From Nosara, Costa Rica
I feel motivated to write some words about the roots, foundation, meaning and the most important part, the practice of Qigong.
This lines are for students, practitioner’s and also for the new people that want to know more or feel interested in Qigong. It’s timely to say that all my words, are obviously one approach, my own experience and perception at this present moment. I don’t want to limit you, take it as a stimulus to deepen it. However, I respect my master’s and teacher’s that I had the opportunity to meet and learn, so part of his knowledge are also here.
Meaning of Qigong
Qigong is an art that give you the way to build, develop, and grow your understanding of your self in a deep layers, and also the nature or universe. Specially, Qigong means as a tentative translation we could say that the word QI (pronounced chi) means energy- vitality and Gong (pronounced kung) means handling, control, development: “development or management of energy”.
In addition, Qigong is a traditional System that is more than 5000 years old and it includes every evolution aspect and of human interest. In China, it is officially considered a science applied to human development.
Apart from this mentions, I would like to stop us, in the «understanding of your self and nature».
Why? Because, in my opinion, it’s interesting to know Who are you?, What´s happend inside? What are your emotions patterns? How are you living this life?, Where are our commons tensions?; to create a healthy life discovering this answers. Qigong practice show us the conditions to learn a lot about you, and also get knowledge about the mechanics of the body-mind to improve relaxation and eficiency. In another words, «Quality of life».
As a summary we can say:
Qigong is a body-mind training that integrates movements, postures, breathing and awareness. A real meditation in movement, an art that strengthens your health, promotes longevity and inner peace.
History foundation of Qigong
The history foundation of Qigong comes from Buddhism and Taoism arts. As well us a root in the traditional Chinese Medicine. Qigong is a modalitity of TCM, like acupuncture, herbs, Tui Na, or another therapeutics.
Qigong become really important for the keep the health in balance, inside the Buddhist and Taoist temples. Also was a method for inner alchemy and enlightment.
Like the Tao said…. «If body, mind and breath are unified your spirit (Shen in chinese) can manifesters».
Types or Modalities of Qigong
There are many modalities and styles of Qigong practices. There are more hard, soft, static, dymanic, sitting, Buddhist, Taoist, confucionist, and for sure more ramifications. Anyway, the principles should be the balance of Yin Yang, restore the energy flow, and live in a healhty body-mind. However, each modality represent an identity or a pourpose. So during your Qigong path, you can appreciate which style or modalitie is the best for you. And if you don´t know how to start, just search and try in some school, and be aware if match with your self.
Practice and training
Qigong practice/training is about fluid and precise movements relaxing muscles and joints in synchro with breathing. It is key to find comfortable postures, which is done with constant practice to be able to do movements fluently, promoting a better circulation of energy and blood in the organism.
Also you can find differentes approach: stationary, dynamic and seated qigong. Each version, have specific components that are important to achieve for a full Qigong inmersion.
Relaxation process and Alignment
One of the points that I always make mention is the relaxation process during the Qigong practice. When we are holding a posture, or making some dynamic movement we still aware checking where is the tension / stagnations / or the areas of the body that present limitation and also pain. So the invitation is always to release. At the same time, the adjustment of the body, the correct alignment, brings you the possibitly to find your «physical center». From that state is much easier to walk the path of relaxation.
After the adjustment of the body and the relaxation process, we incorporate the breathing. There are differents breathing techniques in Qigong, to make you more Yin and relax or more yang and awake, that you can vivence, but the begining is the begining so I hightly recommend the abdominal breathing deep, gentle without forcing or creating tension. «The baby breath» / diaphragm breath, sometimes call like this. First focus on be natural and relax and after that everything appear.
In this pulled apart, Body and Breath drive together, so the Qi «energy life force» start to flow.
The role of the mind during the qigong practice
The rol of the mind during the Qigong practice is a little beat strange to explain by words. Because, I like to say… you are fully there, but at the same time nowbody is there or everything in the universe is there. The thing is, you must be aware in your body and breath, keeping more intention in specifics areas, but at the same time letting go. At the begining I suggest to don’t use the mind too much. Just incorporate small skills, and like a solid seed planted in the earth, you will build the quality of channel your intention/mind in everywhere.
Now we have Body – Breath – Mind together. Is prudent to say, that this three adjustment’s need time to really get an stong connection in between. This is the pure path that don’t have a concrete final. Always we can explore more in this human life.
Finally, we finish this pulled apart talking about meaning, foundation and practice and some crucials points inside the Qigong training. Naturally, there are many details / information / concepts that I don’t include here in this note. So for sure, I will comment more about it or make new topic’s that I feel could be interested for the readers and practitioner’s
Nowaday: qigong is growing around the world
Qigong is growing around the world. Althought nowadays, a lot of people feel connection with this kind of disciplines, like yoga, medtiation, mindfulness, etc, as alternatives to transit the present reality, Qigong for its particular qualities, a great interest begins to awaken. Perhaps because of the multiple health benefits, for the concept/feelings of Qi (Energy Life Force), or the meditation state that you can perceive. There are specific aspects that make Qigong a different discipline than others, and the people are starting to discover.
In addition, I think that the frecuency that Qigong practice offers are a contrast of the common life. Is an invitation to do everything more slow, precise, connected, and relax. So apart of be an authentic healing art, create new healthy habits to increase awareness in every activity that you want to launch.
Separation to unity brings harmony
I think that the must of Qigong, is the possiblity to achieve or cultivate Zen. The experience of the cosmic reality. To see the face of the nature of the mind. Common words, when we are talking about Zen buddhism. Qigong is a Zen art. The Qigong practice, creates the conditions to connect directly with that attitude. An attitude that represent a way of living life.
I hope that you enjoy reading this lines. It was a pleasure to do it. Always, when I write, I have the chance to hear me and learn more about how can I flow in the transmition to be simply and clear.
Discover your own wisdom!