One of the most important Chinese Mind & Body Arts to have come out of China is the practice of “Qigong” which translates as Energy Work or Working with yours or some else’s Internal Energy for the purpose of health, healing or wellbeing. Especially now in today’s fast,stressful modern lifestyle where many individuals are suffering with diabetes, obserty, dementia etc.
Many of today’s ailments that many individuals suffer with can be easily controlled or managed I think through the regular practice of Qigong. Most people are involved with some kind of western physical exercise like jogging, football, cycling or just simply going along to a local gym to either do weight training or circuit training etc. this is all good for the physical body, but what about the mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of each individual.
Qigong practice takes in the whole holistic aspects of each individual. It gently strengthens each individual physicality by strengthening the tendons, ligaments and muscles of the legs, back and shoulders,plus it stretches and opens the the bodies cavity’s through dynamic stretching of the joints, tendons, ligaments increasing the individuals range of mobility and relaxation. It strengthens the mind through timing of certain actions of the body with the breathing. This in- turn then has a great connection to developing the awareness of the an individuals emotions and being sensitive enough to release pent up sadness, anger, fear or joy and release this excess or deficient negative energy out of the body through the actions of your Qigong practice, bringing the body, mind and emotions back into a better state of equilibrium.
The spirituality aspect of Qigong training comes after many years of study and practice gradually cultivating your energy (qi) and strengthening your concentration allowing your mind to become calm and still. This stillness will then develop your consciousness to a higher level of awareness and sensitivity to the world around you where you show kindness, humility, benevolence, respect to those around you be they animal, human or plant.
Qigong practice is a wonderful exercise where the young can be energised with greater vitality and the old can feel younger with a more relaxed ,supple body and a sharp mind. As Zhuang Zi the great Daoist philosopher mentions that the men of old would breath from their feet, whereas today many breath from their throats. This was down to regular Qigong practice.