Sunday, June 25th 2017
Jul
2008
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Master Hai Kong and Buddhist monks: Jemma’s journey out of chronic pain

BEING THERE: JEMMA FONG

Jemma’s journey: “I just need to live with the pain” (1st of 2 parts)

Living with a chronic condition resulting in daily pain and periodic acute flare-ups that flatten me in bed for days seemed to be the only “norm” I knew for the past two and a half decades. Increased stress of any sort would worsen the situation by triggering a vicious spiral: as I became frustrated with my inability to perform at my optimum, I added new layers of stress. Doctors, therapists and alternative health practitioners helped as much as they could through medications, manipulations, exercise and homeopathy, but overall, most of them came to the conclusion that I just need to live with the pain.

Deep down I knew I had to find a way to control it, rather than “it” control me.

Over the past seven years my business and life partner, Wen, had been telling me about her experiences with a Buddhist Master in China. She witnessed seemingly miraculous healing during a Tibetan Tantric Buddhist meditation course.

Seriously ill patients suffering from diseases ranging from cancer to joint pain, were healed through practicing this type of meditation — and showed remarkable improvement in their general health.

She was quite confident that if I had a chance to meet this Master, I, too, would have a chance to heal. It seemed like a far-away dream.

But after listening to Wen, and having a general understanding of how the Chinese approach to healthcare differed from Western Society, I was intrigued to learn and experience this phenomenon first-hand. I also believed that being of Asian decent (although I was raised “Caucasian”), prompted a deep desire to explore my roots and cultural inheritance.

Buddhist meditation has been in China well over 2,000 years. I figured it must have value. Why not open my mind and heart to this experience! So I voted with my feet, so to speak, and flew to the People’s Republic in the summer of 2005.

Despite being in a foreign land and not understanding the language, I actually felt quite at peace and comfortable being in China. A huge part of me felt “at home”.

In the mountains of Sichuan, beside a little town called Zhong Jiang, stands a white tower high on a mountaintop. The White Tower temple sits just below, filled with sounds of chanting, bells ringing and the smell of incense. Ambient mantra-music loops softly in the background through loud speakers most of the day, filling the air with peace and tranquility.

We spent five days in this tranquil paradise. It was extremely peaceful and safe — a sanctuary cloistered by high walls all around us. Monks of all ages, dressed in yellow robes, practiced their daily sacred rituals.

Finally, I had the honour of meeting the master of the temple, Hai Kong, who happens to be the creator of this type of meditation. His teachings have helped millions of Chinese people recover their physical and psychological bearings.

On the second evening of our stay, I was invited to participate in an empowerment ritual held by Master Hai Kong and the monks. It was a two-hour affair, and although I did not understand a spoken word, I watched in awe as Master Hai Kong performed his prostrations, and the monks sang chants and bowed to the Buddhas. My surroundings seemed to enter me through my pores.

It was then my turn to perform my own practice, repeating a mantra in a standing meditative for two hours non-stop. It was difficult, because the pain of walking round and round was hard on my hip joints, but I persevered.

It was essential to get beyond this tipping point of resistance, so the monks kept encouraging me to continue.

The opportunity for having this experience was extremely privileged, especially having this individual attention . . .

Tomorrow: The steps that led Wen to become a teacher, and the first person to bring Master Hai Kong’s practice to the West.

Jemma and her partner, Wen, operate The North American Fulong Dharma Centre, located in Oakville, Ontario, Canada. They also run a website design company called InSite Creations.

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  1. [...] Jemma’s Journey: (The 2nd of 2 parts) [...]

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