Join Leaha Mattinson as she speaks to Lee Holden about the relevance of Qi Gong today, its role in healing and wellness and some easy-to-follow exercises to refresh our energies.
3.37 – 3.46: “How skillful we are at working with our qi determines the quality of our life, it determines our daily life, our weekly lives and our destiny for our whole lives.”
4.17 – 4.28: “Life has so much to offer and when we can work with that life force energy, we can truly cultivate the experiences and who we want to show up as in our lives.”
11.56 – 12.02: “It is an experience and…. the only way to really know something is to experience it.”
15.30 – 15.44: “In modern medicine, we want to monetize healing so that requires sick people. Prevention is hard to monetize so this is something that we as individuals need to take charge of by ourselves.”
16.28 – 16.42: “Breath is your quickest source to this life force energy. How you breathe influences your life. Think about food, you can go days without eating food and still be alive but you can only go minutes without breathing.”
19.58 – 20.04: “In Qi Gong, we’re making our energy more available so your power and potential come forth.”
42.59 – 43.06: “A pressure point for example that… might paralyze an arm, also stimulated and worked on in a different way might create a healing effect.”
The meaning of Qi Gong (2.28)
Lee explains that qi means life force energy, which can have different gradients in depression, happiness, vitality and illness. Gong stands for the skill of working with qi. It is important to develop the skill of working with life force energy in order to live one’s best life. Qi Gong is an ancient practice that mirrors the movements of nature to create effortless ease in life.
As relevant today as it was then (4.43)
All people have a body, feelings, emotions, a mind, and a consciousness, says Lee, and Qi Gong is a practice that can help everyone plagued by the myriad challenges and adversities modern life throws at them, scattering their energy. Qi Gong is a way to clear stresses and cultivate an abundance of life force energy.
Qi Gong in the garden of life (8.18)
Since the pandemic struck, people have had more stresses in their life – relational stress from being home more, or loneliness from being isolated. Lee suggests delineating our energies from those of others and working on our own to reclaim our own power. Going inward can help us discover the richness within and detach from external circumstances which cause stress.
Lee uses the analogy of a garden, stating that we need to prune away the energy that is no longer serving us and put that into the compost bin in the garden instead of having it stink up the kitchen. We need to invest energy in the right places so we can be strong and healthy and show up in the best way in our lives, moving mindfully through adversity.
Embodied experiences (11.52)
Lee laments that in this information age, we tend to use our vocabulary to describe an experience that’s in our head but it’s not embodied. Qi Gong is an embodied practice, helping people translate knowledge into action and get verification for their experiences to maneuver through the twists and turns of life.
Mindfulness in motion (13.30)
Qi Gong is an accessible, relevant and easy practice that can be done anytime, even if just for 10 minutes, as it will shift your day by tapping into your best energy. It is a part of ancient Chinese medicine rooted in prevention. Qi is influenced by breath and therefore the practice incorporates moving with breath and awareness.
Qi Gong exercise #1 (17.00)
Lee shares a simple qi clearing exercise – tap on the center of your sternum (the acupressure point to clear emotional stress) while taking a few deep breaths through the nose. Do this for 30 seconds to a minute. Bringing your hands down, you may notice a tingling in your chest and hands, signalling the activation of dormant qi.
Qi Gong exercise #2 (18.41)
Another qi clearing exercise taught by Lee is rubbing the fingernails back and forth vigorously while breathing deeply, igniting the meridian lines. You will notice your fingers tingling effervescently with life force energy which is made available by this exercise. Energy cannot be tapped into cerebrally and must be done through such embodied exercises.
Qi Gong exercise #3 (20.14)
Wave breathing is done by putting one hand on your chest and the other on the belly. Start by breathing in your belly, abdomen expanding as you inhale then filling up your ribs and then chest. Exhale from the chest then ribs then belly. Repeat this a few more times. Wave breathing helps clear stress and instructs the body to move into relaxation mode.
Qi Gong exercise #4 (21.26)
Put your hands on your lap and inhale slowly, lifting your arms over your head with the palms facing the ceiling, opening your elbows and chest. Exhaling slowly, bring your arms down with the palms facing up. Repeat this a few more times. This exercise works on moving the energy through the lung meridian.
Qi Gong exercise #5 (23.15)
Lee teaches an exercise called ‘holding down the sky’ which helps set your intention at the beginning of the day or let go of old energy at the end of the day. Inhaling, bring your hands out to the sides and up over the head. Bring the hands down with the palms facing towards you all the way down to the legs while exhaling. Scoop up the energy from around you. Repeat.
“Energy is much like a frequency”, Lee notes and suggests that we tune into the energy we want by focussing our attention on it. Use this exercise to bring in health, joy, peace, awareness and wisdom. This practice will help you move out of a stressful state and invest energy in the life you desire.
The bamboo that bends (29.52)
Lee shares a story of a friend who was smiling after a Qi Gong session, saying he felt happy for no reason. Lee says we can tap into this happiness always available to us within since external sources of happiness are fleeting. Being grounded is being rooted in the empowering and reliable source of happiness within us in the present moment while swaying in the breeze of life.
Qi Gong exercise #6 (33.20)
Lee talks about the ‘embracing the tree’ exercise to cultivate grounding and reset your day. Standing straight, lift your arms straight in front of your shoulder like branches. Imagine roots going down from your feet into the earth, stabilizing you. Become aware of your breath and surroundings in the present while wave breathing. Bring your hands down to the sides.
The path of the healing arts (39.26)
Lee is offering 2 weeks free of thrice a week live online classes with him. His website also contains 20 different courses tailored for different health conditions. You can also check out the docuseries The Superhuman Experience on people who have developed superhuman abilities by cultivating their energy.
Master your life!
For more insight, intelligence and inspiration on how to gain control over your health – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual or financial, visit the Master Your Life website and be sure to check out the wealth of tools and resources in the store!
Master Your Life- Regenerate and Rejuvenate Episode 5:
Experience, Enhance, Electrify, and Elevate your “QI” Energy with Master Lee Holden.