Martha asked me to write about my experiences of a 100-Day Gong that I recently completed. I had a lot of opportunities during the gong to notice how much I had changed through all that occurred. I‘m happy to share my experiences.
100-day gongs have always brought me new inspiration and appreciation for how qi works in my life. I’ve completed different gongs over the years and they’ve all affected me in different ways. Some with questioning, some with physical qi reactions, but all had the aspects of being aware of my thoughts as I went through each day.
I realized that it was important to give thought in choosing the qigong practice that I could commit to repeating for 100 days. Ideally, for me, it needed to be a practice that I would look forward to doing instead of one that needed some possible nudging along the way. I decided to try a different practice this time. My choice to do Yang Qi * for 30 minutes a day was the best fit for me and ended up offering the most revealing experience I’ve had so far. I found myself looking forward to joining the qi field daily and feeling more connected and grateful for it.
I felt qi being activated in different parts of my body, mind and spirit throughout the duration of the gong. Physically, I noticed myself lightening up, like going for a short haircut and also dropping some weight along the way. This has given me a way to be more light and open to living each moment without unnecessary heaviness. I found myself adding more Yang Qi throughout the day when I had idle moments available; that worked wonders in many situations.
My mind has become more forgiving and less rattled about stressful situations. The lighter and more positive way of viewing things helped me go through experiences and come out on the other side feeling strong and grateful. For instance, during the gong I visited my only remaining family elders, including an aunt, in Tucson for the last time. She passed away shortly after my visit and then my mother-in-law died the following week. Next, I said goodbye to very dear long-time friends who moved across country, and then lost a close family friend to illness a month later. In the past, these events would have brought on a cloud of grief and anxiety for some time. I believe the daily practices of my gong helped keep me stable, grounded and present through all these events.
Spiritually, I feel that my daily gong practice has continued to keep me connected to nature, which always soothes me on many levels. I’ve noticed that I feel safer and more accepting of life and death as a circle that continues on. Wow, did the gong do that?
Even though I have had experiences with qigong in the past that affirmed my desire to live more fully, I appreciate the concentration of the 100-day practice. I’m amazed at all the potential benefits that can come from committing to a gong. It’s the commitment. It’s the realizations along the way that are so transformative and inspiring.
* Yang Qi is done by sitting comfortably, eyes closed and relax deeply. Place the center of both palms so they are aligned over navel (right hand rests against navel for women, left hand rests against navel for men). Begin breathing in the belly; with each inhalation belly gently expands, and with each exhalation belly gently contracts. You may chant “Hun Yuan Ling Tong” to yourself as you breathe. As belly expands, mind expands out, as belly contracts qi returns home into lower dantian. YQ can be done at any time, such as before falling asleep and upon awakening.