shared their observations, Dato' Joey explained the Feng Shui formations in greater detail. He explained that there are two mountains that form the embrace of Shaolin Temple where the water crosses. The embrace moves outward and is regarded as a non-ideal embrace in Feng Shui because the descendants of people living in this area have to leave their home. Although not ideal for a family, it was responsible the Shaolin Temple rising to worldwide fame. As students and monks leave the temple, they spread the teachings and name of Shaolin throughout the world, turning it into a household name.

We were also given time to study the internal structure of the Shaolin Temple but were warned that it may not reflect its original Feng Shui as the temple has been destroyed and rebuilt many times. Before we headed out Dato' Joey asked us to keep a look out for the important Military Art Star and Nobility Star Mountains. When time was up we quickly regrouped and headed up to Bodhidharma's Cave.

Bodhidharma's Cave

It was a tough one-hour hike to Bodhidharma's Cave, but that did not deter us at all. After all, we were all eager to see the spot Bodhidharma achieved enlightenment. We were also hoping to experience enlightenment for ourselves, even if only for a short while, while we were there.

Upon arriving, we waited as some of our classmates offered their prayers in Bodhidharma's Cave. The statue inside the cave is located on the Meridian Spot and everyone took some time to experience the energy inside the cave. Some of us also tried to figure out the Feng Shui formation of the cave on our own.

Once everyone has had a chance to study the cave, we gathered around Dato' Joey as he explained his findings on this special and holy place. The Meridian Spot is actually a clipper formation. The mountains up on this Meridian Spot formed a large Pen Holder formation, which brings the influence of wisdom. That's what makes this spot so special. Dato' Joey also pointed out the important formations surrounding the cave which can be found in the Jade Essence Classic. There is a Jade Screen Formation in front that cave that creates spiritual people, military officers and imperial officers.

This explains why the Shaolin Temple has always been attracting important people. It has hosted emperors and empresses of China and more recently, world leaders like the Russian President, Vladimir Putin.

There is also a '宝库 Bo Fu' or '孤辉 Ku Fai' formation which is 3 legs branching out of a metal or earth-shaped mountain. This is part of the Reward Star Mountain formation. This creates enormous wealth and Shaolin Temple is one of the richest temples in the world. The whole macro landform is called the Jade Screen Dragon structure. This structure produces monks and ministers. It has also led to the creation of Zen Buddhism.

Once more, Dato' Joey gave us a special direction from the Qi Men Chart and asked us to pray for wisdom.

Zhongyue Temple

After a short lunch, we headed for Zongyue Temple. Zhongyue Temple is a Taoist temple and one of the oldest of its kind in China. The temple is over 2,000 years old and had been rebuilt several times over the course of its history. As such it may not reflect the original Feng Shui.

When we arrived at the temple, Dato' Joey briefed us about the 5 main Ancestor Mountains in China. Song Shan is one of the Ancestor Mountains, and is located in the center of China. Many Chinese Metaphysics metaphors come from the landform using Song Shan as a center point.

We were then given time to do our own study based on what we have learned so far. After our self- study session, Dato' Joey explained to us that there is a special 5 Lotus Petals formation where the vein goes out to the Table Mountain. The temple is in the center of this formation which is the bright hall, where Qi gathers, thus subduing the Five Dragon.

It was another day of amazing sites. It was also interesting to see how a non-ideal Feng Shui formation ended up birthing one of the most famous temples in the in world. It's a good reminder that when we put labels on things, such as "ideal formation" or "non-ideal formation", we also shut down a lot of possibilities.

The day ended with a special farewell dinner for the students. Every one of us gathered in the restaurant to share a final moment of our excursion together. We wanted this dinner to be special so we took the time to share our experience and thoughts together before we make our way back to our own home country.

Coincidentally, the dinner also marked the 10-year anniversary of Joey Yap's Feng Shui Excursion program! Long-time students and friends of Dato' Joey such as Vivian, Sonia, Leonard and Georgeanne spoke on their experience in learning Chinese Metaphysics with Dato' Joey and their gratitude.

Hugs were exchanged and photos were taken, so it's time to head back home. All in all, it was a great experience and we learned so much about Feng Shui through this excursion program. When more than 40 of us crossed path, you are not just study mate. You become friends and paths have been crossed and affinity linked.

With renewed spirits, I can say that I am proud to study Feng Shui under the guidance of Dato' Joey. I truly had the time of my life and an unforgettable journey in this excursion. Thanks Dato' Joey!

Reported by Josephine Phang and Daniel Woon for Joey Yap's China Excursion 2014.

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