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The basic theories of Qigong (qigung) as a therapeutic activity or means of connecting, are very much the same as those of traditional Chinese medicine. The holistic concept that "nature and man form an organic whole" is the core of the theoretical basis for both traditional Chinese medicine and Qigong . The theory of yin and yang is a foundation stone for traditional Chinese medicine and ancient ways of preserving health, Qigong included. The human body, for instance, has its yin and yang parts: the former including the trunk, the back and the limbs and the latter including the lower part of the body, the abdomen and the internal organs. Heat in the body is yang, and cold is yin.

The imbalance between yin and yang in the body would result in ailment. As far as man's relations with nature are concerned, there is yang Qi existing outside the body and yin Qi circulating within it. The purpose of Qigong exercises is to achieve a better balance of yin and yang not only within the body but also between the body and the external world. The ancient theory of the five elements (as in Tai Chi) provides concrete explanations about the relationships between different parts of the human body the five elements of metal, wood, water, fire and earth are regarded as the basic elements of nature. The longitudinal channels are called jing and the lateral ones, luo. The points along these channels are vital spots where Qi and blood converge and disperse. Treating these spots with acupuncture or acupressure, or focusing one's attention on them in Qigong exercises, helps regulate the jingluo channels for the benefit of the whole body. The main function of the five-zang organs is to store basic life-sustaining substances such as jing, Qi, shen and blood. Since the purpose of' Qigong is to cultivate jing, qi and shen, great care is taken of the zangfu organs in qigong practice.

Jing, qi and shen are regarded as the "three treasures" in the human body and, according to traditional Chinese medicine, form the main constituents of human life. The two types of Jing are interdependent: Prenatal jing serves as the material base for the generation of postnatal Jing, which in turn constantly makes up for the consumption of prenatal jing Qi, is an infinitesimal substance by which the human body is nourished. Qi exists in different forms and performs different functions in different parts of the body. The most important type of Qi is yuan qi (literally, primordial qi), also called zhen qi (genuine Qi), which is a combined manifestation of the yin and yang elements in the kidneys. The ancients believed that yuan qi, coming from heaven and filing the human body together with the qi generated by grain and, Water is the root of life and the motive power behind the growth of the human body and the functional activities of its internal organs. The ancients believe that all man's shen and physical form are inseparable and that a man will thrive if he gains shen and die if he loses it. Jing, qi and shen are inseparably linked with each another. Qi is produced from jing hence the saying "exercise jing and transform it into qi" within Qigong practice.

The production of Jing depends on the action of qi while the production of qi is expressive of shen -- hence the need to exercise qi and transform it into shen. A man full of jing and qi must he replete with shen. Conversely, one who lacks shen can never have adequate jing or qi. Qigong is in essence an exercise of jing, qi and shen, which form the material basis for Qigong exercise and are the basic things sought after in Qigong practice. Jing, qi and shen are the very objects to be achieved in Qigong practice, the aim of which is to gather jing, nourish qi and preserve shen all contributing to good health

Qigong is pronounced Chi Gong (With an almost silent i )

Basic Theories of Qigung
Editied from Cen Yusfang, 1996, Chinese Qigung Essentials, New World Press, Beijing




See also Tai Chi

The Root of Chinese Qigong: Secrets for Health, Longevity and Enlightenment
Yang Jwing-Ming
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This book not only covers QiGong on a theoretical level, since Dr Yang has praticed martial arts and qigong since he was a teenager. He also presents a very interesting section with some scientifical hypotheses about Qi, bioelectromagnetic energy and the electromagnetic field in the human body. It is also a great introduction to energy work (qigong), to quote Dr Yang The main purpose of this book is to lead you to the path of study.
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T'ai Chi And QiGong - The Prescription For The Future - An Anthology [DVD]
Bill Douglas
QiGong and Tai Chi.
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A comprehensive guide to the ancient art of T'ai Chi. Chapters include: 'Explanation Of T'ai Chi/QiGong Tenets', 'Introduction To Sitting QiGong's Energy Work Relaxation Therapy', 'T'ai Chi Warm Ups Or Moving QiGing', 'Introduction To The Beginning Movements Of Kuang Ping Yang Style Of T'ai Chi Chaun', 'Expanded T'ai Chi Warm Ups Or Moving QiGong', 'Continuing Instruction In The Kuang Ping Yang Style Of T'ai Chuan' and 'Further Explanation Of How The Dan Tien, Vertical Axis, Breath And Awareness Combine To Maximise Your Human Potential'
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