An Introduction to Qigong

Author: Liang S//Wu WC
Conference/Journal: Kung Fu Qigong Magazine
Date published: 2002
Other: Volume ID: Aug , Special Notes: (Partial paper reproduced) , Word Count: 354

Qigong (Chi Kung) has been an integral part of Chinese culture since ancient China. High level
qigong masters have always been respected and held in high esteem in Chinese society. They
studied qigong not merely for the health and strength of the body, but as an attempt to
understand human nature and its interactions with the environment and the universe as a
whole. Realizing that humans are part of nature, any attempt to understand human physiology
inevitably involves the study of the universe. These qigong masters were the pillars of Chinese society and included
healers, philosophers, teachers, astrologers, scientists, martial artists, and government leaders. Their study resulted in the formation of the Yin-Yang and the Five Element Theories that have guided, and still guide the development and research of all fields of study, from medicine, to government, to the understanding of our greater existence.

Today, qigong is most often referred to as any set of breathing and qi circulation techniques that are capable of improving health, preventing illness, and strengthening the body. Generally speaking, qi is a Chinese term used to refer to all types of energy. It is the intrinsic substance or the vital force behind all things in the universe. It is the medium between and within all material substances. We are all immersed in it. The term gong refers to the power to produce an effect, an attainment of, or an accomplishment that is achieved with steady practice. Loosely, qigong can be translated as the attainment of qi. Healers and the medical society use qigong for healing and preventing illness. Martial artists used qigong for developing incredible strength and abilities. Others use qigong to attain a greater state of consciousness.The practice of qigong aims at balancing and strengthening qi in the human body. In Medical Qigong, for example, the objective for healing illness is to build the patient's qi to counteract the pathogenic influences and to regulate the balance of yin-yang energy, thereby returning the
body to a normal physiological state, thus regaining health. This way the energetic imbalance is rebalanced and the root cause of the illness is removed.