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 Mind/Body Tools for Peak Performance: History of Qigong 
 

In the 1600's the social, scientific and philosophical history of western culture experienced a radical shift. The work of Newton and Galileo literally revised our world. For thousands of years the humans were locked in the stagnation of the dark ages, with little advance since fire, the wheel and the sword. Then, in less than the life span of an oak tree, tremendous and sudden evolution occured with the rapid development of engineering, the automobile and antibiotics.

Western culture is at the edge of another profound and dramatic transformation. For the last 400 years we have understood that the world was a dynamic interelationship of substances, particles and bodies. Now, through the most refined scientific inquiry, it has become clear that there is no substance. What we thought was substance has been revealed as a dynamic interelationship of energies. Physics is now redefining time and space and generating a whole new sciences of resonance and energy fields. There is even emmerging agreement on a theory that suggests that there are more than three dimensions of space and one of time. Again as in the 1600's everything is dramatically changing.

Oriental philosophies and the ancient personal transformation traditions of the pre-colonial, original cultures have always held that the world we experience through our senses is but a fragment of what "is". In addition, an individual's energy field is proposed to be more central to who they are than their physical body. As western science digs itself out from under it's "seeing is believing" position what occurs is a profound validation of ideas and traditions that were called "mysterious", "savage", "unscientific", and "primitive" as little as a decade ago. As we now use science to explain the "why" and the "how" of the mysterious, unusual arts and disciplines are revealed as practical and meaningful.

The medicine of the Asian cultures, which once seemed so strange, useless and unsophisticated by the scientific standards of the 20th century European world view is now licensed as primary medical care in a number of states and is a solid component in an emerging "new medicine". Oriental medicine is completely consistent with the supposed "new" idea in rational science that a person is more of a resonating field than a substance. The Chinese, however, never demanded the scientific proof that is now pouring forth, they just followed what they knew, from generations of experience, to be effective and real. Acupuncture has helped to needle science into the exploration and confirmation of important new information on the bio-electrical aspect of the human. It has played a significant role in the exciting and rapidly developing frontier of neurotransmitter bio-chemistry and is a central aspect of a revolutionary new treatment for addictions.

Acupuncture,however, is really just a modality, a tool used by doctors of oriental medicine to help the patient. Like surgery, though much less invasive or like medication though less likely to cause side-effects, acupuncture has startling implications for the future of medicine. The aspect of oriental medicine that has the potential to truly rock the western world is Qigong. Healing patients without touching them and with no medication, causing anesthesia by just pointing a finger and generating an acupuncture like response without needles are well documented effects of Qigong. Many observers have seen Qigong masters light flourescent tubes with their hands, break massive stones and thick steel bars with their hands and feet and start fires by projecting the Qi.(5,6,7,11,16,22) The implications for the transformational impact of Qigong on western science are profound.

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 About The Author
Roger Jahnke OMDRoger Jahnke has been in the health field since 1967 beginning with body therapies, herbal medicine, Tai Chi, Yoga and meditation. He turned his attention seriously to Oriental medicine in 1972 with study at the North......more
 
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