Attaining Your True Nature
Taoists cherish practices that raise the human being from the "Inferior Man" to the "Superior Man" of the I Ching…
To do so, the energy of one's body and emotions needs to be strong and balanced. If you are ill, chi gung will provide you with a means to become healthy; if your mind is disordered, chi gung can give you a way to attain balanced discipline and perseverance. If you are healthy, chi gung can raise your energy level, release suppressed talents, and prepare the body/mind/spirit to succeed in Taoist meditation. All people are born "inferior"—it is only through great effort and genuine humility that a person transcends. All sane people wish to be healthy and strong; all those interested in spirituality wish to attain their true nature. In Taoism, chi gung is the first basic method for achieving these very human goals. (Note to the Reader of the New Edition)Chi Gung Works with the Fluids of the Body
In chi gung, blood is circulated without stress on the heart. Unlike aerobics, chi gung does not dramatically increase the heart rate during exercise. The object of chi gung is not to make the heart pump more strongly, but to increase the elasticity of the vascular system. As the vessels expand and contract with more vigor, the heart does not need to pump as strongly, thereby providing it with more rest. The lymph fluids are moved primarily by tiny muscular expansions and contractions. The chi gung techniques taught here employ some of their strongest motions where the largest lymph nodes are located; that is, the armpits, the backs of the knees, and the inguinal region. Chi gung’s relatively fine muscular expansions and contractions move lymph efficiently through the entire system. These actions, as well as the overall increase in chi that chi gung brings, strengthen the body's immune response.Synovial fluid is found in joints. Chi gung lubricates them, allows joint flexibility, and when functioning normally helps prevent arthritis and rheumatism. From the point of view of Chinese medicine, when “wind/damp” or physical obstructions (coagulated blood, calcium deposits, and so on) get struck in the joints, the results are not only specific joint problems but a decrease in the flow of chi through the entire body as well. Chi gung works with the synovial fluid by compressing and expanding it, preventing and reversing all sorts of joint problems. (Chapter 2: How Chi Gung Works)
Excerpted from Opening the Energy Gates of Your Body by Bruce Frantzis. . Excerpted by permission of Blue Snake Books, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.