Hey everyone! I hope everyone’s been well. I’m just going through my usual routine of trying to write an entry each week to connect with my readers and (sometimes) letting everyone get to know me a bit better. This entry is a personal one that’s going to sound a lot more like a typical blog entry. Nothing technical here. I’ve been getting feedback that my readers enjoy the non-technical posts a lot more because they can relate to it better and it’s easily digestible. The technical entries from what I realized only seem to confuse the hell out of everyone. I’ll still do technical entries once in a while as my website gets visits from people who are trying to get some technical answers, not to mention it helps with search engine rankings as well. Whatever it is, I’ll try to create content and write about things that anyone would enjoy reading. You might be wondering what the above picture is about, and I’ll explain that later below.
The new year is just around the corner, and I’m already starting to have event companies reaching out to me for my rate card and portfolio to pitch a Chinese New Year event to their client, which of course, involves a “feng shui master” coming in to give forecasts for the year. Some of my friends and clients do ask me why I don’t try to put myself in the limelight a bit more and give myself some media exposure, and the reason is simply because I’m not that comfortable. I’ve written long ago that I do not believe in the practice of yearly Zodiac forecasting. You simply can not get anything constructive just by looking at the Zodiac alone, and I really hope my readers believe what I say because it’s not deemed ‘normal’ for a practitioner to say such things.
The picture at the start of the entry was taken back in July when I was invited back by the alumni society of the University Scholars Programme (USP) which I was part of during my NUS days. It’s sort of like another faculty on its own which has a special curriculum to mould us into critical thinkers and thought-leaders. We have a quarterly gathering where alumnus will meet up to hang out with each other, and it will usually be accompanied with a presentation that has a particular theme. Just so happens that the theme for that meet-up had something to do with architecture and design, so the president of the society, who is a personal friend of mine, felt that it would be interesting to share some of my experiences as a practitioner. The other presenter is a friend working at the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Yes, I’m the guy in the blue shirt with the microphone, and yes, I know I appear very large-sized – I am in fact 186cm tall to the surprise of some of my clients when they meet me in person.
I spoke a bit on the history and theory of Chinese metaphysics and whatever I knew of Chinese history and culture during the presentation. I’m not the best person to gives talk about Chinese history and philosophy because there’s still a lot of things I don’t know, and I rarely get the time and energy to read up more about it to be honest.
I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed my time at USP. It was the most enriching experience I’ve ever had as a student and it was the period where I grew the most intellectually. We had the opportunity to take modules conducted by professors from other faculties, which includes anything from chemistry, art, philosophy to mathematics. Each module goes right to the core of the discipline and we explored and discussed theorems, postulates and anything under the sun, and we even looked out how different disciplines intersect and and develop alongside each other.
My approach to metaphysics has no doubt been influenced by my university education, in that I try to go deep into the theory and history, because it simply feels weird ‘practicing’ something which you don’t know the theory of. Getting books on the theory of metaphysics is extremely hard, simply because people did not exactly document it down and there was no practice of the Scientific Method which modern scientists use, so you can imagine how much I had to dig around for the Chinese classics I managed to get my hands on. Most of them are actually available on the internet which is accessible to everyone, but I guess digesting them is the difficult part especially when it is in Chinese. Just a fun-fact (and showing-off a bit) – I used to be a national-level Weiqi player and I grew up reading chess books written in Chinese, so it has helped a me a lot in maintaining my proficiency at the language. Being from Taiwan helps too of course. I started playing chess since I was 7, and this too has a part to play in the way I think and do things. I’m not sure how many people can appreciate this, but you have no idea how much a simple game of chess can reveal about you as a person. Don’t get me started – I am very passionate about this hobby of mine and I will talk endlessly about it.
Students in USP have been trained to be critical thinkers, such that if we say something, we must have a reasoning or argument behind it. We don’t make sweeping statements, and nothing is taken at face value. This form of training has served some of my friends and I really well in both our corporate and personal lives, in that we aren’t easily swayed by popular thought or groupthink, and we make it a point to look at a particular issue or problem from multiple angles the encompasses both breadth and depth. I feel that this way of operating is exceptionally important in metaphysics because of how little modern day people know about it and how wrong we are in applying it, so you’ll always see me try to explain ancient theories through modern lens the best I can. This is also the reason why I developed the habit and style of writing my reports which is known to be on the technical side as I literally break down the chart bit by bit. All my past clients can attest to that. If I were in my clients’ shoes, I would find it very weird to receive a report that basically depicts my whole life, but the report is built on something that I have absolutely no understanding of.
The point of this entry is really just to let everyone get to know me a bit better through hearing some of my very personal thoughts. I do enjoy writing personal entries more than technical entries sometimes. There’s a lot to my life story that I have not yet shared on this blog, but I don’t want to make this blog too much about my personal life although I’m always happy to share if there’s ever such a request. I’ll always try to link it back to Chinese metaphysics and feng shui since it is the whole point of this website.
With regards to the question from my friends and clients on why I don’t appear on the media or corporate engagements: It’s not that I don’t get the opportunity to, but I’m extremely selective and apprehensive about it. The guest articles I have written for companies like 99.co are under circumstances which I have dictated very strictly, where we agreed that I will full control over what is being communicated because the last thing I want is to be seen endorsing things I don’t believe in. Similarly. the views I’ve expressed on their 99.co’s blog are my own of course and it’s not that the company is endorsing me. The guest articles simply serve as relevant content for people looking to get a house, and of course, media exposure for me. The content manager is an extremely lovely person whom I have the pleasure of working with, and I’ll be meeting her for dinner next week actually! So, unless companies who approach me allow me to dictate what is being presented, I will probably never appear on media as their guest speaker. I’ve been approached by Citibank, a few Swiss banks and some other organizations this year, but it didn’t come to fruition because I just can’t bring myself to do yearly Zodiac forecasts, because to me, it is really hogwash. I honestly don’t think big companies will care about what I believe in or what I have to say because everyone is stuck in this mode of wanting to do what is safe to attract more customers and to please their current ones. Customers are the reason why companies exist in the first place after all, so why rattle the cage?
Do I wish to be seen as the go-to person for BaZi and feng shui in Singapore? A small part of me does of course. It’s not about my ego because that phase of my life is already long over and I’ve been through enough to know that having an ego doesn’t do you any good. I guess it’s more about being recognized for your work and knowledge, and that corporate engagements or media exposure is sort of like a testament to that. It’s a bit of a pity because the opportunities are there for me to get these kinds of exposure, but I can’t exactly take them up eagerly without feeling like I’m doing something wrong. I would be lying if I were to say I’m not tempted, and I guess this entry is also an outlet for me to vent and express myself a bit. Whatever it is, I would like to believe that upholding my principles and beliefs in this field will serve me better in the long run. I am a believer in karma after all, and if I were to participate in something that perpetuates misconceptions in this field, I know I would be harming people indirectly and I don’t think I will be happy and I won’t be able to hold my head up high as a practitioner in this field. I will write a separate entry on why I do not wish to do this sideline on a full-time basis in the near future when I’m in the mood, because it’s another subject I really need to get off my chest.
This blog and website has always been a medium for people who are fated to find me, to find me. I can’t begin to express how grateful I am that the engagements in the past few months are so pleasant and heart-warming, because my clients do end up talking to me like a friend they can confide in, and they have been very appreciative and encouraging of my work. I’m not someone who trusts people easily because of what I’ve gone through in my life, so for clients to be trusting me with major life decisions is something very precious to me.
Will I end up on media one day? Well, maybe, but only if I get to say what I truly believe in. I don’t want to be seen as a celebrity or an entertainer which some practitioners are and I hate it that there is “fake it till you make it” culture in this field. At the end of the day, it’s not about how many people knows me (I honestly don’t care about this and I very much prefer a low profile life because there’s less drama). What’s more important, and it has always been my mission, is that people get a correct understanding of metaphysics. I’ve been operating like this right from the start and I intend to keep it this way and been seen as an educator and thought-leader in this field, and if what I am doing is truly the right thing that people can benefit from, I know in my heart that Heavens will help me along the way.