Prayer Training

Big Eight Series: Settle the Earth 安土地神功

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Daoist training
  • Level: Entry
  • Video time: 2 hours
  • Audio: Almost 2 hours on 4 tracts 
  • Access: 90 days
  • Handouts: 2



Course overview
"Settle the Earth," known as "安土地神功" (ān tǔdì shén gōng) in Daoist practice, is a profound form of prayer and spiritual cultivation deeply rooted in Daoist philosophy and tradition. It is the fourth of the Big Eight Morning Prayers 八大神咒.

In essence, it seeks to harmonize humanity with the energies of the Earth, fostering balance and alignment with the natural world.

Details

This prayer begins by invoking The Respected Celestial of the Primordial Origin (元始天尊 yuán shǐ Tiān Zūn). In short, Yuan Shi Tian Zun is the first in the Daoist Trinity. One of Yuan Shi Tian Zun’s primary functions was to create the universe or at least the inspiration thereof and thus, infinite potential was created. More on this is explained in the lecture.

Central to "Settle the Earth" is the recognition of the Earth as a living, sentient being, often referred to as "Tu Di Gong" (土地公) or the Earth God. Daoists believe that the Earth, like all aspects of the cosmos, possesses its own consciousness and energy. By invoking and honoring this Earthly deity, practitioners aim to establish a reciprocal relationship of respect and gratitude.

"Settle the Earth" prayer is not merely a petition for personal gain but a humble acknowledgment of humanity's interdependence with the Earth and all living beings. It emphasizes living in harmony with nature, respecting its cycles, and tending to its well-being.

In a world increasingly plagued by environmental degradation and disconnection from the natural world, the practice of "Settle the Earth" holds particular relevance. It serves as a reminder of humanity's responsibility to be stewards of the Earth, nurturing and preserving its vitality for future generations.

Ultimately, "Settle the Earth" prayer encapsulates the Daoist principle of wu-wei (无为), or "effortless action," advocating for a gentle, non-coercive approach to harmonizing with the Earth's energies. Through this practice, Daoist practitioners seek not dominion over nature but a humble partnership, wherein both humanity and the Earth mutually support and nourish each other on the path to spiritual realization and ecological balance.

Advanced Daoist practitioners may use this prayer in combination with various rituals, meditation techniques, and invocations designed to connect with the Earth's energy and seek its blessings. Through mindful breathwork, visualization, and movement, practitioners attune themselves to the Earth's rhythms, cultivating a deep sense of groundedness and tranquility.

What's included?

Lecture - 2 hours 

The lecture details the prayer character by character and line by line to convey an understanding not just of the literal translation but a deeper underlying meaning.

Recitation Practice - 20 and 40 minute Moderate Pace

These are 20 and 60 minute recitation practices at a moderate pace. This will guide someone familiar with the prayer to deeper levels of awareness. 

Pronunciation - Audio

This recording provides a single slow repetition of the prayer to elucidate the proper tones of the characters.

Written Prayer

This will have Chinese characters, pinyin, literal translation, and my interpretation of the prayer.

Recitation Practice - 20  minute Slow Pace

This recording is a 20 minute recitation practice at a slow pace. This will help entrain the energy for those new to this prayer. 

Access

You will have 90 days of access to all the material.
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