Qi and Health
What is Qi?
Qi is the building block of life. Everything in the universe is made of Qi, including us.
Qi is made up of energy, information and material, and is much much smaller than atoms. Qi is the building block of the material objects we can see and touch.
Western science understands Qi using theories of quantum physics, and has methods to confirm these theories, such as using the particle accelerator, and discovering the Higgs boson. Many non-western cultures have Qi as part of their culture, with language and cultural practices that involve Qi and Qifields.
How can we understand Qi practically? Imagine cooking. We take a recipe, an oven and ingredients and from those three things create a delicious meal. This delicious meal exists because together the material (the ingredients) the energy (the oven) and the information (the recipe) have come together in a particular way and something new has come from it.
Overall, the information is the most important part of this delicious meal. That is, we can take the same ingredients and an oven, but with different recipes we create different dishes. So in life the information in the Qi of a rock, makes the rock a rock. The information in the Qi of a cat makes the cat a cat. The information in the qi of cells in our fingers is information to create fingers, whilst the information in the qi of cells in our hair is information to create hair.
The information in the Qi is what determines the physical form.
As well as specific information for every tiny cell and part of our body, we also have a whole Qi system. Just like the systems in our physical body, such as the cardiovascular system with the heart and blood vessels, this Qi system has channels and pools. We can see pictures of where these Qi channels are in our body by looking at acupuncture diagrams. So at each moment we have a whole physical system and a whole Qi system that make us who and what we are. Very often we haven't learnt about the Qi aspect of our lives.
Our lives are a complex physical system and a complex Qi system.
The two co-exist and interact together.
Just as we take care of our physical bodies, we also need to take care of our Qi system.
How do we take care of our Qi?
We are born with a certain amount of Qi. A bit like being born with a rechargeable battery. When our Qi runs out, our life finishes. In our lives, we have not learnt how to preserve our Qi, so all our activities quickly use up our Qi. How then, do we recharge to get more?
Firstly we need to understand that our Qi follows our consciousness. Imagine we have been out all day somewhere new. All day we are busy looking around at new things and at the end of the day we feel very tired. Why are we so tired? It is because our consciousness has been focused outside our body all day. Qi follows our consciousness, so we have been sending our Qi out all day. The tiredness we feel is our body warning us that our Qi is lower than it should be and we need to really rest and sleep to gather more Qi. Sleep is a good way of replenishing our Qi, or recharging our battery. However, we can go much further and do something else very important, essential in fact.
We can keep our consciousness inside while we are connecting with the external. This way we are not only preserving our Qi, but we are also gathering more Qi from the universe. It is possible to have a day somewhere new and feel charged up at the end of the day. However this takes practice.
How do I get my Qi back?
So if we have sent our Qi out all our life, how do we get more, how do we make up the lost amount? Yuan Gong practice is a way to both increase the amount, flow and quality of our Qi. It also teaches us how to keep our consciousness inside ourselves during our lives, while remaining connected with what is happening externally in our lives.
Why do I get sick?
Illness at the physical level arise from deficient Qi, Qi blockages and poor quality of Qi. Yuan Qigong practice address all of these. To help understand this imagine a beautiful clean healthy vibrant river. We notice that there is a good amount of water (not a raging torrent and not a tiny trickle), it flow is unimpeded (there are no blockages or stagnant areas), and if we taste the water it tastes wonderful. The quality of the water is very pure. In our bodies it is similar. We are healthy if we have an abundant amount of Qi, it flows well and is of good quality. Yuan Gong practice helps us to improve all these aspects.
However, we need to go further. The cause of the poor quality Qi is our thoughts, attitudes, beliefs and views. Amazingly, our consciousness is in charge of our Qi. If we have thoughts or beliefs that are congruent with the goodness of nature, the quality of our Qi remains good. If the quality of our Qi is good, then our physical body remains healthy. If we have negative thoughts, hold negative beliefs or viewpoints, or have a negative attitude, then this affects our Qi in a negative way. The result is that our physical body becomes unhealthy and very often we don't feel so good.
In fact, these effects go further as the quality of Qi we have created then feeds back to our consciousness which is also a form of Qi. Positive thoughts and beliefs keep the Qi of our consciousness in good condition and helps up maintain a positive attitude and mindset. This creates an ongoing positive upward cycle. Negative thoughts and beliefs do the opposite, creating a vicious downwards cycle.
How do I get healthy?
Of course, life is not so simple and we all have a mix of beneficial and unhelpful thoughts and beliefs. Furthermore, there is no black and white, absolute right and wrong. However, what we can do is work on our Qi, to firstly improve the Qi of our physical body so we feel healthier. At the same time the Qi of our consciousness becomes clearer and more effective at making positive change. With a positive attitude, which we can continue to develop, this is an enjoyable process.
With a stronger, more focused consciousness we can then begin to effectively and efficiently improve our healthy thoughts, beliefs, viewpoints and attitudes, and at the same time change ways that are less healthy. Have you ever noticed that you've said or done things that you vowed you would never do? Or have you tried to change a habit or viewpoint, or stop a constant stream of thoughts in your head? By improving the amount, flow and quality of your Qi making these changes becomes easier, or even what has previously seemed impossible becomes possible. At the same time, we are able to strengthen and develop our good qualities, such as trust, openness, love, gratitude and respect and humility, creating a very solid foundation in our life.
What can I expect?
With willingness and effort, the result is taking life in the direction of better health, happiness & joy, a strong sense of well-being and growth & development of life. Yuan Qigong quickly makes positive change to our Qi, so on the whole we can begin to experience these changes soon after we begin to practice. This makes Yuan Qigong motivating to use.
It is really worthwhile to take good care of ourselves and work deeper and deeper into living this way. Practicing Yuan Qigong is a very pleasurable way to do this.
More information can be found at
The first method
Moving like drifting clouds and flowing water