Increase the Vital Energy Using Shen Kung Practices -- Is Conserving Jing Chi the Key to Increased Strength and Endurance
Although most would agree that one would be hard pressed to find a subject that fans the flames of controversy more than politics and religion, over the years I have discovered that the Taoist Practice known as Sexual Conservation ranks a close third when it comes to conversational topics that are capable of causing heated discussion and arousing passions. The seemingly irreconcilable disagreement over this ancient practice’s ability to increase physical, mental, spiritual, and so-called psychic powers has been debated for centuries and not surprisingly, continues even today.The act of regulating sexual activity, what Taoists refer to as conserving one’s “Jing” Chi, can be traced all the way back to man’s primordial beginnings. Curiously, throughout human history, not only has this ancient practice been an important feature of mysticism and occult practices, it has also been one of the guiding principles in the esoteric form of the internal practice commonly known as Chi Kung. The idea of conserving sexual energy in order to promote the cultivation of the vital energy (Chi), which it is claimed increases one’s physical strength and extends endurance as well as promoting the development of psychic/spiritual powers, is one of the core principles of Taoism and is by no sheer coincidence, an important discipline in the practice of advanced Chinese internal martial arts. According to Taoist teaching, such practice not only promotes longevity (although we would all like to live a long life), perhaps more importantly for the martial artist is the practices ability to replenish and nourish Chi. The vital energy that accumulates or builds up to unprecedented levels as a result of practicing sexual restraint, allows martial artists to engage in the practice commonly referred to as “Chi Circulation.” This ancient Chinese ascetic practice involves circulating the Chi through the body via the Small Heavenly Cycle during what is often referred to as Micro-cosmic Orbit Meditation. And, while most of us are vaguely familiar with the ancient practice, a majority of people associate any form of sexual subjugation with priestly vows, esoteric initiations, and archaic religious disciplines. This general perception which has some factual basis is further supported by the fact that a lifelong commitment to celibacy – which should not be confused with temporary sexual conservation – is one of the highest initiations undertaken by priests, monks and adepts of the world’s oldest religions, mystical orders, and occult societies. Regrettably, it is the tendency to associate theories on regulating sexual activity with these austere religious practices that has made recognizing its functional application in the practice of martial arts all the more difficult. Even though there is ample evidence of the implementation of underlying principles of sexual conservation in a number of well-known health practices such as: Kundalini Yoga, traditional Chinese medicine, Chi Kung and advanced martial arts, as well as many forms of athletics. Far too often the age-old practice is marginalized by modern martial artists as well as most other secular members of society.Familiar examples of the application of the ancient practice’s underlying principles such as: 1) the persistent rumor concerning the U.S. Military’s use of salt petre in the food of military personnel in an effort to harness libidos and curtail sexual activity, 2) professional boxing trainers insistence on banishing women from the pre-fight training camp of male boxers, and 3) the athletic coach’s attempt at enforcing abstinence among their athletes in the days leading up to “the big game,” are all based on the belief that the rewards of sexual restraint such as increased strength and endurance, improved focal abilities and overall physical prowess are all advanced by conserving one’s sexual energy.
Although the enhancement of athletic performance and the rewards to one’s health are undoubtedly important to Taoists, unlike your average martial artist, followers of the ancient Chinese religion are primarily motivated by sexual conservation’s relationship to longevity and its reported ability to harmonize the mind body and spirit. This according to ancient teaching can lead the aspirant to the highest levels of spiritual development or enlightenment. From a medical point of view, one of the most compelling arguments for sexual temperance is traditional Chinese medicine’s assertion that – not only does excessive sexual activity have a negative effect on energy levels by over-taxing the Kidneys creating a condition known as Kidney Yang deficiency, sperm depletion and its relationship with Kidney exhaustion is (according to Chinese medical theory) the primary cause for the loss of vital energy (Chi), sexual dysfunction, and a shortened lifespan. Regulated sexual activity is also part of the more esoteric form of martial arts commonly referred to as Shen Kung. A common feature of this high level martial practice is the temporary sexual abstinence that is required in order to increase the vital energy (Chi) to levels that allow us to circulate it in an orbital fashion through meridians up the midline of the back and down the front of the body through the Small Heavenly Cycle. To read more information on this subject, use the following link: http://seaofchi.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=3776&search=is+conserving+jing&description=true
Because of our tendency toward over-indulgence, it may be necessary to replenish the sexual energy before the practice of Shen Kung can begin in earnest. In this section, we offer several herbal formulas (see below) that will help you to reestablish functional sexual energy levels.