Wai Dan (pronounced 'Why Dan," is the practice of increasing Qi circulation by stimulating one area of the body until a large energy potential builds up and flows through the Qi channel system. In Chinese, the term Wai Dan also signifies the alchemical elixir of life (also called Jin Dan, £ ft ), and it is probable that our use of the term derives from the alchemical usage. Most Chinese alchemical texts are products of the Daoists, who were a significant force in the development of Qigong, so it seems appropriate to call these Qigong training techniques that promote health, strength, and longevity by the Daoist name.
In this chapter, the principles of Wai Dan Qigong ft ) practice will be explained first. Then the most famous Shaolin Wai Dan training method, Da Mo's Yi Jin Jing (ft tt & ) will be introduced, Next, a number of other sets of Wai Dan training will be demonstrated, including the standing set of the well known Eight Pieces of Brocade (Ba Duan Jin, Aft *$). You should try all the exercises presented, then adopt a training schedule suited to your own needs. For example. you can pick one set and practice it every day for several months or even years, or do a different set every day. Your needs will change as you develop, SO maintain a flexible attitude toward the training.
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