REVIEW: Wisdom Chi Kung

Wisdom Chi Kung: Practices For Enlivening The Brain With Chi Energy
By Mantak Chia

160 pages, paperback

Published by Destiny Books

Wisdom Chi Kung presented me with challenges I had not previously encountered in Mantak Chia’s books. They all take the Western reader deep into what is likely to be unfamiliar territory, as the human body is explored and explained in ways that seem strange and alien. Yet they use physiological terms and diagrams that work well to reduce the initial sense of an unimagined world.

Wisdom Chi Kung commences in a reassuring manner. It recounts the results of scientific tests taken in Vienna that demonstrated the capacity of Mantak Chia’s Taoist meditation to produce qualities of brain energy superior to anything derived from other forms of tested meditation.

This leads to suggestions that Taoist meditation may be better suited to equip a practitioner to address the practical needs of this world than Buddhist meditation, which is more addressed to types of withdrawal from the world.

The opening chapter concludes, however, with a passage headed The Gut Brain and the Tao, which leads into less recognisable territory. The second chapter explores the monkey mind and the inner smile in ways designed to reconnect mind, body and spirit, while drawing on an increased sexual function to produce a greater sense of total fusion with the energies of the body and the cosmos.

As I read on into later chapters I found myself grappling with the sense there were not only two brains (of the mind and gut) but also that the heart and other parts of the body, even the skin, seemed to qualify for similar recognition. Moreover, brain energy and brain wave activity pervade other organs of the body.

Uncharacteristically for me, I began to ask myself whether Mantak Chia was losing it. Enlightenment only seemed to dawn when I started a little time later to read Peter Fraser and Harry Massey’s Decoding the Human Body-Field: The New Science of Information as Medicine, reviewed by Huw Griffiths in the September-October 2008 edition of New Dawn.

Fraser and Massey outline a new dimension of science and medicine that draws on quantum physics and oriental notions of qi or energy to explain that quantum level energy is the bearer of information that is the foundation of organic health and well-being. Their Nutri-Energetics System has developed a range of infoceuticals that are designed to assist the body to maintain health sustaining information flows.

While the West’s mainstream allopathic model of health care is unlikely to be displaced tomorrow, it is difficult to read Decoding the Human Body-Field without reflecting on the profound wisdom of ancient Chinese and Indian health traditions, as well as that of a body of practice like homeopathy. In comparison, much modern medicine, largely defined as it is by corporate profit calculation, seems crude and primitive, as well as grossly expensive.

Decoding the Human Body-Field is relevant in that it presents in more or less familiar Western scientific paradigms what Mantak Chia outlines in Wisdom Chi Kung. Chia, however, uses terms that are largely dictated by the intuitive, disciplined consciousness of the Taoist initiate.

When troubled by some form of disease, moreover, the Taoist is more likely to draw on internal resources, perhaps the inner smile and a cultivated sensitivity to the body’s energy and information flows, than on the products of the scientific discoveries of Fraser and Massey, let alone the products of the West’s mainstream corporate inventors.

The above realisation led me to further reflection. Fraser and Massey had provided many brilliant insights and an invaluable service in awakening me to the wisdom of Chia’s Wisdom Chi Kung.

The two books, when read together, offered an even deeper insight. This was that for a normal healthy person, accustomed to taking a disciplined interest in his or her own well-being, the science of Fraser and Massey was much more cumbersome and inconvenient than the disciplined, intuitive consciousness of Chia.

Increasingly, my own experience suggests that the application of Chia’s ‘wisdom’ enables one to correct most problems and retain a high level of energy without the involvement of third parties or recourse to scientific or medical procedures.

The body, with a little conscious effort, seems to be capable of generating its own infoceuticals. Books like the two in question highlight the fact there are no rewards for dogmatism in areas like this.

Wisdom Chi Kung also contains chapters focusing on PracticeFeeding the First and Second Brains to Increase Wisdom and Clearing the Spirit to Increase Wisdom. The first has passages on Spinal Cord BreathingBreath and LaughterActivation of the Three Fires, and Combine Your Chi with the Universal Energy, the second passages on Brain FoodFeeding the Body Through the Skin and Practice Abdominal Massage and the third passages on Recalling the Past, Rewiring Brain CellsClear MindOpening the Mid-EyebrowAwareness Like Radar and Eating the Cosmos.

One may need a period of suspension of disbelief and some faith to follow Mantak Chia, but the quality of one’s health, well-being and energy always provides the opportunity to check whether one’s efforts are rewarded. In the process, one is presented with some probing questions about the character of Western religious and scientific faith.

– Reviewed by Reg Little in New Dawn No. 120


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