Over 25 several years ago, I attended boarding school and got to live, wreak, and study with some remarkable people. One of those people was a classmate appointed Hui Neng Amos.
Neng was one of my dormitory prefects. And in addition to being a generally kind and easy going guy, Neng practised this strange and-to my district mind-mysterious thing called Tai Chi.
All I knew about it was that it appeared to give Neng preternatural powers of grace and power on the athletic field.
At the time, it didn’t occur to me that in part, it is likely excused his position off the field too.
Many years later, when I became interested in the meditative artistries, I started to learn about a figure of moving meditation called Tai Chi. In my memory, I ever associated this ancient form of musing with my old-time classmate.
So I was delighted when a number of years ago, Neng and I reconnected via Facebook. I was intrigued to see that he had created something called the Mindful Arts Project .
In this episode, we explore Hui Neng’s story, about how he grew up in a small agricultural New Hampshire school cum intentional parish where he started learning and practicing tai chi and seated reflection from the pee-pee age of three.
After college, his travellings made him across America to India and more. Neng would journey away from his beginnings in pensive rehearsal, simply to return as young adults, more devoted than ever and now coaching these hallowed patterns through the Mindful Arts Project.
But there is much more to this story, as you’ll learn.
Albert Amos( Center in chair ); Hui Neng’s Father( top left)
During the interrogation, Neng makes us back to the time of his grandpa, Albert Amos, who was a close friend of the great civil rights luminary Howard Thurman, and a deacon in his church.
Thurman was one of the first major supporters of Gandhi’s nonviolent principles in the West, transmitting those powerful tenets of nonviolent fight to Martin Luther King.
Albert Amos himself was a socialist organizer in the black Bay Area community. And as Neng says it 😛 TAGEND
Our family was certainly engulf in the ideas that Howard Thurman espoused; a sizable group of black academics shared in their inception, and the Civil Rights Movement was arguably built there( in the Bay Area ), outside the see of the Deep South, where it was famously requested. He was an extraordinary human being, and I certainly weigh him as a forefather.
Indeed, Thurman was the reason Neng’s father got to go to college. Thurman put in a word for him at U.C. San Francisco, where he was very successful. Hui Neng’s father then went on to continue his studies in economics at U.C. Berkeley.
But the astonishing intersections in Neng’s family don’t stop with Thurman. Throughout the ’6 0s, Neng’s father was a student of the great Zen Master Shunryu Suzuki, founder of the San Francisco Zen Center and the Tassajara Monastery.
Today, in addition to running the Mindful Arts Project, Neng learns English at the Basis School in Ahwatukee, AZ. He’s married to Sonya Amos and has seven minors aged 5 months to 17 years. He educates tai chi and his wife traditions Buti yoga. Neng likes to sing and paint and tell dad jokes .( – 😛 TAGEND
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