On NOT Taking Ownership
What I'm about to say might upset some people, but when we are working with energy to overcome an ailment, this is an extremely important point to make. Are you suffering from something? Arthritis? Depression? Anxiety? IBS? Something else? Something worse? Do you frequently talk about the condition with possessive pronouns? Maybe you say things like, “My anxiety is really bad today”, or “My migraines have been really bad this week”. If you find yourself saying things like this...STOP IT.
Cosmos Qigong is an amazing tool that has helped people overcome all sorts of issues, and while students learn patterns and the skill of Qi flow to do this, one of the best ways to rid yourself of an ailment once and for all is to stop taking ownership of it. In our weekly classes (which are starting up again in less than a week!), we learn how to enter a qigong state of mind, relax and let go. We do this so that our Qi can flow smoothly, and wash away all of the blockages that separate us from pristine health, clarity, and happiness. But every time we identify with a condition, and call it our own, we hold onto a piece of it, and make it more difficult to heal.
Wherever appropriate, I like to try and explain the benefits of qigong through the lens of science to make it more approachable to people. But as qigong is fundamentally energetic in nature, this has its limits. At the end of the day, we are dealing with our own vital energy, and it's important to remember that when we identify with a disease, we are sending a message to every molecule in our body that it is still there. Of course, a person may still be grappling with an illness, but by choosing not to call it their own, they gradually disassociate with it, which better facilitates healing.
In my own work, I help couples who are trying to get pregnant. We have a whole industry centered around the treatment of infertility. And yet, I always say that I don't treat infertility, I help restore balance and facilitate conception, however that may occur. Women come to me with their labs, which have reduced their personhood to a set of numbers, and label them as infertile. My job is to then not only figure out the right herbs and acupuncture points that might help them get pregnant, but also to constantly remind them that they are not a set of numbers, and to not identify with them. I see enough of them defy their bloodwork and have a baby that I want to get that reductionist data out of their heads right away.
The same applies to whatever we are trying to overcome in our qigong training. We're told throughout our lives to own our stuff and while that is often the right thing to do, in this case it is not. One of my favorite quotes from Grandmaster Wong is as follows:
“I would like to share with you a great cosmic truth. What you are and will be, is what you think. If one constantly thinks of himself as being sick and unhappy, he will be sick and unhappy. It is very important that you must always have noble thoughts — of yourself and of others. And especially when your mind has become powerful, you must always use it for good.”
There are so many beautiful and subtle ways that Cosmos Qigong strengthens our bodies and minds. When we stop owning diseases and conditions, we can release blockages at the deepest levels. Once we've dug out that root, it becomes easier to pull it out of the soil, leaving space to cultivate health, joy, and longevity.