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Curious about Qigong...
Old 12-29-2011, 08:42 AM   #1
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Curious about Qigong...

A friend of mine has always been interested in Eastern Philosophy and, the other day, he sent me information on a 4 day seminar he suggested we attend: Qi Revolution.

Evidently it's been around for a few years, touring the country.

Now, I've always been a skeptic when it comes to these types of "seminars" seeing them as more of a vehicle to sell merchandise (Books, DVD's, CD's etc.) at a huge markup. Still, like my friend, I've been attracted to "Eastern Philosophy" and would be interested in learning more about Qigong.

- Has anyone attended the Qi Revolution Seminar (or know anyone who has)?
- Any thoughts in general?
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Old 12-29-2011, 08:59 AM   #2
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I don't know anything about it but will be curious as to reports from others. I volunteer with a non-profit that helps people age in place in my neighborhood. I noticed on their calendar that they have weekly Qigong sessions.
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Old 12-29-2011, 10:26 AM   #3
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It's a kind of self meditation, a little similar to Yoga but not exactly identical. It has been around for over thousand years and quite dominant in EA culture. It is NOT a religious/cult activity, and it has so many different branches/forms (but all roads lead to Roma). So for a beginner it might be a good idea to attend some sort of training session at first before doing solo.

The basic idea is to train your mind to concentrate and tune your body to be resonant with the energy (Qi) field surrounding you. I have been practicing a form of QiGong taught by my DW for the past about 12 years. It only takes about 15 mins each time every day, and I do have a lot of tears (NOT because I'm upset/sad) literally flowing down along my cheeks while doing it. I feel great, especially for my eyes, afterwards.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:32 AM   #4
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Thanks for the input!

Researching more about the "Qi Revolution Tour" these are the opinions I have formed based on reading past attendee's "reviews"...

Good...
- At 99$ it's a pretty affordable intro into Qigong.
- The folks running it seem knowledgable, sincere, well produced & organized.
- Most people who have attended (and posted reviews) have, mostly, enjoyed it.

Neutral...
- There is less focus on the mental aspects of Qigong & more on the breathing, eating, posturing. (easier to demonstrate, I imagine)
- The 4 days are full and long.

Bad...
- The event can lean towards a "religious revival" feel.
- There a times when the event wanders into a "cheesy infomercial" for products sold at the event.
- Although the entry fee is small... their business model is clearly to make money through the sale of Books, CD's, DVD's, Blenders at huge markups.
- Requires minimum of 2, more comfortably, 3 nights in a hotel, meals, vacation days etc...

Bottom line...
I have mixed feelings. On one hand, I believe in yoga and Eastern philosophy & would like to learn more about practicing Qigong. On the other hand, there is an element of showmanship and "marketing" that makes me a little uncomfortable.

That being said, I've suggested to my friend that we pass on the seminar and, instead, seek out a more personal introduction to Qigong... This opposed to being surrounded by 400 attendees watching "experts" on stage, viewing animations on large screens and being pitched high priced merchandise.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:47 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Seeking Hobbes View Post
That being said, I've suggested to my friend that we pass on the seminar and, instead, seek out a more personal introduction to Qigong... This opposed to being surrounded by 400 attendees watching "experts" on stage, viewing animations on large screens and being pitched high priced merchandise.
This is the approach for which I would vote.

Back when I worked for Mega-Corp, we had a large contingent of Asian salaried employees. A group of them organized a Qigong 'club' that held sessions at lunchtimes during the week in different buildings. So if you missed a session, you could likely catch another one if you were willing to drive to a different building. They never charged a penny for these.

This group also mentioned similar sessions in the community (in the evenings and on weekends). I think they may have charged a nominal fee (like $5) to offset any room rental expenses.

I enjoyed Qigong for its calming/meditative energy.

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Old 12-30-2011, 12:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seeking Hobbes View Post
- The event can lean towards a "religious revival" feel.
- There a times when the event wanders into a "cheesy infomercial" for products sold at the event.
- Although the entry fee is small... their business model is clearly to make money through the sale of Books, CD's, DVD's, Blenders at huge markups.
- Requires minimum of 2, more comfortably, 3 nights in a hotel, meals, vacation days etc...
This doesn't sound right. A combination of "religious revival" feel and strong smell of commercial push can not be good. It totally violates the basic fundamentals of Qi-Gong. Your choice of practice should be very personal and private.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seeking Hobbes View Post
Bottom line...
I have mixed feelings. On one hand, I believe in yoga and Eastern philosophy & would like to learn more about practicing Qigong. On the other hand, there is an element of showmanship and "marketing" that makes me a little uncomfortable.
Trust your own gut feelings. Maybe you can try to find if there is any local Qi-Gong club in your area, or if your local school district would offer some sort of introductory class in their summer programs.

I chuckled when I read the following self promoting statement from Qi Revolution web site: "Qi Revolution features newly developed, never seen before techniques presented in state of the art High Definition Visuals & Luminous Audio, The energy can be felt in a profound way by both inexperienced as well as seasoned practitioners." Yup, you're right.
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:33 AM   #7
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I second the recommendation to find a Qi-Gong club/association in your area.
I have no personal experience with Qi-Gong, but local club holds meeting/practices few times a week in a local park open for everybody. They don't charge anything to join.
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:28 PM   #8
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Like many forms of meditation, it can have a calming effect. But don't get sucked into the "energy field" stuff, which people who know nothing about what energy is made up to explain that effect.

More generally, I'm very suspicious of people who are "into Eastern philosophy". In most cases, it seems to be a way to sound profound by invoking things which others have no way to disprove - after all, it's written with all those fiddly characters like you see in the windows of Asian restaurants.

I also note that the economic boom in China seems to revolve around Chinese people trying to get themselves a big chunk of Western stuff. And "Traditional Chinese Medicine" was basically popularised by Mao, as a way of saying to people, "Sorry, the People's Republic of China is currently too poor to get you any evidence-based medicine, here's some herbs and animal by-products in the meantime".
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:22 AM   #9
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Thanks again for everyone offering advice...

It seems that we have pretty similar opinions. I've done some searching locally and actually found a weekly Qigong "meetup". While it's on the opposite end of town... it gives my friend and me a local option, which I'm all for!

This process has also introduced me to the whole world of "Meetups". Honestly, I never really knew much about them. In my pre-ER life... I never really had time for them. A quick search, however, produced a handful of interesting (and close) meetup groups.

Does anyone have any experience with meetups?

My guess is that their quality varies greatly with the people who form/attend them.

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Originally Posted by BigNick View Post
But don't get sucked into the "energy field" stuff, which people who know nothing about what energy is made up to explain that effect.
Something you needn't worry about... I have a healthy skepticism when it comes to anything that has to do "Mystical Energy Fields." The same Qigong friend gave me one of those "power bands" a year or so ago. Evidently he purchased several at an airport for he and his family.

Anyway, seeing that it was simply a glorified rubber band with a hologram affixed to it, I thanked him... but recognized that he had just paid $30(??) for a "placebo". Later, noticing that I never wore it, he offered to take it off my hands so that he might give it to his nephew.

I believe that a person's mind/attitude is a powerful tool for wellbeing, but I think also think that this "energy" occurs naturally and can be exercised with training. (not rubber bands)
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