Faq About Qigong

FAQ about Qigong

What is Qigong?

Is Qigong the same as chi Kung?

Is Qigong the same as Taijiquan?

Is this a religion?

What are the benefits of practicing Qigong?

Why should I learn chi kuang?

What kinds of illness can practicing Qigong overcome?

What is the importance of Qigong postures?

What’s next after correct postures?

How does practicing Qigong cure so-called incurable diseases?

How is Qigong related to kungfu?

What is Qigong?

Qigong is the art of developing vital energy particularly for health, vitality, mind expansion and spiritual cultivation. More on what is chi kuang?

How many categories are there under Qigong?

There have been many qigong schools in China. Although each school adopts unique methods, they all agree on the basic importance of regulating the mind and deepening the respiration. Western practitioners have divided and categorized qigong into various segments. The term "soft qigong" usually refers to exercises which enhance spiritual, mental, and physical health with meditation and gentle exercises. "Hard qigong" refers to exercises done in martial arts to strengthen and protect the body from vicious blows.

Some divide qigong into "Medical", "Martial", or "Spiritual" categories depending on the purpose of the practice.

Within China, qigong is generally practiced in two major categories, "still" and "moving". "Still" qigong lays emphasis on quiet, motionless meditation, generally employing methods of internal concentration and regulation of breathing. It is usually practiced in outwardly motionless postures such as the lying, sitting or standing positions, and since it emphasizes exercise of the internal aspect of the body, it is often known as internal qigong.

"Moving" qigong involves movement of the limbs and body under the conscious direction of the mind, and since the movement is expressed externally, it is also known as external qigong.

Is Qigong the same as qigong?

Yes, they are the same. "Qigong" is the usual English spelling, whereas "qigong" is the Romanized Chinese spelling. In Romanized Chinese, q is pronounced like the English ch'; and o like the English u. Hence, both "Qigong" and qigong" should be pronounced like the English "ch'i gung".

Is Qigong the same as Taijiquan?

They are different, although Taijiquan (if it is practiced the way traditional masters practiced it) makes extensive use of Qigong. Basically, Taijiquan is a martial art, whereas Qigong is a collective term for various arts of energy, which may or may not be used for martial art purposes. The movements of some Qigong types resemble those of Taijiquan, whereas many other Qigong movements are totally different from typical Taijiquan movements.

Is this a religion?

Most definitely not. It is a tool for improving health, enhancing your mind/body connection, and connecting you with the qi or life force. It can enhance your own spirituality. You can use that to enhance your own religious path or not. It is up to you.

Some teachers may use qigong practices as part of a religious teaching. That is fine, but not necessary. Qigong's great beauty is that it can be used by anyone to enhance their spiritual path no matter what that path is. Is Qigong Political, A new look at falun Gong?

What are the benefits of practicing Qigong?

There are many wonderful benefits derived from practising Qigong, and they may be generalized into the following five categories:

  • Curing illness and promoting health.
  • Enhancing vitality and developing internal force.
  • Promoting youthfulness and longevity.
  • Expanding the mind and the intellect.
  • Spiritual cultivation.

Many Qigong types focus on only one or two of the above categories, but a few cover all the five. For example, most types of medical Qigong aim mainly at curing illness, virtually all sexual types of Qigong emphasize solely on youthfulness, whereas Shaolin Cosmos Qigong touches on all the above five categories of benefits.

Why should I learn Qigong?

Qigong can improve your physical and mental health. It provides all the benefits of meditation (reduced stress, lower blood pressure, better attitude, etc.) with physical exercises. The enhancement of the mind/body connection increases your awareness of where your body needs work - where your body needs changes related to diet, exercise, sleep, lifestyle, etc.

This mind/body connection is not a trivial issue. It can influence the course of all manner of chronic diseases. In China, qigong gained its recent fame in the treatment of cancer.

What kinds of illness can practicing Qigong overcome?

According to Chinese medical thought, practicing Qigong can cure as well as prevent all kinds of illness, including diseases like asthma, diabetes, hypertension and cancer which are generally considered "incurable" by conventional medicine. Practicing Qigong is also very effective for overcoming psychological problems. (Please see the following section.)

What is the importance of Qigong postures?

The first step in the practice of qigong is to assure correct posture. It is vital that the posture is natural and relaxed so as to allow smooth breathing and help lead the mind into a relaxed and quiet state. Each posture naturally has different physiological characteristics and hence will have a different healing effect on the body according to the needs of the practitioner. What are the most common Qigong postures?

What’s next after correct postures?

Another basic skill to be gradually mastered in qigong is how to concentrate and regulate one's mental activity so as to enter a quiet, meditative state. Much of the success of Qigong practice depends on the level of peace and quietness one can attain. This "entering a quiet state" refers to a settled and peaceful state of mind not disturbed by extraneous thoughts, the mind concentrated on one point such as the "Dantian" (about one inch below the navel) or on the very act of breathing. All awareness to external stimuli (such as sound and light) is thereby reduced, even to the point that the practitioner's sense of position and weight are lost, until one reaches a state in which they are conscious yet not conscious, aware yet not aware. In this way, the cerebral cortex enters a quiescent state. Most people find it difficult to enter such a quietened state, being frequently disturbed by extraneous thoughts. However, with patience and perseverance it can be gradually attained. The most common methods used to help enter such a state.

How does practicing Qigong cure so-called incurable diseases?

One must, first of all, realize that the conventional medical paradigm is only one of many ways to look at health and illness, and it is not necessarily the only correct way. According to the Chinese medical paradigm, there is no such a thing as an incurable disease, although a patient may be incurable if his disease, even a simple one, has done damage beyond a certain threshold. No disease is incurable because it is our natural birth-right to overcome all types of diseases -- if our psychological and physiological systems are working the way they should work. Illness occurs only if one or more of these natural systems fail in their functions. When all our systems are functioning naturally, the Chinese figuratively describe this condition as harmonious chi flow, i.e. the energy flow that supplies the right information to every part of our body (and mind), that provides the right defense or immunity when needed, that repairs all our wear and tear, that channels away toxic waste and negative emotions, and that performs other countless things to keep as alive and healthy, is functioning the way it should. If this harmonious chi flow is disrupted, illness occurs. The forte of Qigong is to restore and enhance this harmonious chi flow, thus overcoming illness, irrespective of the labels one may use to define its symptoms, and promoting health, which the Chinese have always considered to be more important than curing diseases. It is significant to note that the claim of Qigong to overcome illness and promote health is not based just on the above philosophical explanation, but on thousands and thousands of practical cases.

How is Qigong related to kungfu?

All great kungfu makes use of energy training (which is Qigong) to develop internal force, without which it remains at its external, mechanical level, considered by Chinese martial artists as rough and low-class. Hence, a kungfu master may look, and actually is, gentle, yet with his internal force he can cause much damage to his opponent if he wishes. Moreover, his internal force does not diminish with age, and he can apply it for peaceful use in his daily living. Unlike in many other systems of martial arts where the training itself often results in physical as well as emotional injuries, kungfu training with Qigong enhances harmonious chi flow, thus promotes health, vitality and longevity.