Why I now Prefer this Ancient Practice to Yoga
I love yoga and think it's an awesome practice but, for me, the incredible calming and healing benefits that flow from my Qigong practice are more aligned to my inner compass. I 'come home again' in the routine practice of this ancient healing tradition.Interestingly, some people refer to Qigong as the 'Asian yoga'.
I find the big difference for me between my previous yoga practice and my current practice of Qigong is the focus Qigong brings to the uplifting of such emotions as gratitude as I progress through the gentle, mindful movements; it serves to bring me into greater heart coherence.
Research at the Heart Math Institute supports my experience of this heart/mind connection: "...individuals can produce extended periods of physiological coherence by actively generating and sustaining a feeling of appreciation or other positives emotions."
I practiced Ashtanga yoga for a decade with a wonderful teacher named Johnny Belinko. He was a calming, healing presence and I'm so grateful for the experience of working with this awesome guide. During the pandemic, I, like many others, I felt a call for something else. During a 100-day Qigong challenge offered by the wonderful ServiceSpace I found the leadership of Master MIngtong Gu. I woke up early each morning to practice Qigong for an hour. We were an online community group who shared reflections every day on how we had experienced our practice and what we had felt; we shared with one another our joy, our sorrows, our pain in this communal practice. We moved through all of it together.
This rich experience inspired me to seek other such safe nurturing spaces, a path that might offer healing benefits for both body and mind, a practice that was simple and easy to follow. In that search, I found Qigong Teacher Sue Crites on You Tube and through her guidance I also found Spring Forest Qigong. I found what felt like my 'true home of healing' and I started training to become a Certified Practice Group Leader. I studied and trained and absorbed as much as I could of this ancient healing practice given to us from the guidance of Master Lin, a man who has moved through chronic pain and trauma, to become a loving healing presence and guide for many.
When you practice, Spring Forest Qigong Healing Movements, you will find my Love and the Love Energy of the Universe with you." - Master Chunyi Lin
Many people study for many decades to lead a Qigong practice but, thanks to Spring Forest Qigong, I now have a Healing Communi-Qi where people come together in an online community to move through these simple but powerful movements. I share two classes: one on Saturday mornings at 9 a.m. and one on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. EST. I am grateful beyond words to be able to offer these healing sessions in which I feel my own inner healing taking place as well. As is often quoted, "The healer shares what they need to heal."
Today I practice Qigong daily and it helps me re-set and re-frame challenges that come up in my life and work. Most importantly, I truly feel connected to something greater than myself; I feel part of, and deeply held by, universal energy around me. The need for other stimulants has lessened as I call upon my inner love instead of looking for it elsewhere. I also love the fact that SFQ emphasizes the physical intelligence of the body in concert with the power of unconditional love. The teachings are based on a foundation of Love, Kindness and Compassion. That's pretty powerful messaging and I trust that a focus on the heart will always bring more healing than any focus on only the mind and movements. It's the combination that helps bring us to a state of oneness in that moment.
For me, it's like coming back to my true home again.