Have you ever finished up a really good session of qigong where you found yourself experiencing a strange sensation between your eyes? It’s the type of session where everything is perfect, your mind is relaxed because you’re probably on vacation, maybe you’re on a beach, and the air is clean. Or maybe you can just go into that deep of a qigong state of mind in your basement on an odd Tuesday night (in which case, I salute you!). But as you finish up your Qi flow and enter into standing meditation, you start to feel a strange feeling, perhaps like something is trickling, bubbling, or bulging from between both eyes. No, you’re not going crazy, but you are opening your Yin Tang, or your Third Eye.
Within Chinese medicine and qigong theory, the point located directly between the eyebrows is known as Yin Tang, sometimes translated as the Hall of Yin, or the Hall of the Heavenly Spirit. If you’ve ever had acupuncture before, you’ve probably had your Yin Tang needled. In clinic, I use this point all the time. It’s great for headaches, sinus issues, and is deeply calming. But what does it mean when we start to feel it in our qigong practice?
A few months ago, I wrote a post about the dan tian and its significance in Chinese medicine and qigong practice. However, the dan tian that I described in that post is actually one of several dan tians, or energy storehouses in the body. The one I described in my previous post is actually referred to as the lower dan tian. Yin Tang is what is known as the upper dan tian. Some believe that the upper dan tian is associated with the pineal gland. In Hinduism and Daoism, Yin Tang is associated with a state of enlightenment or higher consciousness and even psychic powers. This is essentially the same in qigong theory. The opening of the third eye indicates the development of mental clarity and insight into the self. Of course, you need not experience any of this to develop mental clarity and progress in your qigong practice, but if you are, it’s a pretty solid indicator that you’re practicing correctly.
I’m not going to pretend that some weird stuff doesn’t happen along the way when you’re practicing qigong, in fact, the road has a lot of “what the heck was that?” moments. But at the end of the day, we are dealing with our body’s energy, so a little bit of weirdness is to be expected. Really, if the yield of a little weirdness is health, vitality, longevity, and happiness then isn’t it worth exploring?