One of the most important concepts to be considered for a healthy mind, body and spirit is balance. This idea is one of the meanings of the famous Yin/Yang symbol – each colour needs the other and complements the other – too much of either and balance is lost.
Whilst this can be applied to many aspects of our lives it also applies to our energy system.
The chi that flows through our system does not do so in isolation from the rest of the universe. Quite the contrary, our chi comes from the universe, returns to the universe and helps mark our place within it. There are many points in our bodies through which we can receive and transmit chi, such disciplines as Iron Palm and Chi Healing to name but two use the hands as a conduit for energy. However, the most important points in the body for exchanging chi with the universe around us are through our feet and through the top of our head. These points form an important part of many Chi Kung meditations and other energy manipulation disciplines.
These two channels are important on more levels than just exchanging energy because the energy we access through these points are of different kinds – the “earth” energy that connects us to the here and now through the feet and the “heaven” or spiritual energy that we access through the head. Note that “heaven” is used in a non-religious context here.
As with all things maintaining a balance between these two types of energy is crucial to a happy and healthy existence. If we spend all our time in mundane activities our spiritual side withers and dies, if we spend all our time seeking out the higher planes or communing with our higher powers our bodies suffer a similar fate.
So this is all very interesting, but what’s it got to do with me?
One of the first things we do when stressed, frightened, or suffering trauma of one type or another is to withdraw our energy into ourselves, towards our energetic heart – roughly at the same position in the body as our real heart, only in the centre rather than offset to the left.
This diminishes the chi connection through our feet, affecting our energetic grounding. This may produce feelings of insecurity or anxiety and can potentially lead to chi blockages that may cause other problems in the body. Indeed, this is one of the commonest states I see in clients.
Here is a simple exercise that only takes a couple of minutes that can be very useful in grounding our energy and can help to balance our system, lessening the chances of chi blockages and other unwanted effects.
Stand with your feet a little more than shoulder width apart and the knees slightly bent.
Place your right hand in your left palm with your thumbs touching and close your eyes.
Tell yourself that you are calm and relaxed.
Listen to your breathing and take a few moments until your breathing becomes gentle and regular.
Let your hands fall away and circle them out to the sides.
Continue the circle and bring your hands up over your head.
Turn your palms until they face downwards.
Slowly push your hands down whilst visualizing pushing your energy down through your body, all the way to your feet.
Repeat this movement, circling your arms out to the sides again and pushing your energy down through your body to your feet a second time.
Repeat this movement, circling your arms out and pushing your energy down for a third time.
Open your eyes and relax – this concludes the exercise.
If you can it is good to breathe in deeply whilst circling your arms out and up, and then breath out whilst pushing the hands down. However, you may find you run out of breath or have to rush the movement to achieve this, in which case it is better to take the exercise at your own pace and just breath normally.
This simple exercise can be very effective in grounding your internal energy and is useful to do when you are feeling upset or stressed.