Although qigong has a long history in China, throughout Chinese history, it was kept secret in a small
group of people. Today, it is practiced by millions for health and to cure
disease. Although there have been many proposed theories on how qigong improves
the body condition, however, since there is no conclusive scientific data, its
function remains mystery.
The information revealed from human anatomy that the body has eight major
systems. They are respiratory, circulatory, digestive, muscle, skeleton,
nervous, reproduction and endocrine. One can observe their structure from
autopsy. However, there is one system that exist only appear to a live body.
People in China today called it the communication or information system. It is a
network of acupuncture meridians for qi circulation. Qi is a particle that
motion by wave. It circulates among meridians inside the body or outside the
body to carryout nutrient to the organs. Therefore, some people called qi as a
type of energy to support the physiologic organic functions.
There are many types of qi in traditional Chinese medicine. The qi in qigong
is referring to the original qi. It is the basic substance to support life. It
is also the difference between a corpse and a live body is the present of qi
according to the traditional Chinese medicine. Although it is different from the
air one breathes, however, the function is similar to support and maintain
life's normal function.
Traditional Chinese Medicine believes that the seven emotions such as happy,
sad, sorrow, worry, fear, terror and anger has directly affected physiologic
functions and activities. Although they do not cause someone to get sick immediately,
if a person has a stressful life style or fallen into an extreme situation,
above and beyond the body's normal capacity, the seven emotions will affect
the body's Yin/Yang balance, blood and qi circulations and the body will get
sick. The information from physiological and psychological demonstrated that the
emotional responds have direct input on the nervous and endocrine systems'
function. When one has a positive emotion, one is energetic and full with
energy. One is happy and healthy. However, when one has negative emotion, one is
easily angered, sad, painful and confused, the body is fatigue, the heart is
beating fast and irregular. The relaxation and tranquility required in qigong
practices properly work on the nervous system to neutralize any negative
emotion. e.g. When the muscle system relaxes, this improves the central nervous
and circulatory systems. When one is in a tranquil condition, the brain is in a
restoration mechanism. When one is emphasized on deep breathing, the movement of
the diaphragm massages the internal organs, improving the blood circulation and
digestive system. In qigong practices, the emphasis on concentration lead the
brain to desensitize some of the stimulate so the negative emotion will not
affect the body. The emphasis on control breathing to restore energy, power and
supply nutrient to physiologic organs. The emphasis on relaxing the muscle and
correct posture lead to proper exercise the skeleton system to build up structure
and strength. Therefore, practicing qigong can cure disease and strengthen the
body as the same time.
Over 2000 years ago, ancient Chinese already recognized there is a direct
connection between good health and mental condition. In the Yellow Emperor's
Internal Classic, which written "Anger hurts the liver. Sorrow hurts the heart.
Worry hurts the pancreas. Sad hurts the lung. Fear hurts the kidney." In a later
chapters of the same book, it said "All diseases caused by qi. When one is
anger, the qi rises. When one is happy, the qi calm. When one is sad, the qi
depletes. When one has hear, the qi goes down. When one is cold, the qi closes.
When one is afraid, the qi imbalances. When one is overworked, the qi cannot
last. When one is worry, the qi stagnates." These explanations demonstrated that
one's mental condition has a close relationship to qi. The seven emotions have
the most impact in one's health. In qigong training, it trains the practitioner
to better control the emotion and the body's internal environment.
There are four major schools of qigong and thousands of techniques available
today. Generally, they are divided into static and dynamic. They are
inter-relative and complementary to work on the body, mind and qi. When come to
the objective of curing disease, practicing qigong can strengthen the body's
condition by improving the immunity so the immune system is stronger and the
body is healthier.
Internal practice is an important aspect of qigong training. It is referring
to when the practitioner is working on the intent's creativity to yield a positive
result. It is also known as a method of improving the physiological activity
result from psychological activity. Intent is a psychological activity and it is
a function of the nervous system. Tranquility is a condition result from
intent's creativity. It is an important conscious behavior in qigong training.
This situation does not require the whole nervous system but a specific area of
the brain's function. This action differentiates the brain cells' function. This
type of mechanism is a very special kind of function. When one is tranquil,
some sensory functions reduced. This will make a significant change in the
peripheral nervous system function. During the tranquil condition, the
physiological activities do not completely stop or reduced, they changed. The
activities are changed to recovering or restoration. Therefore, when one is in
tranquil condition, the energy in the body is from a consumption mode changed
into a restoration mode. The body's energy lasts longer and one feel refreshing
after qigong practices.
Does not matter which kind of qigong technique one is practicing, the
objective is the same to relax the body so the qi works on three areas of the
body: breathing, mental and physical. This relaxation is not happened
immediately. The physiological changed in the body often associated with the
changed in sensory nervous system such as respiration, blood pressure, heartbeat
and breathing with rhythm.
The activity in life is but many levels of generating cycles. To maintain
their functions, this requires nutrients and energy. Qi is a type of energy
inside the body to keep the physiologic organs functions. In qigong training,
one is mobilizing the qi to better circulate throughout the body to carry
nutrients and energy to the physiologic organs so the body is in a perfect
Article By Vincent Chu