Jesus as Qigong Master

In the Beginning NDK Podcast….During an extended standing meditation at a Chi Center retreat with Master Mingtong, the Our Father/Lord’s Prayer started chanting within me. I grew up Catholic, so all thosesermon prayers and even some in Latin are part of my cellular nature–though somewhat dormant at the moment, so it was kind of surprising. The prayer was interesting and lovely except when I got to what seemed like harsh words, like trespassing and evil. Those words didn’t seem right to me, did not seem to have the same energy as the rest of the prayer, the intention of the prayer. I talked about this with my wonderful roommate at retreat, my chi buddy, Carolyn, and she asked if I knew the work of Neil Douglas-Klotz (NDK). I had not then, but I am immersed in his work now! Neil took on the task some years ago of learning the Aramaic language (as well as Hebrew and others)–the language that Jesus (Yeshua in Aramaic) spoke in, taught in, dreamed in–so that he could directly translate those words for us today. The direct translation of the words of Yeshua is a beautiful, energetic, cosmic teaching from a beloved and enlightened being, role model, teacher, prophet, mystic, savior, friend. In the podcast below, Neil finishes our conversation by sharing The Lord’s Prayer in Aramaic. Such a gift!

ndk picI was honored to interview Dr. Neil Douglas-Klotz for my In The Beginning podcast . I gave my podcast this title after reading some of Dr. Klotz’s work about our place in the caravan of time. We think of our lives as just existing in the present, but we are connected in time–not only to our ancestors and the ones who will come after us, and to the beginning of time, not just in this linear movement of time, but in a cyclic time frame as well. We are connected by Source, by light, by sound, by vibration. We come from the same Mother/Father, Birther of the Cosmos.

For more information on NDK, check out his website The Abwoon Network. Abwoon is the first word of The Lord’s Prayer–translated directly from the Aramaic as Mother/Father, Birther of the Cosmos.

Click here for the interview.

From The Abwoon Network website: Neil is best known for his work on the Aramaic Prayer of Jesus (“The Lord’s Prayer”), shared both in his books as well through the body prayers with music that have spread around the world in the past 32 years (a form called the Dances of Universal Peace). The Abwoon Network website shares the work of Dr. Neil Douglas-Klotz and his colleagues and students on Native Middle Eastern spirituality, peacemaking and ecology, including work on the Aramaic words of Jesus, Hebrew and Native Middle Eastern creation mysticism and Sufism. The website is a collaboration between the Edinburgh Institute for Advanced Learning in Scotland, UK and the Abwoon Resource Center in Columbus, OH, USA (see “About Us“).

 

Cosmology & Coffee

In the Beginning….My first podcast is finally ready! A huge shoutout to Erik Leitch, my first guest. Here’s the link to the audio interview stored on my google drive. The picture referred to in the interview is below. This is the image Erik showed at a Rotary meeting that inspired me to talk with him about the beginning of the universe. The picture shows what the sky and the light all around us would look like right now if we could see that part of the spectrum. It’s the light left over from the Big Bang, 13.7 billion years ago. Wow! This is what I picture now between my hands when I do lachi, when I imagine my body filled with and surrounded by light, whenever I do qigong and whenever I can remember (grocery shopping, post office, walking, etc.) This has changed my practice and my life. Enjoy the talk!

cosmic light erik

Sound Healing–Raising Our Voices

Human beings raised voices and vibrations of hearts and minds–the government took notice to begin to heal its egregious wrongs to children and families at the border. The Executive Order is not the solution,  so we keep our voices speaking up for justice and compassion. Voices, sounds, vibrations are powerful. They are much needed to heal bodies, minds, spirits, nations and worlds.

As we are learning in our Wisdom Healing Qigong Sound Healing class, ancient sounds and vibrations can heal from the inside out. As we heal ourselves, we heal the world. Wenamaste heal the world because we come to realize and to experience the true oneness of all beings. When we know we are connected, we treat each other with dignity, respect, and love. We bow to the divine in each other (Namaste).

Below is a summary of the two organ systems we introduced last week (from Sound Healing Technologies by Mingtong Gu, The Chi Center):

Kidney System: includes kidneys, bladder, adrenal glands, reproductive organs, bone marrow, cells, ears, teeth, bones and stem cells. When chi is flowing, we are cautious (but not fearful), alert, mindful, gentle, determined and kind. Blockages appear as fear, shock, fright, hatred and ignorance. The energetic pattern is visualized as going from stuck or frozen, like ice, to beautiful, flowing water. We act instead of react, creativity abounds. These sounds are are effective for healing hormonal, reproductive and skeletal issues.

Digestive System (Pancreas): includes stomach, pancreas, intestine, colon, mouth, skin, flesh. When chi is flowing, we are thoughtful, open, centered and grounded. We embody equanimity. Worry, pride, and arrogance are results of blockages of this system. We may have difficulty digesting food, energy, and/or information. These may either be symptoms of or the cause of blockages. The energy pattern of this system is spiral movement, in and out. When making the third sound, feel as though you are singing a song.

This Wednesday we’ll discuss the Liver/Purification System and Lungs/Respiratory System, and engage in the full Sound Healing practice. As mentioned in class, it’s best to practice the whole 5 Organ Sounds together, as they all work together as a system. If you only have time to do a few, at least acknowledge in gratitude and light each of the other systems. Or, if you want to spend more time focusing on one system, that’s great, and also do the sounds for the others. The order is important, the handout in class has information about that. Haola!

Opening Our Hearts

Few would argue that sound and vibration have a significant affect on our emotions. Media people know this with expert precision. Think of sound tracks and Foley effects in movies and commercials. If you take away scary music and just watch the scene, usually5 organs not so scary! And we put on music at home to give us energy, to quiet us down, to feel groovy and centered, etc. So it makes perfect sense that sound and vibration can impact our emotions. Wisdom Healing Qigong (WHQ) Sound Healing uses the sound and vibration from our own voices to focus directly into our organs to heal on many levels, among them the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual layers of our organ energy systems.

This WHQ Sound Healing practice comes from ancient Taoist texts. We don’t

heart yeti
theawkwardyeti.com

know how Taoist monks came up with these specific sounds for the 5 organ systems, but we do know they didn’t have TV, movies and the Internet. 🙂 They had time to practice and study and experience their bodies, hearts and souls, consciousness and sometimes enlightenment. As we strive in our busy lives to keep stress at bay, make a living, parent our kids, keep relationships healthy, etc., most of us don’t have the same laser focus on consciousness that Taoist monks did.  But we can use the gift of these teachings from the ancient ones to heal ourselves, others and the world.

In our first Sound Healing class (6/13/18), we focused on the Heart. As we make the sounds, we visualize the heart as a red rose, or any kind of flower, opening, allowing energy to flow deeper, clearing blockages. We visualize the energy pattern of the heart as expansion and gathering. Easy to imagine, as the heart is rosecontinuously pumping, contracting and expanding. The emotional qualities of the heart are things we know–love, happiness, joy, connection, fulfillment, wisdom, sincerity, openness, peace. The secret to happiness is not to try to do things to get happy, but to allow energy blockages in the heart to release and transform. Blockages in the heart can manifest as anxiety, depression, cruelty (sometimes especially to self), hatred, and greed. How do we heal? We open and allow transformation through sound healing, inner smile, and other qigong and healing practices. It’s not easy to just “let go” of blockages. It takes commitment and time.

Healing and transformation are most effective with a daily practice. If time is limited and you only have time for the heart sounds in a day, do briefly acknowledge all the organ systems after you sing with the heart because they all work together–a simple internal smile and gratitude to our beautiful, hard working systems is all it takes in a pinch.

This coming week (June 20th), we’ll study the Kidney and Digestive Energy systems and then practice the sounds for all 3 organ systems we will have learned so far.

True cardiovascular health is not just about physical fitness, it’s about deep contentment with one’s life and destiny.  Happiness and love are often associated with the Heart representing a state of peacefulness. Stress or lack of self-expression can directly impact this organ’s function. TCM World website

heart anatomy

To study WHQ Sound Healing, contact the Chi Center for online courses or purchase the Sound Healing booklet and DVD/download from the Chi Center store. Or come to my classes in Bishop, CA. Both would be extra great! Click on the Classes tab of this website to see when offered.

Intro to Healing with Sound

sound healingThe physical effect of sound has a great influence upon the human body. The whole mechanism, the muscles, the blood circulation, the nerves are all moved by the power of vibration. As there is resonance for every sound, so the human body is a living resonator for sound.
Hazrat Inayat Khan, Sufi Master

One of the three main practices of Wisdom Healing Qigong (WHQ) is a sound healing practice. When WHQ was developed by Dr. Pang  (known as Zhineng Qigong in China), Sound Healing was an advanced practice (Level 3). Master Mingtong Gu’s experience has shown him that many of us in the West are in immediate need of this deep emotional healing, and so he is offering sound healing to beginners (Level 1).

WHQ cultivates the mind’s capacity to direct chi (energy) toward an uplifting of the whole human energy system–one mind/body/heart/spirit. As we practice and consciously choose to transform, we shift from automatic responses to life’s challenges to wisdom responses.  These work together in a holistic pattern–as we learn to make healthier responses, we further integrate our mind, body, heart and spirit. As we integrate, we build our capacity to change our responses. This gets into the whole 3 A teaching (accept, appreciate, activate) that is at the heart of qigong practice. But I can tell you from personal experience, transformation from automatic responses to autonomous wisdom takes time and practice! I’ve had a qigong practice for four years, and a similar Pema Chodron practice for many years prior to that, and it’s still hard. You have to make a conscious choice to be on this path, and Sound Healing is a practice that can help you hold true to this commitment.

For example, the other day I was in a “bad” mood. Okay, part of our journey is to not label things as “bad” or “good,” but simply to see them as part of our journey. We choose how to respond.  Anyway, I was in a bad mood. I considered the 3 A’s, but it’s so hard to accept when I feel that way. I wanted to resist the “bad” feeling, to somehow get into a better mood. So I quasi-accepted and then tried to figure out a chi-ful response. I tried Haola chanting to myself. When you are with another person and on vacation, it’s hard to just go into isolation and practice. At least, that was my excuse, and I stuck to it! I gave up pretty quickly on the internal chanting and chose instead to eat a bunch of chips and drank some red wine. Not a very chi-ful response! But guess what? I didn’t totally fail the lesson. Later, I took a look at my response and said, “Hmm, I think I need to get back to Sound Healing.” So I made a commitment to a Sound Healing gong: daily practice for 100 days. I’m now well into my second week! The air will be starting to cool in September when I finish, and it will be a solid habit in my day.

Sound Healing is my anchor, my grounding practice, that bridle when my emotional well-being is a runaway horse. I think the next time I am challenged by a “teaching mood,” I can say to my beloved, “Dear, my body/mind/heart/spirit needs some Sound Healing. I’ll be back with you in 30 minutes.”

So what is it about Sound Healing that is so powerful? As a part of cultivating our minds to direct our energy, we need to be on the path toward emotional grounding. The Taoist, traditional Chinese Medicine, and Qigong teachings all say that our organs are not just physical entities, but also organs of energy. As energy systems, each absorbs and transforms our emotions. Energy can get stuck in these systems. For example, we often live in chronic stress. Stress that is not dissipated or transformed gets buried until there is a conscious unblocking or transformation of this energy. Sound Healing for the Five Organ Systems is a practice that uses sound and vibration from our own voices to allow chi/energy to flow freely throughout our body/mind/heart/spirit. We can let go of stress– or whatever emotion has been affecting our internal alchemy. Powerful!

In our Sound Healing classes over the next 3 weeks, we will be learning the simple practice of healing with the sound of Haola. In addition, we will chant the Essence Mantra and learn the three sacred sounds for each of the five organ systems. These sounds access the deep energy within and help us create new, healthy and stable emotional patterns. We’ll start with sounds for the heart–such a beautiful place to start! We’ll send love, hugs, light, smiles, and gratitude to our hearts through our own voices and the ancient sounds from Taoist texts. We will learn which organ systems relate to specific emotions. If you choose this path of transformation, you will take with you a daily practice that will allow you to choose a chi-ful response when life sends you lessons. If you eat chips and drink wine instead, you can make a different choice next time! We learn. We practice. And we keep learning.

Wisdom Healing Qigong Sound Healing
Wednesdays June 13, 20, 27
9:00 – 10:00 AM
Imagination Lab, Bishop, CA
621 West Line Street Suite 204
Donations accepted

If you cannot make these classes or desire more in-depth Qigong Sound Healing, check out The Chi Center online classes and store (for an e-book and audio downloads).

Water

I just found this poem I wrote a few years ago, July 29, 2013 to be exact (hurrah, I dated my journal entry!) We were on the Tuolumne River, upstream from the Lodge, one of my favorite rivers in the world. I have often pondered this about water, and I know I need to spend more time with this amazing gift of our planet. Enjoy!

tuolumne river

There is something about water
I don’t know what it is,
exactly
But I know it’s wondrous and
we so take it for granted.

I think if I sit by the flow
For hours or days or weeks or
months
Maybe,
Like the Buddha under the
Bodhi tree
I’ll be enlightened
as to the genius, the God,
the essence, the guru, the
magic of water.

Oh yes, there is water magic, water medicine.
I await the gift. I sit, and sink into the essence. I open my heart as if to say “I’m here, I’m listening”. Communion.

 

Tailbone

sacrum coccyxIn Wisdom Healing Qigong, we are encouraged to point our tailbones to the earth to connect with the source energy from our Mother, this planet. And, in hip rotations, we visualize light radiating from the tailbone. I began to notice when I did this I started feeling energy in my brain. Hey, the tailbone must be pretty important. I wonder what it is about the tailbone? So, I did a little research and here’s what I found.

Of course, it’s called our tailbone because it’s what’s left of our anatomy as it evolved from creatures with tails to our current status. Anatomically called the coccyx, it is “3-5nerves and spinal cord bones connected by fused or semi-fused joints or disk-like ligaments. ..The coccyx is the connecting point for many pelvic floor muscles… These muscles…assist in walking, running, and moving the legs.” https://www.spine-health.com/conditions/spine-anatomy/anatomy-coccyx-tailbone. The coccyx is attached to the sacrum (which translates as “sacred” from Latin) and is the anchor point for the spinal cord which is the circuit board for our entire Central Nervous System. So, needless to say, pretty crucial for our our bodies and quality of life.   http://www.innerbody.com/image_skelfov/skel38_new.html

The position of the tailbone affects the alignment of the whole spine. To be grounded, we want it pointing straight down to the earth. When we feel fear, we tuck the tailbone under. We see that dramatically in our beloved dogs, the tail goes obviously between the legs when afraid. “Physically, tailbone misalignments can cause anything from knee problems to carpal tunnel syndrome to panic attacks to migraines and incontinence.” When we become ungrounded, we become overwhelmed. Our breath and immune systems are compromised. When our tailbones are aligned with the earth, we feel grounded, connected, energetic. marbleheadnaturalhealing.com/honor-thy-tailbone.  chakras

The tailbone is associated with the root chakra, which represents our right to exist, to belong, to be here on this planet. The root chakra is the first chakra in Ayurvedic tradition, the Huiyin Gate in Traditional Chinese Medicine. It is associated with the color red and the emotion of trust and safety.

 

Suggestions for tailbone alignment via qigong:

  • tailbone coccyxBe aware of your tailbone when you are standing, practicing qigong, sitting, etc. Envision your tailbone pointed and grounded with the earth. Study images of your coccyx to help you with a more detailed visualization.
  • Wisdom Healing Qigong hip rotations are a great practice for tailbone flexibility and alignment. Imagine your tailbone full of light, initiating the rotation with your tailbone. Mingtong’s 100 Day Gong starts with Hip Rotations. Enjoy the whole practice if you have time.
  • Kegels, a pelvic floor exercise, are recommended by the health profession for men and women. A similar exercise is also a qigong movement for the Huiyin gate, same area. Kegels are energetically and physically good for you, and you can do them anytime, anywhere.

You’re only as old as your spine is flexible.” ~ Joseph Pilates. Why not start with your tailbone?

Attention & Gratitude

“Attention is the doorway to gratitude”. Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass.

jonas-jacobsson-344604.jpg
Photo by Jonas Jacobsson on Unsplash

This quote by Robin Wall Kimmerer means to me that I can only be grateful to that which I notice. How true! So often we zip through life, missing sunsets and sunrises, rainbows and puddles, while we rush to some place or another, or lose ourselves in devices while the most wonderful person is sitting right nearby. I find myself even taking photos of amazing things rather than spending the time that would allow me to drop into layers of that beauty that are beyond the external. What are some ways we can be more mindful, pay more attention to our world and each other? Attention begets gratitude.

Braiding Sweetgrass is an incredible book that reminds us to take time, to smell the sweetgrass, to go to the Source, to notice, and to be thankful. One of her chapters discusses the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address, very appropos for this time of year. A bit about the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and Thanksgiving Address:

giving-thanks-640pxThe Thanksgiving Address (the Ohen:ton Karihwatehkwen) is the central prayer and invocation for the Haudenosaunee (also known as the Iroquois Confederacy or Six Nations — Mohawk, Oneida, Cayuga, Onondaga, Seneca, and Tuscarora). It reflects their relationship of giving thanks for life and the world around them. The Haudenosaunee open and close every social and religious meeting with the Thanksgiving Address. It is also said as a daily sunrise prayer, and is an ancient message of peace and appreciation of Mother Earth and her inhabitants. The children learn that, according to Native American tradition, people everywhere are embraced as family. Our diversity, like all wonders of Nature, is truly a gift for which we are thankful.  https://danceforallpeople.com/haudenosaunee-thanksgiving-address/

This prayer helps people notice, remember, and offer thanks for all that we have been given on this planet. It reminds us to pay attention as the doorway to gratitude. A portion of the prayer follows:

The People Today we have gathered and we see that the cycles of life continues. We have been given the duty to live in balance and harmony with each other and all living things. So now, we bring our minds together as one as we give greetings and thanks to each other as people. Now our minds are one.

The Earth Mother We are all thankful to our Mother, the Earth, for she gives us all that we need for life. She supports our feet as we walk about upon her. It gives us joy that she continues to care for us as she has from the beginning of time. To our mother, we send greetings and thanks. Now our minds are one.

The Waters We give thanks to all the waters of the world for quenching our thirst and providing us with strength. Water is life. We know its power in many forms‐ waterfalls and rain, mists and streams, rivers and oceans. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to the spirit of Water.   Now our minds are one.

IMG_7126The address goes on with additional odes of gratitude to The Fish, The Plants, The Food Plants, The Medicine Herbs, The Animals, The Trees, The Birds, The Four Winds, The Thunderers, The Sun, Grandmother Moon, The Stars, The Enlightened Teachers. The Haudenosaunee share this beautiful address freely as they were given it to share with the world.  Link to full Thanksgiving Address. It is right and good to spend more than 1 minute giving thanks with a prayer. We can start this Thanksgiving with a full, hearty thanks for all these gifts of life.

May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and may you pay attention and give thanks every day for this amazing privilege of being alive on this planet and in this time together. Haola, Aloha, Mvtto, Aho, Amen. Now our minds are one. earth

 

Energy Enhancement

I just ran across this explanation of the different types of chi (qi) in Ken Cohen’s book Thedeep-breath Way of Qigong. It was an aha moment for me, clarifying for me WHY daily practice is so important. I wanted to synthesize it here as writing often helps me to wrap my brain around something that I want to absorb into my being!

There are many sources of chi or life force energy. Our main sources of chi are breath/air, food/nutrition, and the chi we are born with that comes from our parents, our genetics, also known as our constitution. Ken Cohen calls this personal original chi.

There is also an original chi that is a gift of the universe, “the primal energy of life, the creative and omnipresent power of the Dao”, yuan chi. Cohen calls this transpersonal original chi.

In addition to what we are born with, we can supplement our original life force energy with what’s called “post-natal chi”. We can eat well and breathe well. We can tap into the chi in nature and learn to harmonize with the energy available to us from Mother Earth.cow creek And, we can practice qigong. The practice of qigong movements and meditations cultivates and enhances our personal original chi. This post-natal chi/energy, however, is easily dissipated, so that’s why a daily qigong practice is strongly encouraged. That daily cultivation of life force energy will enhance our health, energy, and well being.

 

 

A Daily Practice

On this Summer Solstice Eve, our Qigong practice group focused on making a commitment to a daily practice. It’s so difficult to fit one more thing into our busy lives, and new habits are hard to establish. But to get the true benefits of this healing art, it must become a part of your daily life on this beautiful planet. It will catalyze that connection of mind, body, and spirit to the beauty and energy of all life on this earth and beyond. Here’s the simple formula for beginning this daily practice. These instructions assume you have been taking classes but are mainly just practicing during class time.

MEDITATION_DOGS-color

  1. Set your intention; make a commitment to integrate a 10 minute practice into your day. Decide on 1 movement (or 2 if you must 🙂 to focus on for the first 30 days and the best time of day to make this happen. I recommend first thing in the morning, before your mind distracts you with other things (personal experience :).
  2. Connect to the chi field. (Vertical & Horizontal Alignment, Heart focus, Set Intention. (if you’d like a chi field audio by me, click link to email me, under 6 min)
    1. Vertical Alignment: Straighten your spine. Drop your hips and legs into the earth. Feel your feet on the earth and open to the earth’s energy. Then, notice and imagine the space above your head and then expand out to the universe. Allow the energy of the universe to flow through you. Enjoy, relax.
    2. Horizontal Alignment: Notice, imagine the space in front of you, then expand out beyond the mountains, oceans, horizon. Now to the back, left, right. mountains
    3. Heart focus: Bring your focus to your heart, allow your heart to open and to connect to its true, deepest purpose–for healing of self, others, the planet. Connect with others of good heart who are also using their energy to heal self, others, the planet.
    4. . Intention: Take a moment to truly feel and articulate your specific intention for practice. Our collective intention is for health, happiness, and deep fulfillment of life.
  3. Do your chosen practice for 5 minutes, increasing the time as you can. Keep your mind in your body, using the visualizations we are learning in class.
  4. Integrate: After practice, do a few lift chi up pour chi down movements, then slowly bring your hands to your navel, your dantien, grounding, integrating, enjoying the energy you have been cultivating. Then feel your feet on the earth, grounding and centering on the earth. And feel the spaciousness around you. Slowly move your body and gently open your eyes. Bow in gratitude to the chi field, masters/teachers, practitioners, and to your own inner teacher. Or just say thank you, especially to that inner teacher that is encouraging you to begin this daily practice!deep-breath