Qi-Gong traditionnel avec Marc Gerson
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Qi-Gong (parfois écrit Chi Gong ou Chi Kung) signifie “maitrise de l’énergie” ou “discipline de l’énergie”, « travail de l’énergie ». Le “Qi” représente le concept de l’essence qui constitue toute chose existante dans l’univers et représente l’aspect véritable de la force intérieure de l’énergie qui est partout et dans le souffle même du corps.
L’origine du Qi Gong remonte aux différents courants historiques ancestraux des monastères bouddhistes, des écoles universitaires taôistes, dans les pratiques des herboristes et médecins et auprès des différentes disciplines des arts martiaux internes et externes ainsi que du Confucianisme. Dans les temps anciens les branches originaires du bouddhisme ont donné naissance à des écoles où les styles ont été plus inspirés par l’aspect philosophique et psychologique du détachement, du juste milieu et par la pratique de la méditation. Ici le système des mouvements résulte de l’observation et de la simulation des animaux sauvages (l’ours, la grue, le tigre, l’aigle, la mante etc.). D’après la légende le Qi-Gong fut introduit par Bodhidharma dans les premiers temps des Shaolin pour le maintien de la santé des moines et de leur défense contre des dangers. Ce Qi Gong est appelé La Grande Loi de Bouddhification.
Dans les écoles originaires du Taoïsme, les styles sont inspirés par le concept du Tao (le “sans nom“ ou la Voie et la Vertu) et par la subtile dynamique universelle du “yin et yang” les deux forces primaires – positives et négatives – qui forment l’état d’équilibre, dans un mouvement perpétuel d’énergie, en parfaite harmonie. Ici aussi les techniques sont développées par l’observation de la nature et des animaux (cerf, singe, tigre, ours, etc.) et visent à fusionner par les mouvements la puissance et la souplesse, la vitalité et le calme, dans une expression unifiée. Ces styles de Qi Gong sont également destinés à cultiver l’esprit et à préserver la santé. On les appelle « La Grande Loi de la cultivation » dans la Voie.
Les écoles formées à partir de la sagesse des herboristes et des médecins Taôistes des temps anciens ont donné naissance à des formes spécifiques basées surtout sur la connaissance “des méridiens” (réseau de points principaux du corps ou l’énergie entre et sort) , et sur la connaissance des éléments de la nature (bois, feu , terre, métal, eau), en relation aux organes vitaux ( cœur, poumons, pancréas, foie, rate, reins, vessie) en fonction des 24 périodes de l’année. Le but de ces mouvements est d’assurer principalement la libre circulation du souffle, des fluides et du sang dans les vaisseaux. Le principe de ces formes est d’être en bonne santé et de soigner. Les styles font partie du chemin de “L’Alchimie de Cinabre à neuf tours”
Le Qi Gong qui s’est développé à partir des arts martiaux s’apprête surtout pour devenir fort et pour mieux vivre, pour se défendre et pour les compétitions qui aujourd’hui en Occident sont portées au niveau sportif. Ces formes et styles sont appelés la Loi de l’Arhat.
Les règles de vie, le respect, le respect des ancêtres, les arts et conduites sociales, sont intégrées aux différents styles en tant qu’aspect philosophique et psychologique. Ces principes sont appelés « la Voie du Dhyâna de diamant » et représentent l’accomplissement de Soi. Ils sont inspirés autant du Taôisme que du Confucianisme et du Bouddhisme Chan (Zen-Bouddhisme).
Ces 5 grands courants se sont influencés et mélangés mutuellement au cours des siècles, en ayant comme base commune la notion de préservation de la santé, en harmonie avec la nature, pour être fort et servir le bien commun.
La technique des formes est pratiquée par des positions debout, assises ou même couchées, statiques ou dynamiques, fortes ou douces. Par les formes de mouvements la circulation sanguine est stimulée, le système nerveux redevient calme et résistant, tous les organes, les ligaments et les articulations ainsi que la colonne vertébrale sont renforcés, les muscles sont rendus forts et dynamiques, le mental trouve sa paix et l’expérience du Soi devient aisée.
Des séquences de mouvements sont conçues spécifiquement pour travailler le fonctionnement précis des organes du corps, des ligaments, des os, des hémisphères du cerveau etc.
Dès le plus jeune âge, par la pratique régulière de cet art, tout un chacun peut énormément bénéficier, en élevant ainsi son système de vibrations énergétiques et en favorisant de cette façon l’épanouissement global de la santé, dans l’esprit du souhait de longévité.
Dans les cours de base , les « Ba Duan Jin » sont enseignés comme système complet de bonnes fondations pour une pratique plus avancée. Trois niveaux différents sont enseignés, BASIC LEVEL, MEDIUM LEVEL, ADVANCED LEVEL (niveaux de base, médium et avancé). Après maîtrise de cette forme de base à plusieurs niveaux, une forme assise en quatre parties est enseignée, ce qui constitue le second degré. Après maîtrise du second degré on passe au niveau supérieur qui est une combinaison de Yi JIN JING et de XI SUI JING, (Classique de changements des muscles et tendons et de la forme assise destinée à purifier la moelle épinière). Cette combinaison amène à déclencher des énergies puissantes et bénéfiques à tous les niveaux de l’être.
Chaque cours classique de Qi Gong contient une méditation, des exercices d’échauffements et d’étirements, et en troisième partie les exercices proprement dits des formes spécifiques des « BA DUAN JIN »et bien entendu également d’autres formes spécifiques.
Qi-Gong (sometimes written Chi Gong or Chi Kung) means “control of energy” or “discipline of energy”. “Qi” represents the concept of subtle vapor which pervades all existing things in the universe and represents the true aspect of the interior force of the energy which is everywhere, even in the breath of the body.
The origin of Qi-Gong goes back to historical currents of Buddhist monasteries, Taoist university schools, practices of herbalists and doctors, and various disciplines of internal and external martial arts as well as Confucianism. In old times, the branches originating in Buddhism gave rise to schools where the styles were inspired by the philosophical and psychological aspect of detachment, of the middle path, and by the practice of meditation. Here the system of the movements results from the observation and the simulation of savage animals (the bear, crane, tiger, eagle, mantis etc). According to legend, Qi-Gong was introduced by Bodhidharma into the first times of Shaolin for the maintenance of good health of the monks and of their defense against dangers. This Qi-Gong is called the Great Law of Bouddhification.
In schools originating from Taoism, the styles are inspired by the concept of TAO (“without name” or the Way and the Virtue) and by subtle universal dynamics of “yin and yang”, two primary, positive and negative forces, which form the state of balance, in a perpetual motion of energy, in perfect harmony. Here also the techniques are developed by the observation of nature and animals (the stag, monkey, tiger, bear, etc) and aim at fusing by movements power and flexibility, vitality and calm, in a unified expression. These styles of Qi-Gong are also intended to cultivate the spirit and to preserve health. They are called “the Great Law of the cultivation” in the Way.
The schools formed from the wisdom of the herbalists and Taoist doctors of ancient times gave rise to specific forms especially based on knowledge “of meridian lines” (network of principal points of the body where energy enters and leaves), and on knowledge of the elements of nature (wood, fire, ground, metal, water), in relation with the vital bodies (heart, lungs, pancreas, liver, spleen, kidneys, bladder) according to 24 periods of the year. The goal of these movements is to ensure free circulation of the breath and the fluids and blood in the vessels. The principle of these forms is to be in good health and to take care. The styles belong to the way of “The Cinnabar Alchemy with nine fortresses (towers).”
The Qi-Gong which developed from the martial arts especially prepares one to become strong and for better living, to defend oneself and for competitions which today in the West are carried at the sporting level. These forms and styles are called the Law of Arhat.
The rules of life, respect, respect of the ancestors, arts and social conduits are integrated into the various styles as a philosophical and psychological aspect. These principles are called “the Way of diamond Dhyâna” and represent the achievement of Oneself. They are inspired as much by Taoism as Confucianism and Chan Buddhism (Zen-Buddhism).
These five main currents were influenced and altered by each other over centuries, while having as a common base the concept of safeguarding health in harmony with nature, to be strong and to serve the common good.
The technique of the forms is practised by upright or standing positions, sitting upright or even lying, static or dynamic, strong or soft. By the forms of movements, blood circulation is stimulated, the nervous system becomes calm and resistant, all the organs (bodies), the ligaments and the articulations as well as the spinal column are reinforced, the muscles are made strong and dynamic, the mind finds peace and experiencing the Self becomes easy.
Sequences of movements are conceived specifically to work the precise functioning of the organs (bodies) of the body, the ligaments, the bones, the hemispheres of the brain.
From a young age, one can profit enormously by the regular practice of this art, raising one’s system of energy vibrations and by supporting the total blooming of health and longevity.
In the basic classes of Qi-Gong like taught at Howald, the “Ba Duan Jin” are taught as a complete set of good foundations and the basic system for a more advanced practice.
Three different levels are taught: BASIC, MEDIUM, and ADVANCED LEVEL. After control of this basic form on several levels, a sitting form in four parts is taught, which constitutes the second degree. After control of the second degree, one passes at the higher level which is a combination of Yi JIN JING and XI SUI JING, (traditional form of changing muscles and tendons and the sitting form intended to purify the spinal cord). This combination unleashes powerful and beneficial energies on all the levels of being.
Each class of classical Qi-Gong contains a meditation, exercises of heating and stretching the physical body, and in the third part the specific forms of exercises of “BA DUAN JIN” or other specific Qi-Gong forms.
What is Medical Qigong and Why You Need It
Medical Qigong is becoming extremely important in the world as healthcare costs rise, economies are shrinking; the world is waking up to the fact they need to find alternative preventative medicine. What is Medical Qigong? The word “Qi” means air or energy. The word “Gong” means work. The word “Medical” is self-explanatory. What is not so obvious is how does one apply Qigong to the medical aspect?
Medical Qigong principle lays on the fundamental belief that all illness arises from imbalance, stagnation in energetic patterns. It is used to treat these disorders and is used as a preventative medicine by restoring and adjusting energetic balances, breaking through stagnation bringing unimpeded flow and circulation back to the body.
What Medical Qigong Can Treat
Medical Qigong has been used in not only ancient China, but also modern day China to treat a wide variety of illnesses and disease. It is often used in conjunction with Chinese Medicine herbs and even now western medicine.
Medical Qigong in China has been used for thousands of years and still to this day to treat various disorders such as:
- Cancer (all types)
- Sports Injuries
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Orthopedic Disorders
- Broken Bones
- Common Cold
- Emotional Disorders
- Bipolar disorder
2 General Categories of Medical Qigong
- Outgoing Qigong Therapy
Outgoing Qigong therapy requires a recipient and a giver. One might suffer from an illness or worse. They seek a Qigong therapy practitioner to do healing work on them. The person administering the therapy will infuse the receiver with healing Qi. The practitioner can use various healing sounds and or light visualizations depending on if they are treating a certain organ. Tui Na can be considered a type of Outgoing Qigong therapy.
- Medical Qigong Exercises
Medical Qigong exercises are designed to open up the meridian channels.
3 Levels of Dynamic Medical Qigong Exercises
In the first level of Medical Qigong, the practitioner needs to open up the Meridian Channels of the body. The Chinese say the meridians are like the rivers that flow to the oceans and lakes of your body. The oceans and lakes of your body are your organs. If a river is blocked, stagnation will build. If it does not find a way to flow, it will burst or find another path that may change the natural course of nature. In Taoism we are a microcosm of nature. If your meridians are blocked, not opening and flowing on a regular basis then the proper nutrients, oxygen and Qi cannot flow to your organs. This is like cutting off the oxygen supply to them. They cannot breathe. Once you cut off flow to them, they will suffer. If they suffer to long, you can end up with damage to your organs. Therefore it is imperative to keep your Meridian Channels open and flowing. In our Level 1 Medical Qigong course we teach the 14 Meridian Flow Set. This set is comprised of 14 movements designed for the specific purpose of opening all the meridian pathways.1. Bone Qigong-Gu Tou Gong
Once you have opened your meridian pathways the next step is to massage your internal organs. Our Organ Qigong Set is made up of 8 Qigong movements and 3 warm-up exercises. By completing this entire set you will have gently massaged your internal organs in multiple ways and angles through various stretching movements coupled with compression and expansion of the body in many ways. I can tell you once you experience this Qigong you will want to do it everyday at least once. It really wakes my body up and gives me good feelings all over.
After you have completed the Organ Qigong set the next level is to guide the Qi into the bone marrow, tendons and ligaments. This is an advanced stage of Medical Qigong as it is also more challenging than Meridian and Organ Qigong as it requires deep stances coupled with deep twisting movements.
The Qi feelings you will derive from each of these sets feel different. If practiced together you have the opportunity for maximum Qi development and a preventative medicine program that is for free and can be practiced whenever you want.
Sitting Medical Qigong such as Primordial Breathing with the Golden Elixir Breath is used to treat a variety of gastrointestinal disorders and other illnesses. The saliva in traditional Qigong is considered the Golden Elixir. The Taoists believe it has a huge amount of powerful healing benefits.
I highly recommend you incorporate a daily Medical Qigong routine into your schedule as I do, to gain maximum natural preventive medicine.
The Modern Research of Meridians and Muscle Fascia
There has been ongoing research into physically identifying where the meridian systems actually are. In his groundbreaking book Anatomy Trains, Thomas Meyers worked on dissecting cadavers to understand the inner workings of the muscle fascia. He discovered previously unknown lines of muscle fascia that were interwoven throughout the body. He called these connections The Myofascial Meridians. At the time, he was not looking for, nor was he referring to the Asian Meridian system. It was only later that he realized the uncanny parallels of the Meridian lines in Traditional Chinese Medicine and his own discovery of these Myofascial Meridian lines.
The Link of Meridians and Muscle Fascia
Modern research has shown the link in both form and function between the workings of acupuncture and the fascial network in general. Prominent acupuncture and researcher, Dr. Helene Langevin have shown that connective tissue along with collagen fibers and fibroblasts wind around the end of an acupuncture needle when it is rotated in place creating detectable mechanical effects. Dr. Langevnin concluded that oriental acupuncture meridians may follow intramuscular or intramuscular fascial planes.
Meridian Qigong and Muscle Fascia
There is conclusive evidence that the fascial net responds and distributes forces as a whole not just locally. There was measured strain in various tissues while doing the straight leg lift test, commonly though to measure hamstring resistance to hip flexion as we have in one of the exercises called Unicorn with Front Stretch Kick (see the chapter: Exercise Instructions). The strain distributes itself through the myofascial net. According to Meyers, the distribution tracks the Superficial Back Line, the Spiral Line, and the Back Functional Line. The Superficial Back Line is related to the Bladder Meridian. The Spiral Line is related to the Stomach and Bladder Meridians of the acupuncture Meridians from Traditional Chinese Medicine.
It was only after an in depth conversation with Chris Kummer, who is an anatomist and Yoga teacher that I discovered this book and the fact that modern research is telling us something the Taoists have been telling us for thousands of years, but in a different language. One of the greatest joys and fascinating aspects of Qigong for me was the discovery of the connections within my body. When I was a young student I thought it was rather mystical to feel these connections, but as I began to study western anatomy I realized I was actually feeling the connections of the muscle fascia throughout my body. My discovery of Thomas Meyers work and others was confirming evidence of what I had known all along. It is one thing to read about the meridians, but to feel and experience these connections takes patience and lots of practice, but the rewards are immeasurable.
Fajin: The Secrets of Qi Energy Release
The Taoist masters of China have practiced Fajin for hundreds of years if not thousands. Bruce Lee with his famous one-inch punch popularized it. Fajin was made famous by The Magus of Java John Chang who could release Qi in the form of electricity powerful enough to start fires. John Chang, the Indonesian Chinese from Indonesia first began to use Fajin in his early years as a form of self-defense. Later he used Fajin to heal people in his healing practices.
What is Fajin?
Fajin is an explosive release of Qi that circles or spirals from the Dan Tian (lower abdomen) to the limbs or body parts such as the head, shoulders and elbows.
Fajin in Qigong
Fajin is used in Qigong as an invigorating method of bringing powerful circulation to the extremities. It is also used to release emotions including anger and frustration. It can be used to express happiness even. If someone is too Yang, too much energy, they need Fajin to release pent up energy. If someone’s energy is lacking, they use a Yin, water method of Qigong to build up the energy and then release it with the Yang, fiery Fajin method.
Fajin For Martial Arts
It is used in the internal martial arts a method of striking an opponent to cause internal damage. Bruce Lee’s one in punch popularized the method of Fajin in martial arts proving significant internal power could be generated with micro movements of the body. Some say his power came from Wing Chun, but if you look at Bruce Lee’s movements there was waist action indicating it was an internal art. In the 2010 television show, Stan Lee’s Superhumans, a Shaolin monk demonstrated his one-inch punch on a crash test dummy. The testing showed it was 1.7 times more injurious than a 30mph car crash with modern safety features.
There are a variety of methods to generate Fajin otherwise known as Fali. Fajin is used in Baguazhang, Tai Chi, Xing Yi and other martial arts. In Baguazhang we have the 8 Mother Palms, which teach us how to generate Fajin in 8 different directions. These palms are trained for 4 years in total (6 months each) in order to generate maximum Fajin and from each palm and full integrate it into your body.
The Secrets of Fajin
The secret of Fajin lies in the motion of the Dan Tian. It requires a loose, supple body that is flexible, yet strong. The legs are like the handles of a whip and the hands and fingertips are the ends of the whip. If any part of a whip is stiff it won’t work. I have trained Fajin methods with a variety of martial art and Qigong schools around the world. Each method varies slightly. Some focus on a specific rotation of the hips, while others combine a shaking of the body like a dog when it shakes off water from its body when it is wet. From my own experience, the secret of powerful Fajin Qi releases requires a variety of external and internal body movements to combine and harmonize at the same time. It takes specific motions of the pelvis, hips and Dan Tian, combined with a forceful exhalation, which pumps the Qi from the Dan Tian to the extremities. It combines shaking the body with specific rotation of the hips. Releasing Fajin in different directions requires different rotations of the hips. It takes many repetitions and a lot of correct practice under a qualified instructor to have a good Fajin release. This all requires a lot of body conditioning and training.
The mysterious and beautiful methods of Fajin are a life long study. It is all worth the effort, as I would not have wanted to live a life without feeling Fajin, as you can see by my poem from below. It is extremely addictive as you discover a new found sense of inner power of what this amazing human body is capable of.
The magical Feeling of Releasing Qi Through Fajin
“I wouldn’t want to have lived without feeling this incredible feeling.
Like lightening surging through your body.
Feeling the power from heaven and earth merge into your body, pull into your Dan Tian and then surge out in a whip, rippling effortlessly out to your hands and feet.
Loosening my body with every move. As I finish my organs feel deeply relaxed, my emotions are as calm as still as a lake in the early morning. Feeling soft, yet strong. Supple and flexible my body feels so good!”