BHE Week Eleven: Connecting to Heaven and Earth – Part Two

This week we are going to look at our connection with heaven and earth in a bit more depth.

Structuring Your Sessions

Do all of the exercises you have focused on so far in this course before spending the rest of your practice sessions focusing on this week’s exercise – Connecting with heaven and earth – part two.

Exercises

The following video shows the focus exercise for this week.  Do as many repetitions of this simple exercise as you want to/have time for in your session.

 

Additional details about the exercise

In the exercise this week we explore the difference in connection to heaven and earth achieved by holding our body in different positions.  We most readily connect to energies around us through the most conductive parts of our body.  These parts tend to be softer parts of our bodies and rich with nerve endings.  The palms of our hands and soles of our feet are particularly conductive and these are the main focus of the exercise this week.  There are also other conductive parts of our body that we will be using this week as well, particularly the face and centre of the top of the head.

For the exercise this week we will be standing with both feet flat on the ground, so this will be a constant strong connection with the earth through the soles of the feet.  We will be varying the position of our arms hands and head which will create different levels of connection to both heaven and earth as you go through the exercise.  Notice these differences and how they make you feel as you do the exercise.

Positions:

  1. Hands relaxed by our sides:  Strong earth connection through feet. Weak heaven connection through top of head.
  2. Hands face down: Strong earth connection through hands and feet. Weak heaven connection through top of head.
  3. Arms raised to sides, palms down: Strong earth connection through feet, broad diffuse earth connection through underside of arms and hands.  Weak heaven connection through top of head.
  4. Arms raised to sides, palms up: Strong earth connection through feet.  Broad diffuse heaven connection through upper side of arms and hands, weak heaven connection through top of head.
  5. Hands raised up above head, looking upwards: Strong earth connection through feet.  Strong heaven connection through palms of hands, strong heaven connection through face.
  6. Hands pushing to sides: Strong earth connection through feet.  Weak heaven connection through top of head.  Energy pushes outward through palms.
  7. Arms crossed in front of chest:  Strong earth connection through feet.  Weak heaven connection through top of head.  Energy gathers in through palms and arms.
  8. Arms drawn back, palms up.  Strong earth connection through feet.  Weak heaven connection through top of head and palms.  Energy is loaded and ready.
  9. Hands pressing forwards.  Strong earth connection through feet.  Weak heaven connection through top of head.  Energy presses forwards through hands.
  10. Arms drawn back, palms up.  Strong earth connection through feet.  Weak heaven connection through top of head and palms.  Energy is loaded and ready

Return to start position.

As with the other exercises you can experiment doing this one at different speeds.  You may go quickly, moving through several positions in one phase of breath, or you may slow it down, doing one whole breath in each position – or even several breaths in each position to truly appreciate the energy connection you experience.

 

Theory

Many parts of our bodies are conductive to energy. In particular all of the acupuncture points are conductive areas.  Spending time experiencing the difference in energy connection from holding different positions in the exercise this week will help you to be more aware of energy conduction in general and will help you to apply these principles to other qigong practices as well.

On a psycho/spiritual note, it is interesting that while we almost always maintain a strong connection to the earth (through the soles of our feet), our connection to heaven is generally weaker (through the relatively less conductive centre of the top of our head) but becomes stronger when we ‘raise our hands to heaven’ or ‘look to heaven’.  In qigong practice lot of emphasis is often put on ‘grounding’ yourself and connecting to the earth.  This is important, but it is just as important for us to spend time on our connection with heaven.  Of course it is impractical for us to walk around with our hands over our heads and looking upwards a lot of the time, but taking time to refresh this connection is very worthwhile and rewarding.  The fresh influx of yang heavenly energy with help to activate, reinvigorate and balance the yin we receive from the earth.