Intent versus Chi

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iglazer
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Intent versus Chi

Post by iglazer » Thu Feb 17, 2005 9:48 am

How would you describe the difference in feeling between bringing your mind intent your hands and bringing qi to them?



I am having trouble separating them and am worried that what I think is qi flowing is, in fact, just mind intent.

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Stages of Using Mind Intent

Post by Scott M. Rodell » Thu Feb 17, 2005 12:10 pm

The Taiji Classic, Exposition of Insights into the Thirteen Postures by Wu Yuxiang, clearly instructs us to, "Use mind intent (xin) to move qi. Make the qi calmly sink, so that it can soak into the bones. Use the qi to move the body." (my translation) This describes the method that a seasoned practitioner uses, where his or her qi is already moving smoothly. To get there you have to work thur several stages, where each skill is added to the previously learned & absorbed skill so that they become as one.



The first step is obviously to know the form well enough, have practiced it enough, so that you have no need think about what comes next. When you are there (ion, you're past this point), you use your mind intent to intentionally move your body according to the principles with the waist (yao in Mandarian) as the commander. You must achieve a relative stage of the body being truely as one unit physically & not as a bunch of parts work well together in order to be able to add qi to your movements. Clearly, if your body is not a unified whole, you can not expect to add another "part", the qi, & expect that to be unified with the whole. During this first step, one can begin adding more specific mind intent, that is a greater physical focus by adding the function or martial application to each movement. (This will be a process that refines throughout one's years of training. In other words, one will start thinking of striking the duifang's chest, then sharpen that to be striking the heart, then a specific striking point, with a specific type of strike. Each added level of focus heightens the overall focus, the mind intent, of form practice).



Step two below...

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Post by black matt » Fri Mar 11, 2005 12:58 pm

It's easier for me to feel the connection between the waist and the upper body than the waist and the lower body. One exercise that we've practiced several times in class is consciously letting go of the empty leg. In addition to letting go, this has helped me to allow the waist to move the legs.

In thinking about the body being connected and moving as one unit, I have a question(s) about the opening movement. Should chi alone be used to raise the arms in preparation? If we are unable to use chi to raise the arms, should the focus be on the pressure in the legs, mind intent, and filling up through breathing, and should these forces be what raises the arms throughout the form?

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Post by Baba Deep » Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:48 pm

Qi follows the mind. The Yi (mind-intent or the analytical/logical aspect of the mind) can direct the Qi. If you are feeling something in your hands, it is the Qi being directed by or following the Yi, or by brining your awareness/Yi to your hands, you are becomming aware of the Qi which is already there. One cannot feel the Yi in one's hands per se. Qi and blood are flowing through the meridians and vessels of the body constantly.

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sinking qi

Post by Flyin' Brian » Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:28 am

How exactly does one "sink the qi" so that it soaks into the bones? I am not sure I quite understand that process or the meaning.

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Re: sinking qi

Post by Scott M. Rodell » Fri Mar 14, 2008 10:39 am

Flyin' Brian wrote:How... does one "sink the qi" so that it soaks into the bones?...
Sinking the qi refers to the overall process of establishing the principle dantian & then using it as a pump to circulate qi throughout the entire body. As the quanity of one's qi increases with regular practice, it fills the body & slowly permeates the bones, making them harder.

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Post by Flyin' Brian » Fri Mar 14, 2008 11:04 am

So it is a two step process (first learn to sink qi, then learn to permeate)?

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Post by Scott M. Rodell » Fri Mar 14, 2008 4:18 pm

Flyin' Brian wrote:... learn to sink qi, then learn to permeate...
No, the qi will enter the bones as a result of years of circulating the qi, this is not a fast process.

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Re: Intent versus Chi

Post by Tashi James » Thu Jun 16, 2011 6:44 am

During sitting neigong meditation, I performed the circulation and then brought the intent back to the dantien. Shortly after when I let the intent go and relaxed with fangsong I experienced an overwhelming ecstatic feeling mentally and physically through the back and around the crown. I experienced no adverse effect, for example, headache or pain. It just naturally dissipated after several minutes.

Is this related to the process being discussed here Laoshi, or is it just coincidental.
"There is nothing that does not become easier through familiarity" (Santideva).

"We become what we do repeatedly. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit" (Aristotle).

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Re: Intent versus Chi

Post by Scott M. Rodell » Wed Nov 09, 2011 7:39 am

Tashi James wrote:... Shortly after (neigong) when I let the intent go... fangsong I experienced an overwhelming ecstatic feeling mentally and physically through the back and around the crown. I experienced no adverse effect, for example, headache or pain. It just naturally dissipated after several minutes.

Is this related to the process being discussed here Laoshi, or is it just coincidental.
What you are describing if the "after effect" if you will. While you are no longer actively using your mind intent to circulate your qi, it still has some momentum. Also, one effect of circulating your qi is that you are balancing out your qi & cleansing it in a sense. As the qi circulates thru the central channels, that helps to balance out the elements & level between the qi in different meridians. Your qi is also being refined, returning to a state less affected by imbalances.

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Re: Intent versus Chi

Post by Tashi James » Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:34 pm

That doesn't sound so bad. Still a way to go though!

Thank you Laoshi
"There is nothing that does not become easier through familiarity" (Santideva).

"We become what we do repeatedly. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit" (Aristotle).

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