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hammer, December 21, 2009 in General Discussion
I am looking for broad strokes so to speak, a general idea of why the motion becomes necessary. ... It seems to me, and I am sure that this idea is incorrect, that anything meditative that can be done during movement can be done just as well in stillness.
Well, Qigong meditation always involves motion, even if you're standing like a tree. It's about moving Qi. You're right, to an extent, that it's possible to do this without actually "moving" the body, all you need is the intent to move and the Qi will flow the same. But that won't happen until you've reached a tremendous level of development (and have gone through a lot of ups and downs in your practice).
For the time being:
Qigong movements all have a specific purpose behind them, they all activate one Qi stream or another, or groups of them, or points along a meridian, or move Qi from one place to another, and many other Qi-related concepts. Read up on Qi. Ken Cohen is good. You might really enjoy Roger Jahnke's book, "Healing Power of Qi" (I think that's the title, might be a little different) as well.
But from a more practical standpoint, repetetive motions aid the meditation process in that they give you a focal point to keep your mind centered in the here and now. It's easier and more relaxing than "still", better said "static" meditation.
Also, you have a body, it's there to be moved. Your body wants to move, a lot. Why work against that tendency? Doesn't make sense to me. Qigong walks are even more meditative and relaxing than sitting sessions, because then really everything falls into place. Your mind is still, your breath is soft yet your body gets something to do as well.
Fwiw, I always do a little vigorous exercise before starting the slower practice. Vigorous exercise clears the head and warms the body, it's relaxing. The bulk of my personal Qigong practice these days is in the form of organ-strengthening walks. Xi Xi Ho...
Take your time and enjoy the journey!
edit: Added a few words here and there and realized I'd phrased something clumsily. I don't really like to say we "move Qi", but it comes out that way sometinmes if I'm lazy. I think it more accurate to say we move the obstacles that obstruct the natural flow of Qi. And that we do with our intent. And then the Qi flows where it's needed.