Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Some Unusual Experiences in Early Qi Gong Practice

The following is an excerpt from the Level 2 book "The Universal Yi Fa":

"Brand new students may feel, sometime in the first week or two of daily Qi Gong practice, some physical symptoms that are not unlike having a mild cold; this is also normal and happens to at least a third of all new students. The ancient teachers suggested that this was due to the expulsion of stagnant Qi (or later, once Buddhism had become popular in China, the expulsion of "bad karma"); however it may also bepossible that these symptoms are in fact due to the way Qi Gong stimulates the lymphatic system into more effective detoxification.

Many students will experience, after their first few sessions of Qi Gong, feelings of excitement and pleasure during the practice, and a general sense of well-being after the practice. This is different from the bliss stage of pre-enlightenment, but is rather an effect of that initial enthusiasm for practice (and the conscious or unconscious sensing of initial Qi cultivation). It happens to at least a third of initial students. Instructors should make it clear that this is a normal sensation, but not to dwell too much or make that kind of pleasure the goal (otherwise, in the middle-early stages, when perfecting the technical
side of the movements becomes more challenging, they may start to get discouraged).

On the other hand, at least a third of the students may find that, in the days after initial Qi Gong practice, they start to feel more easily annoyed or irritated by everyday things in their life and environment. This is likely caused by the initial increase in sensitivity and perception that properly practiced Qi Gong generates. Students should be advised not to worry too much about it, to try to avoid outbursts or reactions caused by such irritation, and that once they get used to their higher level of perception, these sensations will pass.

One very common physical side effect of Qi Gong practice is most curious: practitioners will experience an increase of "bubbles" in their urine. The ancient teaching suggested that these are due to "excess Qi", not yet able to be contained in the new student as they are still in the process of activating the First Furnace. It may also be likely, however, that this is a side effect of increased oxygenation produced by improved breathing when practicing Qi Breathing. In either case, this curious side effect is completely harmless.

Finally many students, after the first two or three weeks of practice, report that they are getting less sleep than they used to; and for some this can seem quite distressing. However, the student should consider whether their reduced hours of sleep actually translate into a sensation of being tired when they wake up. They will likely find that even if they have slept one to three hours less than they were previously used to, they wake up feeling no more tired than they would normally. This is because the physical effects of Qi Gong, and the increased life energy generated by the proper circulation of Qi in the body, makes less sleep necessary to get the same amount of physical regeneration. So if a student is sleeping less but is not feeling exhausted from it, they should realize that this is not a serious problem at all, but rather an advantage of practice! At the same time, the instructor should warn students away from intentionally getting less sleep; if their body naturally sleeps less, that is different than if they are trying to use Qi Gong as a way to "burn the midnight oil", which is not as such advised."

If you are interested in Yi Fa Qi Gong, you could start on it by checking out the Yi Fa Society Playlist on Youtube.

If you are interested in joining the Yi Fa Society and working on its curriculum, please feel free to contact me!

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