From my informal study of qigong and Chinese martial arts, I have learned that there are two essential ingredients needed for proper study. One, a good student, and two, a good teacher. I can't say if I am a "good student" or not. Master Shen, however, is the teacher I have been looking for.
Having a general love for Chinese culture and its physical arts, I started out looking for a Tai Chi teacher. None that I came across gave me confidence. When I decided to try out Soaring Crane. I knew after my first class that Master Shen was a teacher I wanted to study with even though she wasn't teaching Tai Chi.
Master Shen projected caring, confidence and an easy-going posture. All of this attracted me to her teaching. She cared that we learn correctly the movements and the names of the movements. Master Shen made learning Soaring Crane fun and easy, giving myself and fellow students a little bit (the movements) at a time.
Master Shen by being very patient gave me the impression that she knew myself and fellow students had the intelligence to learn.
All this alone has contributed greatly to my Soaring Crane Qigong practice, which in one sentence or less gives me peace of mind, heals my neck, shoulders, wrists and any other pains that I incur from my everyday life. I know I am doing something immensely good for myself and others. And that's a lot of love.
Fitzcarl Reid, 25 years old New Yorker
I remember my first Qi gong class. We were told to stand with two feet about the shoulder's width apart, parallel to each other and then we proceeded with learning Routine One. I was struggling with the standing position. I had a hard time keeping my feet parallel. Master Shen sensed something and said "you are in a lot of pain".
I started crying, "Yes," I said. she asked me to sit down and began to move her hand along my legs without actually touching me. I didn't feel anything. But 30 seconds later there was no pain and I was able to participate in the class. I knew something happened. My feet were now parallel without the pain.
When I signed up for the class, I knew I wanted to hone in on my healing abilities. Many years ago, I worked with Actualism and noted my ability to psychically see things beyond myself. We worked with energy. My hands seems to hold a radiant healing light. Twenty years later, I find myself wanting to further develop this natural phenomenon.
I was told that it would take some time, maybe several months, before I would feel the Qi. And, if I continued to practice every day, I would soon notice something. One morning as I stood in my bedroom, beginning Routine One, I did the usual procedure, which is to visualize Qi entering at bai-hui point. I've been doing this for months and this morning I felt it enter my body and find its way down into the center of my body. Yes. This is it. I felt the Qi.
I've practiced Soaring Crane Qi Gong since I enrolled over two years ago. I'm not a very disciplined person, but I know there is something in this practice that keeps me focused and committed. I know I need to do this for me. And, I know I can't be sloppy and inconsistent about it.
I have participated in 8 different Soaring Crane Qi Gong classes. In addition to the basic classes, I have also learned to channel my energy to use in healing not only myself but others as well. I am currently learning how to teach Qi Gong. As a student teacher I am not only fine-tuning my practice but am learning to overcome my own inhibition about standing in front of a group and sharing what I have learned. I am learning the art of communication.
I especially like the classroom. I am with a group of people, all focused on the same thing...good energy...healing. I can feel the difference between my practice at home versus the classroom. It is as if the whole room radiates Qi. There is a vibration so strong, I can feel my face get all flushed. I feel my hands filled with Qi. Aches and pains I came in with disappear by the end of the class. There are days I come in with low energy and leave flying.
I'm happy to share my qigong experience with you. I met Masters Shen and Wu in the fall of 1997, on the recommendation of a friend. I was suffering excruciating back pain that had caused me to stop working. Honestly, I was a bit skeptical. But after trying conventional physical therapy, rest, massage, heat, ice, acupunture, etc. with no success, I was willing to try qigong.
I began receiving bi-weekly qigong healing sessions with Master Wu, and after about 3 months of treatment, the pain was all but a memory! I've gone back to work, started excercising regularly and begun qigong classes with Master Shen.
I'm very grateful to Masters Shen and Wu. I want everyone to know about these two very special healers. God bless them.
I practice a form of qi gong known as Soaring Crane qi gong. Qi means air and energy. Gong means cultivation. There's five basic routines that you can learn which help you to clear your mind, relax your body, ground yourself and let universal energy flow. The movements are inspired by and partially modelled after the movements of cranes.
They're simple and you can learn them quickly, if you have a good teacher to correct your posture and help direct your energy and mental focus. Being in a class is a really good idea, because you enjoy and contribute to communal vitality and learn from and help teach others as you go along.
My physical, mental and emotional balance has improved significantly since I began taking a weekly class in October. Also, not to give anything away, but if you practice a lot, you will feel very, very nice during practice and afterwards. It's fun and it's fascinating. You might start glowing, and you might find that you have learned how to subtly transfer your own qi to another. Soaring Crane Qi Gong, after all, is an art form with healing as its main mission.
After seven weeks of the five routines, I had developed a sense of qi, knew of its presence and absence, loved it, and worked at cultivating it when it was on the wane.
Soon I began 7 weeks of standing meditation. This is a very interesting practice. You do a preliminary grounding routine that leaves you in a rooted standing meditation with your eyes closed and your mind extended into the stratosphere.
Qi often surprises the standing meditation by moving you in spontaneous directions and opening up blockages, releasing tension, old or cold qi, and helping you to experience your problems and your interests with an intimacy that I personally haven't known in any other place or time.
I first became acquainted with Soaring Crane qigong when my acupuncturist recommended that I learn it in order to improve my health. She said, "these people can really throw energy around a room."
In the past I had studied yoga, but I never stuck with it. Soaring Crane qigong really appealed to me--I can't explain it, except that I found the combination of physical movements and mental direction very satisfying.
I took the Standing Meditation class, then a Six Sounds class, and then--well, I think you could say I got bitten by the qigong bug. By now I've taken just about every class the Qigong Center offers.
When Master Shen asked if I wanted to take the teacher training class, I initially discounted the idea. But the more I thought about it, the more it seemed like the right thing to do. First of all, I am a teacher (of music) and a performer, so the teaching part would follow naturally. And if I became a teacher of Soaring Crane qigong, it would help me continue my practice and not drop out. Soaring Crane qigong would be a part of my life. It's now five years later and qigong is very much a part of my life. I love teaching Soaring Crane qigong.
Practicing qigong has also affected my life in other, subtle ways. I am generally happier and more balanced. People tell my I am more grounded. And all aspects of my singing and performance have improved tremendously since I have been practicing Soaring Crane qigong.