One should be cautious about dismissing some amazing stories too quickly. Some feats that may be treated with skepticism by the uninitiated may have been kept secret through many generations and passed down from father to son. One of my teachers, by profession a college professor, is a well-liked, unassuming man who from time to time gives my students a real treat. He performs the amazing feat of concentrating his qi and projecting it through his finger, drawing a mark on his torso with his finger six to eight inches away without physical contact! He makes no great display of this and rarely discusses it. This feat was once performed for a newspaper reporter in the United States and I was twice able to record it on videotape. His father and teacher, now in his mid-eighties, visits me in California about once a year and to this day has never discussed it.40
My Taiwan acupuncture teacher, a senior uncle of the inner-door family, practices a similar feat. He demonstrates concentrating his qi through an acupuncture needle an inch or so away from a patient's skin. Again, without making physical contact, and without the patient watching, he is able to raise a red spot on the patient's skin, sometimes with a visible "pulse."
On a related note, Dr. David Eisenberg, professor of medicine at Harvard University, described his interaction with a Chinese internal energy master in this way:
In a final demonstration the Qi Gong master took two metal skewers along with a one-pound pork steak which he had brought with him. He put the two skewers through the steak then grabbed the skewers, one in the left hand and one in the right so as to complete an electrical circuit. Having grasped the wires along with the two skewers the circuit was engaged and the pork chop began to smoke and flame. Within minutes there was a medium-well-done pork chop which my Qi Gong friend sliced and offered to serve! I was astounded by this demonstration and have no adequate explanation for why the Qi Gong master did not injure his skin, or cause a serious heart irregularity, seizure or other damage to his own person.41
The marvel of qi, to varying levels, is being increasingly accepted as a true, not imaginary, phenomenon. We are at the dawn of a new day where, through the knowledge of past masters, we are able to glean insights into mind and body potential. Yet, while keeping an open mind, we must learn to filter information and retain a degree of scrutiny about what is and what is not a valid "qi event."
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