Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Finding Padma in North Georgia

In keeping with my focus for The Year of the Dragon, I have been working more on Qigong and meditation. To that end, I just participated in a Neigong workshop with the folks at The Rising Lotus in Atlanta, GA.  It was a great experience and I recommend them to anyone interested in learning more about Qigong, Medical Qigong, Neigong, and associated practices.

As anyone who knows me or reads my blog can attest to, I am and have been a big proponent of Qigong.  However, I have found that in-depth study in quality Qigong is not that easy to find.  Many Taiji and Kung Fu schools offer some Qigong practice, generally related to the martial arts.  And my experience with this has been good.  However, it is rare to find a school that focuses primarily on Qigong that offers real, deep, solid instruction.  Qigong practice in the West has unfortunately attracted many New-agers and the associated quirks that go along with that thought: Angels, levitation, aliens, tarot, etc...  There is obviously a market for this in our world, it's just not my thing.  I have a background in well-grounded, scientifically sound Taiji and Qigong practice.  Accordingly, when I go looking for further training, I expect a similar environment.  This is what I found at The Rising Lotus.

The Rising Lotus is operated by husband and wife team, Peyton and Christina Barea Young.  They offer Qigong classes, Medical Qigong Therapy, and Medical Qigong training and certification via The International Institute of Medical Qigong.  They offer spiritual Qigong practice, as Peyton is a Buddhist priest and Christina a Taoist priest, and they are both martial artists and offer martial training as well.  So in keeping with solid Taoist principles, they see no distinction between Qigong for health, spiritual growth, or martial skills.  For them it is, like all of life, all Qigong.

So, last weekend a Taiji brother and I made our way south to their studio north of Atlanta.  While many of the external Qigong movements were immediately familiar to me, the focus of the workshop was Neigong, or internal Qi development, which was not as familiar to me, but something I have been needing instruction in for some time.  The class was a mixture of folks with much Qigong experience and rank beginners.  Regardless, our teachers expertly guided us all through the movements and into the depth of Neigong practice.  On the second day of the workshop we worked on Qi emission and basic Qigong healing technique. This was all brand new to me.  But again, the level of instruction was superb.  I not only learned new skills, I left energized and satisfied, which is the benchmark of any good Qigong.

I don't really ever see myself being a full-fledged Medical Qigong practitioner.  However, I consider this practice to be a major part of the path, and something I have been needing and wanting to do for some time.   I not only benefited greatly, I look forward to further study in the future.  The Youngs have further plans for developing a Buddhist/Taoist monastery that will serve as a holistic space for spiritual, health, and martial growth.  There is definitely a need for something like that in the Southeast US.  I hope for them, and the rest of us, that it comes to fruition soon.  In the meantime, if you are interested in solid in-depth Qigong training, you will find The Rising Lotus hard to beat.

1 comment:

Christina J Barea-Young said...

Wow, thank you. Your thoughtful words and generous praise are deeply appreciated. Thank you. We look forward to the next time we meet again.