The only thing keeping Qigong from being one of the most controversial topics in the twenty first century is that so few people know anything about it. That’s, of course, ignoring the over fifty million people who practice it now. Just this month we have two beautiful examples. The first is from the Gainesville Sun and it’s a short article telling how people in that area are coming to Qigong for everything from stress reduction to toxicity.
On the other side of the world, in the very country of Qigong’s origin, we have the beginning of a repressive movement to ban all new Qigong groups.
Why is this? What is the threat poses suddenly by a three thousand year old exercise that is beautiful, ritualized, relaxing and serene? Well, one answer lies in the fact that freedom is always a radical concept. Now there’s all kinds of freedoms but wise people from all over the earth have, throughout history, discovered that the freedom we obtain from knowing out true selves is often the deepest and most personal form of freedom. Not the same as freedom from restraint or political freedom, the freedom of self-knowledge poses a threat not to this or that form of compulsion but to the very idea of compulsion.
The world of Qigong is a wonderful place and a wonderful practice. But, as you can see, some times the idea of change itself scares some people while beckoning others.
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