Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Qigong practice: Summer into Fall

Throughout the summer just past I kept up a qigong practice several mornings a week before work. I settled on a routine of a warmup and four or five forms that takes about 10-12 minutes to complete.

I think it was in July that I finally got myself to go outside for my practice. I have read that qigong should be practiced outside, and it makes sense, since the practitioner is interacting with the qi in the natural world. I am a creature of habit, though, and moving my practice out of the comfort of my house, was some resistance I needed to break through. I am so glad I did, though. Moving out of doors really increased my enjoyment of the practice, in ways that I hadn't anticipated.

I found myself noticing little things about my surroundings.  Insects flitting around the stems of grass, making them quiver as if they fluttered in a breeze. A spider navigating around the tip of a blade of grass near my feet. Small spider webs glinting in the sun. Farther away, fog glowing in early morning sunlight and bales of hay drying in a field. The red orb of the sun, rising over the row of trees at the other end of the field.

Out of doors, too, it was easier to feel that I joined heaven and earth with my movements. It was easier to use my imagination, and later feeling, to pull qi from nature into my body.

Now, though, with the cooler temperatures, and especially darker mornings, I have had to quit my outdoor morning qigong routine. I have brought the qigong inside. I can also do some at lunch, if I have a free lunch period. But I definitely miss the sunrise qigong.

However, I have noticed a really nice change in my qigong practice in the past month.  I have started be able to really feel the energy/qi move as I am doing the qigong movements. Lifting my arms up to my head, I feel an opening in my head. Moving my arms out in a circle, I sense the qi move with my hands, like smoke or ripples in water. It is beautiful and amazingly cool.  

I think the change has been prompted by a new hormone balancing treatment that has been added to my regular acupuncture treatments. As it has been explained to me, the balancing attempts to bring one's yin and yang into balance. The fact that I am now able to feel the qi move means that I am becoming able to balance the qi on my own. I am thrilled by this development! I plan to use this new understanding to deepen my practice and continue to improve my health as well as my spiritual understanding.