March 2008 (Part 2)

SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

Hoong Ka Kungfu

Students at a regional chi kung course in New York City performing a chi kung pattern called “Plucking Stars”

Question 1

I am suffering from muscle dystrophy (the limb-girdle type) since age 19 — now I am 33. I was correctly diagnosed only about half a year ago. Meanwhile, I lost more than 70% of the calf muscles and therefore have problem to stand properly.

— Arthur, Israel

Answer

You would be inspired to know that one of our students, Andrew from Ecuador, has written an account of his recovery from spinal muscular astrophy by practicing our Shaolin Cosmos Chi Kung. You can find his testimonial in our discussion forum .

Andrew's condition was so bad that he would randomly fall while walking. After practicing for about a month an exercise he learned from my book, he felt “stronger all round”, and the “random falls were not happening as much.” After attending a course given by Sifu Rama and another by Sifu JoseAntonio, Andrew felt “more confident, happier, a lot of the emotional junk associated with the disease was subsiding.”

In a recent course in New York given by me, I asked Andrew do what many would consider crazy and impossible. I asked him to run round the hall, and he did so successfully, albeit with some difficulty. Andrew said passionately, “If I had not started Chi Kung, I would most likely be in a wheelchair right now, unable to take care of myself and the others that depend on me. Infinite love and gratitude to Sifu Wong, Sifu Rama, and Sifu Jose Antonio.”

Question 2

I want to study qigong but the only qigong teacher in my town doesn't want to teach me. I can understand his concerns — he is afraid to take responsibility. What do you advise me to do? What exercises should I do (I have your two books in Russian translation)?

Answer

The chi kung teacher you mentioned must have his reasons for not teaching you. It is incorrect to think that he does not want to take responsibility. Indeed, it is probably the other way round. If he thinks that his teaching would not help you, a responsible teacher would not teach you.

First of all you must believe that you can overcome your problem. Then, learn from one of our certified instructors. Please see our List of Certified Instructors . Practice conscientiously everyday and enjoy your practice. When the opportunity arises, take a course from me.

Question 3

Just yesterday, I opened Baihui, Lingtai, and Mingmen for my assistant.. I believe that she is going through some deep karmic cleansing. I offered to help by keeping her points open. As soon as I opened Baihui, a feeling of irritation and anxiety washed over her.

Anxiety is a problem that she is currently dealing with, but it was still a strange reaction. Is there any possibility that I aggravated the problem? Could I have closed the points by accident? Could this happen from transmitting too much energy?

— Sifu Anthony, USA

Answer

I don't think you closed her vital point or aggravated the problem. It was more likely that you set the process of emotional cleansing. A patient often feels the negative emotion during the process it is being cleansed out.

It is possible that you transmitted too much energy, which resulted in too rapid cleansing. Over-transmitting is a common occurrence amongst new chi kung therapists.

Horse-Riding Stance

"Zhan zhuang" or stance training is a very powerful exercise. When practiced correctly, as performed here during an Intensive Shaolin Kungfu Course of 24-30 June 2007 by Chris Didyk, one of Sifu Anthony's student, it develops much internal force and metnal clarity. If practiced wwongly, it brings harmful side-effects.

Question 4

In your last email, you mentioned that the Sandwich Technique (where I lay my palms on either side of the painful area and channel energy to but not out of my hands) is draining. I am not 100% sure, but so far, it feels as if this technique is far less draining than using the Sword Fingers. I can easily use the Sandwich Technique for 10 minutes on an area, but 1 minute of Sword Finger often drains me. Is this normal?

Answer

In transmitting energy, using the sword finger is usually more draining than using the palm even when the palm is used to transmit energy. In your case you did not transmit energy consciously; you let your energy radiate out from your palms.

Feeling drained after just a minute of transmitting energy with a sword-finger or other means, is very bad. If you feel drained after 10 minutes, regardless of what means you use to transmit energy, is bad enough. A chi kung therapist, especially one who uses his own chi to heal others, should be able to channel chi for at least an hour without feeling drained.

Question 5

I have noticed that I am more likely to absorb negative energy from a patient if I am NOT touching them. When I use the Sandwich Method, I usually don't feel a backflow of energy. If I do feel a backflow, it feels as if something is crawling up my fingers into my arm. When that happens, I do “Flicking Water off the Fingers” a few times, and it seems to subside.

On the other hand, if I hold the palm a few inches above the area, it seems like the bad energy just jumps into me. My best guess is that when I don't touch the patient, I actually extend my energy further, creating a bridge. But when I touch, I am subconsciously aware of the barrier at the skin, and I do not project through it. Sifu, can you please offer your own interpretation?

Answer

Other factors could be involved.

Irrespective of whether your hand is in contact with your patient or not, when you radiate energy rather than transmit it, you are less likely to pick up the bad energy from your patient.

On the other hand, when you transmit energy regardless of whether you hand is in contact with the patient or not, but you have a gentle thought that the bad energy of the patient would not back flow to you, then you are less likely to pick up the bad energy.

If your energy is very strong, the bad energy would not be able to flow into you. If you transmit energy, you should take care not to channel too much energy into your patient. Not only you may drain yourself, as the outflow from you will be vigorous due to your strong energy, too strong a flow from you may harm the patient.

When you have completed your transmission of energy, you should cut off contact abruptly. If you neglect this, you may cause a strong back-flow of bad energy into you. Normally the bad energy cannot enter your strong energy field. But if you cause a back-flow, your own strong energy may lead the patient's bad energy into you.

If you have your Small Universe flowing, bad energy will be unable to enter you. Even if some bad energy manages to come near you, it would be deflected by your strong Small Universe flow.

Question 6

What is the best way to protect myself? I have learned a few techniques from acupuncturists. One technique involves imagining a white, spinning shield around your body. Another involves imagining that you are protected by armor made of diamonds.

But recently, I have been using my own technique, which happened spontaneously. Before I treat the patient, I get them to relax and smile from the heart. Then I tell them to enjoy the relaxation while I prepare myself. Then I chant to Guan Yin a few times, asking for protection. Afterwards, I gently circulate the Small Universe a few times, and then the Big Universe a few times. What is your advice, Sifu? Which technique would you recommend?

Answer

All the methods you mentioned above are correct. Nevertheless, these methods are for those of a lower chi level.

At your high level, you yourself would be able to handle this small problem competently without “troubling” Guan Yin Bodh Satt. Even the relatively “low level” (compared to Guan Yin Bodh Satt) Small Universe and Big Universe are not necessary. Unless you voluntarily or unconsciously cause a back-flow, your own normal chi flow is more than sufficient to protect yourself without any conscious thought about protection.

Even if some bad chi accidentally rubs onto you, your normal chi flow would flush it away. But if you feel that quite a lot of bad chi has entered you by whatever means, a vigorous self-manifested chi movement would clear the bad chi away.

My advice and recommendation is that you carry on with your healing without worrying about the back-flow, knowing that your own strong chi would protect yourself. This is also what I do.

But if you have to treat a patient with a serious illness, like cancer, you can have a gentle thought that his bad chi would not flow into you. If the cancer patient is undergoing self-manifested chi movement, and there are other people around, use your mind to create a chi shield for the protection of the other people. Afterwards, perform “Lifting the Sky” or any suitable exercises to cleanse yourself.

Kungfu Weapons

Grandmaster Wong demonstrates the application of a sword against a staff held by Sifu Wong Chun Nga

Question 7

My assistant has some varicose veins in her legs that get worse with Zhan Zhuang. Can you offer some advice? Is Zhan Zhuang creating blood stagnation in the legs?

Answer

Zhan Zhuang is a very powerful exercise. Therefore, its effect — both beneficial if practiced correctly, and harmful if practiced wrongly — are very powerful.

If someone develops varicose veins or other harmful results, it is an indication that he has practiced wrongly. Because Zhan Zhuang is simple (and profound), it is easy to practice it wrongly. When practiced correctly, Zhan Zhuang does not produce varicose veins or any other bad results.

A likely mistake your assistant made was that she tensed her legs. This caused blood stagnation. She should leave Zhan Zhuang for some time. A good remedial exercise for her is “Dancing Crane”, followed by self-manifested chi movement.

Question 8

How effective is Shaolin Kungfu against modern criminals who use guns,knives, and clubs?

— Mark, USA

Answer

A skillful kungfu practitioner can effectively handle opponents who use knives and clubs.

But no matter how proficient his kungfu is, he has no defence against a gun shot directly at him. However, before a shot is made. a skillful practitioner may be able to disarm a person holding a gun.

Question 9

In the past the Shaolin monks had to defend the temple from bandits and thieves, and helped the country at one time defending the land. How does that translate into today where you have to protect yourself from someone with a firearm?

Answer

Fighting against someone with classical weapons is different from fighting against someone with firearm. Against the former, you may just disarm him and let him go.

Against the latter, you take no chance. You have not only to disarm him, but also to disable him decisively, like breaking both his arms. Even if you have taken away his gun and broken one of his arms, there is a possibility that he may use his other arm to fire another gun, which he may have hidden from you earlier.

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