By Alan Largo
Knowing Chi is only the first step in being able to utilize it and manipulate it. It is one of the things that are rarely taught in most martial arts.
This is because it is something that takes years to develop and practice. It is more difficult than simply training your body to be able to accomplish the movements, forms and katas.
Therefore in order to be able to use this energy, you must be able to feel and recognize it. You must have an awareness of it.
Everything in the world has some sort of energy to it. Even objects like paper and plastic are going to have some kind of energy attached to it because it contains materials that were once alive though in non-living objects the energy will be very slight.
In order to gain awareness you must first put aside expectations. Expectations are the pictures we create for ourselves and often they will be the little voice that rises up in you head which causes doubt.
Doubt is not something that belongs in the world of Chi. The energy is there. The ability to feel it and use it belongs to everyone you simply need to believe.
Once you have gotten to the space of not holding expectations on what should happen or what you should feel, you are ready for the step of actually working on becoming aware of the energy around you and flowing within you.
It is usually easier to feel your own energy than someone elses energy because you become aware of your body during meditation. Meditation is the key to gaining the awareness necessary to use Chi.
You must quiet the mind, pay attention to the body. You will notice that you will soon feel abnormalities first. This is because negative spots or blockages can be easier to sense and become aware of than the actual flow because you are already used to the flow that comes from the chi you have within you.
The next step is to become aware of the flow at this point. You should start to feel tingling in hands and feet and goose bumps, even heat coming from your hands, feet, spine, and the top of the head and may even feel some pressure in the middle of the forehead.
This is showing you are feeling and becoming aware of the energy. This is also why meditation is an important aspect of martial arts. Once you have become aware of the energy within you, its flow and feel, you can then begin to spread out and begin feeling the energy of other people, pets, plants, and even the air, earth and water.
Once you have gained awareness of the energy within yourself and within other living things, you must then work on learning to recognize the various aspects of each type of energy. Fire will be fast and quick. Some describe it as violent, earth, is steady, solid and seems to stretch forever.
Air is quick, flighty, and gentle or can be the exact opposite and water is calming for the most part. Of course, there are multiple aspects to each energy type and each as its own way of showing itself.
Alan Largo is the creator and administrator of Martial Arts Secrets and strives to assist others identify with various types of martial arts and self defense tactics through informative reviews. You are invited to visit Martial Arts Secrets to read his most recent article review.