On Such A Heart

CV17“QiGong is essentially a philosophy for living life with mindfulness, an awareness of the present that leads to better understanding of ourselves, others, and the world in which we live. Our first priority must be to cultivate a heart that is at once peaceful, strong, and courageous. Focusing our intention on such a heart is QiGong that can be practiced everywhere, all the time!

In Chinese medicine and philosophy, all mental activities are understood to be associated with particular internal organs, thus affecting the whole body. The mind connects with the heart; the soul connects with the lungs; the ethereal soul connects with the liver; the intention connects with the spleen; and the will connects with the kidneys. Among these five relationships, the mind-heart association is most important, because the mind supports the animation of our whole body: our appearance, facial expressions, bodily gestures, speech, response, and overall consciousness. It is also the source of our mental and emotional states. Disturbances of the heart/mind show up immediately in our bodies. When we’re frightened, our hearts beat faster and our breathing becomes short and shallow. Love can make our hearts tremble, while anger makes our eyes fierce and our faces red.”

– Master Liu He, Jade Woman Qigong: The Healing Power of Taoist Medicine for Every Woman

Yin Tang

yintangI’ve been connecting with the space between the eyebrows a lot (on me and you!) and love what my teacher Master Liu He writes about it:

“The center of the forehead between the eyebrows is nicknamed ‘a room to conserve your stamp,’ a title that refers to the emperors in ancient China. The emperor’s stamp, or seal, was critical to people who never saw the emperor himself. The only way to know his intention was through orders sealed by his stamp. The integrity of the stamp was, therefore, very important, and it had to be protected from theft and mischief. If the stamp was lost or tampered with, the whole country would fall into disorder. Because of the stamp’s precious value, it was kept in a room protected by soldiers.

The story is a metaphor: when we open the mind, we open our internal communication (the stamp) with the external world (the subjects.) The result is insight into correct actions; with insight, there is order, and the emotions stabilize.”