SELECTION OF QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
MARCH 2010 PART 3
My aims in Chi Kung are to develop a very high level of sinew, of energy, and of mind. My current morning program consists of:
- Smiling from the Heart
- Shaolin Eye Exercises
- Three Circles Stance
- Lifting Water
- 3 rounds of the '24' Taiji set
- Self-Manifested Chi Movement
- Standing Meditation
- Abdominal Breathing
- Standing Meditation
— Daniel, New Zealand
You have made the same mistakes many people make. You have failed to appreciate the difference between skills and techniques. You think, mistakenly, that if you perform the techniques, you will get the results that these exercises are purported to give. This is simply not so, though most people are ignorant of this fact, and many of them may still not understand even when this fact is explained to them.
If you are very skillful, just any one of the exercises above will enable you to develop high level of energy and mind. This does not mean that you should not practice more exercises. This is another issue. Whether it is cost-effective to practice just one, two or more exercises depends on some other factors.
But the fact remains that if you have the necessary skills, you may practice just one, two or many exercises, and you can develop high-level energy and mind. If you lack the necessary skills, you may practice just one, two or many exercises, and you still cannot develop any level of energy and mind. In fact, most chi kung practitioners nowadays are in this category. They may practice many chi kung exercises for years, yet they have little improvement in energy and mind.
One can easily learn chi kung techniques from books or videos. But it is best to learn chi kung skills from competent teachers.
Editorial Note: Daniel's other questions are posted in the March 2010 Part 2 issue.
I often feel wonderful Chi flow through my limbs, and they feel like they want to do the Taiji movements on their own, and sometimes ones I have not practised before. I have practised the Classic of Sinew Metamorphosis as detailed on your website at times in the past. Though I have not been consistent with my practice, the experience was very special.
Congratulations for feeling chi flow. It is an indication that you have been practicing chi kung, and not just gentle physical exercise. However, your chi kung skills are still low. How do I know if I have not seen you practice?
There are two tell-tale signs. One, if you have high chi kung skills, you would not have asked me the questions you did. Two, you have spent a lot of time in your practice and obtain only little result.
I would recommend that you attend my Intensive Chi Kung Course. You would be amazed at what you can achieve in just a few days. You would then realize that what you thought was fantastic result practicing on your own, is nothing comparable to what you can achieve at the course, as many students have found out.
Understandably, some people reading this may think I am boastful. That is their business, and I would not want them to be my students. But you sound sincere in wanting to spread the benefits of chi kung to others, and you are respectful in seeking knowledge. I would like you to learn high-level chi kung so that you may achieve your dream in future.
I would like to pave the way towards the art of Small Universe, and related skills, as I would like to become a Chi Kung therapist in the future. I am mindful of too much practice making the exercises less effective, and I try to keep my routine to a core of fundamentals. I am trying to increase my routine before bed, but find self-discipline very difficult, even though I am intellectually aware of how wonderful the practice is.
Small Universe is an advanced exercise that should be learnt from a competent teacher.
Yes, in our school, less is often more. We frequently claim that our students achieve more by practicing just fifteen mintes for six months than many other people achieve by practicing an hour for three years. Again we may sound boastful, but it is a fact. We mention this fact not to belittle others or glamorize ourselves but for the benefit of those who wish to be cost-effective in practicing chi kung.
Your daily routine is far too heavy. You have too many exercises and your practice time is too long. If you improve your skills, you will have better results by practicing less exercise with less time.
Discipline is necessary in any art. If you cannot discipline yourself to practice, you will not even become a good student, leave aside becoming a master.
Is my current program appropriate for my aims? Does it need less, or more, and what is the next step for me in my study of these arts. I consider Chi Kung of utmost importance to me and I wish to dedicate my life to it to help people learn it themselves and overcome illness. I would very much appreciate your guidance in these matters.
Your current programme is not appropriate for your aims. There are too many exercises in your programme, and you spend too much time on it, yet you recieve little or no result. Your concept and approach are faulty, and you lack both the understanding and the necessary skills.
Logically, you next step is to correct your concept and approach, and to acquire the necessary understanding and skills.
Your concept that you can study chi kung to save the world is faulty. You should change the concept to practicing, not studying, chi kung to be healthy and full of vitality. Whether you will save the world with chi kung is another issue which you may consider later if you have become a chi kung master.. In other words, you should learn how to walk before attempting to run.
Your approach to become proficient in chi kung by practicing on your own is faulty. You should learn from a generous master who is willing to teach you.
Your understanding of chi kung is shallow. You don't seem to realize that chi kung is different from gentle physical exercise.
You lack basic chi kung skills, otherwise you would not need to perform so many chi kung exercises for such a long time.
I believe public awareness of Chi Kung is astonishingly low in New Zealand, if not most of the Western world, and this is something that can be improved, while avoiding playing the lute to the water buffalo. As my line of work is in communication arts, I can help in this area.
If we realize that chi kung was an elite art, kept as top secret in the past, it will not be such a surprise that it is not widely known.
What is more significant, but even less known, is that amongst those who practice chi kung today, most of them are actually practicing a form of gentle physical exercise. It seems you are one of them.
Hence, if you start to spread chi kung now, despite your good intention and sincerity, you will only help to debase chi kung further.
A good analogy is Taijiquan. Taijiquan is an internal martial art, which means that those who practice Taijiquan would have internal force and be able to defend themselves. But how many people today who practice Taijiquan have internal force and can defend themselves? This situation arises because most people who practice Taijiquan today do not practice it as an internal martial art but as an external graceful dance.
Now comes a smart Alex who has read about Taijiquan. He has decided that Taijiquan is a wonderful art, and he wants to use it to save the world. But he does not want to be a student first, he wants to be a master striaght-away. So he works out an elaborate Taijiquan programme and practices it on his own. Later he teaches it to other people, honestly thinking he is doing a great thing for Taijiquan. But the more successful he spreads his art of Taijiquan, the more successful he helps to debase this great art.
Are there specific exercises you teach to help prevent nocturnal emissions ("wet dreams") in men?
— John, USA
No, we do not teach specific exercises to overcome nocturnal emissions, but students who had nocturnal emissions told us that they had overcome their problem after practicing our chi kung for a few months. They did not perform any special exercises; they just practiced whatever we taught them.
This was the same as other diseases. Students with different diseases, ranging from chronic pain to viral infection, depression to diabetes, attended the same class. After a few months, they told us that their different diseases had been overcome.
This does not make sense from the conventional Western medical perspective. How could different people with different diseases become well when they practiced the same exercises? From the chi kung perspective, it was perfectly logical and scientific.
There is only one disease, called yin-yang disharmony, though it may be called by different names in Western medical terminology according to different symptoms. There is only one fundamental cause of yin-yang disharmony, and it is energy blockage. If the energy blockage is cleared, yin-yang harmony is restored. An excellent way to clear energy blockage is to generate an energy flow. All genuine chi kung exercises generate energy flow.
Or are "Lifting the Sky" and "Nourishing Kidneys" the two most effective exercises?
While any genuine chi kung exercises will generate an energy flow and therefore overcome illness, including nocturnal emissions, "Lifting the Sky" and "Nourishing Kidneys" are amongst the most effective. Two other very effective exercises are "Pushing Mountain" and "Bear Walk".
Nevertheless, it is not what exercises to practice that is important. What is important, and this is what many people do not realize, is to practice the exercises as high-level chi kung.
Many people, including those practicing chi kung exercises, may be puzzled. Isn't one practicing chi kung when he practicse chi kung exercises? No. The fact is that most people today practice chi kung exercises as gymnastics and not as chi kung. In the same way, most people today practice Tai Chi Chuan forms as a graceful dance and not as an internal martial art.
The reason I ask is I have been experiencing nocturnal emissions. At first I was not too worried, as I am young and single, I thought it was natural. But lately I feel exhausted and tired easily, and after experiencing a nocturnal emission I feel sad, and sometimes even hopeless.
It appears that your problem is quite serious, but the good news is that you can overcome it if you really want to.
But if you say that you have no time or no money, or the course is too far away from your home, then you do not really want to get well. I cannot guarantee that you will definitely overcome your nocturnal emission problem, because recovery depends on a few other factors like whether you will practice diligently what you will learn at the course, but I can honestly say that you have a very good chance.
Nocturnal emissions are not natural. It is understandable that you feel exhausted and sad. But certainly it is not hopeless. Indeed, if you practice what you will learn at my Intensive Chi Kung Course, you will not only overcome your nocturnal emissions, tiredness and sadness, but also acquire good health, vitality and joy for living.
Many people reading my statement may find it trite. Almost anyone teaching chi kung would say his chi kung leads to good health, vitality and joyful living. But what is really important is whether the students actually get the promised results.
- Developing Internal Force using Siu Lin Tou
- Sharing Some Secrets
- Playing with New Friends and Taijiquan Sequences
- Good Training
- Counters against Kicks and Throws