Author Topic: What is Chi?  (Read 31500 times)

Bebek Sincap Ratatosk

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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2008, 05:07:34 pm »
This thread is inspiring me to try and begin some form of Chi manipulation exercise.  Up to now, i have always clung to the view that there is definitely something there, but it's not well defined enough (without handwaving or fluffery) for me to give credibility to... My wife (a massage therapist, and more esoterically gullible attuned)  refers to 'energy' and my immediate response is along the lines of 'what are you blathering about? what energy are you talking about?' which, of course, kills any useful coversation.  then i feel like an ass, and it's over.  But i'm thinking now (in part because of this thread) that i should experience the phenomenon first hand without getting too hung up on the fact that we don't have an adequate enough (in my tiny opinion) model to explain it.

soooooo. that being said:  Could we have a weigh in on what people have had the most successful experiences with? Rat voted for the 'archaeology of the soul' it seems.  what about the rest of you?  Also, i'm thinking the state of mind that you embark on it with would effect your success too, so that would be worth mentioning, no?

I think Antero's stuff is brilliant, but BUT!, I have no qualms in admitting that I'm biased. His book Angel Tech was one of the first books to change my brain, and his use of RAW and Leary models (which I'm familiar with) make it easier to work through. I also did some Method Acting which seems pretty useful.

The system Antero made out of his archeology work is called Paratheatrics, and its very interesting to experience. Very much a 'raising of energy' without worrying about crystals or Chi or labels. However, it also means you spend time in your own headspace, dancing around like a crazy person. Being that I am a crazy person, this was not difficult. If you are not a crazy person, it may be a little more difficult.

I highly recommend checking out his YouTube channel. Remember his videos are of polished public rituals/performances. Not of the regular exercises etc.

http://www.youtube.com/user/paratheatrical

Chi exercises require getting into the model a bit, but the exercises are IMO a little less 'intense' if you've never done anything like this before. Not that they 'raise less energy' but, just that they require less 'acting'.

The difference between "Colse your eyes and visualize a ball of energy" and "You are now the First Circuit of your own brain, behave accordingly" ;-) (Obvious simplistic example is obvious)
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #16 on: October 27, 2008, 06:27:30 pm »
I found the ti chi classes i took useful and interesting, angel tec was good too. Also i found readily verifiable results with Carlos Castaneda's "don Juan's" gait of power exercises and as a tenderfoot with no hippie calluses was able to walk bare foot in the desert W/O hurting my feet, a  pretty mind blowing accomplishment at the time.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2008, 01:04:55 am »
This thread is inspiring me to try and begin some form of Chi manipulation exercise.  Up to now, i have always clung to the view that there is definitely something there, but it's not well defined enough (without handwaving or fluffery) for me to give credibility to... My wife (a massage therapist, and more esoterically gullible attuned)  refers to 'energy' and my immediate response is along the lines of 'what are you blathering about? what energy are you talking about?' which, of course, kills any useful coversation.  then i feel like an ass, and it's over.  But i'm thinking now (in part because of this thread) that i should experience the phenomenon first hand without getting too hung up on the fact that we don't have an adequate enough (in my tiny opinion) model to explain it.

soooooo. that being said:  Could we have a weigh in on what people have had the most successful experiences with? Rat voted for the 'archaeology of the soul' it seems.  what about the rest of you?  Also, i'm thinking the state of mind that you embark on it with would effect your success too, so that would be worth mentioning, no?

I think Antero's stuff is brilliant, but BUT!, I have no qualms in admitting that I'm biased. His book Angel Tech was one of the first books to change my brain, and his use of RAW and Leary models (which I'm familiar with) make it easier to work through. I also did some Method Acting which seems pretty useful.

The system Antero made out of his archeology work is called Paratheatrics, and its very interesting to experience. Very much a 'raising of energy' without worrying about crystals or Chi or labels. However, it also means you spend time in your own headspace, dancing around like a crazy person. Being that I am a crazy person, this was not difficult. If you are not a crazy person, it may be a little more difficult.

I highly recommend checking out his YouTube channel. Remember his videos are of polished public rituals/performances. Not of the regular exercises etc.

http://www.youtube.com/user/paratheatrical

Chi exercises require getting into the model a bit, but the exercises are IMO a little less 'intense' if you've never done anything like this before. Not that they 'raise less energy' but, just that they require less 'acting'.

The difference between "Colse your eyes and visualize a ball of energy" and "You are now the First Circuit of your own brain, behave accordingly" ;-) (Obvious simplistic example is obvious)

I really like to cut things down to the bare bones and shape them to my ethics and spirituality, loosing the complex ritual that other systems have.  So, chi gong works for me because it doesn't require any belief in something outside your own experience, or any ritual, or doctrine. The simple exercise of breathing and focusing on the body systematically and sensing, over time, brings an awareness of "energy" or whatever the hell it is, without believing that this energy is some cosmic force, or that Taoism is perfection, or believing in the Chinese Immortals. Its okay for me to say this is my mind body connection at work, I am manipulating my body with my mind, and just go with it. Biofeedback is a scientific fact, there is plenty of evidence for it, so I don't  have to enter new models to experience it, or if I do, I don't have to entertain ritual.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2008, 05:34:29 am »
I'd completely forgotten about the chi exercises from my earliest martial arts classes.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #19 on: October 28, 2008, 07:02:46 am »
I'm a 2nd Dan in Ki-do (korean, evolved from moo duk kwan and hap ki do.) My grand master, Grand Master Moon Ku Baek, had a saying: "If you want to be like superman, the secret is to breathe." Given that I've seen him and Grandmaster Kim break cast-iron wok covers with a chop I can well believe it. Their technique is much better than mine, but I can "concentration break" 2-3 bricks. A concentration break is a kneeling break, using meditative concentration to move the hand fast enough to break the bricks, without the benefit of the weight of the body as in a normal break. Without breathing, there will be no circulation and your arm muscles won't have the oxygen needed to move quickly. Knowing how to breathe can allow for "impossible" feats, simply because the tissues will be fully oxygenated.

As for body control, I can control heart rate +- about 10 bpm, and breathing rate down to about 0.5 breaths/minute, while still getting enough oxygen. Any high-ranked martial artist should be able to confirm this, breathing is critical. While the physiological mechanisms may not be perfectly understood it has noticeable and measurable external effects.

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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #20 on: October 28, 2008, 03:48:34 pm »
I've always wondered why there is so much emphasis on breaking things in some martial arts. I like the Chinese approach, that as you deepen with the understanding of Chi, you can use it to heal people. I don't know how it works, but I guess it seems to work somehow. At any rate, it seems much more practical.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2008, 04:02:42 pm »
I've always wondered why there is so much emphasis on breaking things in some martial arts. I like the Chinese approach, that as you deepen with the understanding of Chi, you can use it to heal people. I don't know how it works, but I guess it seems to work somehow. At any rate, it seems much more practical.

I agree. The average number of bricks, boards and other typical martial arts regalia that I have to break each day tends to average at just above zero, whereas the average number of times that I stub my toe, burn my hand, or have my cat scratch at my trachea as I sleep, due to general feline ass-hole-ishness, tends to average in the 100-200 range.

I could do with some martial arts healing techniques throughout the day.  :)
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2008, 04:18:20 pm »
The healing brings up a good point.
As i mentioned earlier, my wife is a massage therapist that has studied under a master over in Thailand and various mentors here in the US.  She will refer to the energy work that she does (which i have an unfortunate propensity of needling).  Although it bugs me that she cannot describe any mechanisms in terms palatable to my western science outlook, the end results are not deniable.  She has diagnosed called serious illnesses in people (that you cant really tell by palpating or such). and has generally amazing recuperative skills.  So she talks about the 'energy work' not just as something simply such as blood flow, or proper breathing, or something else entirely internal.  its something that is detectable and alterable from one person to another.....
 

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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2008, 04:28:36 pm »
The healing brings up a good point.
As i mentioned earlier, my wife is a massage therapist that has studied under a master over in Thailand and various mentors here in the US.  She will refer to the energy work that she does (which i have an unfortunate propensity of needling).  Although it bugs me that she cannot describe any mechanisms in terms palatable to my western science outlook, the end results are not deniable.  She has diagnosed called serious illnesses in people (that you cant really tell by palpating or such). and has generally amazing recuperative skills.  So she talks about the 'energy work' not just as something simply such as blood flow, or proper breathing, or something else entirely internal.  its something that is detectable and alterable from one person to another.....
 

I can believe it. My former post concerning the internal endocrine changes and synaptic enzyme releases doesn't come NEARLY close to encompassing the full scale of chi healing. The effects of it, from person to person, remind me of something I once heard concerning the nature of subatomic particles, which is that once one particle comes into contact with another, they will continue to affect each other's movement for the rest of eternity, no matter what distance there is between them. So a particle in my lungs might be spinning to the tune of a dancing quark on Alpha Centauri, or something. I'm not sure if this idea is true or not, but I find it aesthetically pleasing.

I would like to be able to post/go into an intelligent conversation about physics (both Newtonian and quantum scale), energy transfer and other possible physical explanations for the phenomenon, but I am, regrettably, woefully ignorant in any non-biology-or-geology-based science. Has anyone read anything about interaction of the two?
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #24 on: October 28, 2008, 04:33:00 pm »
I've always wondered why there is so much emphasis on breaking things in some martial arts. I like the Chinese approach, that as you deepen with the understanding of Chi, you can use it to heal people. I don't know how it works, but I guess it seems to work somehow. At any rate, it seems much more practical.

I agree. The average number of bricks, boards and other typical martial arts regalia that I have to break each day tends to average at just above zero, whereas the average number of times that I stub my toe, burn my hand, or have my cat scratch at my trachea as I sleep, due to general feline ass-hole-ishness, tends to average in the 100-200 range.

I could do with some martial arts healing techniques throughout the day.  :)

Well, obviously theres some internal healing technique for yourself, but I was talking about more Chi Gung Tui Na, and other techniques that are claimed to be able to heal other people through your manipulation of chi. You've probably all heard of Reiki, or something like that.

I don't know if it works. I've had personal experience with something similar to each of those (projecting energy from the hands into my body) and I could feel it, and as anyone here knows I'm a huge sceptic, but there was something going on, whether it was energy or a psychosomatic response. I don't know what it was.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #25 on: October 28, 2008, 04:37:15 pm »
The healing brings up a good point.
As i mentioned earlier, my wife is a massage therapist that has studied under a master over in Thailand and various mentors here in the US.  She will refer to the energy work that she does (which i have an unfortunate propensity of needling).  Although it bugs me that she cannot describe any mechanisms in terms palatable to my western science outlook, the end results are not deniable.  She has diagnosed called serious illnesses in people (that you cant really tell by palpating or such). and has generally amazing recuperative skills.  So she talks about the 'energy work' not just as something simply such as blood flow, or proper breathing, or something else entirely internal.  its something that is detectable and alterable from one person to another.....
 

I can believe it. My former post concerning the internal endocrine changes and synaptic enzyme releases doesn't come NEARLY close to encompassing the full scale of chi healing. The effects of it, from person to person, remind me of something I once heard concerning the nature of subatomic particles, which is that once one particle comes into contact with another, they will continue to affect each other's movement for the rest of eternity, no matter what distance there is between them. So a particle in my lungs might be spinning to the tune of a dancing quark on Alpha Centauri, or something. I'm not sure if this idea is true or not, but I find it aesthetically pleasing.

I would like to be able to post/go into an intelligent conversation about physics (both Newtonian and quantum scale), energy transfer and other possible physical explanations for the phenomenon, but I am, regrettably, woefully ignorant in any non-biology-or-geology-based science. Has anyone read anything about interaction of the two?

I don't believe that there is any sort of real energy transfer involved because we don't see any physical evidence of such. Well, obviously there will be some electromagnetic transfer (in the form of heat), but chemical energy transfer wouldn't be occuring, kinetic transfer, or mechanical, or any of the other types of energy we know of, would not be occuring in this. So, I stick to the idea that its some sort of psychosomatic response.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #26 on: October 28, 2008, 04:44:57 pm »
Thank you for that.  Once you mentioned Reiki, I started to worry.
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #27 on: October 28, 2008, 04:45:42 pm »
Well, obviously theres some internal healing technique for yourself, but I was talking about more Chi Gung Tui Na, and other techniques that are claimed to be able to heal other people through your manipulation of chi. You've probably all heard of Reiki, or something like that.

I don't know if it works. I've had personal experience with something similar to each of those (projecting energy from the hands into my body) and I could feel it, and as anyone here knows I'm a huge sceptic, but there was something going on, whether it was energy or a psychosomatic response. I don't know what it was.

Ah yes, Reiki is one of the disciplines that my wife has studied.....
she told me the story about how the original Reiki guy was instructed by some entity to climb a mountain and meditate and then magical glowing glyphs flew into his head and BAM he knew Reiki and taught it to others (for a fee)..... (i think that's how it went)
That was totally a mistake for her to tell me that, but i gotta admit.... there is something there, even if it does reeeek of superstitious scam to me when i walk into the room and shes sitting there in lotus praying this prayer to the original Reiki guy.....'Om nammo, zhivago, blah blah....."
so easy to laugh at.....
so hard to dismiss...

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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #28 on: October 28, 2008, 04:47:11 pm »
I've always wondered why there is so much emphasis on breaking things in some martial arts. I like the Chinese approach, that as you deepen with the understanding of Chi, you can use it to heal people. I don't know how it works, but I guess it seems to work somehow. At any rate, it seems much more practical.

I agree. The average number of bricks, boards and other typical martial arts regalia that I have to break each day tends to average at just above zero, whereas the average number of times that I stub my toe, burn my hand, or have my cat scratch at my trachea as I sleep, due to general feline ass-hole-ishness, tends to average in the 100-200 range.

I could do with some martial arts healing techniques throughout the day.  :)

Well, obviously theres some internal healing technique for yourself, but I was talking about more Chi Gung Tui Na, and other techniques that are claimed to be able to heal other people through your manipulation of chi. You've probably all heard of Reiki, or something like that.

I don't know if it works. I've had personal experience with something similar to each of those (projecting energy from the hands into my body) and I could feel it, and as anyone here knows I'm a huge sceptic, but there was something going on, whether it was energy or a psychosomatic response. I don't know what it was.

I see what you're saying. Pardon the tongue-in-cheekness in my previous post.

I'm flummoxed by the whole, thing, too. If only there was some sort of Akashic record that could just give us a clue . . .
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Re: What is Chi?
« Reply #29 on: October 28, 2008, 04:48:05 pm »
so easy to laugh at.....
so hard to dismiss...

I can do both quite easily, thank you.
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