Jumat, 24 Juni 2011

QI 3 - 气 - 氣

QI 3 - 气 - 氣

Definition of Qi

What is Qi? Qi means breathe or air in Chinese. This is the easy part.

The word ‘qi’ in a key concept in many Chinese metaphysics disciplines including Feng Shui. The word ‘qi’ can have different meaning depending on where it is applied and trying to come out with a single definition can be quite a challenge.

Qi is often defined as a form of energy. For the uninitiated it is difficult to relate qi to energy and therefore instead of trying to come out with a definition of qi, I will attempt to explain the meaning of qi by relating to it in the practice of Feng Shui.

There are two type of qi namely Sheng Qi (Living Qi) and Sha Qi (Killing Qi). In Feng Shui we want to live in a place with plenty of Sheng Qi and to avoid places or offending structures that generate Sha Qi.

What is Qi?

meaning of qi

Since we cannot see qi, the next best thing is to look for indicators of qi. A place with thriving fauna and flora has plenty of Sheng Qi. On the other hand a place that is dry and rocky or sandy without much fauna and flora is said to be lacking in qi. This is a first clue to the meaning of qi. It is something that is supports life!

In an ancient Feng Shui text, we learn that “qi is carried by the wind and accumulates near water”. From this statement we know that this life giving Sheng Qi exists in the atmosphere, can be blown away and gathers where there is water. This is another clue to the meaning of qi. It is some sort of life giving ‘energy’ that can be found in the air!

We also know that the mountain ranges with lush green vegetation are a rich source and carrier of qi. In Feng Shui, mountains are known as Dragon and hence qi is also known as the dragons breathe. This is yet another clue to the meaning of qi.

Certain structures like high tension pylon lines generate Sha or Killing Qi and it can be detrimental to health if we live near to one for a long time. Is this another manifestation of qi? This time is it some sort of strong electromagnetic force!

meaning of qi

In the study of Feng Shui there is Xing Fa (shape techniques) and Li Fa (calculation of qi). Xing Fa is about the surrounding forms and how they affect us. Li Fa on the other is about qi that we cannot see. It is about the effect of planetary movements on us. This is a qi that we cannot see but we know where they are at different time by applying the formulas left to us by our forefathers.

So far I have not attempted to give a definition of qi. Instead I have tried to reveal the meaning of qi through examples and practices in Feng Shui. I hope you now have at better understanding of qi (at least from a Feng Shui perspective) and understand why it is so difficult to come out with a definition of qi.

The Meaning of Qi

Richard C Chen
Phone: (312) 328-9906

China has more than 2000 years history, the study of the Traditional Chinese Medical has experienced thousands years of practice. With the application of natural sources of energy, people get the benefits from the nature for health and the happiness of life. Today, lots of western people like to study this subject. It is a very good activity toward the cultural exchange, and the peace of the world. 

In study the Traditional Chinese Medical, the most confusing term that puzzles western people, is the meaning of Qi. Simply, Qi is energy. Broadly, to understand the activities of Qi, we must understand the Chinese Taoism explanation of Tao ( Dao) and Te (De). Tao (Dao) is Qi, Tao is the smallest and original particle of the universe with special capacity and movement regulation. It exists in everywhere and forms everything; it passes through the time – past, current, and future – there is no space and time barrier of Tao; it is also the inner force which maintains the balance and functioning of everything. Te (De) is moral virtue. Moral virtue is the application of Tao, the expressing process of the character of Tao, and the regulation of matters in motion. All the things in the universe have in their orbit regulation in movement, and everything has a basic norm, this is virtue. According to the School of Soaring Crane Qigong, through modern lab, the energy of Qi has been shown to be formed with infrared electromagnetism waves, the magnetic field, static, energetic particles, and other messages. It is a high energy material.

It is hard to understand the Taoism idea of Qi, and the modern science is not advance enough to prove “the smallest and original particle of the universe”. However, Taoism is native Chinese culture, it exists for more than 2000 years already, we cannot disregard this idea. Many of the modern Chinese scholars cannot get this meaning too. They tried many ways to understand it, and different people get the different meanings. The way to understand it is through comprehension (Chinese people call it awareness or sudden awakening).

Because everything has special capacity and movement regulation, their inner force of energy movement is Qi, it is a kind of inner energy flow.Like the western medical terminology, a word was formed with prefix, root, and suffix. Qi is suffix. The energy flow of activity:

Related to the heart, is called “XinQi”, Xin means heart;
Related to the stomach, is called “WuiQi”, Wui means stomach;
Related to the Kidney, is called “ShanQi”, Shan means Kidney,
Related to the Liver, is called “GanQi”, Gan means Liver,
Related to the Lounge, is called “HuiQi”, Hui means Lounge,
Related to blood, is called “XieQi”, Xie means blood.
The energy flow of activity,
Related to air, is called “KongQi”, Kong means sky, the air stays in the sky; the inner force of air movement is Qi;
Related to gas, is called MeiQi, Mei means coal;
Related to water, is called “ShuiQi”, Shui means water;
Related to earth, is called “TuQi”, Tu means earth;
Related to the Earth, is called “DiQi”, Di means the Earth.
The energy flow of activity,
Related to people’s fortune, is called “YinQi”, Yin means activities;
Related to FengSui, is called “LingQi”, Ling means deity.
Related to the motivation of army, is called “SiQi”, Si means soldier;
Related to the disease, is called “BingQi”, Bing means disease.
Related to Yang character, is called YangQi;
Related to Yin Character, is called YinQi.

From the above example, we can have a general concept about the meaning of Qi now. However, that is not enough. Qi includes both of the material base and the movement activity characters. This two kind of character is inseparable. Different kind of herb has different material base, and different functional activities. Thus Qi is very diversified. The material base of Qi is energy, and all of the material has energy, thus it is not hard for people to have a general concept of Qi. However, it is bard for people to understand the functional activity characters of Qi.

The material base of Qi is energy. According to physics, energy can neither be created, nor be destroyed, it always transfers from a material to another material, or transforms from a form to another form, and the general amount of energy cannot be changed. For example, the energy of fire is transferred to water, while the water is boiling; and the chemical energy is transformed into mechanical energy, while the gas is burning inside the engine of a car. Understand this idea, we can easily understand that the activities of Qi are diversified. 

Technique and herb method are not important, the skillful doctor is the one who can freely apply the energy. It is difficult for western people to understand and memorize the Traditional Chinese Medical. This is reality. However, it is not the fault of western people, because the culture and natural sources of the eastern and western world are different. You can be a skillful doctor while you can understand the functional character of Qi. Thus you can freely apply the natural energy for medical use.

There are many ideas explain the functional characters of Qi. As mankind is going to enter the 21st century, I think that it is a good sense to start this new subject for the understanding of the activities of Qi now.

In 1979, the sun had its third tremendous eruption that stimulated strong waves, emitted high energetic material, and replaced the energy field of the universe. During this year, some resourceful people thought that modern science and human beings would have a big evolution. They theorize that 1970s atomic scientific period and it was now coming to an end; beginning with the 1980s, modern science would be characterized by a “human biological  science” period. Many scientists have now switched their focus of study to this subject.  Notably, the famous rocket scientist, General QUAN Xueshen, believes that human body is a complex biological microcosm, it opens itself to nature; the natural universe is a macrocosm which controls our small universal system; human beings with special methods can make their small universal systems link together with the huge natural universal system thereby easily applying the information and energy in the universe to develop modern science and human beings in many ways.

Oneness -- If contends that nature includes mankind and there force, that human beings and the natural world are all integrated into a single unit of existence. Everything is one entire entity. Although our visible body can be separated from nature, human beings are biologically dependent upon the principle of the natural world and are linked together within a universal field of interdependent existence. If we forget our flesh, as a source of personal existence, our energy can be released and joined into the universal field of what Western philosophers have called "being." According to traditional Chinese culture, that the universe and human beings are unified to be one entire entity which is called “TIAN REN HE YI”. TIAN means the universe, REN means mankind, HE means unify, and YI means one. With this idea, human being and the universe are one entire entity; while they maintain balance, the world is peace and the human body is healthy. While you can perfectly adjust yourself to balance with the universal regulations, you are free from the misfortunes of life. This is a state of existence.

Twoness, Taiji --- the idea of Yin & Yang. Yin & Yang, is the representing of the two opposites characters of the natural relative things and phenomena. It is not only represents the opposites characters of two things, but also represents the opposites characters related into a thing. Yin&Yang method believes that all of the things in the natural world exist in the Yin&Yang, the development of everything in the world is the result which the Yin&Yang acted. Yin & Yang is the regulation of the natural world, the guiding principal of everything, the basis of the development, and the original force of the producing and eliminating. They are related to each other; positive and negative, male and female, clearly and chaotic, health and sick, good and bad, uplift and sad, order and disorder, success and fail, increase and decrease, light and dark, black and white, left and right, front and back, etc. Creature has Yin & Yang characters, while the zygote of a creature begins its first cleavage, two cells are formed, there are Yin and Yan characters exist in this two cells; and more and more Yin & Yang characters will be created through the development of the embryonic.

The traditional Chinese Medical is based on the virtue of Yin and Yang -- the positive and negative materials; and applying the counterbalance character to convert all evil materials. Yin & Yang can be categorized into four ideas: mutually inclusive, mutually exclusive, mutually revolve, and mutually balance.

  • Mutually inclusive: The existence of Yin & Yang relate to each other. That is to say, although they are different kinds of characters, they link with each other; the existence of Yang is based on the existence of Yin, and the existence of Yin is based on the existence of Yang; If there is no Yang, there is no Yin; If there is no Yin, there is no Yang.

  • Mutually exclusive: The state of the Yin & Yang is not at peace, Yin and Yang always eliminate each other to become imbalance which keep the development of life force. 

  • Mutual balance: Although Yin and Yang react to each other they should maintain the balance that is the condition of health and peace. While the balance condition breaks, either Yang over Yin, or Yin over Yang, people will have disease.

  • Mutually revolve: The state of Yin and Yang can base on special condition for a mutually revolving. That’s to say, Yin can turn to Yang, and Yang can turn to Yin. Things will develop in the opposite direction when they reach the limit. Regardless of what kind of character, while an unusual character develops exceedingly, it will automatically revolve to its opposite side in the end.
Threeness --- the relationship between the Universe, human beings, and the Earth. The human body, especially the brain is treated as a small universal system. Human body is a complex biological microcosm, it opens itself to nature; the natural universe is a macrocosm which controls our small universal system; human beings with special methods can make their small universal systems link together with the huge natural universal system thereby easily applying the information and energy in the universe to develop modern science and human beings in many ways. According to Albert Einstein’s Relative Theory: E=MC2. E is energy, M is mass which relates to matter and space, and C is the velocity of light that relates to speed and time. From this relationship between the energy, space, and time we can logically understand the relationship between the human being and the universe. The visible separation of people and nature is an illusion that can be overcome through Qi (energy). According to Soaring Crane Qigong, there are three main energy storage areas in our body which are called "Dantian": Lower Dantian is in the center of the pelvic cavity which connects to the earth, Middle Dantian is in the center of the abdominal cavity which connects to human beings, and Upper Dantian is in the center of forebrain which connects to the universe. In addition there is a central channel which is called "Zhongmei" in people's central body which joins these three Dantian together with inner energy circulation channels (meridians) and pressure points to form our small universal system. Nature includes the space and the earth, the balance relationship between the universe, human, and the earth, is the way of life. This is a functional character of Qi.

Fiveness --- Wuxing --- the energy source of Five Elements: Metal, Water, Wood, Fire, and Earth. Based on the Oriental culture, the natural world and creatures are formed with five sources of energy materials. These five elements have supporting and restrain characters. We can apply their supporting and restrain character in a healing.                                            
  • Supporting character: Water ==> Wood ==> Fire ==> Earth ==> Metal ==>Water                                
  • Restrain character:  Metal ==> Wood ==> Earth ==> Water ==> Fire ==> Metal     

In conclusion, Qi is an energy form. To better understand what is Qi? People must understand its material base, and its functional characters.  It is the smallest and original particle of the universe with special capacity and movement regulation. It exists in everywhere and forms everything; it passes through the time – past, current, and future – there is no space and time barrier of Qi; it is also the inner force which maintains the balance and functioning of everything.

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