Everything in nature needs balance to function optimally. Balance with the external forces around it, as well as balance of the internal forces within it. The opposing forces are defined as yin and yang (pronounced Yawng). These are the polar complements used to compartmentalize all phenomena. Up, down, light, dark, dry, wet, hot, cold, inner, outer, left, right, male, female, strong, weak, DC, Marvel (kidding). But what do you do when your internal forces go awry? How do you find balance once again? Qigong to Balance Yin and Yang just might be the answer!
Eastern practitioners recognized long ago that for life to flourish, the physical environment can't be too wet, or too dry. It can't be too hot, or too cold. For life to flourish there needs to be balance. They also realized that because we are made up of the same constituents, the health of the internal environment of the human body relyed on the same balance.
Both ayurvedic and TCM traditions are based on the notion of bringing the body back into energetic balance with both the internal and external environment. When the body is too hot, it needs to be cooled. When the body is too dry, it needs to be moistened. Those who live in a hot environment need more cooling foods. Those who live in a damp environment need more foods that astringe etc.
The old adage of "too much of even a good thing, is bad" is so true! Whether we are talking about physical, emotional or mental aspects, finding our centre, our point of balance, is key to health and wellness.
Yin and Yang of the World
To understand ourselves, we first need to understand our place in the world around us. The earth we live on is the greatest influencing source of yin energy. The relative stillness of the ground beneath our feet provides us with a calming, stabilizing, slowing, literally grounding energy. It is one of the many reasons walking in nature is so healing.
When life has you feeling stressed, anxious, and has your mind going a thousand miles a minute, take a few hours away from your screens and take a quiet walk in nature. It's incredible how quickly our heart, mind... and blood pressure, relax and slow when we reconnect to the speed of nature.
Although nature can have specific moments of raging energetic fury, the vast majority of the time it moves at a glacial pace. It is the stability needed to balance out the constant motion of the solar system outside our planet, namely the sun. The Sun is our source of ultimate yang energy. A source of constantly changing exploding heat and light.
Our planet is at the mercy of the sun's powerful gravitational field. As we spin around the sun, our planet slowly spins (slowly relative to the sun that is!) creating a balance of light and dark, warm and cold. It is this relationship in motion that creates the seasons and weather as well as day and night.
For life to manifest on our tiny blue planet, the "blue" was a definite must! For life, we need water and for water to exist on a planet it once again needs to find a balance point. Too close to the sun, all water would dry up and evaporate. Too far from the sun, we end up with a ball of ice. As always balance is needed.
We are currently living in a time of increasing environmental change and not for the better. We are witness to the unfavourable results of even the slightest shifts in balance. A slight rise in temperature leads to a dramatic change in weather patterns. Changing weather patterns lead to unfavourable plant growth as well as shifts in both species loss and migration. Changes in animal numbers and movement lead to changing distribution of vectors of disease.
It's hard to imagine finding balance in a world dealing with such imbalance.
Yin and Yang Within The Body
As always, classifications of yin and yang are based on your point of reference. Up (yang) vs down (yin), internal (yin) vs external (yang), are relative to your point of reference. Your chest is yang in comparison to your stomach, but yin to your head. Your muscles are yin in comparison to your skin, but yang to your bones.
But there are balance points. If you were to draw a line down the centre of your body, this would be the balance point of your left (yang) and right (yin) sides. Your centre of gravity located 2 inches below your navel, would be the balance point between your upper body (yang) and lower body (yin).
Even our brain has a yin and yang side. The left (yang) side of our brain deals with language, logic, reasoning and numbers which are all considered yang attributes. While the right (yin) side deals with emotion, empathy, creative thinking, and images.
How Can You Use Qiong To Balance Yin and Yang in The Body?
To balance out our yin and yang energies in the body we need to reconnect one with the other. Within yang, there is the seed of yin, and within yin there is the seed of yang. Think of creating an energetic ice cream swirl. This is once again where intention is key. Remember, where the mind goes, the Qi follows.
If you feel your energy is accumulating in say your head and shoulders, then your need to employ Qigong exercises that connect your upper body and lower body. If you feel one arm or leg is weaker than the other, your need to focus on Qigong exercises that cross the body from right to left.
The mental intention and focus of reconnecting yin and yang energies during movement is a simple yet powerful way to quickly bring the body back into physical energetic balance. By connecting your mind to the intention behind the movement, you bring it back into balance with the moment, rather than being trapped in the past (yin) or reeling in the future (yang). Finally, when the yin and yang energies of your mind and body are balanced, your emotions are calm, peaceful and once again.... in balance.
Whether you're a beginner or advanced, young or elderly, spending a few moments bringing awareness to your imbalances and then setting your intention, you can quickly and easily use the gentle practice of qigong to balance yin and yang in the body once again...Give it a try!
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