Take the backward step
Self-cultivation is based on the idea of independent inquiry. It does not rely on authority, tradition or dogma.
The point is to face our life in all Nine Petals. To do this, we need self-honesty and radical acceptance. We need to turn around and step fully into our situation, to feel the reality of our past choices and the total effect of our current circumstance.
It's much easier to stand on your head, memorize some sutras, or learn a new Taiji form.
But even yoga, meditation and qigong can become modes of disassociation. Spiritual bypassing, as it were.
Awakening happens in the midst of life's mess.
Wisdom is not transcendent. It’s ordinary.
Genuine insight is found within our own direct embodied experience, nowhere else.