Today as I am writing this blog, I am in Scotland attending a music festival that I have been attending every January for the past 17 years. When I first came t…
Over the past month, you’ve learned more about the 4 secrets of qigong as taught by Sifu Lew.
You’ve seen how simple these secrets are. And at the same time, I hope you’ve seen how powerful they are.
But there is a final secret of qigong that stands on its own. That secret is practice.
This is so foundational that I almost missed it early on. Only the fact that he repeated it frequently made it stick in my brain.
This might also be true for you. After all, in the modern Western world, we’re used to learning things intellectually. We study facts and then repeat them. This is how you pass tests in school.
And though this kind of learning has its place, there is the other kind, namely learning by experience. It’s this second kind that Sifu Lew was talking about when he said, “You practice.”
And he said this frequently. In the first six months I studied with him, he basically said three things when asked about what we were learning. These three things were, “Yes,” “No,” and “You practice.”
Only later did I make the connection with why this was so important. It was after I’d read Musashi’s “Book of Five Rings.” In that book one of his precepts is, “The Way is the training.”
It is only by doing your qigong practice that you will truly understand it at a deeper level. And I don’t mean boring, repetitive, obligatory practice. If qigong becomes an item on your to-do list, you aren’t getting the greatest benefit.
On the other hand, if you are paying attention to eyes, mind, movement and breath, you will be fully present in your practice. Each day will be a day of exploration and discovery. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that unless you feel like a different person after your practice, you didn’t do it fully.
The results of this show up in sometimes surprising ways. After practicing consistently for years, I would notice unexpected things happening. For example, when I taught a class and was asked a question, I always knew the answer. And that included questions I’d never asked and never heard anyone answer. The answer came from the practice. I knew it in my cells.
If you want to get the greatest benefit from your training in qigong, use the 4 secrets in your daily practice. Doing so will, over time, bring you the deeper gifts of qigong.
All the best for your health and happiness,
Tari Prinster is a cancer survivor, master yoga teacher and author. She is the Founder of Yoga4Cancer, LLC (y4c) and the Retreat Project (nonprofit) – businesse…
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