When a person starts practicing meditation, and especially after a person meditates for longer periods, most meditation practitioners can’t help but notice the subtle energy in their bodies, as well as the flow that gets exchanged within a group. Known as Chi, Ki, or Qi, it is universal life energy, and Chinese Medicine has used it for healing proposes for many centuries. I remember many years ago when I started to feel the energy flowing throughout my body. Many times this awareness came in meditation when my mind was quiet and centered. However, later in my life, I started a Kung Fu practice and we did Tai Chi and Qi Gong practices during our sessions. My teacher would say to pull the energy from the Earth from the ground up, through your body and into your hand before you punch. At first I thought this was just an imagery technique or a placebo effect in order for us to feel like we were hitting harder, but as I continued to practice, I actually felt energy coming into my hand. Some of my teachers were using it to take massive hits, hits that would break bones or leave large bruises to normal people, during Kung Fu or Martial Arts practice. Athletes would do themselves a great service to check into how to use this type of energy, but energy practice can be used for more serious reasons as well, like health and healing.
Everyone has this energy flowing through him or her, and this is where awareness comes into play. This energy flows through the spine where there are different energy centers called chakras, and these centers connect through channels in the body called meridians. Don’t take my word for it, I challenge you to sit and quiet your mind and body for 20-30 minutes a day and eventually if you get your mind quiet enough, you will find this truth in your own body. It’s possible many of you are awakened to this truth, and have felt or discovered the flow of energy inside yourself. After you become aware of the energy, you can start to use the energy flow to open these channels, or consciously move energy through the body to heal and make the body vibrant. A simple practice of visualization and breathing would be the first step. Breathe into different parts of your body where pain or tension is stored, and visualize energy coming into each area of the body. Then, without judgment, just become aware of your experience. Awakening to the subtle energy can be an easy process, or sometimes painful or uncomfortable, and many traditions have quite complex systems for explaining the energy. Check out this cool guide if your interested in knowing more about meditations for chakras. Keep in mind this is just the basic information to allow many folks the ability to become aware of energy flow in the body and how it works. This is an important part of waking up, tuning into your body and mindfulness practice.