Art

Painting by Leigh Freudenheim, Boston artist, congregation member of the Temple of Original Simplicity.

Finishing instantiation of cosmic energy in the amulet painting through the burning of magical essences and blessing with salt illuminated by gods.

Creating of the holy Celestial Fox protection and health amulet by placing the seal of the Celestial Fox master on the painting.

Painting of torii gates by Peter LaFarge, Boston artist, congregation member of the Temple of Original Simplicity.

Ceremony

“Pray to the immortal spirits, call them to your aid, and you will be rewarded.”

– Liu Yang Tai

Ancient Taoist Chinese shamanism

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In our Temple of Original Simplicity we faithfully follow traditional methods and sacred rules of ancient Chinese shamanism.

Below you can find interesting historical information about this subject.

During the Chou dynasty, shamanism became popular in mainstream Chinese society, as Eva Wong (1997, book: “The Shambhala Guide to Taoism”) described: Shamanism entered a new phase in ancient China with the development of literacy and a sedentary society. By the 12th century B.C.E., in the early part of the Chou Dynasty,

Kings and Nobles employed shamans as advisors, diviners and healers. Shamanism became an institution, and shamans were expected to exercise their ability as a duty. . . .

During the Chou dynasty, the duties of the shamans were inviting the spirits, interpreting dreams, reading omens, rainmaking, healing, and Celestial divination.

1. Inviting the spirits. A major task of the shamans of the Chou Dynasty was to invite the spirits to visit the mortal realm and offer them- selves as a place for the Spirit to stay temporarily. The visitation of the Spirit generally began with a dance, which put the Shaman in a trance and allowed the Spirit to enter the shaman’s body. This is different from possession, in which the spirit enters the body of the possessed, which then causes the trance. The shaman’s trance is the state of consciousness necessary for the visi- tation, rather than the result of the visitation. As Eliade asserts, this is the hallmark of a shamanic experience, making shamans different from psychic mediums and sorcerers whose magic is based on possession.

2. Interpreting dreams. Dreams are consid- ered to be carriers of omens, and one of the shaman’s tasks is to interpret these messages from the spirits. In ancient China, the dream was also linked to the shaman’s journey to the other realms. The ceremony of summoning the soul of the dead was conducted by a shaman called “the dream master.” This suggests that although dreams of nonshamans were messages from the spirits, they were not under the dreamer’s control, whereas the dreams of the shamans were journeys to other realms of existence in which the shamans were in full control of the dream journey.

3. Reading omens. Another task of the shaman was to observe the changes in nature, predict the course of events, and decide whether it was auspicious or not to engage in a certain ac- tivity. Thus, shamans in the Chou dynasty were adept in the knowledge of the I-ching (the classic work of divination from ancient China known as the Book of Change) and were the forerunners of diviners.

4. Rainmaking. It was also the task of the shaman to pray for rain. The rainmaking cer- emony involved dancing and singing. The Chi- nese word for Spirit (ling) consists of three radi- cals: one meaning rain, another (showing three mouths), chanting, and the third, shaman. Often, the shaman would be exposed to the sun, using his suffering to “persuade” the sacred powers to send rain. Although the speci cs of the ceremo- ny have changed down the years, praying for rain has continued to be an integral part of Chinese religious ritual, and today the ceremony is performed by Taoist priests.

5. Healing. Healing was another major task of the shaman. In the earliest times, this was pri- marily the responsibility of the shamaness. We are told that, in the healing ceremony, the shamaness grasped a green snake in her right hand and a red snake in her left hand and climbed into the mountains to gather the herbs that would restore life and health to a sick or dying person. The ancient Chinese believed that illness was the result of malevolent spirits invading the body; it was therefore logical that the task of healing should fall on the shoulders of the shaman, who had the ability to deal with both good and malevolent spirits.

6. Celestial divination. During the latter part of the Chou dynasty, Celestial divination was very popular. It was believed that, given harmony in the skies, there would be peace, prosperity, and harmony on earth. The key to peace and prosperity lay in following the Celestial Way, or will of heaven, and for the Celestial Way to be followed, the meaning of celestial phenomena must be interpreted; thus, shamans were employed in the court to observe the skies and interpret Celestial events.

The Ceremonial attributes of Ancient Chinese shamanism of the Celestial Fox creed at the Temple of the Original Simplicity.

The Temple of Original Simplicity performs ancient Chinese Taoist Shamanistic ceremonies to communicate with the holy spirits of the Celestial Foxes. These sacred rituals are completed with the master wearing special ceremonial garments, using consecrated talismans from cultures and geographies where the worship of

the celestial Foxes is flourishing today just as it did thousands of years ago.

For the last 40 years in the Temple of Original Simplicity Master Alex Anatole has been a translator of cultures, interpreting the sacred Chinese Shamanistic principles for modern western culture. This spiritual journey led to the crystallization of the Temple’s Heavenly Lin Hun Therapy utilizing eclectic Celestial Fox teachings, icons and rituals from such diverse places as China, Mongolia, Japan, Southeast Asia, Central and South America, Kazakhstan and the Altai and Buryatia, regions in Siberia. As part of this eclectic sharing of Сelestial Fox dogma and icons, the master can wear different vestments at certain times during the shamanistic ceremony. The master can burn magic Taoist diagrams wearing the celestial garb of a Chinese Taoist priest, the ceremonial Shaman’s armor of Mongolia, Siberia shaman’s robes, along with an elaborate hat complete with the talisman of the Celestial Foxes.

The master also can don the Celestial Japanese mask of the Celestial Foxes protected with sacred amulets of the Goddess Inari. The Celestial deity Inari is the highest authority of the heavenly Foxes in Japan. Channeling the spirit of the Сelestial Foxes by donning the sacred, blessed Heavenly Fox mask, the master can invoke the power of the Сelestial Foxes in the venerable Heavenly Fox hall in the Temple of Original Simplicity. The great Celestial Fox hall has Heavenly Fox spirits from all over the world. Included in the sacred hall of Heavenly Foxes is the holy nine-tail Celestial Fox goddess from Thailand, the Heavenly Celestial Foxes from Japan, the great goddess of the holy Foxes from Taiwan and the venerable Celestial Fox spirits from China, Mr. and Mrs. Hu.

In the creed of Celestial Fox Shamanism there are icons of the holy Fox deities that are worshipped in different countries in different cultures all around the world. There are some differences in the ceremonial artifacts and rhythm of the rituals, but the core and methods of Shamanistic communication with the spirit of the Celestial Foxes is consistent across all the cultures and geographies.

Taoist Ceremony of Temple Purification In the New Year Celebration

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Congregation member obtains Celestial Chi from the magic diagram.

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Grandmaster Alex Anatole and his disciple Master Richard Percuoco are administering the ashes burned from the sacred diagram to congregation members.

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Grandmaster Alex Anatole and master Richard Percuoco burning incense to invite celestial Fox spirits to the temple.

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Grandmaster Alex Anatole with ancient shaman’s mask and magic mirror for warding off malevolent entities.

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Congregation members praying to the Celestial Foxes for protection, health, and guidance.

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Congregation members praying to the Celestial Foxes at the main altar.

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Purification ceremony with congregation member utilizing the magic mirror.

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Purification from malevolent entities for physical health and clarity of mind by the sacred coin sword during the Chinese New Year ceremony.

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Final rituals during purification ceremony with congregation members in the Temple.

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Grandmaster Alex Anatole with celestial Fox mask and drum during Chinese New Year ceremony.

Grandmaster Alex Anatole with celestial Fox mask and drum during Chinese New Year ceremony.

Grandmaster Alex Anatole performing a sacred ceremony purging congregation members from malevolent spirits by burning magic Taoist diagrams during the 2020 Year of the Rat Chinese New Year ceremony.

Taoist Ceremony of Opening Eyes

Taoist Ceremony of Temple Purification In the New Year Celebration

The Taoist Point of View on the Futility of Plans

ANCIENT Taoist CHINESE exorcism

Taoist Lin Hun Therapy and Celestial Fox exorcism are based on the ancient theories of shamanism that espouse diseases, illnesses, and numerous medical conditions are the result of negative energies fostered by spiritual possession by malevolent entities. It is fascinating that almost every major world religion originally had a component of spiritual possession and exorcism.
According to Patrick McNamara (2011, 147) in Spirit Possession and Exorcism, “Several of the world religions we know today had their origins in the so-called axial age that occurred roughly 2,500 years ago. Islam arrived about a thousand years after the axial age and can be said to have completed it as it inherited many of the tenets and practices of the axial age religions.
What religions emerged from the axial age itself?
Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, the Hellenistic and Roman mystery religions, Christianity, the core prophetic aspects of Judaism and several other faiths as well. Core aspects of each of these religious movements can be construed as attempts to reform improper use of spirit-possession techniques and thereby return to the old shamanistic attempts to control the techniques rather than be controlled by them.”
McNamara (2011, xi–xii) also argues, Humanity cannot be understood apart from religion and religion . . . cannot be understood apart from “spirit possession.” “Spirit possession” is the taking over of an individual’s sense of agency and identity by a supernatural agent. This “taking over” of the host’s sense of agency and identity can be either a positive or a negative experience. When it is positive, the mind and personality of the possessed individual are transfigured and the individual seems to be acting more freely and effectively. A famous case involves one of the founders of Christianity, Saint Paul. He claims in his letters to the early Christian communities that “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.”
In all cases of positive possession the new personality has left behind the old, the lower self, and now lives via a new transformed self linked to the divine consciousness and is in fact identified with this divine consciousness. The link to or bond with the divine consciousness seems to enhance perceptual capacities and intelligence and can produce some very fine character traits like gratitude, generosity, compassion for others, fearlessness, clear strategic sense, joy, and many other qualities besides. Clearly, any process that can enhance one’s perceptual and information processing capacities and give one these character traits must be transformative indeed and must be considered quite valuable—indeed priceless. That is why this form of possession, Saint Paul calls it “putting on the Mind of Christ” (Rom. 12:2), is something all serious religious believers desire and act to acquire.
The negative form of possession, however, was and is an experience of a very different kind, though once again perceptual and information-processing capacities of the possessed individual are often enhanced, though this time not permanently. Negative possession is now known in many cultures as “demonic possession.” In the ancient world negative forms of possession could occur with almost any sort of spirit entity, including many of the gods worshipped by the ancients as well as spirits of the dead, animal spirits, ancestor spirits, and all kinds of intermediate beings such as demi-gods, faeries, angels, mountain spirits, and many other types of beings as well. Although an individual undergoing demonic possession could often evidence unusual cognitive abilities like “reading the mind” of others, predicting future events, or having knowledge of foreign languages and the like, negative possession (I will call it “demonic possession”) was an experience that was feared. It has to be ranked among the most unfortunate and perilous forms of suffering a human being can undergo. It is so perilous a condition that special rituals have been evolved over the centuries by most peoples, at least all those who have been studied to date to rid the possessed of the demon or to prevent possession in the first place.
Christianity also had techniques of exorcism that called on Jesus as a sanctioning authority to command the malevolent offending spirits. It is described this way in An Encyclopedia of Religion (Ferm 1945, 268): “Exorcism has likewise had an important place in higher religions, including Christianity. In order to demonstrate the power of Jesus over Satan the Synoptic Gospels depict him as exorcising demons, but through his own supernatural authority rather than by the invocation of God’s name and help. Christians, in both early and later periods, exorcised in the name of Jesus, less frequently in the name of God, claiming that the invocation of these holy names made their exorcism religious rather than magical. The rise of a minor order of exorcists in the church testifies to the wide currency of Christian exorcism. The present Catholic practice of prebaptismal exorcism, together with the exorcism of demoniacs and [the blessing] of objects like oil, water, and salt, originated in early times. Today, however, the priest alone is permitted to exorcise. The power attributed to the ‘name’ of Jesus survives in the customary conclusion to Christian prayers in which his name is invoked.”
According to the Handbook of Culture, Therapy, and Healing (Gielen et al. 2004, 350–351),
Spirit possession and Exorcism is also known to have ancient roots in the religion and traditions of Islam where the offending spirits are known as jinn. In dealing with disorders caused by possession by the jinn, the treatment will aim at either exorcising the jinn or establishing symbiotic and working relationships with them. Exorcism (azima, literally incantation) is usually employed when the attack is by an unnamed jinn, whereas forming a symbiotic relationship is the aim of treatment when one is attacked by a named jinn. Although exorcism is a procedure practiced in almost all Arab-Muslim countries, specific treatments that aim at forming symbiotic relationships with the jinn are popular mainly in Egypt and North Africa and are usually carried out by specific cults. Exorcism also tends to be carried out in one session in contrast to the other treatments, which involve continuous sessions in which the patients become members of a cult and must go through the treatments periodically in order to placate the jinn, become their followers, and remain permanently dependent on them.
Although possession by the jinn is recognized in Islam, exorcism is not mentioned in the Qur’an. However, it seems to have been practiced in many Arab-Muslim communities. The exorcist (the mu’azzim) is not a specialist. . . .
The methods of exorcism also vary from one healer to another. In Palestine, in carrying out exorcism, the Sheik massages the body, moving his hands from the upper part of the body downwards so that the devil is to leave the important areas (heart and lungs) and is eventually thrown out of the body through the lower extremities (e.g., toes). The massage turns in most cases into violent beatings. Currently, the Dervish follows similar procedures among the Negev Bedouins of Israel. Moreover, the Dervish employs music in exorcism in the belief that the jinn are attracted to it. Drums are used to convince the reluctant jinn to open a dialogue with the healer. The Dervish may also carry out exorcism during a dhikr ceremony. . . . The belief in North Africa that the jinn detest salt has resulted in its use to expel them. However, forcing the possessed patient to drink large amounts of salty water may sometimes result in death.”
Interestingly, most major religions like the celestial Fox Creed, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam believe in a set of common fundamental religious principles involving spirit possession and exorcism.
Exorcism is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine and has always been associated with human health and well-being. Mortal physical diseases have always related to a person’s confused and frustrated mental state. Exorcism helps to purge the malevolent influences that make people mentally and physically sick. A periodic platform of exorcism helps achieve healing and wellness. For generations, the techniques of exorcism have been used to help people who had difculty functioning in the real world of society’s accepted norms and regulations. Today, the science of pharmacology and mind-altering medications is used to help the individual who has problems functioning in the world of everyday reality. The problem with drug therapy is that the powerful narcotics suppress the energies of the physical body, making the person feel mentally dull and physically tired. Conversely, as opposed to suppressing the physical body, exorcism frees the stagnation of energies in the body and helps promote healing and wellness. Exorcism helps cure mental and physical illness with the support and power of the celestial Creed of the Foxes.
What is the celestial Fox Creed?
The creed of the heavenly Foxes is possibly one of the oldest known religions, dating back to the third or fourth century b.c. Since it has historically been kept secret by its followers, it is practically unknown in Western civilization. This creed, laden with hidden symbolism, centers around spiritual deities known as Fox spirits that are part of the cultural and religious beliefs of both China and Japan. These beliefs spread throughout Southeast Asia, Mongolia, the Manchurian provinces, and what are today Buryatia and Kyrgyzstan. Currently, these geographic areas are actively involved in open worship of the holy Fox Creed. There are modern, functioning Fox temples in Thailand, Japan, Taiwan, and the United States.
In Thailand, legitimate images of nine-tail Fox deities are available and blessed by LP Nain, the master and abbot of Wat Kaset Ban Thung Setthi, a Buddhist temple in the Roi Ed province of Thailand. He is a master of heavenly Fox magic and is well known in Malaysia, Singapore, and China.
The main temple of Fushimi Inari in Kyoto, Japan, has many priests and miles of tori gates and holy Fox shrines on the main mountain retreat. In Japan, the celestial Fox Creed was naturally integrated with the Buddhist and Shinto religions, and it is one of the most prolific major Japanese religions, boasting thousands of public shrines across the country.
The beliefs of the creed of the venerable Foxes are also alive in Taipei, the political and nancial center of Taiwan. It is noteworthy that the creed spread historically through political and cultural upheaval. The holy Fox religion traveled to Taiwan with Chiang Kaishek in 1949, when the Chinese nationalists were defeated and Chiang’s government was forced to move to the island, where he ruled for thirty years. Taiwan was entrusted to keep the ancient Chinese cultural and religious traditions alive and safe from the horrors of communism. As blog writer Jonathan Seidman (2010) described it in In Mystical Taiwan, “I was surprised to discover that there was a special temple devoted to worship of a celestial fox right here in Taipei City, the Hu-Xian Tang. I found the temple on the second floor of a building in downtown Taipei. On first entering, it didn’t seem a great deal different from most Taoist temples I’d seen. There was a shrine set into the far wall decked out in red and gold and on which lay a pot of incense. It was when I took a closer look at the statue of the goddess that I discovered the differ- ence. The Goddess is shown as a beautiful woman dressed in ancient Chinese fashion, but upon looking more closely, one sees she has a tail.”
The Temple of Original Simplicity—headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts—has a modern working Hall of Celestial Foxes. The Hall and main altar are an integral part of the worship of the Celestial Foxes. Historically, most Taoist temples contained a Hall of Foxes, although shrines and altars were popular all over China. Sacred Taoist teachings state that the Celestial Fox deities can change the fate of an individual. Heavenly Fox exorcism rituals—including Taoist Lin Hun Therapy, which instantiates purifying celestial energi which can expel malevolent forces from the human soul, creating a positive aura and bringing luck and contentment by changing misfortune to fortune. Under the unceasing Taoist principle of reversion, all of life’s phenomena grow, peak, and revert to their polar opposite, repeating the same cycle. In reality, the change associated with reversion can occur posthumously. Natural changes can take years to happen, and many times our ultimate demise signals the signi cant change. With the help of the venerable Fox deities, misfortune can change to fortune in the current invocation of our lives. Personal sincerity, Celestial Fox exorcism and Taoist Lin Hun Therapy can help the pendulum swing from misfortune to fortune in the great cycle of reversion to opposites by employing the heavenly power of the Fox deities in this dimension. Not only can these powerful gods protect us and make our earthly lives content, but they can bring us spiritual immortality in the afterlife. Connection and communication with the celestial Foxes can save the soul in this dimension and subsequently protect it in another.

Grandmaster Anatole performs a sacred Taoist Lin Hun ceremony of Exorcirm designed to purge The Temple of Original Simplicity from malevolent spirits. Part of the purging procedure is a purification of the temple from harmful influences. All members of the Temple’s congregation come to worship the Celestial Foxes and change their fates from misfortune to fortune.

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Chinese Shamanistic Exorcism Kit. The kit includes different tools for warding off malevolent spirits. Magic protection diagrams are carved on the wooden plates of the kit.

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Taoist Exorcism ceremony to ward off a malevolent spirit from the body of the afflicted man for physical health and wellness.

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Ceremonial Whisk made from horse hair and possess magic power to ward off malevolent spirits.

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Ancient Chinese Taoist Shamanism. Pictured is the Celestial Fox ritual of Heavenly Lin Hun Therapy. Grand Master Anatole uses Celestial Fox Exorcism to remove a predator spirit. This ancient Taoist Celestial Fox ritual captures the offending spirit in a magic diagram, punishing it, ultimately burning the diagram and sending the predator spirit to the Celestial Court of Heavens.

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Smoking the Celestial pipe. Grand Master Alex Anatole captures evil spirits from a patient’s body in a magic bone ball.

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The Unity of Souls ceremony in the central hall of the Temple of Original Simplicity.

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White Cloud Temple of Shanghai

This brief clip demonstrates temple visitors burning offerings of incense to the Taoist Gods. Oftentimes the sacrifices are substantial. This video was recorded in the Shanghai White Cloud Temple with special permission granted by the Supreme Master Abbot Lu to members of the congregation from the Temple of Original Simplicity (Massachusetts, US). Special thanks to the White Cloud Temple Administration for the recording privileges.

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Desires

Principle #9

Desires and Limitations

He who knows where to stop may be exempt from danger.

– Lao Tzu

One of its most prescient warnings in the Tao Te Ching is to avoid the popular notion that “the sky’s the limit.” This myth causes people to jeopardize themselves with plans motivated by unchecked desires and unrealistic expectations. Lao Tzu’s anecdote to this common disease is to observe that the natural world is an environment of clearly defined limits; the necessities of survival do not permit confusions about the boundaries of strength, speed or ferocity. In translating this observation to Man, he advises using practical tests to constantly check whether desires are attainable and within our grasp. The weight lifter adds 5 pounds — not 50 — to test and improve his maximum lift, the runner gradually increases his training distance before attempting a marathon, and a student pilot flies to the next town before attempting to transit the country. Thus our inherent desires, including pride, make contentment unachievable without practical tests to remind us of our limitations. This ensures that our mental model of the world is firmly grounded in reality, arresting tendencies to chase chimeras and remain in a content state of what is attainable.

Camouflage

Principle #8

Camouflage

Only the perfect man can go about the world without attracting attention to himself.—

-庄子

Recognizing that the Individual may hold different values from members of Society has important consequences for appropriate behavior. Since the values of a Taoist feature natural self-interest, they can appear superficially selfish — and possibly earn resentment from one’s surrounding community. To deal with this undesired animosity, Lao Tzu maintains that one needs to disguise such beliefs using a strategy of camouflage. Thus, Lao Tzu has been called the “First Philosopher of Camouflage.”

Non-interference

Principle #7

Non-interference

He responds only when moved, acts only when he is urged, and rises to action only when he is compelled to do so.

-庄子

The Taoist acknowledges his inherent limitations and how much effort it takes to develop one’s mind, body and spirit. As such, Lao Tzu’s philosophy recommends dedicating all of one’s energy towards achieving personal contentment and not waste precious time interfering with others. This means not trying to change things that do not bring tangible personal benefits. For example, Taoists remain uninvolved in politics because attempting to improve society wastes focus, time and energy with little personal gain. But there is a deeper implication too: Taoists let things achieve harmony on their own, according to their natural traits. By interfering, even in the name of “improvement,” well-intentioned efforts may actually remove a phenomenon from its natural course — and ultimately cause harm. Finally, Lao Tzu’s mantra of non-interference is not a prescription for passiveness. For when something or someone threatens the Taoist (interfering with him), he “rises to action” using the reserve power accumulated by not interfering with others.

Humanity

Principle #6

Humanity and Justice are Artificial Values

On the decline of the great Tao, The doctrines of “humanity” and “justice” arose.

– Lao Tzu

With the duality of Society versus the Individual clearly described, Lao Tzu goes further by unambiguously identifying the source of detrimental social values. He writes that “humanity and justice” are virtues that may be beguiling, but are in fact harmful to individual contentment. This is a hard concept for many to accept: How could humanity and justice be bad? The answer lies in recognizing that society largely promulgates artificial and not natural notions of virtues. “Humanity” is really artificial love and “Justice” is actually artificial punishment. Lao Tzu advocates more personal and romantic versions of humanity and justice that honestly invoke man’s natural character.

Society

Principle #5

Society versus the Individual

The people of the world all have a purpose; I alone appear stubborn and uncouth. I alone differ from the other people, And value drawing sustenance from the Mother.

– Lao Tzu

Taoism is a philosophy for the Individual. It regards Society as including confused people who voluntarily submit to beguiling social conventions. Lao Tzu cautions that social conventions may include virtues and behaviors which benefit society at the expense of the individual; i.e. — sacrificing personal contentment for the good of anonymous others. Thus the Taoist separates ineffective virtues from effective ones by understanding that there are helpful individual values and potentially unhelpful social values. This duality of Society versus the Individual is another unique Taoist concept that, in many ways, harkens to early America’s rugged individualism.