Thanks to everyone who reached out with questions about the first standing audio practice in the Energy Gates Dissolving series. I want to share some of the questions with you here. Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions or comments or think there is anything the needs clarification. Hopefully we can approach this series together as an ongoing learning process! What’s the Difference between Outer Dissolving, Downward Dissolving, and Sinking?
If you read last week’s post on standing qigong and the Energy Gates book, or better yet, you can stand comfortably “just feeling” for 15-20 minutes, you’re probably ready to embark on the downward dissolving process. This week, I want to help you get started. I recorded a guided practice mp3 to get you through the first workout in the Energy Gates series: Feeling the Gate at the Crown of the Head.
When you set out to develop your internal energy using standing postures, there are two main ways you can go about it: by feel or by form. Now, there will be a lot of overlap in these two broad approaches, like aligning your body with gravity without collapsing internally and progressively releasing and relaxing as you stand, but when it comes to the role of the mind, form and feel can be very different.
Next month, we’ll be starting a new Energy Gates course at Brookline Tai Chi, focused on Outer Dissolving and working through the Gates of the body. When you work on dissolving the gates, you will inevitably be fighting the urge to: visualize instead of feel “chase” energetic releases, untethered from the physical body wonder if you are really feeling anything at all
In this episode of Qigong Radio, I’ll give my recommendations for avoiding these pitfalls and for setting up the conditions for actual energetic resolution.
We tend to think about our energy level like the money we have in the bank. You wake up in the morning, look in your energetic wallet and say, “I’ve got a lot of energy today” or “Man, I need 7 cups of coffee.” Or, to put it another way, thanks to this New Yorker cartoon:
In qigong, we think about “having energy” a little bit differently. Often, it’s not just how much or how little, but how well is your energy circulating?
When you set out to learn Taoist Energy Arts like Tai Chi, qigong, or meditation, you come across the lore of masters with supernatural abilities or techniques too deadly to teach openly. Or more insidious, we grasp after images of unattainable perfection, always slightly beyond reach, unless we just find the right technique or are initiated into a secret practice. And even if we’ve given up silly kung fu fantasies of flying through the bamboo reeds, on a subtle level we still chase ideas and dreams that only live in the mental realm.
One of the most satisfying things about running this site is when you guys reach out and ask questions about Qigong and Tai Chi. Today, I wanted to share with you 3 of the most common ones I get about starting up a qigong practice (and if you have a different one, something I’ve missed, let me hear about it!). Hopefully, these questions will line up with something you’ve been thinking about in your practice too (again, let me know in the comments!
The name “tai chi” has become fairly well known in the United States and the ar t is being used by the western medical community for the treatment of a number of different conditions. The fact is however that the art of tai chi was developed from an older art called qigong. While there are a number of different styles of qigong the focus of all of them is to focus the body’s natural energies.