Stand still with both feet together and hands resting on IV the Daimai points which are located at the waist. Fig 13. Turn the left foot outwards 90 degrees to the left and at the same time make a anti-clockwise circle with the left hand, coming back to the Daimai points as in the original V. position. Fig 14-15.
Turn the body 180 degrees with right foot so that your body is facing the opposite direction. Meanwhile, the right VI. hand should make an anti-clockwise circle from the right Daimai point and return back to the same point. Fig 16-17.
Turn the body again the original direction with the left foot in an anti-clockwise circle, the left hand does the same making an anti-clockwise circle from the left Daimai point back to the left Daimai point. Fig 18-20. Keep turning the body 180 degree for a total of six steps, though do not count the first turning. At the end we should face the original direction. Repeat the same movement in the opposite direction so that you return to where you originally started.
Always breathe naturally in all of the stepping, no matter whether you are going forwards, backwards or sideways.
Concentration: Forward Stepping
If we step with the left foot, then we will move the whole body to the left and touch the left Daimai point. It is the same with the right foot. Make sure that when you step, you are not just stepping forward and backward in a straight line like normal walking. When you step, your foot should sweep forwards or backwards a little bit like the curve of a half circle. The movements should be very beautiful and relaxed, moving as if you were gliding forwards and backwards over ice. The movements should not done in a mechanical way.
Concentration: Sideway Stepping
When counting, do not count the first turn. Start with the first stepping and move a total of six steps, so that you end up facing the same direction as you started. In the beginning, do the movement slowly just in case you get dizzy. You can also sink down a little bit, so that you can keep your balance when turning.
When we turn to the left, the hands and feet are always moving in an anti-clockwise motion. When we turn to the right, they always move in a clockwise direction. Practise as if you were skating, with a relaxed and happy attitude.
Stress is the cause for so many diseases. I remember when I was teaching in England from Monday to Thursday every single week. For the first two days of the week I would be in Manchester and then the next two days I would teach in London. Often I was very exhausted because I was also giving a lot of Qigong treatments on these days. I did this for ten years and I would also teach seminars on many Saturdays and Sundays.
However, I kept practising my Qigong every morning and evening. If I had any spare time, even just five minutes, I would take that opportunity to practise my horse stance to recharge my Qi. I can recognise if a job I am going to do will be tiring and require a lot of energy. Today, I am not ill and tired and it is because of my Qigong practise. There is no doubt that it has helped to maintain my health and so save my life. So I will always be loyal my Qigong practise until I the day I die.
I cannot imagine how people who do not do any Qigong can keep themselves healthy. I even see some of my students become exhausted as I know that they have no choice about their work and have to keep going. Their family and their boss need so much from them and they find that they do not have enough time to practise their Qigong.
They are releasing more Qi than they gain and I know that one day they will be forced to stop because of their health. If anyone can balance both their work and health, then this is the best. However, if your work causes you to be ill, then you cannot carry on and your boss will find you are not good. Then they will find someone younger and less expensive to employ. So you will be forced to leave your job and your family will not have any financial support. A wise person will not go down this path.
In order to keep doing our work well, without making mistakes and so keeping your boss happy, requires a healthy body and mind. Qigong is the answer. Qigong can give us good Qi to maintain our life and we can have enough to take care of our family and work. Qigong can also give us a good attitude and we will smile more and look good. This is because we feel good and have no aches and pains.
I look at the tourists in Hawaii where I live. They are all very happy because they have no stress and lots of good, fresh air. In this kind of environment, their attitude will automatically be good. Stress can easily cause us to have a bad attitude and can cause us to be unhappy. It will also cause us to be tired and at the end ill. We may even have a serious illness. When we practise Skating on Ice, with a happy attitude, then it will help release our stress and make our bodies light. A light body is not just about being small or skinny. It is about your mental attitude and also the strength of your bones and the good flow of Qi in the body.
I always enjoy watching people in ice skating competitions as it brings you a nice feeling, but skating is not Qigong. So if we want to practise skating as if it were Qigong and also enjoy the ice skating attitude, then we can do this movement. This is why I created it. However, I also practise Wing Chun and in Wing Chun, the walking style is more grounded, and does not put the weight on the front leg as this would be very dangerous. In Qigong, it is alright, though. This movement brings the Qi up to the head so that the legs will be light. It also brings up a good and happy attitude. There are two different ways to practise. One is walking forward-backward. The other way is sideways left and right. When we look at these together, we can say that Skating on Ice covers both clockwise and anti-clockwise directions and therefore, all four directions.
to be continued... by Michael Tse
All my life I have admired wisdom and found myself unconsciously drawn to much older people. I used to visit my grandparents who lived behind us every evening to talk story as they say here in Hawaii.
M Love and Guidance
ometimes, there would be no talking, just sitting on a low stool in front of my Grandfather, a game of checkers being played between us. Grandma would just sit in her chair watching some programme on the telly while Grandpa and I would have our nightly ritual. He would have one hand behind his rockerfondling the ears of his dog, Peggy, who slept in her box behind his chair while laughing at my frown of concentration. Grandpa would never let me win at checkers but just made me keep on trying, so it was truly a victory when one day I finally won. But I remember I also felt a sadness inside. I somehow felt that even though I had won, I had lost something else. I still feel sad thinking about it.
He and grandma's house was actually pretty small and it was hard to conceive that it once heaved with eight children who had grown up in it during the depression years. They did not have a lot of money, but Grandma always had some treat for us grandchildren who would pop in unexpectedly. The treats would change as the seasons changed. On a special day, it might be home-made cinnamon rolls or fried doughnuts. I remember the first time I had her doughnuts. She said to me, "It is bad luck to eat the hole!'. So I nibbled around the hole like a rabbit and then when it was small enough, I popped the 'hole' whole into my mouth, saying that I had not eaten the hole as I had not broken it's circle."
In the autumn she would make apple cobbler from fruit she had picked up in her own orchard or chocolate cake...all made by hand and in a space of time so short that you could not write down the recipe except in shorthand. In the summer time it was white bread slathered with butter and layered with sugar or home grown, sun warmed tomatoes eaten with salt we had poured into the palm of our hands.
I have a lot of memories from those times. I was lucky to have been in the presence of so many good people. It shaped my heart a lot. My dad was quite strict with me but that discipline has done me well as I know how to behave in most circumstances and know how to help out and not be lazy. My mum was and is still my heart. When I think of her I think of something tiny and fragile and soft. I remember when I was little that I hated to lose to her in games. She was so nice and I loved her so much, that I would sometimes secretly lose on purpose.
Later, in my teens, I also befriended my neighbour who is now almost 80 years old and still a dear and very good friend. She has what she calls 'deck talks' in good weather. This means we will sit outside on her screened-in porch and listen to each other's hearts, though to be fair I would say she has listened a lot more than I. She has seen inside the walls of my heart and still
loves me, that is how deep the river runs between us.
There was a programme on the other evening that talked about a family. This was not your normal family but one that had been created out of compassion and love. The 'mother' had taken in the young Russian boy, named Sasha, when she heard that he had tried to murder his adopted mother and was going to be sent back to his country of birth, where he would probably live homeless or in another prison. Having read more about the case, she knew that there was more than just the sensational headlines. Here was a lost boy, who was only a teenager and yet his eyes carried an ocean of pain, looking more like an old man. He trusted no one and was locked into himself. After having to go through a lot of legal procedures, they got care of him and took him home to their immense but remote farm in the mountains. They had theirown daughter, plus another adopted Russian daughter and so he also had to learn to be with others. They let him heal himself through work on the farm, cutting wood for their heat in the winter, repairing fences and the most important of all, caring for the horses. He and one particular horse befriended each other and became inseparable. This was the first time in Sasha's adult life that he had someone depending on him.
You could see through old videos and old photos how Sasha changed over the two years with this family. Eventually, he was adopted formally and became their legal son. I saw in his eyes the emptiness of so many teenagers in the west today, even my own nephew. They have designer clothes, cars, money to spend, but inside they have so little. They only live to have a good time but it is like eating the same rich food meal after meal. It stops tasting so good before long. Then they look for something else to eat, but it still does not feed their hunger, feed their soul. And so in their hunger, they become more and more lost.
We all sometimes lose our way. We may have been planted into a good garden, but we somehow lean over the fence to another kind of garden. It is only when some good gardener comes along and gently puts us back on the trellis or digs our roots in deeper, that we somehow survive. But it is only when we can open our heart and start to love others and care for their well-being before ours, that we can save ourselves^
by Sihnkei. [email protected],qimagazjne.com m
#ard Qigong draws spectators but attracts few women or middle-aged men as students. Mistakenly, they feel that it is hazardous or that they are not strong enough or are too old to undertake this training.
Hard Qigong Level One
The public really only ever witnesses Hard Qigong demonstrations (breaking displays and bending spears against throats etc.) so despite being enthralled people naturallyassume that it must be a somewhat dangerous activity, and therefore offers little value as a health exercise. They fail to take into account the fact that the training (generally done in seclusion, away from prying eyes) is very different from the demonstrations and that Qigong is for health. Hard Qigong training cultivates Qi to the level that the body is strong enough to withstand physical blows, with no real effect internally. The demonstrations illustrate this potential but are not the reason for training. Under correct tutelage, abiding by the rules set, and practising with due care and attention there is no reason why Hard Qigong should be harmful.
Everyone understands Qigong is concerned with relaxation, health, and healing. Chinese culture embodies the concept of yin and yang, so there must be two sides. Hard Qigong covers strength, stamina, and conditioning. Ideally the two methods should complement each other to make the training complete. To experience only one side is to know only half the picture. Actually, the terms 'hard' and 'soft' are relatively new - all Qigong is internal.
Heavenly River Monastery Hard Qigong Level 1 contains nothing to fear and certainly no pain, just strong breathing exercises to strengthen the internal body and develop Qi and stamina, providing the foundation for further training, if sought. The exercises can be practised gently and slowly in the beginning and then built up gradually to become increasingly strong as the number of repetitions is increased. You must train with a sincere heart, giving one hundred percent effort; ^
quality being more important than quantity.
Level 1 concentrates on developing the Dan-tian (umbilical centre),
where Qi is gathered and stored. When Dantian Qi is strong then the body should be strong, healthy and vital. When it is deficient, then the back is prone to weakness (pain and injury), and poor digestion or sexual complications may also be experienced. Through training, the external body also begins to change, but instead of becoming bulky and stiff (through weight-training) it, becomes more solid and muscularyet remains lean and flexible.
The breathing method introduced in Level 1 is very different from anything you will have ever experienced before from any other type of exercise. It is exhilarating; bringing up the energy and raising the spirit. Contrary to soft Qigong principles, you breathe in through the mouth, as if sucking
"Actually, the terms 'hard' and 'soft' are ively new - all ng is internal.*
through a straw, forcefully, to take in as much Qi as possible. (The more Qi you can absorb the more Qi is available to use and develop.) This involves the lungs, which create the power for pushing, pulling, lifting and punching etc.). Breathing out (through the nose) is coordinated with mentally guiding the Qi from the lungs to the crown of the
head (Baihui) or down to the Dantian, to open the Chong channel, running through the centre of the body.
Level 1 movements are dynamic and exciting. Names such as 'Dragon Twists with a Pole', 'Demon Enters the Sea', 'Sparrow Hawk Dodges Away' and 'Hurricane' etc. encapsulate the essence and nature of these exercises. The movements feature relaxation (Yin) while breathing in, and tension (Yang) when breathing out and using the energy.
The warm-down ('Drunken Python Crosses the Mountain') is the most fun to practice, relaxing the muscles and joints, and neck, shoulders, and waist, releasing any tension caused by the movements.
Meditation (Yin) is very important, necessary to calm down the internal 'fire' (Yang) created from the combination of exercises and powerful breathing, so afterwards you experience a deep inner peace, and maintain balance of yin and yang.
Training is as much mental as physical. Success has little to do with gender, age, size or inherited strength, but inner fortitude. Therefore, a woman with steely resolve can develop more than the male martial artists and bodybuilders, full of machismo, who begin enthusiastically but fade away when they discover the self-discipline and commitment demanded. The skill was developed by monks to promote health and to supplement and enhance martial arts training (protecting and healing the body and replacing spent Qi.) The hard work is 'spiritual training', which does not discriminate between male and female.
Men, by nature are yang (hard, active, aggressive etc.) and need 'Yin' training (soft Qigong and meditation) to achieve balance. Women, being more Yin (soft, passive, gentle) would benefit immensely from Hard Qigong. Level 1 alone promotes boundless vitality (youthful vigour), good circulation, inner strength and physical prowess and boosts self-confidence. These benefits are available to anyone who is serious about studying^
by Adam Wallace. [email protected],qimagazjne. com
"Success has little to do with gender, age, size or inherited strength."
ed the Piq
One day when Zeng Shen's wife was going to the market, their son cried and clamoured to go with her. "Go back now," she wheedled, "and when I get home we will kill the pig for your dinner." Upon her return, she found her husband about to kill their pig. She shouted for him to stop and asked what he was doing. She said, "I didn't really mean it," she protested. "I just said that to keep the boy quiet."
Zeng Shen looked at her and then said, "How can you deceive a child like that? Children know nothing to begin with, but they copy their parents and learn from them. When you cheat the boy, you are teaching him to lie. If a mother deceives her child, he will not trust her and that is no way to bring him up." So he killed the pig after all.
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