Learning from the Nature, Living according to Ancient Wellness Wisdom Once Again
These days people really care about cultivating health and wellness. As a result, “LOHAS” has become very trendy worldwide. LOHAS stands for Lifestyle of Health and Sustainability. The mission of LOHAS is creating sustainable mind/body balance and health for individuals, families, and communities. This theory corresponds very well to concepts of Traditional Chinese Wellness. Wellness, according to Chinese tradition, holds that the human body is a small universe reflecting the great universe of Heaven and Earth. Living according to the operational patterns of Heaven and Earth is the healthiest and the most optimal lifestyle. This traditional philosophy of wellness is best expressed by Lao Zi in Tao Te Ching where he offers that, “Mankind models after Earth, Earth models after Heaven, Heaven follows the Way, and the Way follows Nature.”
The concept of wellness being “modeled after nature” is found in traditional martial arts, Qi Gong, and Traditional Chinese Medicine. I have accumulated many years of experience teaching Qi Gong and martial arts. Through this experience, I have gained a deep understanding of how learning and applying nature’s great operational rules in daily living can enhance the vitality and health of the body/mind. In plain words, we should have a regular lifestyle, eat more seasonal and local food, sync our emotions with nature’s comforting harmony, and do wellness exercises like Qi Gong and Taichi Quan following nature’s rules for invigorating the sinews and bones as well as unblocking the Channels. This way, we can enhance immunity and energy, strengthen muscular endurance, regulate changes of yin and yang in the body, deeply massage internal organs, and enhance organ functions from the exterior to the interior.
I know the enormous benefits of Qi Gong and Taichi Chuan to the body/mind and therefore I have devoted myself to promoting these traditional wellness practices. Throughout this process, I notice that beginning learners and the general public often have a hard time understanding the abstract operational mechanisms behind traditional wellness exercises including the foundational mindset, internal visualization and thinking, the Channels, and the flow of Qi and energy. Therefore, based on my years of teaching experiences, I have integrated concepts of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Natural Medicine, Chinese Martial Arts, and Qi Gong and analyzed wellness Qi Gong with digital technology. Through the animation of these activities through the use of cutting-edge technology, we are able to bring the concept of internal visualization of thinking to life and turn abstract ideas of qi and Channels into visual media. With this system, we have created the multimedia series of “LOHAS Taichi Chuan” and “LOHAS Fitness Qi Gong”.
LOHAS Tai-Chi Chuan wellness series: “Tai-Chi Boxing”《太極太流行》 uses individual form to address various symptoms by utilizing the health-promoting benefits of Tai-chi. “Lohas Tai-Chi”《太極樂慢活》uses the concept of Heaven-Earth energy flow to illustrate its eight forms. It eases pressure and unblocks the Channels allowing unobstructed flow of qi and blood, and achieves the effect of calming the spirit and promoting wellness. “The DNA of TAICHI” 《太極DNA》emphasizes communicating with the body, feeling the spiraling of the limbs, and the revolving of the Dantian. This practice improves the body’s energy and promotes vitality.
LOHAS Fitness Qi Gong wellness series: “Yi Jin Jing” 《易筋經》integrates the movement patterns of the twelve Channels into a exercise program that benefits the body and joints, strengthens the sinews and bones and aims to assist practitioners as they progress toward a stronger and healthier body. “Ba Duan Jin” 《八段錦》improves body functions through the eight extraordinary Channels. It also matches the Bagua (eight tri-grams) to eight natural elements to enhance the effects of practice. This series exercises the sinews and bones in all aspects and calms the spirit. Wu Qin Xi（ Five Animal Mimicking Exercises）《五禽戲》serves to massage the internal organs and viscera through flexing and extending the limbs and body. This practice helps eliminate stagnant waste products from the body and promotes Channel and organ functions. It renews a person from inside out and brings good health to the individual.
Wu Qin Xi（ Five Animal Mimicking Exercises）is the best compilation of ancient wisdom: where the emphasis is , “Modeling after Nature.” Divine physician Hua Tuo of East Han Dynasty designed this wellness guiding exercise 1800 years ago. The exercise system was created through imitating movements and motions of five animals: deer, bird, monkey, tiger, and bear. It integrates the theories of the Five Elements, Qi and Blood, as well as Channel Theory. It corresponds to the wellness of the five organs. Regular practice will help prevent disease and strengthen the body. We can see how Hua Tuo was not only an expert in medicine and herbology, but also recognized concepts of preventive medicine early on. He lead people to use wellness exercises for increasing the body’s energy, decreasing incidence of sickness, and easing symptoms of disease.
I sincerely wish that everyone is able to gain better knowledge and understanding of this ancient wellness exercise system, the “Wu Qin Xi”. Through practicing these exercises regularly, we can regulate and enhance the corresponding organ and Channel functions. I also hope that we can learn from nature how to harmonize our mind/body. One manner we can accomplish this is through Transforming ourselves into the animals of this form, using our imagination as a tool to rebuild the connections between nature and ourselves. We can think about how nature contains every creature within it. We will then be able to communicate with nature’s energy and have greater appreciation of how to respect and protect our environment through cultivating a sustainable relationship. As we sync the universe within our bodies to the outer environment harmoniously, we can create an everlasting cycle and be the one with the universe.