The Science Of Qi

The Science Of Qi

The science of qi can be understood in the same way we seek to understand the science of energy in the universe in all its forms and how it affects us. We know energy exists, but we are not sure why it exists and where it comes from. In other words, we don’t yet understand what caused the Big Bang in the first place-we just know it happened, and over time we have learned to use the energy that comes from nature to power our homes and work our wireless technology and drive our cars amongst many other things. Just as a scientist works and studies to understand energy and how we can use it, we can also work to understand the innate energy flowing in our body and what practices we can do to use it more effectively.

Quantum PhysicsWe Are Mostly Empty Space.

Experiments in the field of quantum physics have discovered that 99.9% of the universe and therefore our bodies is actually made up of empty space. The first scientist to discover this was Ernest Rutherford. This so called empty space is teeming with quantum waves and particles that are vibrating. When we look at an object in the physical world, what we are actually looking at is energy that is condensed to a level that is vibrating so fast that we are not able to notice it as vibrating at all. This is why it seems like a solid object to us. Our five senses cannot perceive its vibrations. You can think of this in the same way you would observe a fan spinning very fast-it looks like a solid circle, but you know that it is actually single blades spinning very fast.

How Much Of Us Is Actually Physical Matter?

If you were to ask a quantum physicist how much actual physical matter we have when it comes to our body, they would say that without the energy component we’d fit onto the size of a pin head, and the entire human race would fit into the size of a sugar cube.

BiologyQi Drives Our Biology.

Therefore it is logical to conclude that the energy in these so called empty spaces is what drives all of nature. Given that we are more energy than we are matter, it seems strange that we place far more emphasis on what we can perceive with our five senses than what we cannot. Einstein once said ’The field is the sole governing agency of the particle’. What he was saying is that invisible forces govern the animation of the physical world. Though there are many scientific theories of what this field of energy actually is and how it behaves, we can still sense it without knowing how it fully works.

ECGOur Electrical Body

For example, we know we are electric in nature from the electrical field that can be detected around our heart and our brain from medical equipment such the EEG and ECG. Our muscles and nerves work from electrical impulses, and when our electrical energy is flowing well, our body is working efficiently. Without electrical charge in our heart, it would cease to beat. Or, if the electrical charge gets chaotic, the result is a heart attack.

How Can We Enhance Our Flow Of Energy?

We can enhance the flow of electricity in our body through various forms of exercise. We know that the energy centre that powers a single cell in our body is the mitochondria organelle, and it gets its energy from oxygen. Therefore aerobic like exercises can enhance our energy and therefore result in a feeling of more physical energy. Our body is made up of 50 trillion cells, and our cells communicate via electrical potential differentiation. We can sense the Qi or energy flowing through our nerve sensations as well as the pumping of our blood through our veins. Technically, what we are sensing is not so much the qi itself, but the result of qi moving the matter in our body. Qi, or the energy that powers the universe, is one of the great mysteries of life. We don’t know where it comes from, but we can observe its effects and use it to our advantage.

feel your qiThe Ancients Knew Something About Energy Long Ago.

Other than typical aerobic exercise to increase the energy circulation in our body, we can work with our energy through various practices such as Qigong, Yoga or Tai Chi. The most simple of these is Qigong, and it is also the easiest to practice. Qigong not only enhances the aerobic system, but taps into the energy pathways known as meridians which traditional Chinese medicine has worked with for thousands of years. We can learn how to harness this energy to our advantage so we can be at our peak level of wellness and emotional health. The word Qigong from China breaks down to mean ‘energy’ (qi) ‘skill’ (gong), or the skilful application of using energy. There is no exact meaning due to the nature of translation from Chinese to English, but all translations point to a common meaning, which is ‘working with energy skillfully’.
kinetic energy

kinetic energy

Energy Is Many Things.

There are many forms of energy such as sound, electrical, atomic, kinetic, radiant and chemical. But our emotions and thoughts are a form of energy too as we know that these intangible things can impact our physical wellbeing and how much physical energy we possess in order to enjoy life. Medical studies confirm that a large percentage of disease and ill health are caused by stress, but have a limited amount to offer in terms of how to manage this emotional energy.

Feel Your Qi By Practicing Qigong.

This is where the practice of Qigong is perfect as it embraces the physical, mental and emotional aspects as well as the sense that we are deeply connected to nature. By nurturing our connection to nature we are able to come into a balance of wellbeing more easily than if we were only involved in the usual western forms of exercise. Qigong enhances the flow of energy around our body more than exercises that only have a focus on the physical aspects of our being. Not only is the focus on moving energy through the muscles, but also through the organs and meridians of the body and releasing resistance in our mind and how we can move with the least effort possible just as nature moves. It works with the breath and helps us to understand how our breathing is connected to our emotional state. It teaches us that energy is always available to us and how we can unlock it where it may be dormant within us.

Try the 10 minute Qigong Exercise Below.

 
  • ABOUT LIZ HENNESSY

    ABOUT LIZ HENNESSY

    Yoga Instructor, Fitness Coach
    and Qigong Teacher
    In Training

  • ABOUT LIZ'S TEACHER

    ABOUT LIZ'S TEACHER

    Lee Holden
    Is A Qigong Master
    Based In The US.

    LEARN MORE

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Comments (10)

  • Avatar

    Farhan

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    This is a very thought provoking article. I have heard some people talking about energy in terms of our well-being, but I never really understood what it means. Now I have a clearer idea on how energy affects us.

    I also agree with you that people only focus on the physical aspect of their well-being, and don’t even consider how our emotions can bring about all kinds of illnesses.

    I guess we really do live in a very busy and stressful world, and unfortunately, most people won’t be able to live at their fullest potential.

    Very informative post!

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Liz

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      Hi Farhan, glad you liked the post. It is a funny thing that we don’t spend more time thinking about energy in general given that the quantum physicists discovered that we are 99% energy ages ago. We are so conditioned to be physically focused, but I do feel in the future we will be less so and as a result find more meaning in our life as well as more joy.

      Reply

  • Avatar

    lilywong

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    Wow, this ia really profound look at what Qi or energy is. I agree with many points you highlighted like how it drives our biology and ultimately affect our health. The part about enhancing our flow of energy is really informative too. I have heard many great account of Tai Chi – might just give that a try! Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Liz

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      Hey Lily, thanks for your comments. Although Tai Chi and Qigong have similarities, I’d start with Qigong as it is much easier to practice and also more related to health where is Tai Chi is based on a martial art.

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Israel

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    Hey Liz!

    I’ve always been into quantum physics. The way energy works and how we can actually enhance the flow of energy within our body is amazing.

    I practice reiki and it’s awesome how you can feel the energy and direct it.

    I started practicing some QiGong exercises some time ago, and I’d ike to start doing it again, since it helped me balance my energy and feeling better.

    Thanks for sharing! 😉

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Liz

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      Hi Israel, reiki is very interesting and not something I have had a lot of experience with. However, I suspect that all of these energy techniques are pretty much the same thing-some form of Qi or Life Force energy or Prana or whatever you want to call it! I think a Qigong practice would really compliment and maybe even enhance your experience with Reiki.

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Angela

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    What an interesting post, I have never heard of Qigong before. The fact that we are a lot of empty space and everything is energy is quite mind boggling! I love that Qigong is good for the mind and body, a bit like Yoga I suppose. It looks and sounds very relaxing!

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Liz

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      Hi Angela. It is funny how many people have not heard of Qigong before, but they have heard of Chinese Medicine and acupuncture. QIgoing is just a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine and I think it will begin to get more and more popular over the years just as yoga has. Thanks for visiting!

      Reply

  • Avatar

    Chris

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    Thank you Liz for this very interesting and profound article. I believe that our western medical and science approach, only concentrating on the physical part of things, is missing a very important part that you are highlighting here. Eventhough it seems that they are getting closer it’s definitely a wise idea to look in the older eastern traditions that have a better access to those things.

    Do you think learning Qigong all by yourself is attainable or is it better to work with a teacher?

    Reply

    • Avatar

      Liz

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      Hi Chris, I do think you can get a huge amount of benefits by practicing by yourself following along with a video online, but I also think it depends on how deep you want to go. In the beginning for at least a year or so I think video instruction is all anyone actually needs, but finding a group of people to practice with lead by a teacher can be a really enhancing experience of the practice.

      Reply

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