ch’i kung

started doing cloud hands out of boredom in my work chair and lo and behold it’s better and easier than standing for some odd reason for cranking up the flow immediately. very weird. there is the waist turn which is artificially longer through the extra rotation from the chair turning a little bit. there isn’t any separation of substantial and insubstantial in the legs. hmm.

Qigong – internal circulation, relaxation, health.

Zhan zhuang – more about intent. Don’t really get the instructions on dynamic opposition of forces.

There are some good threads on various forums about when to do qigong, forms, and so on. I noticed I tend to feel much better at night time, between 11 p.m. and midnight, somewhat consistent with one answer. I’ve also always been a night owl anyway, so I have always had more good energy at night without working on any kind of qigong. My guess is I should just go with this pattern and exploit it. However, eventually I’d like to be able to wake up earlier and feel and work the same sort of energy.

Last night I did qigong for what seemed like an hour but it could have been more. After a little while, I thought I felt “microcosmic orbit” (so I think since I have no idea what this should feel like). Basically similar to acupuncture with electrode sensation but fainter, going up the back, down the front, trying to end it and “store” at the dantien area. This sensation went on for a while and then I felt I should see how long I could do the qigong til I got tired and went to sleep. Different times today I’ve felt a vague fullness and a vague sensation of this flow if I stopped to think about it or do a few seconds of zhan zhuang. Good I suppose since qi should follow yi and it only seemed to do so if yi was there. Usually most people say something like beginners might feel a heat sensation. That is pretty easy so a sensation of a flow probably means some small progress. What about the BIG question for neijia – what to do with qigong to combine it with martial arts? I suppose a peng energy is really backed by a full energy but then I’m also sure I’ll have no good idea from actual experience for quite some time. These are totally separate tracks for now. If they come together later I’ll think about it some more. It does feel good and healthy. Also, here’s where all of the books I’ve looked at say something like it’s dangerous to progress without good instruction. Well, how is one supposed to find the right instruction? Not exactly on yellow pages or search engine dot com. I’m pretty comfortable sticking to experimentation. Clip from Wikipedia:

The Microcosmic Orbit is a Taoist Qigong meditation technique. It is based on observing the natural flow of energy in the body during respiration. The meditation involves consciously raising the focus of awareness up the Governor Vessel meridian at the back of the spine during inhalation, and returning the focus of awareness down the Conception vessel meridian at the front of the spine during exhalation.

This article in MIT’s Technology Review talks about control of cell behavior with a magnetic field. Hmm.. could that have something to do with qigong’s mechanism? Here’s an excerpt from the article:

The approach could have a far-reaching impact, as many important cell receptors are activated in a similar way and might be controlled using Ingber’s method.

“In recent years, there has been a realization that physical events, not just chemical events, are important” to cell function, says Shu Chien, a bioengineer at the University of California, San Diego. Researchers have probed the effects of physical forces on cells by, for example, squishing them between plates or pulling probes across their surfaces. But none of these techniques work at as fine a level of control as Ingber’s magnetic beads, which act on single biomolecules.

I’m not saying a qigong adept can act on “single biomolecules” of course, but maybe the overall physical mechanism at work is similar. The TCM doctor is supposed to feel a qi blockage or a qi excess and act accordingly. That seems like a very general or aggregate assessment and treatment, whether it’s magnetic or what. Could this treatment make cells consume calcium or something like that? Hmm, seems like some interesting science projects could be done along these lines to get at this big mystery. The related article on cancer cells being softer was also fascinating.