IG’s Peace Blog

Peace and its many aspects

Chi and Qi

I wrote last year about Inner and Outer Peace , but expected to have (much) more to say about the topic.  Well, it seemed about the right time to get back to it.  I have been doing some yoga exercises each morning for some years, but have also been interested in Tai chi chuan and Qigong ; and recently I started to look into them more extensively.  Of course, one should not forget that Tai chi is not just a form of  exercise, but is actually a martial art.   That being said, it seems obvious if you Google the term that more people (at least in the West) seem interested in Tai chi for its health and harmony benefits than for fighting (and, btw, even in fighting it emphasizes defense).  In fact, the link between Tai chi and Qibong (which includes extensive exercises for health and well being) seems very close in current practice (maybe this was always the case–I make no claim to expertise here).

Anyhow, what got me thinking is this (typical) description of Qigong from the article linked above:

“Qigong uses slow graceful movements and controlled breathing techniques to promote the circulation of qi within the human body, and enhance a practitioner’s overall health.”

Everything I’ve seen on this kind of exercise emphasizes being relaxed, moving in a fluid way and finding peace and new energy.  To get a sense of this “flow” have a look at the video below:

So, as witnessed through Tai chi and Quigong practice (and many other practices as well) an individual becomes peaceful by moving like this, by turning inward and meditating and through following a “path” defined by moral values.  One does not become peaceful (obviously) through violent frenetic action, an unsettled mind and doing whatever our senses and ego tell us to do.  Seems to me that what applies to the individual also applies to the planet, and that healing the planet means finding the praxis that moves us from social confusion and violence to clarity, harmony and new energy.  While not exactly a new idea, this understanding provides a touchstone for evaluating social policy and initiatives of all kinds.   And, it underscores the idea that people who experience some form of inner peace, will be better able to conceive and contribute to the emergence of outer peace.

“Love is the key we must turn
Truth is the flame we must burn
Freedom the lesson we must learn
Do you know what I mean
Have your eyes really seen”

(“Love Song”, Elton John)

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August 17, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , ,

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