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Ron Teeguarden of Dragon Herbs, explains his relationship to a great Taoist Master, and the Masters words to all of us for the "Year of the Dragon"

A New Years Message to YOU from Taoist Grand Master Sung Jin Park

rontJanuary 24, 2012Comments Off

A New Years Message to YOU from Taoist Grand Master Sung Jin Park
Introduction by Dan-O Sun Sha (Ron Teeguarden)
Message from Master Sung Jin Park
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Taoist Master Sung Jin Park, circa 1971, meditating in Taoist yogic pose, Korean mountain retreat

I (Ron Teeguarden) met Taoist Master Sung Jin Park over thirty-five years ago. He somehow chose me to be his primary student, and I became his apprentice from the first day I met him. However, Master Park did not teach me much for the first couple of months. He put me on a tonic herbal program (a 100 day “foundation program”) and started to teach me how to sit and breathe. But his English was not very good, so explaining sophisticated, complex Taoist philosophy and esoteric techniques proved a little difficult for him.

Then, Master Park had a brainstorm. He started writing a manual – in what he considered “English.” It was in broken English for sure, but I’d already had much experience dealing with Asian philosophy and had done plenty of this kind of semi-translation. He asked me to correct his prose and make his writing speak.

Thus, my apprenticeship began in earnest. I spent the next two years helping Master Park write a sophisticated, in-depth manual on Taoist Yoga, which included Taoist meditation, Ki Kong (Qigong), the Taoist dietary approach, Taoist herbalism (tonic herbs), and other related subjects (some, quite esoteric). In the process of making his English easily readable and understandable by English readers, I of course learned amazing secrets of Taoist alchemy and yoga. I had to ask him questions on almost every sentence, every technique and every concept — and this became our vehicle for teaching and learning. That’s how this grasshopper metamorphosed into a more serious practitioner of Taoist Ways.

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Me (Dan-O Sun Sha Ron Teeguarden) during the period when I was apprenticing with Sung Jin Park, circa 1975.

On this year’s lunar New Year, I received an email message from Master Park. Master Park lives as a recluse, but continues to emerge to lead large meditation groups and to instruct other Taoist masters. He is a Grand Master. This message was sent to me, but is also directed to YOU, my students and clients as well. He refers to me by my Taoist given name, Dan-O, which means “Elixir of Immortality.”

His note is a little ragged in the English grammar, spelling and punctuation department, so as has been our practice for over 35 years, I have taken the liberty of fixing his English a bit. I leave it almost intact, since I like the way he phrases things. This is actually my lifelong service for Master Park, and will be forever (he is currently writing a series of new books which I will be editing into sound English and philosophy). An original, unedited version of his email is available on my Facebook page ( I think you will find this version to be accurate.

So here it is,

A New Years greeting from my great teacher, Taoist Grand Master Sung Jin Park:

Happy Dragon New Year Master Dan-O Ron and his dear students.

Best wishes for Dragon Herbs in the Lunar Dragon New Year! (Solar Calendar: 2012/1/23 = Lunar Calendar 2012/1/1)

A Long awaited auspicious Dragon Year has dawned in this morning!

This is the year of Dragon. This Dragon Year requires us to control the North-Qi energy that manifests as wisdom and virtue. To grow in virtue, we must avoid wrongdoing and must practice good deeds.

The Auspicious Dragon that holds the lucky Magic Pearl between its teeth has always been a symbol of the Three Treasures. That is Jing, Qi and Shen in the body. It is a truth that the Dragon that cannot hold the Magic Pearl finds it impossible to ascend to heaven. Therefore all the people also have to study the Three Treasures for radiant health and enlightenment in this Dragon Year. All the people only waste their Three Treasures energy, they do not know how to replenish and recharge the Three Treasures in the body.

Please give my best regards to your students.

Bless Dragon Herbs, you and your wife on Lunar Dragon Year!

Taoist Temple

Sung Jin Park

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The Dragon and the Three Treasures "Pearl"

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Taoist Grand Master Sung Jin Park, 2009