How do you know if you’re eating an orange?

by Marcus on July 1, 2011

I’m often asked this question about energy flow:

How do I know if I’m moving my body or if it’s my Qi moving my body?

My usual reply is how do you know if you’re eating an orange? The answer is, you just know from your experience.

After a few lessons, it is very common to see new Qigong students in a class begin to let go enough to enjoy energy flow. It usually starts with a gentle swaying and then at some point you will see them tense and the movements will stop.

They tense because they are about to lose their balance and instead of going with it, they tense their leg muscles.

Eventually they learn to let go and if their Qi moves them forwards they just move forwards and if their Qi moves them backwards, they just move backwards.

Are you moving your body, or is Qi moving it? You’ll know from your own experience.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

andrew blount July 1, 2011 at 2:15 pm

Thank you for the insight. I found myself tensing during standing meditations for just that reason! I would inhale and feel myself sway foward. When exhaling, sway backwards. I felt I had to continuously “root” myself by sinking downwards to stop swaying.

Marcus July 9, 2011 at 9:10 am

Hi Andrew,

During standing mediation the body wants to be quite still. We can achieve this by focusing our mindfulness on the Dan Tien, the energy point just below the belly button. During Energy flow we want to let go and do nothing. During Energy flow we don’t want to be rooted.

Hope that makes sense.

Good to hear from you and thanks for commenting.


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