Note: This Meetup is shared with the Atlanta Qigong Community meetup group. The class usually averages 6-10 students. PICTURES OF THE HERON HOUSE (where we practice) can be seen at: http://heronhousenews.blogspot.com
**PLEASE BRING A JOURNAL AND EXACT CHANGE TO PRACTICE.**
How can you expect to get control over what happens outside if you can't first control what happens inside?
Through correct posture, proper breathing, and focused intention, this static, meditative qigong routine will teach you how to work with qi (your personal life energy).
In this routine, students hold one posture that involves minimal movement and complex mental coordination exercises. Most practice the entire routine seated, but it may also be practiced standing, lying, or on a meditation cushion. All students are encouraged to wear clothing that is comfortable both seated and standing.
The Qigong Meditative State
Throughout this class, students practicing the routine will appear to be sitting quietly with an empty mind. The instructor begins with guiding you into a meditative state where you are listening but not really listening. You remain aware of your surroundings, yet you may notice that you are strangely not too aware. Then throughout the routine you will be guided to imagine and coordinate numerous visualizations. Each visualization is simple in itself, but when attempting to coordinate them simultaneously with each breath, your common day-to-day thought patterns quickly yield to the intense mental focus this routine requires! As a natural result, you will enter the essence of a qigong meditative state.
Proper breathing is essential to properly practice any qigong routine. Western cultures often overlook teaching how to breathe properly, so it is common for our beginners to struggle with it. This routine encourages “whole body breathing” where you learn to breathe in and out using every pore in the body. Each practice will provide you with another opportunity to consciously move from rapid shallow chest breathing into slow, healthy, abdominal breathing. Slow and rhythmical breaths in this routine are coordinated with the imagery of a flow of energy, lights, colors, sounds, fragrances, and information that enters and moves through the body.
Directing Qi in the Body
A common goal of most qigong routines is to teach students how to intentionally move qi in the body. In this routine, each inhalation is another opportunity to gather and direct qi into your main energy reservoir called the Lower Dan Tian. Qi enters the body through every pore, travels through the lymph, blood and organs, and ends by entering a blossoming, red lotus flower (the flower is symbolic of the Lower Dan Tian). It opens with each inhale to receive qi and closes with each exhale to retain qi. There are many other visualizations that are synchronized with each breath in this routine including organs lighting up, the heart contracting and relaxing, smiling and good wishes, etc. By learning to coordinate all of them together, you will eventually learn to move qi inside the body simply through willpower alone.
Practicing in a Group
Qigong energy is much stronger when practiced among others in a group. This is because when people practice qigong together, their biological fields begin to resonate with one another, thus multiplying the benefits of practice exponentially.
We hope you will come share the energy as we practice!
This routine is based on step one in a nine step program that was developed by Dr. Yan Xin. Dr. Yan Xin is recognized worldwide as a leader in many qigong routines and, to date, it is estimated that 1/3 of the 160,000,000 people currently practicing qigong throughout the world practice his nine step routine. It is one of the least physically active and most mentally active qigong routines known.