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I've noticed this pattern in most books about Qi-Gong: This kind of books start with a incredible story of their master or their own life, how they learned Qi-Gong beginning with standing meditation and then progressing versus a sitting meditation, eventually reaching mastery and the ability to transmit qi for healing. Then they teach several techniques to the reader, beginning with breathing technique, relaxation, maybe some more advanced techniques like microcosmic orbits and more deeper stuff. But it's funny why they mention standing meditation in the first few pages and then discard it when the practical part of the book starts. Instead they teach techniques which can never lead to success if the energy gates of the body are not opened or when the body is not able to produce abundantly enough qi for practicing the microcosmic orbit. From say 20 books I've read the last 20 years about Qi-Gong or "similar practices", only 4 of them stressed the importance of standing meditation. From this 4 books 2 was specialized in Zhan Zhuang and the other 2 on "water techniques". My own experience taught me that Zhan Zhuang is so effective in opening the meridians, that I practice now only this technique. The flow inside the meridians is stronger, blockages are dissolved on daily basis and I begin to feel something inside my dantien, which was impossible with other techniques before. Standing meditation involves the entire body and strengthens the core of the energy body. You cannot cheat (!!!!), which is super important and a perfect precondition for myself, because my imagination is strong and I could imagine that there is a flow if there is nothing. But if one can stand for one hour, than some success must have be achieved, right?! And we need a exercise that acts a qi-generator, building up enough qi to push through the meridians and dissolving blockages. How could a relaxation technique based on sitting and breathing ever lead to the point where one masters qi? The plausible explanation is, that the authors of this books are not real masters and so they don't know what they are writing about (highly probable) they try to keep a secret in plain sight, so that only the "worthy ones" will understand ... but dude, we have the year 2018 and the internet maybe it's a "cultural thing" to not tell everything to westerners (I cannot change my birth place, it was purely out of my control) they don't teach the important stuff in books, but you need to buy them a beer and then they will teach you the secret (masters are humans after all!) or maybe they really thought that we would understand ... and so they overestimated our intelligence. Anyway ... I hope that more qi-gong masters out there teach the "real" fundamental techniques and not super deep high advanced stuff that is only practicable by other masters.
I recently recorded myself doing zhan zhuang to analyze my session. Playing the video at about 4x speed, I can see a lot of movement in the lower back (I am moving the shoulders as well, but those more intentionally), which somewhat resembles nauli kriya to me . When doing zhan zhuang I can feel myself stretching the spine, creating more space between the vertebrae, and I usually think of breathing into my upper back. One question I have is whether in the practice of zhan zhuang such movements are desirable or whether more stillness is desirable instead. Any other feedback is welcomed.
Some of you may be familiar with the posture Standing in the Stream from Master Lam Kam Chuen's book The Way of Energy. Please see the photo below: I opened this book yesterday for the first time in a while and I felt drawn to this posture. When I did find myself in it later during a qigong session--WOW! I'm just curious, does anyone know which energy centers/meridian pathways this posture activates or works with? I'm just curious, but may also be useful for diagnostic purposes and treatment references down the road. Thanks!