Energy. That illusive concept that goes far deeper than what we understand in a physical manner. It is easy to understand the energy that we can see around us – the trees, earth, homes and our cars. This is called latent energy and this can be understood in the sense that latent energy is energy that is tied up in a fixed manner. It is not being actively expended at the time in any noticeable form. Beyond that we also commonly understand energy in the sense that we use energy as we transition from one state to another. So we know that energy is used in the process of going from a fixed state to a moving state such as when we start running or a train starts rumbling down the tracks.
This is all very physical energy that is easy to understand. We know diesel is being used by the train and our bodies are using the food we’ve eaten to help us start running. But if we start to dig a little deeper, what is this energy that permeates all things and which we can affect with our mind, emotions and state?
Many spiritual and cultural traditions make reference to it. The Chinese call it qi, the Japanese refer to it as ki, Hinduism describes it as Shakti. Christians might make reference to the Holy Spirit flowing through someone while yoga practitioners talk about the rising kundalini.
It isn’t that we can grasp this energy or qi in our hands, point at it and say this is the energy we speak of because our hands are at once qi and attempting to hold qi. It is pretty much elusive so far or as Lao Tzu descibed it 2,500 years ago, “The Tao that can be named is not the tao.”.
This energy that we speak of is so small it has yet to be discovered. If we were to split a cell and keep splitting it, keep going down into the smallest possible particle, we would eventually arrive at a state where there was nothing left to divide. The energy we would be viewing would be fluid and in motion, ever in a state of flux, impossible to pinpoint this piece or that piece as ‘belonging’ to one item or the next – all we would see would be this field of energy, constantly in motion and never stagnant.
This field permeates me, you, the earth, sky and space. It runs through all things and this is why we are all connected.
For many holistic practitioners, this is the energy state they are working with. Because this field is responsive to the thoughts and intentions of people, it can be manipulated to bring about the desired result – subject to the provision that it does not meet any blockages of a stronger nature that would prevent it from doing so.
Blockages could take the form of an opposing thought form. For example, if I wanted outcome ‘A’ and you wanted outcome ‘B’, I could only succeed in bringing about outcome A if the energy I generated was stronger than your energy, all other things being equal.
So in this context, it is crucial therefore that the focus, consistency and intentions of the practitioner are all in alignment and of a noble purpose. They need to be as anything that throws the purity of a healing modality into question will affect the outcome and that block can come from the environment, the practitioner, patient, family and friends. The strength then of the focus and intent needs to overcome any of these blockages combined in order for a healing effect to take place.
Connecting with this energy is not hard – we, each and every one of us, are already part of of it and it of us. There is no separation only one continuum of energy. This is why there is nothing that you do that exists in isolation – everything you do has an effect on this cosmic energy – you thoughts, emotions and actions. Unfortunately, we have lost the natural abilities we had to be in tune and alignment with this energy and many of us go through life never really experience the spirituality that comes with knowing and being mindful of this energy.
Meditation and energy exercises help us to build an awareness of this energy. Yoga, qigong, taichi and meditation are some of the most common. With all physical exercises such as qigong, the crucial point is to be mindful of the energetic aspect of the movements.