When people ask me what Chi Kung/Qigong is, I usually explain that it is a way of deliberately working with the bodies vital energy to promote health, vitality, longevity and happiness.
If they’re still interested I’ll show that Chi Kung is usually characterised by slow, graceful movements, co-ordinated with the breathing and performed in what is known as a Chi Kung state of mind.
If they’re still with me I’ll mention that it is a composite of Form, Energy and Mind. And in this post I’d like to look at each of these ‘hidden’ pillars in a little more detail:
Photo by wez pics.
Form is obvious; it’s the bit you can see. You can watch a person’s form and say: “Oh, they’re doing lifting the sky“. But as you know if they are just doing the form then they are only doing lifting the sky form and not Chi Kung.
And there is a massive difference between the two.
Energy – Chi Kung means to work on vital energy. An excellent way to work on energy is through the breathing. Chi Kung is not the Art of Breathing, but breathing is an excellent means to generate Energy Flow. As my teacher is fond of saying: “Life is a meaningful flow of energy”. It is energy flow that removes blockages to the Meaningful flow of energy through our bodies. When we meaningful energy flow we have good health, vitality and long life.
Mind is the most important part of this composite and probably the one I have to work the hardest on. From my own experience I have discovered that one of the best ways to get my mind into the best state to help my Chi Kung practice is through entering into a really powerful Chi Kung state of mind, right at the start of my practice session.
I’ve found that a good Chi Kung state of mind helps to keep the idle chatter and static that fills my inner airwaves whenever I start to do “inner work“
Higher levels of Chi Kung like Dan Tien breathing, Small Universe, and Big Universe etc require your mind to focus on specific actions. But for dynamic Chi Kung patterns like those from the Shaolin 18 Lohan Hands and 18 Shaolin Exercises a good Chi Kung state of mind is more than enough to aide you in getting all the results and benefits of practicing Chi Kung.
Remember, all Chi Kung is a composite of Form, Energy and Mind.