Explanations Of Chi, Tai Chi & Chi Kung (Qigong)
Tai Chi – Tai Chi Chuan
An ancient Chinese exercise or art for the harmony of mind and body (and nature). It is a system of meditation, physical coordination, health, self defense and consciousness raising. It is of extreme value for attaining longevity, eliminating tension, increasing physical, spiritual and mental well-being as well as an effective means of self-defense.
To develop Tai Chi Chuan as an effective exercise and powerful system of self defense, one must learn how to achieve a smooth circulation of chi to every part of the body.
Can mean “breath”, but a more accurate term is Vital Energy or Life Force. Chi Kung (Qigong) is the science of cultivating the bodies internal energy (which the Chinese have been researching for the last four thousand years). It is the practice of nurturing the bodies inner knowledge and a way to help people return to the union of the Human Being and the Universe. Chi Kung facilitates the development of a deeper relationship with Chi, which helps the practitioner understand the laws of the universe and how they influence human life.
Chi Kung (Qigong)
By itself, or in conjunction with Tai Chi, helps develop energy, promote health, prevent illness, achieve mental and spiritual peace, and aid in self-defense.
In the several thousand years since Chi and its relationship to health was discovered, every level of the Chinese population has practiced Chi Kung at sometime. There are four major schools or categories which were created by the different classes of people:
Scholarly Chi Kung – for maintaining health
Medical Chi Kung – for healing
Martial Chi Kung – for fighting (internal & external styles)*
Religious Chi Kung – for enlightenment and buddhahood (divided into Buddhist, Taoist & Tibetan)
*The two main branches of Martial Chi Kung are the external or active- where the body moves in coordination with the breath and the internal or passive- where the person remains still in either a sitting or standing position and directs their attention toward circulating the chi internally using the breath and imagery.
This circulation of energy through the two main energy channels of the body is known as the Microcosmic Orbit or Small Heavenly Cycle. As Chinese sages studied these two main meridians (the Functional and the Governor), they discovered other energy flow routes and it was along thes meridians that the points used in Acupuncture healing were also discovered.