Chi Chi Chi
The Chinese word "Chi" has many translations; energy, air, breath, wind, vital essence, and so on. Although difficult to define, it can be thought of as the activating energy of the universe. Chi condenses and disperses in alternating cycles of negative and positive energy (Yin and Yang), materialising in different forms and shapes. It can neither be created nor destroyed. Instead, Chi transforms itself and reappears in new forms of existence. Chi is the source of all movement in the universe. The motion of the stars and the planets, the radiation from the sun, and the pattern of our thoughts and motions occur because of Chi.
It is considered to be the source of our life-force and the animating factor in all living beings. Chi also binds things together. It is what keeps the constituents of our bodies from separating and dissipating. When the human body loses its breath of life, the original energy leaves it, allowing the body to decompose. Chi holds the organs, blood vessels, and other bodily parts in place. When the body's Chi becomes weak, a loosening of the organs can occur in which they drop from their normal positions, leading to poor functioning and ill-health.
The Chi that forms the heavens and earth is essentially the same as the Chi that forms living beings. The Bible's Book of Genesis says, "God created man in his image". Similarly, in Chinese thought, human beings are a microcosm of the universe. Thus, Chi flows through the universe, and it also flows through humans.
The idea of Chi is not unique to the Chinese. In Hebrew the word is "Ruach". Ruach was present at the creation of the universe, even before light. The term means 'Breath of God' or 'Divine Breath'. In Japanese, the term "Ki" expands the concept of Chi to include the Chinese idea of 'Yi' or intention, indicating that our mind or will is a major influence governing the movement of Chi, which is very important in meditation and martial arts. In Sanskrit, the word for Chi is "Prana". The Tibetan word is "Lung". In Lakota Sioux it is known as "Neyatoneyah". The Bush People of the Kalahari speak of it as "Num", which means 'Boiling Energy". In Islamic, Chi is referred to as "Barraka".
Although many cultures possess an awareness of Chi, the Chinese have refined this concept and integrated it into their culture to an unparalleled degree. Chi is a causal factor in a wide range of bodily phenomena. Regular exercise fortifies the muscles with the body's energy, enhancing our ability to consume more Chi. So working with Chi to heal your own body is a needle-less form of acupuncture. External Chi, received from the earth, sun, and stars, can be transformed and refined into enhanced life-force for self-healing.
So stop, and take an honest look at yourself, become aware of the subtleties of your mind and body, and tread lightly on the earth. Heal yourself first before you attempt to heal others and the planet.