Chi Meditation

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Tai Chi is also called meditation in motion, according to the Tai Chi and Chi Kung Institute, and is an easy meditation technique that can be practiced just about anywhere. Tai Chi meditation was originally developed as a martial art, according to the Institute, but is now a meditation technique aimed at reducing stress and improving health. You can learn Tai Chi meditation by using a Tai Chi instructional DVD at home, taking classes at your local gym, fitness center or YMCA or with a personal instructor or group in an open space like a park. Read on for four Tai Chi meditation techniques.

Standing meditation technique

According to Cynthia McMullen, LMT, of the Oriental Healing Arts School of Massage Therapy, Acupuncture, and Traditional Taoist Medical Ongoing in Arizona, meditation is an important aspect of doing Tai Chi because it grounds you, or centers you, both physically and emotionally and helps you uncover the stillness within motion. McMullen adds that standing meditation is the most basic Tai Chi pose. To do this easy meditation technique:

  • First stand with your feet shoulder-width apart with your toes pointing straight ahead and your knees slightly bent.
  • With your hips tucked slightly forward, keep your shoulders down and relaxed and your head held up.
  • Slowly inhale and exhale deep breaths through your nose. McMullen adds that you should continue this meditation technique by keeping your eyes closed or slightly parted and begin meditating.
  • Focus on your feet and their connection to the earth.
  • Use this meditation breathing technique: As you inhale, imagine that you are pulling energy into your feet from the ground or earth. As you exhale, you return the energy to the ground.
  • Repeat this numerous times, then let the energy from the ground travel up your legs and into the center of your inner strength, which, according to McMullen, is located just below your belly button. Exhale, ridding your body of any unclean energy.

Variations of the standing meditation technique

According to McMullen, variations of the standing meditation technique include seated, arms circled with shoulders down and relaxed, horse stance with feet wide apart (beyond shoulder-width) and arms circled with shoulders down in horse stance.

Focus on breathing

According to Dr. Paul Lam of the Tai Chi Association of Australia, correct breathing techniques are an important part of Tai Chi meditation and should focus on the giving and taking of energy. The premise of this meditation technique is very easy: Lam recommends that when inhaling, you should think of taking life energy into your body. When you exhale, release that energy. This breathing technique can be applied to almost all tai chi meditations and movements, according to Lam.

Involve opening and closing movements

Lam adds that another meditation breathing technique involves opening and closing movements. With opening movements, like when your hands are in front of your chest and opening up, you breathe in. Stepping forward or pulling your hands apart are also opening movements. When your hands come together or close, these are closing movements and you exhale. According to Lam, this rule applies to up and down motions when it comes to breathing techniques during meditation. When you move your hands up, you breathe in; move them down and you’re delivering energy, so you breathe out. Similarly, standing up and bending down, respectively, correspond to breathing in and exhaling.

How To Do Chi Meditation To Control Chi Energy [10 Steps]

What Is Meditation And Chi Energy?

Chi, qi, or Ki, is the energy of the universe. And it is the same energy that flows through you. When you have pure chi flow in your body and mind, you will be highly energized and rarely tired.

The energy surrounds our being and  “binds the universe together.” Bonus points if you notice how similar this is to the scenes of Yoda meditating in Star Wars. [Read: How Jedi Meditations Work]

Chi has a storied background in traditional Eastern healing, which speak of the nadis, meridians, or “energy channels”

In the East, life is considered to be the result of vibration al energy, a life-force that flows through all living things. For this reason, much of Eastern healing science is based on techniques and exercises that get this energy flowing, such as through qigong and tai chi.

Chi is made of yin and yang and flows through the body via rivers. If you look at the medical science of countries like Thailand and India, you will find words like “Sen” and “Nadia” describing the energy channels in the body.

When the energy channels in the body become blocked we experience illness. And hence why Eastern healing focuses on curing the blockage to help energy flow. There is some scientific evidence to support this. MRIs and EKG’s reveal that our bodies are electromagnetic in nature. And many healing techniques such as meditation and “Shiatsu” (massage) have been scientifically shown to stimulate electromagnetic energy in the body.

Related Posts

 How To Do Chi Meditation To Control Chi Energy

One of the best exercises for chi energy is tai chi [read: benefits of tai chi]. And, of course, meditation.

There is a very basic chi meditation technique beginners can use to control chi energy.

This exercise will strengthen the mind -body connection and help you to control energy in your body and mind. It is also one of my favorite meditations for relaxation.

This chi meditation derives from Qi Gong and is a popular technique in China.

Instructions

  1. Begin breathing in a natural way while focusing your mind on your breath moving in and out of your lower abdomen. With your eyes open, focus on a point at eye level in front of you.  This point should be approximately six feet away. Try not to move your eyes. Continue to focus on this point for 5 minutes.
  2. Move your eyes to a position approximately 3 feet away and 45 degrees down in front of you. Focus here for 5 minutes.
  3. Continuing to breathe in the same fashion, move your gaze to a point between your feet. Try not to move your head too much, only move your eyes. Focus here for 5 minutes.
  4. Continuing the same pattern, focus on the tip of your nose for five minutes. Both your eyes should be fixed on the same point.
  5. Close your eyes while still pointing them towards the tip of your nose. Feel your breathing entering through your nasal passage and moving through to your abdomen. The air will feel quite cold as you breathe in and quite warm when you breathe out. Continue for five minutes.
  6. Focus on the sound of your breathing for five minutes.
  7. Now focus on your lower abdomen for five minutes.
  8. Still sitting with your eyes closed, breathe in this fashion: breathe in for 3 counts, hold for 3 counts, then breathe out for 6 counts.
  9. Imagine all impurities leaving your body as you breathe out. Rub your palms together counter clockwise so that the palms get warm, then hold them over your eyes, warming your eyes.
  10. Place your hands down on your lower abdomen. Now open your eyes and sit still for a few moments.

Benefits Of Chi Meditation [Research]

Research from Seoul National University found has shown the existence of meridians, the energy centers of the body. They state that the meridian system is involved with allowing energy to be relayed by bio photons and DNA. The Journal Of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena published research in which a dye was injected into the body to reveal the existence of the meridian system [1], which gives evidence to traditional Eastern healing techniques that have existed for thousands of years.

Those healing techniques focus on stimulating energy flow to enhance health. And one way to do this is through meditation.

Meditation is the practice of focusing the mind on a single thing. Numerous scientific studies have shown that this practice relaxes the body and improves the immune system, along with many other physical health benefits.

How to Develop Your Chi

The Chinese word “chi” or “ch’i” can be defined as life force or energy, and has parallels in other cultures: “prana” in India or “qi” in Japan. Developing your chi can be a way to heal your body – both physically and mentally – as well as a path to reaching your full potential. To fully realize your life force, you have to develop your breath and physical practice, and then approach the development of your chi on the level of energy and spiritual

Tai Chi as Meditation

The science of how energy flows in humans is neigong. It is the root from which all the Taoist qigong systems in China have obtained some or most of their technical information and potential capacities.

It is also the root of the essential chi work of the internal martial arts (bagua, tai chi and hsing-i), Taoist meditation, and Chinese medicine’s qigong therapies and bodywork systems.

For example, tai chi has short or long form styles and bagua has Circle Walking and/or the Single Palm Change. Over time, neigong components are incorporated into the movements at increasingly sophisticated levels with the goal of progressively opening up all the energy channels of the body, mind and spirit.

What makes learning these components unique to energetic practices is that they are learned as a circular process. On your first pass through a particular component, you may only learn its most basic elements. Then, on the next pass, you might move on to deeper aspects that you again incorporate into your physical movements.

You return over and over again to specific neigong components to flesh out their more refined and powerful aspects and applications within the movements.

The sequence of learning the 16 components is not cast in stone, although many people find that learning the breathing and alignment components early on to be particularly useful for health and relaxation.

The sophistication of neigong is experienced by practitioners as progressive and systematic improvements in health and the energetic and spiritual capacities of the mind, body and spirit. This ever-deepening sophistication is what allows tai chi, bagua and hing-i to become exquisite exercises and profound meditation vehicles for Taoist spiritual practices.

Tai Chi Meditation: Finding Emptiness

In the Taoist tradition, embarking on a spiritual path goes beyond having health and a calm, peaceful mind.

The highest purpose of Taoist meditation is to make you aware of the permanent, unchanging center of your being, that place of spirit and emptiness that is Consciousness itself. This level is beyond mere physical and mental relaxation; rather it is relaxing into your soul or your very being.

Tai chi is a means for deepening your awareness of and ability to relax on all levels of your being.

The primary emphasis of practicing a tai chi form as an advanced method of Taoist meditation is to explore the nature of opposites, the nature of emptiness and non-duality. These are the concepts of tai chi and wu chi. This is practiced through tai chi’s rhythmic alternation between yin and yang through slow motion movement.

The goal in moving meditation is to find and recognize the tai chi place in your mind where these differentiation come together and become one simultaneously within emptiness.

Stay tuned for upcoming Energy Arts products to help you combine tai chi and Taoist meditation for a truly unique spiritual practice

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